On August 25, the Governor’s Office of Economic Development reported on its corporate-socialism handouts to the Government Operations and Audit Committee. The report includes this table of $29.6 million in Reinvestment Payment Program tax rebates approved to build or expand fourteen businesses around the state in Fiscal Year 2023:
The recipient of the most RPP funds is Gevo, which proposes to build a renewable jet fuel plant in Lake Norden. Four entities connected to that ambitious plan—Gevo Net-Zero, Lakeside Biogas, Dakota Renewable Hydrogen, and Kingsbury County Wind Fuel—received a total of $18.85 million in tax rebates, nearly 64% of the RPP’s FY2023 payouts. Gevo now says it may cancel its project and take its 113 promised jobs elsewhere if South Dakota doesn’t approve the Summit Carbon Solutions carbon dioxide pipeline.
The next luckiest RPP recipient is Riverside LLP, which got $4.4 million to build the new Redstone Dairy in Kingsbury County. Riverside is quick to point out that it doesn’t put that $4.4 million in its pocket; Riverside’s contract with the state requires it to pass that $4.4 million on to Kingsbury County as a thank-you for the county’s approval of Redstone’s CAFO permit. Riverside will seek a similar $4.5M CAFO bribe for its proposed dairy on the Arnold/Noem family land in Hamlin County.
GOED figures that its $29.6M in tax kickbacks have created or retained (or will create or retain) the equivalent of 917 full-time jobs. That’s a bit more than $32K per job. The RPP grants spend much less per job in business expansions—$474 per job at Phase Technologies in Rapid City, apparently the best return on GOED dollars in this list. Jobs at the Redstone Dairy come at a cost to the state of $55K each; jobs at Gevo’s four entities need $167K each in socialist support.
The jobs that GOED thinks are worth $32K a pop represent 0.19% of South Dakota’s workforce. The other 482,200 workers in South Dakota somehow manage to keep showing up for work and drawing paychecks without the state sending their employers $32K per worker in corporate welfare.