Kristi Noem

The Senate floor in the South Dakota Capitol at Pierre. (Joshua Haiar/South Dakota Searchlight)

Governor shouldn’t be the one to choose replacement legislators

BY: - November 24, 2023

Two Republican legislators from Rapid City have resigned. Sen. Jessica Castleberry of District 35 had to resign so she can get busy repaying $600,000 in pandemic relief funding she received through state government, in violation of the Legislature’s ethics rules. Rep. Jess Olson of District 34 said she resigned for health reasons. According to The […]

Gov. Kristi Noem recruits welders to move to South Dakota in one of her office's Freedom Works Here campaign ads. (Courtesy of Governor's Office)

Noem announces second phase of workforce campaign after legislators question first phase

BY: - November 15, 2023

Governor Kristi Noem on Wednesday announced a $1.5 million second phase of a national workforce recruitment campaign that has featured her as the star, after lawmakers expressed concerns earlier this week about a $5 million contract for the first phase. “We are continuing to recruit Freedom-loving Americans from across the country to come live and […]

The Legislature's Appropriations Committee meets Nov. 13, 2023, at the Capitol in Pierre. (Joshua Haiar/South Dakota Searchlight)

Some lawmakers frustrated by lack of specific data from governor’s workforce campaign

BY: - November 13, 2023

PIERRE — Some lawmakers expressed frustration Monday upon learning the state’s $5 million workforce recruitment campaign — which includes television ads featuring Gov. Kristi Noem — is not directly measuring how many workers it recruits.  Members of the Legislature’s Appropriations Committee heard a report from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development that included information on […]

Legislators and guests wait for Gov. Kristi Noem to deliver her budget address on Dec. 6, 2022, in the House chamber at the Capitol in Pierre. (Joshua Haiar/SD Searchlight)

Noem sets budget mood, but are legislators in a mood to follow?

BY: - November 8, 2023

With her annual budget address set for Dec. 5, Gov. Kristi Noem used her last weekly newspaper column of October to help set the mood for the coming legislative session. The mood she’s going for: overwhelmingly conservative. For the past few years, the state had enjoyed strong economic growth coupled with a windfall of federal […]

Jessica Eagle Star helps her son Noran across the monkey bars at the park in Winner on Aug. 29, 2023. (Makenzie Huber/South Dakota Searchlight)

The Lost Children: Overrepresentation of Native American children in the SD foster care system

BY: and - November 6, 2023

South Dakota officials have known Native American children are overrepresented in the foster care system for nearly 50 years. The Indian Child Welfare Act, a 1978 federal law, was meant to tackle the problem not just in the state but across the country at a time when Native children were regularly removed from their families. […]

The minimum security center of the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls, pictured on Feb. 16, 2023. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Noem issues 40 more pardons since April

BY: - November 3, 2023

Gov. Kristi Noem has issued 40 pardons since April, according to records on file with the Secretary of State’s Office. The pardons bring the total number issued by Gov. Noem since the start of her first term to 268. The Board of Pardons and Paroles offers recommendations on pardons to the governor, but South Dakota’s […]

Governor Kristi Noem signs a bill into law that bans transgender women from playing in women's sports during the end of the 2022 legislative session. (Courtesy of Governor's Office)

Governors risk NCAA ramifications with opposition to transgender policy, scholar says

BY: - November 1, 2023

Governors criticizing an NCAA policy on transgender student athletes may put their universities at risk of “penalties or ramifications” if those institutions disobey the policy, according to a sports law scholar.  Joshua Lens is an assistant professor of recreation and sport management at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, who wrote an article on NCAA transgender […]

Gov. Kristi Noem delivers her annual budget address Dec. 6, 2023, at the Capitol in Pierre. (Makenzie Huber/SD Searchlight)

Noem foreshadows ‘back to normal’ budget

BY: - October 27, 2023

Gov. Kristi Noem says state revenues are falling “back to normal.” Noem focused her weekly column Friday on fiscal matters. She’s preparing to deliver her annual budget address to the Legislature on Dec. 5. “It is important to realize that this year’s budget will look more ‘normal’ than it has the last several years,” Noem […]

Gov. Kristi Noem speaks Sept. 8, 2023, during a rally at The Monument in Rapid City featuring former President Donald Trump. (Seth Tupper/South Dakota Searchlight)

South Dakota taxpayer dollars spent to make governor look good

BY: - October 22, 2023

Gov. Kristi Noem is a little young to be suffering from long-term memory loss, but she seems to be forgetting this statement she made to the Legislature during her 2022 budget address: “I recognize that taxpayer dollars are not our own – they belong to the people of South Dakota. We all must remember throughout […]

Gov. Kristi Noem with members of the South Dakota National Guard in Texas at the U.S.-Mexico border in September 2023. (Courtesy of the Governor's Office)

Mum’s the word: When questioned, Noem administration stays quiet

BY: - October 16, 2023

It may be best if journalists in South Dakota took a three-year break from asking questions of Gov. Kristi Noem or anyone in her administration. It would be less frustrating for them and they would likely have just as much information as they would if they kept asking questions for the last 36 months of […]

Gov. Kristi Noem and Corey Lewandowski. (South Dakota Searchlight composite from Getty Images)

Noem-Lewandowski relationship doesn’t have to be an affair to be inappropriate

BY: - October 13, 2023

After reporting that Gov. Kristi Noem is allegedly having an extramarital affair, Ken Silverstein suffered a memory lapse. It happened on the Dakota Town Hall podcast. The hosts wanted to know if Silverstein’s Sept. 15 story about Noem was his first about South Dakota politics.  Silverstein struggled with his answer — “I don’t think that’s […]

The South Dakota Board of Regents meets on Oct. 5, 2023, at South Dakota Mines in Rapid City. (Seth Tupper/South Dakota Searchlight)

Regents request control of whistleblower hotline; Noem says ‘no planned changes’

BY: - October 5, 2023

UPDATED 3:40 p.m. Central, 10/5/23 RAPID CITY — The board that oversees South Dakota’s public universities has requested control over the governor’s whistleblower hotline for higher education, but the Governor’s Office said there are “no planned changes.” News of the request came from Jeff Partridge, a member of the Board of Regents, during a meeting […]