2024 South Dakota Legislature

Gov. Kristi Noem visits troops during the 2019 Golden Coyote Exercise at Rapid City in 2019. (U.S. Army Reserve photo by Spc. Jamaal Turner)

Noem plans to use emergency and disaster money to pay for border troop deployment

BY: - June 2, 2023

Gov. Kristi Noem’s funding source for a troop deployment to the U.S.-Mexico border is the state’s Emergency and Disaster Fund, a revelation that caused a top-ranking legislator to criticize the plan and question its legality. Noem announced the impending troop deployment Thursday in a news release, saying she plans to send at least 50 National […]

Fifth Circuit Court Judge Tony Portra speaks at the Brown County listening session with members of the Indigent Legal Defense Task Force. The meeting was held in the Brown County Courthouse basement in Aberdeen on May 17, 2023. (Makenzie Huber/South Dakota Searchlight)

Officials seek help for counties at first listening session on public defense costs

BY: - May 17, 2023

ABERDEEN — The caseload of defendants who can’t afford a lawyer has increased exponentially in Brown County in recent years, and public defense costs for criminal cases have more than doubled in the last decade in the county and across the state. That’s putting increased pressure on the county to cover the costs for the […]

Erica Schipper is an OB-GYN physician practicing in Sioux Falls. (Joshua Haiar/South Dakota Searchlight)

Physicians feel ‘trapped’ by SD’s abortion trigger law. They’re hoping to change it.

BY: - May 13, 2023

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second story in a three-part series about the impacts of South Dakota’s abortion ban. The first story examined the number of South Dakotans leaving the state for abortions. The third story looks at the effects of the abortion ban on the recruitment and retention of OB-GYNs. A wave of dread […]

Houses under construction. (Getty Images)

$200 million in housing infrastructure funding likely to lie dormant for a second year

BY: - April 20, 2023

A $200 million pool of housing infrastructure funding will likely go unspent for another construction season, despite efforts by lawmakers to push the money out in 2023. The interim director of the South Dakota Housing Development Authority broke that news to the Legislature’s Executive Board Thursday during its first meeting since the end of the […]

(Daria Nipot/Getty Images)

Child care needs greater attention from the Legislature

BY: - April 6, 2023

Veto day may have been the official end of the legislative session, but it did not mean the end of legislative work. The work of lawmakers continues past those nine weeks in the winter as veto day also marks the start of the summer study season. On veto day, the Legislature’s Executive Board met to […]

The South Dakota House of Representatives chamber at the Capitol in Pierre. (Joshua Haiar/South Dakota Searchlight)

Legislature will tackle county funding and long term care in summer studies

BY: - March 27, 2023

The 2023 legislative session ended Monday, but legislators are already preparing and researching issues ahead of the 2024 session. The Legislature will conduct two summer studies this year focusing on long term care sustainability as well as county funding and mandated services, the Executive Board decided Monday. The summer studies allow legislators to learn about […]