Congress should work to make health insurance more affordable by controlling costs and stabilizing the market, and we are pleased to see a growing number of senators stand up for this approach. The Senate should immediately reject efforts to ‘repeal’ the current system and replace sometime later. This could leave millions of Americans without coverage. The best next step is for both parties to come together and do what we can all agree on: fix out unstable insurance markets. Going forward, it is critically important that governors are brought to the table to provide input, and we stand ready to work with lawmakers in an open, bipartisan way to provide better insurance for all Americans [Governors’ statement on U.S. Senate health care bill, tweeted by Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, 2017.07.18].
“CDBG funds assist projects that improve living conditions for our state’s residents,” said Gov. Daugaard. “These six grants are in addition to eight other grants awarded in December. Because we have so many community-minded leaders who continue to prove their commitment to their towns and cities, we’ve now awarded more than $6 million for projects totaling more than $23 million, and that’s something I think we can all be proud of.”
The CDBG awards include the following:
The city of Blunt will use a $515,000 grant to make improvements to the city’s wastewater infrastructure and treatment lagoons.
The city of Faith was approved for a $515,000 grant to upgrade its wastewater system.
The city of Lake Andes was approved for a $750,000 grant to upgrade the city’s wastewater system.
The town of Langford will use a $565,000 grant for construction of a new drinking water storage system and increase the capacity of the city’s water infrastructure.
The city of Newell was approved for a $324,370 grant to assist with replacing the city’s water mains.
The city of Veblen will use a $765,000 grant to make improvements to its wastewater infrastructure and collection ponds [Governor Dennis Daugaard, press release, 2017.06.22].
Hmmm… by that budget rationale, the White House is saying that Governor Daugaard is mistaken when he claims these Community Development Block Grants “assist projects that improve living conditions.” Perhaps Governor Daugaard will recant and admit that those billions of dollars will do more to improve the living conditions of Trump’s rich friends via tax breaks.
As the waters of nonmeandered lakes expanded, so did their recreational use, much of which is tied to exceptional fishing in some of the new lakes. As fishing became more commonplace, so did conflicts between sportsmen and landowners. Complaints emerged about boat trailers blocking roadways, littering, noise and many others [Gov. Dennis Daugaard, press release, 2017.06.08 (though curiously labeled April 21)].
The Governor mentions no problems about recreational users not getting to enjoy their rights. Landowners are squeaking, and the draft legislation coming up Monday in our special session is designed to grease their wheels.
A compromise generally means all parties are giving something up and meeting in the middle. This legislation has the public giving up water and private landowners giving up gaining new authority while giving up little to nothing.
*Related Language Note: The award for best headline synonym for this arcane term goes to KJAM Radio, which tagged its Thursday story on the topic, “Governor Calls Special Session About Lakes on Private Land.” Much clearer, only two characters longer in print, and same number of characters if hashtagged! #NonmeaneredWaters vs. #LakesOnPrivateLand—well done, KJAM! But they lose a bonus point for referring to “sportsmen” rather than a more sex-inclusive “fishers and hunters.”
After years of precedent set by Barack Obama, President Donald Trump is breaking from tradition by failing to recognize June as LGBT Pride Month.
On the final day of May, the president issued five separate proclamations, choosing June to honor Caribbean-American heritage, African-American music, homeownership, the outdoors and the ocean. (Reporters and comedians alike noted the irony of the last two, in light of Trump pulling the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement last week.) An acknowledgement of June as a historic month for LGBT people was nowhere to be found [Claire Shaffer, “Trump’s White House Won’t Acknowledge June as LGBT Pride Month, Even as Everyone Else Does,” Newsweek, 2017.06.05].
Sioux Falls Pride borrows this platform for the march from the Twin Cities rally:
We demand equal rights and protection from discrimination for all LGBTQ+ people, without an exemption for any religious based organizations, businesses or personal religious beliefs.
We demand the end to violence against our LGBTQ+ community, especially the continual violence toward transgender women of color, and demand effective prosecution of these hate crimes.
