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All Three Daugaard Vetoes Stand

Nobody overrides Dennis Daugaard’s vetoes. Not this year.

The South Dakota Legislature convened this morning to consider three gubernatorial vetoes issued Friday. None of the vetoes survived their first chamber.

The Senate let die Senate Bill 94, a revision of the criteria for homeschoolers to qualify for the Opportunity Scholarship. Prime sponsor Senator Jack Kolbeck (R-13/Sioux Falls) managed to keep 21 of the 25 ayes his bill won way back in January, but he needed 24 to override the veto. Senator Kolbeck said the bill only brought fairness to homeschoolers by allowing them to qualify for the Opportunity Scholarship by the same criteria as public- and private-school students: 24 on the ACT and a transcript with the proper classes instead of the current 28 ACT requirement. However, Senator Justin Cronin (R-23/Gettysburg) contended (and you can read SDCL 13-55-31 to see if you agree) that current law already allows homeschoolers the fairness SB 94 seeks: Cronin says homeschoolers can qualify with a 24 ACT if they follow the same coursework as regular school students.

At the same time, the House bailed on House Bill 1188, which would have mandated goals, outcomes, performance measures, and more bureaucracy for higher ed scholarship programs. (They voted the same time as I was covering the Senate, so I missed the count—stayed tuned for LRC’s posting!)

Then the House did in House Bill 1268, which would have allowed legislators to prefile bills as early as July 1 in odd years but capped their bill submissions to ten. I kind of liked HB 1268 when I first heard it—the early submission, but not the bill cap!—but speeches by Reps. Mark Willadsen (R-11/Sioux Falls) and Larry Rhoden (R-29/Union Center) touched my old conservative nerves. They noted that if legislators want more public input on bill drafts, nothing is stopping them from seeking that input right now by publicizing their efforts without locking text into filed form in the LRC hopper. Rep. Willadsen even made the radical suggestion that the Executive Board (which meets shortly!) could order the LRC to create a separate webpage where legislators could post bill drafts for public review. (Yes! Do the bill wiki!) HB 1268 drew 39 votes, eighteen fewer than it got three weeks ago in its final concurrence vote in the House and eight fewer than it needed to overcome the Governor’s seemable unovercomable veto pen.

Both chambers approved the Governor’s two style-and-form veto recommendations. The only dissent came from Rep. Kevin Jensen (R-16/Canton), who resisted the Governor’s audacious suggestion that the Legislature strike a superfluous “and” from Senate Bill 90.

Governor Daugaard has issued 28 substantive vetoes in the last eight Sessions. The Legislature overrode two vetoes in 2011one veto in 2012 and one veto in 2015.


  1. grudznick 2018-03-26 19:49

    Mr. H, when you are covering the legislatures do you get to sit up high in the balcony with the PBS camera crew or down low with the print beat writers in that little bullpen they have?

  2. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-03-27 07:11

    I sat in the press box on the floor three years ago at Bob Mercer’s invitation. It was fun… and it was useful to have a full desk at my disposal for my computer and camera. However, the gallery offers better angles, and multiple angles.

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