On September 20, Christine Erickson, president of the South Dakota Trucking Association, and Lorin Pankratz, lobbyist for the South Dakota Pork Producers Council, organized “Sioux Falls Open for Business“, a municipal ballot question committee to fight Smart Growth Sioux Falls’s ballot initiative seeking to block construction of the Wholestone Farms hog slaughterhouse in Sioux Falls. On Wednesday, SFOB filed its first campaign finance report, showing $169,134 in income, $36,922.99 spent, and $132,211.01 on hand for the remaining month of campaigning.
The biggest donation to the Vote No campaign is $125,000 from the South Dakota Soybean Association, which evidently hopes to sell more feed to all those little piggies. Wholestone Farms’ parent company, Pipestone Holdings, has chipped in another $10,000, and Wholestone boss Luke Minion is in for another $5,000.
Take out Minion’s cash, and SFOB reports $26,085 in itemized individual contributions. 78.8% of those contributions, 33 of the 46 listed, came from addresses outside South Dakota. Only seven individual donors besides Minion list Sioux Falls addresses. Three corporate donations totaling $1,650 come from Kingston, Illinois.
Meanwhile, slaughterhouse-ban proponents Smart Growth Sioux Falls report $80,849 in new contributions in September, $31,444 in new spending, and $59,932.43 on hand. 23.5% of their itemized individual contributions come from Minnesota; the rest comes from South Dakota addresses. $22,500 comes from seven donors in Sioux Falls or Brandon; $10,000 comes from Brian Gunderson of North Sioux City.
86% of proponent corporate money came from Sioux Falls addresses; $5,000 came from the Bockorny Group of Washington, DC. The Minneapolis law firm of Robins Kaplan kicked in $1,000 from its PAC.