Press "Enter" to skip to content

IM 22 Doesn’t Affect City Officials

Also adding to the fog on the Anti-Corruption Act is Aberdeen city attorney Ron Wager, who suggests IM 22 could complicate his life:

Aberdeen City Attorney Ron Wager said the new law is complicated, and there’s potential for city officials to be affected.

“I don’t have a lot of information at this point,” he said. “I’m not sure what the impact will be.”

Wager said the South Dakota Municipal League is studying the measure and its impact on city elected officials and appointed board members [Elisa Sand, “Passage of IM 22 Halts Legislators’ Events,” Aberdeen American News, 2016.11.27].

Unlikely, Mr. Wager. The Anti-Corruption Act does not impose any new requirements on municipal officials. Its new campaign finance requirements apply only down to the county level. The $100 limit on gifts from lobbyists (Section 31) only apply to gifts to “an elected state officer, legislative official or staffperson, or executive department official or staffperson,” not municipal officials. IM 22’s extension of the “revolving door” ban from one year to two (Section 65) applies only to officials serving in state government. The only new item in IM 22 concerning city officials lies in Section 33, which forbids all elected or appointed officials “of the state or any of its political subdivisions” cannot serve on the state ethics commission (Section 33).

I welcome Mr. Wager and the Municipal League to parse the Anti-Corruption Act for municipal implications that I may have missed. But my reading says city officials will see no new work coming their way from the Anti-Corruption Act.


  1. Tim 2016-11-27 10:26

    Rapid City’s “good ol boy” network can breathe a sigh of relief.

  2. grudznick 2016-11-27 13:27

    Yet another problem with the IM #22. If there is corruption anywhere it is likely at the city level. Maybe not so much in Rapid City but if you pay attention to Hot Springs and the blogs about Sioux Falls you know this to be true.

  3. Roger Elgersma 2016-11-27 14:07

    typical lawyer. Put enough doubt on a clear picture and they will get themselves a job to explain the problem. This method also is used to confuse the public into thinking that they do not have a brain that can write law correctly. This is the first step in causing enough confusion that people accept a good law getting thrown out. They start out with uncertainty.
    At a farm meeting in Sioux Falls over ten years ago they had a panel of experts to address some new issue on factory farms and what laws could be passed to deal with it. They had a judge on the panel and he started out with, ‘I do not know what we would do if that law passed.’ The farmer in charge politely told the judge to then just sit down and shut up if he did not know what he was doing. They had asked him to come so they could get some information on what courts think is constitutional or reasonable. I do not know if the judge simply had not studied the issue or if he was intentionally causing distrust to divert the issue if he had a personal agenda against it. He might have been a real slick talker to evade the issue but he came off as uninformed to the farmers. In fact he had given no information at all.

  4. grudznick 2016-11-27 14:16

    Farmers and out-of-state big money special interest groups should not write South Dakota law bills. They make a hash of it.

  5. Donald Pay 2016-11-27 16:50


    Just to let you in on what isn’t much of a secret, a lot of legislation supposedly written by “legislators” is not written by them. It is handed to them by big money special interests. I hope you can agree with me that Legislators should not meet with and do the bidding of these big money special interests, especially taking bills from them to introduce into the legislature. What legislation do you propose to do away with this type of corruption? You seem to have a lot of criticism of the Anti-Corruption Bill, but have very little to propose for a solution to rampant corruption in South Dakota. When like you people carp, but have nothing to offer, I tend to write them off as cranks.

  6. grudznick 2016-11-27 17:01

    I would tell you, Mr. Pay, that I might be cranky sometimes but not as much as Mr. H has been lately. I agree with you that all these out-of-state big money special interests need to get outlawed and done away with. The donation things seem reasonable enough but taking public money away from taxpayers to put libbie candidates on a more even footing by itself smacks of silliness. I submit that no hot dog ever bought a vote and that the word “corruption” is too often used by many in an attempt to drum it into people’s heads as if it were true. To quote a recent blogging from a usually somewhat reasonable fellow here:

    “I also get the impression that the extremists dedicated to their radical misportrayal of reality are more dedicated to clicking their propaganda into online-virality than we relatively moderate fact-based citizens are to wrting and spreading our own defenses of fact.”

  7. Porter Lansing 2016-11-27 19:02

    Deb Peters:
    You’ll be pushed into national humiliation as the face of corruption that disrespected the will of the voters. Are you ready to be the villain? The rest of the plaintiffs will be nowhere around when 60 Minutes, CNN and PBS drag you personally through the slough of sleaze. And for what? Because you refuse to be told what to do? You’ve not come to grips with the fact that the voters of South Dakota believe you aren’t trustworthy and demand an ethics commission to watch you. And why wouldn’t they? That you’re challenging their legally passed initiative immediately is proof positive you’re unethical. Either do what’s right and follow the law and no one will notice or fight the voters and you’ll be characterized nationally as Dakota’s Drama Diva. This isn’t the 1990’s. The news from South Dakota is now seen by all, judged by all and this one stinks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.