Veto Day was held Monday, March 30, beginning at 11 a.m., but lasting until about 3:45 a.m., early Tuesday morning. The meeting was held remotely with only a handful of legislators attending in person at Pierre.

The vetoed bills were a few style and form vetoes that the governor supported but wanted minor changes made to; these bills passed. There were also a few bills cleaning up numerous statutes that were vetoed; those bills did not receive enough votes to override the veto.

New bills were introduced on Veto Day dealing with the COVID-19 virus. All the bills had an emergency clause which means they need a two thirds vote to pass. They also had sunset clauses which means the emergency bills will expire. I voted yes on all the emergency bills that were seen in the Senate.

Bills were introduced to waive the minimum hours requirement for schools and to waive standardized testing requirements; both passed.

HB1298 requires local governments to postpone elections that were going to be held from April 14 to May 26, to any Tuesday in June. The bill originally gave the governor authority to move the State Primary Election if considered necessary; the bill was amended to take that out; the State Primary will still be held Tuesday, June 2. HB1298 passed, 26 to 5.

SB192 creates the Small Business Economic Disaster Relief Sub Fund. Sdreadytowork.com has information on this fund. SB192 passed the Senate unanimously.

SB193 revised the 2020 state budget to account for Federal funds that the state is expected to receive.

SB190 revises driver license requirements to allow for an extension on renewals during the emergency.

SB187 revised unemployment provisions allowing the state to receive additional federal funds for unemployment. SB193, SB190 and SB187 all passed.

The bill which had the longest discussion in both the House and Senate was SB191, which would have allowed counties to pass ordinances to protect public health, such as restricting group sizes in businesses or requiring carry out only. Cities have this authority and this was seen by some as a fairness issue for counties to have the same authority to regulate businesses that are outside city limits. The bill originally would have allowed these regulations to pass on one reading of an ordinance; the bill was amended in the Senate for transparency reasons to take out the provision allowing passage on one reading. The bill passed the Senate, 30 to 5. The bill ultimately failed in the House, receiving 37 yes votes and 29 no votes, but falling short of the 47 votes needed to pass and take effect.

The budget that was passed at the end of session gave 2% increase to education, state employees and Medicaid providers. With the recent economic downturn and many businesses shut down or cut back, the state’s budget situation may look much different going forward and the revenue the state was expecting to take in may not be there. A special session to adjust the budget is likely to take place.

The Legislature lost one of its members this last week. Rep. Bob Glanzer from Huron passed away Friday evening. His kind and caring personality was always appreciated and will be missed.  Keep his family and friends in your prayers.

Please contact me with any questions and concerns at 605-660-6468 and Kyle.schoenfish@sdlegislature.gov.

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