We demand protections for our transgender youth so they are not bullied and have the right to use the bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their identified gender.
We demand more access to shelters, emergency housing, and affordable housing for all LGBTQ+ homeless youth.
We demand a culture shift that acknowledges, respects, and celebrates the existence of bisexual and bi+ people and works to end biphobia and bi erasure.
We demand affordable healthcare for all people in our country and demand increased resources to address the large health disparities present in the bisexual and transgender communities and among all LGBTQ+ youth.
We demand support, respect, and community inclusion for people with disabilities, both seen and unseen, to have the resources and support they need to live full and satisfying lives.
We demand that more resources are put towards changing the rape culture in this country and ending sexual and domestic violence.
We demand accountability and an end to police violence against marginalized members of our community, including people of color and transgender people.
We demand resources to create equity for all people of color, low-income people, and other disenfranchised communities.
We demand that all immigrants in our country are treated with compassion, dignity, and respect, whether documented or undocumented, as they search for a better life for themselves and their families.
We demand an end to islamophobia and antisemitism and call on our communities to unite to protect both Muslim people and Jewish people from violence and discrimination.
We demand the global condemnation of the concentration camps in Chechnya and the persecution of the LGBTQ+ community throughout the world [Sioux Falls Pride, Equality March Platform, Facebook event, retrieved 2017.06.08].
Governor Dennis Daugaard has called a special session of the South Dakota Legislature on Monday, June 12 (that’s next week!) to discuss who can fish where:
Gov. Dennis Daugaard has called a special legislative session to consider legislation relating to public recreational use of non-meandered waters overlying private property.
After consulting with legislative leaders from both political parties, the Governor is calling the special session for Monday, June 12, 2017, at 10 a.m. CDT, at the State Capitol in Pierre.
“The interim legislative committee considered hours of testimony and struck a good compromise that balanced the rights of landowners with the ability for sportsmen to use public waters for recreation,” said the Governor. “I hope the Legislature can act quickly to resolve this long-standing issue” [Governor Dennis Daugaard, press release, 2017.06.07].
Gov. Dennis Daugaard said Monday that he would consider allowing South Dakota to opt out of the Affordable Care Act’s pre-existing conditions rules if a Republican repeal bill makes it through the Senate.
…The Republican governor said that many South Dakota residents have expressed a desire to keep the rules but might not realize the extent to which they can create a financial burden for the state.
“I think most citizens are probably not conscious of the cost so a responsible government has to weigh both sides,” Daugaard said. “We want to give as much benefit, particularly in health, as you can afford, but you have to be able to afford it” [Dana Ferguson, “Daugaard Would Consider Pre-Existing Condition Waiver,” that Sioux Falls paper, 2017.05.08].
Governor Daugaard acknowledges that “many” South Dakotans want to keep the ACA rules that prevent insurers from pricing folks with pre-existing conditions out of their insurance, but he dismisses that popular sentiment as ill-informed. The Governor here affirms the arrogance of South Dakota Republicans, who view any popular disagreement with their ideological agenda as error or ignorance that they can ignore.
But what’s that last line about affordability? If you can’t afford insurance, and if Grandpa Cheap thinks the state can’t afford to help, we’re just going to let you go bankrupt? Or die?
Dennis Daugaard, Kristi Noem, Mike Rounds, Donald Trump—they are the death panel.
If the Trump Congress offers waivers to states to do their dirty work against the Affordable Care Act for them, then it becomes more important than ever for South Dakota Democrats to field a passionate populist Democrat who will turn to South Dakotans and promise, “I will not take your health insurance away. I will not sign a Trumpcare waiver.”
Governor Daugaard says the bill is different from other legislation around the country. Daugaard says to some extent South Dakota is compared to North Carolina which experienced a big backlash from business for its stance on transgender.
“If anything, I think South Dakota is compared favorably to places like that, and seen as a more tolerant state than might otherwise be the case.”
