Sioux Falls

Early Learner South Dakota Executive Director Kayla Klein, left, talks with Lake Area Improvement Corporation Executive Director Brooke Rollag during a session at the Early Learner Summit on Sept. 21, 2023, in Brookings. (Makenzie Huber/South Dakota Searchlight)

City leaders fund child care center with tax district typically used for roads, sewer

BY: - November 22, 2023

Brooke Rollag cannot work without child care. The mother of four is the economic development director for the Lake Area Improvement Corporation in Madison. Her job is to understand what businesses need to locate and expand in the area. And in Madison, those businesses need child care. “Child care is infrastructure,” Rollag said. “When you […]

The sign for the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds, as pictured on Dec. 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Severe weather becoming larger factor for concert-goers, fair director says

BY: - November 21, 2023

SIOUX FALLS — Insurance coverage allowed South Dakota’s most well-attended fair to avoid the sting of financial loss in 2023. Sioux Empire Fair Director Scott Wick told Minnehaha County commissioners on Tuesday that a severe weather shutdown on two separate days could have tanked the fair’s profitability, but a $313,000 insurance payout and strong attendance […]

Falls Park in Sioux Falls. (Makenzie Huber/South Dakota Searchlight)

‘We’re going to have these conversations’: New sustainability coalition forms in Sioux Falls

BY: - November 16, 2023

A newly formed coalition is encouraging more conversation around sustainability efforts and policy in Sioux Falls and South Dakota. The Sioux Falls Sustainability Coalition is made up of already established organizations in South Dakota, including environmental groups SoDak350, Citizens’ Climate Lobby (which has chapters in Sioux Falls and Rapid City) and Dakota Rural Action, as […]

James "Jim" Dover, president and CEO of Avera Health. (Courtesy of Avera)

South Dakota-based health system chooses new leader

BY: - September 20, 2023

One of the state’s major health systems has a new leader. James “Jim” Dover has been named the next president and CEO of Sioux Falls-based Avera Health, one of the largest not-for-profit rural health care systems in the Midwest. His first day with Avera will be Oct. 23. Dover joins Avera following Bob Sutton’s resignation […]

Metro Communications Director Mike Gramlick (right), talks to city leaders and reporters during a June 2023 tour of the office that will soon house 911 dispatchers in Sioux Falls. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Sioux Falls aims to boost efficiency at state’s busiest regional 911 call center

BY: - September 7, 2023

For more than a fifth of South Dakota’s population, a call to 911 puts them in touch with someone from Metro Communications in downtown Sioux Falls. Despite its size and its role in public safety, Metro Communications doesn’t have its own legal team or human resources staff. That’s led to a host of headaches for […]

Officer Aaron Klein of the Sioux Falls Police Department fuels up at a Street Department facility on June 22, 2023. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Supply chain struggles complicate cities’ transition to electric vehicles

BY: - July 5, 2023

Morgan Jackson would love to get a few more gas-electric hybrids for the Sioux Falls Police Department. The SFPD’s four hybrids are 25-37% cheaper to fuel than the rest of the fleet. That’s no small savings for police cruisers, which average 30,000 miles a year. Non-hybrids burn up an average of $43,000 a month in […]

Eric Gage, the executive director of the Veterans Community Project in Sioux Falls, hangs a flag on one of the five tiny homes that will soon house homeless veterans. The project held a ribbon cutting on May 9, 2023. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

First tiny homes for vets ready in Sioux Falls

BY: - May 9, 2023

SIOUX FALLS – Project managers and advocates threw open the doors of the first five tiny homes for veterans in Sioux Falls on Tuesday morning. The homes are the first in a planned village of transitional housing for homeless veterans in southeast South Dakota. The village is about a mile from downtown Sioux Falls, tucked […]

Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Sioux Falls, like the state, turns down climate funding after Rapid City applies

BY: - April 28, 2023

Sioux Falls has decided not to seek federal grant money to reduce greenhouse gases and other air pollution, following Rapid City’s decision to apply for the funding.  Meanwhile, South Dakota is one of four state governments that declined to participate in the Climate Pollution Reduction Grant program. The program would have provided the state with […]

Sioux Falls as seen from Falls Park, on the Big Sioux River. (Seth Tupper/South Dakota Searchlight)

Will the state’s biggest city be small-thinking or visionary on the climate?

BY: - April 8, 2023

Have Sioux Falls voters elected leaders with narrow minds and small thinking, or visionaries with strategic plans and goals for a better Sioux Falls?   In February, Mayor Paul TenHaken announced that the detailed, carefully considered, and widely vetted city Sustainability Plan with clear goals and objective measures was being replaced by a framework of phony […]

(USDA Photo by Lance Cheung)

Nonprofit tagged to enroll low income South Dakotans in monthly internet discount program

BY: - January 10, 2023

A Sioux Falls nonprofit is one of five recipients nationally of a new grant to connect people to the internet. Roughly one in six South Dakotans don’t have access to high-speed internet, according to state data from 2021. In Sioux Falls, the state’s largest city, roughly 15% of households lack internet access at home or […]

Jack Fonder is the community health worker for The Transformation Project in Sioux Falls. He was hired in September 2022. (Courtesy of Jack Fonder)

Transgender employee at center of contract controversy pledges to fight on

BY: - December 30, 2022

Jack Fonder trusted his doctor. He’d spent years under her care, and she understood his medical history. But that changed when he transitioned. “It was one of the worst experiences I’ve ever had,” he recalled. Fonder is a transgender man – a person whose gender identity is as a man, but was assigned female sex […]

Hibachi Grill and Supreme Buffet in Sioux Falls. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Feds recover $280,000 in back wages and damages from Hibachi Grill

BY: - December 15, 2022

The U.S. Department of Labor has recovered $279,070 from a Sioux Falls buffet restaurant that paid kitchen workers a flat monthly salary and denied them overtime wages for hours over 40 in a workweek, the department announced Thursday in a news release. An investigation by the department’s Wage and Hour Division found Hibachi Grill & Supreme […]