This week saw a good number of new bills introduced. Bill introductions are wrapping up and hearing schedules are filling up. Action on bills will now tie to “crossover day” which is February 25. That is the last date by which legislation must pass its house of origin in order to move forward. Under South Dakota law, all bills must be heard by a legislative committee. So, the legislature has until February 25 to hold a committee hearing for all bills that are introduced and to pass any bills from their House of origin. The governor held a signing ceremony in the rotunda of the capitol building to sign the first bill of the session – a bill to allow South Dakota citizens to carry a concealed weapon in the state without a permit. Nursing home funding appears to be the key spending issue before the legislature this year. Several bills have been introduced to address that topic. In arts news, HB 1156 has been introduced to replace the fiddle with the accordion as the official state musical instrument.
Stockgrowers’ Legislative Issues
Agland Valuation SB 4, to perform a pre-implementation simulation of updated agland assessment standards, was heard in Senate Tax on Thursday. The hearing was not completed. Testimony was taken but, committee action was deferred to next week. The original bill, which would have stricken several sections of the original productivity act, was completely replaced with language that authorized the simulation that will be done in 10-12 representative counties in order to test application of most probable and actual use valuation methodologies. Opposition testimony centered on the terms of the original bill and opponents shared concerns that striking the original language would damage landowners and would particularly damage plaintiffs in pending challenges to property tax valuations. For Stockgrowers I testified that action on this problem is past due and that we need to resolve the valuation problem as soon as possible. There is a tendency to frame correction of this problem as a tax shift – shifting the tax burden from one group of taxpayers to another. I emphasized that the real tax shift occurred with implantation of the productivity system and that what is underway now is a correction. 2 I also testified that we need to move forward with other elements of implementation of an accurate assessment program during the eleven months of this simulation in order to speed the process. Lesley Coyle testified for the Department of Revenue. She described how the simulation will be carried out. Revenue is recruiting counties to be involved in the simulation and Coyle pointed out that counties who are involved will benefit by having input into how the new system is implemented. In Pierre this week, Gary and I made a point of speaking with individual legislators, Lesley, and others in the Revenue Department. We stressed with all the importance of local control vs. a centralized assessment. Fake Meat We are continuing to solicit support from the other ag groups for SB 68, our fake meat bill. We are working with the grocers on amendment language to ensure the bill doesn’t create unintended problems for products clearly labeled as vegetable rather than meat. A lobbyist was in Pierre yesterday from Virginia representing the “Good Food Institute.” which is an outfit advocating for plant-based and cell-based (lab grown) meat. He’s promoting a complicated amendment to our bill. Other Stockgrower Issues The 2 + 2 veterinary program (SB 43) passed the Senate this week. The hunter trespass repeat offenders bill (SB 63) was passed by the Senate Ag. Committee Thursday. SB 149 is the Brand Board fee increase bill. SB 33 which permitted School & Public Lands to sell parcels of land and purchase other parcels with those proceeds was tabled at Commissioner Brunner’s request this week. Stockgrowers were comfortable with the bill, particularly after it was amended to mandate that proceeds could only be spent on listed properties and not at auction. However, there was other opposition. Brunner will continue working on the issue and may come forward with new legislation on this next session. If you have any questions or comments about this week’s report or about activities in Pierre, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Best regards, Jeremiah
Legislation of Interest Following are the bills that have been introduced that may impact Stockgrowers. You can read the bill text and actions by clicking on the blue bill number. Bill status is noted in the status column. DP = “Do Pass” DNP = “Do Not Pass” “41st day” means a bill has been killed.
DP S HB 130- Public Lands to accept internet bidding for the leasing of state mineral rights.
1/24 DP Senate HB 1031 authorize certain wind and solar easements and leases by the commissioner of School and Public Lands.
1/24 DP House HB 1054 revise certain provisions regarding the possession of firearms on certain vehicles.
1/30 DP House HB 1075 revise certain provisions regarding the authority of conservation district governing boards.
HB 1089 revise provisions regarding electronic livestock auctions.
HB 1100 revise certain programs regarding landowner rights.
HB 1101 revise certain programs regarding the Department of Game, Fish and Parks.
HB 1103 establish a lemon law for certain farm machinery.
2/8 hearing Judiciary HB 1117 establish immunity from liability for injuries to or the death of a person engaged in off-road vehicle activity under certain circumstances.
HB 1145 establish certain provisions regarding the mowing of rights-of-way adjacent to the state trunk highway system.
4 1/31 DP Ag. HB 1159 repeal a provision that prohibits hunting mourning doves on public roads and highways.
1/28 withdrawn HB 1161 revise certain provisions regarding the issuance of temporary permits for the use of public water. 1/31 tabled HB 1162 provide for the expiration of certain statutory authority regarding the promulgation of rules by the Game, Fish and Parks Commission.
2/5 hearing H. Ag. HB 1182 require a balanced and representative membership on the Game, Fish and Parks Commission.
2/5 hearing H. Ag. HB 1188 revise provisions regarding fertilizer inspection fees.
HB 1251 distribute funds to the special racing revolving fund and the South Dakota-bred racing fund from the tourism promotion fund and simulcast wagering.
2/6 hearing resumes SB 4 revise certain provisions regarding the classification of agricultural land for property tax purposes.
1/22 DP Senate SB 18 update certain references to federal laws and regulations regarding pipeline safety inspections and to increase the maximum civil penalty for certain pipeline safety violations.
1/29 tabled SB 33 authorize the commissioner of school and public lands to sell and acquire certain real property.
1/30 DP Senate SB 40 authorize the transfer of certain real property to the Animal Industry Board.
1/31 DP Senate SB 43 redirect funding to a collaborative program in rural veterinary medical education and to provide tax revenue for the support of veterinary 5 students.
1/31 DP Sen. Ag. SB 63 increase the penalty for a subsequent conviction for trespass to hunt, fish, or trap.
SB 68 define certain acts as misbranding of food products. SB 105 distribute a portion of tourism promotion funds to the special racing revolving fund and the South Dakota-bred racing fund.
SB 112 provide for the assessment of certain agricultural land as noncropland.
SB 128 make an appropriation to the gaming commission fund, to provide for the transfer of funds to the special racing revolving fund and the South Dakota-bred racing fund, and to declare an emergency.
SB 149 increase the amount authorized for certain brand fees and to authorize a brand registration application fee and an expedited registration fee.
SB 179 revise the property tax levies for the general fund of school districts and to revise the state aid to education formula.
SB 183 revise certain provisions regarding buffer strips.