Daugaard vetoed a bill last year that placed restrictions on the use of public restrooms and locker rooms by transgender students. He says that may have stalled similar action this year [Jack Taylor, “Daugaard Says South Dakota Is Not Like North Carolina,” KELO Radio, 2017.05.02].
KSFY sent Bridget Bennett to San Francisco to see what locals think of South Dakota’s inclusiveness and their city’s ban on city-funded travel and business with South Dakota and other discriminatory places. San Franciscans sound barely aware of South Dakota in general, let alone our discriminatory laws, but no one Bennett talked to said South Dakota is right to discriminate against LGBT parents:
“People are people and good people make good parents,” [Galen] Maloney, a homeless youth counselor said. “That’s the most important thing, especially when you’re talking about adoption and people just wanting to feel loved.”
Everyone Bennett met in San Francisco shared the same view that LGBT families should have equal rights.
“I think families come in all sorts of forms and shapes and to be part of an alternative family in a state that is a little more conservative, it can definitely be harder and creates a lot more pressure as a family unit,” [Mario] Sosa said.
So even while city employees may not travel to South Dakota that often, San Francisco’s symbolic ban could influence other residents’ travel plans.
“Nobody is going to want to come visit your state,” [Brian] Parent said. “They’re going to be afraid to visit your state, they’re not going to feel welcome and that’s what you should want is people visiting you and seeing what your lifestyle is like and no one is going to want to go there” [Bridget Bennett, “San Francisco Community Discusses Intent of South Dakota Ban,” KSFY, 2017.05.01].
South Dakota—Not as Bigoted as North Carolina!…hmmm…. Governor Daugaard, that line won’t work any better than South Dakota—Not as Deadly as Mars!
I don’t have any plans to endorse anybody at this point. I think we’ve got two very good declared candidates in Kristi Noem and Marty Jackley. They’re going to be very credible candidates [Gov. Dennis Daugaard, transcribed from audio, “No Endorsement from Gov. Daugaard in Race for Governor,” HubCityRadio.com, 2017.04.19].
Daugaard also repeats in this interview that he’s choosing retirement (he’ll be 65 next year), the farm, and grandkids over running for any more offices after he finishes his second term in the Governor’s office. But Daugaard still has lots of money to talk for him: as of February 6, his campaign account still held $1,132,008.80. His year-end report shows $36,000 spent on Legislative candidates, $55,000 against the nonpartisan open primary amendment, $26,325 on his own party, and a few thousand in spare change on big county parties, GOP PACs, and $250 for Rapid City Right to Life.
Other emergency situations and natural disasters? Come on—such events are not the intent of the law. As we discussed before Daugaard removed the martial-law provisions of the original draft of SB 176, the Governor already has extraordinary powers to deal with emergencies and disasters. The watered-down SB 176 only allows the Governor to kick people off public land and harass folks stopped along a road. ***Update 09:05 CDT: SB 176 does add the ability to charge individuals who enter a disaster area without authorization with Class 1 misdemeanor criminal trespass, but that only adds subsequent punishment to the immediate disaster-area powers the Governor has to forcibly detain and evacuate individuals.***
Don’t let the Governor buffalo you: SB 176 doesn’t enhance public safety in emergency situations. It seeks to turn public protest into “emergencies” that warrant police crackdowns.
Medicaid historically had been reserved for only the poorest and sickest, but the ACA opened it up to the lower middle class. States that expanded the program have experienced many benefits. For example, uninsured rates dropped — dramatically in some states — as did uncompensated care.
“Medicaid is such a fabric on the health system. Now, there are very few — if any — policy reasons not to expand,” says Adam Searing, associate professor at Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families.
Medicaid expansion has been a highly partisan issue. But the debate at the federal level has revealed that there’s more bipartisan support — among voters and policymakers — for expanding Medicaid than previously thought. Republican governors arguably scored the biggest win with the demise of Paul Ryan’s plan because now they will likely take less political heat for expanding Medicaid and can claim credit for insuring more of their residents [Mattie Quinn, “Failed Health Bill Fuels New Momentum for Expanding Medicaid,” Governing, 2017.03.29].