The Legislature yesterday put its seal of approval on Governor Kristi Noem’s illegal use of federal coronavirus relief dollars to cover ordinary state expenses:
South Dakota senators voted 34-0 Thursday for reducing state government’s general-fund spending for the current budget by $167 million and offsetting a lot of it with federal COVID-19 aid.
…“The majority of those general fund cuts were due to federal dollars,” Chris Karr said. Taffy Howard praised him and the rest of the committee for opening the budget-assembly process. “It was a record year as excess revenue went,” she said. Representatives backed it 58-11 [Bob Mercer, “S.D. Lawmakers Tap Federal Coronavirus Funds and Stretch State Government’s Current Budget,” KELO-TV, 2021.03.11].
The federal CARES Act said aid to states was to be spent responding to the coronavirus pandemic and was not to be spent on expenses accounted for in the regularly enacted state budget. But I guess no one will get impeached for this violation of federal law and public trust, because everyone is complicit (except for eleven radical rightwing extremists in the House who wouldn’t vote to spend tax dollars on water if their grandma’s house were on fire).