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  • Steve Hamilton, Yankton Executive Director, South Dakota Pilots Association Skip VanDerhule, Yankton Past member South Dakota Aeronautics Commission
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This is in response to the letter by Sean Williams (“Misleading,” Press & Dakotan, Feb. 15)

  • Brian Engebretson, Yankton
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A year ago, President Trump signed a law making it easier for mentally ill people to buy assault weapons. No signing ceremony — just with the blessing of the NRA.

  • By Sen. ARTHUR RUSCH R-District 17 (Vermillion)
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The big news in the South Dakota Legislature this past week was that the Appropriations Committee has released their revenue estimates for this year and next year. Apparently, late last year, revenues did turn around somewhat and the Appropriations Committee has estimated the actual revenue …

  • Douglass Sall, Yankton 82nd Airborne Division, 1961-1964
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It was with a good deal of sadness that I learned of the passing of Wayne Barham, Springfield, in the Feb. 12, 2018, issue of the Press and Dakotan. It was 49 years ago that I first met Wayne. He had been at Southern State College since ’67 and I was new to the faculty in 1969. There was som…

  • Yankton Youth Soccer Association Board
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Sincere gratitude to all the parents, players and community members who volunteered their time in support of our two January fundraising events.

  • John Magnuson, Yankton
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Ten-to-1 you’re not in the market for an AR-15 rifle. It’s a no brainer. This assault weapon should be military only. Ban civilian ownership of the AR-15 and fewer will die. As much as some enthusiasts may enjoy spraying rounds at range targets, you have to ask yourself the question: Is it m…

  • Brad (Bootz) Butzlaff, Yankton
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My wife and I went to the movie “15:17 To Paris,” which is a true story. The actors are the same people who were involved in the terrorist attack. While we watched the previews of the seven upcoming movies, we saw nothing but very violent situations and people being shot with guns — in ALL s…

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South Dakota lawmakers are seeking a pay raise — but they don’t want to raise their salaries. Instead, they want the state constitution to determine the wage.

  • By Rep. Kyle Schoenfish R-District 19 (Scotland)
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Week 6 of the legislative session is complete which means session is about two-thirds of the way done. It was a packed weekend of preparing income taxes for clients and attending two cracker barrels. I got to see my three nephews in Tyndall as two were playing basketball and the youngest was…

  • By Rep. Ray Ring D-District 17 (Vermillion)
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This is the sixth week of the 2018 legislative session. Bills I mentioned previously are making their way through the process, but we still have a long way to go.

  • Ed Van Gerpen, Avon
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Who are the officers of Prevailing Winds wind farm project and where do they live? President Ron Hornstra, Avon, and Eric Johnson, Avon, are the most vocal.

  • Kevin Doby, Yankton
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Freedom and loyalty are not the same thing.

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It’s hard to believe that this year marks the 30th anniversary of the opening of the Yankton Federal Prison Camp (YFPC), which sprang from the fiscal ashes of the late, beloved Yankton College (YC).

  • BY REP. JEAN HUNHOFF R-District 18 (Yankton)
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This week the Joint Appropriations Committee approved the ongoing receipts for FY18 and FY19. The process for this to happen was, the Bureau of Fiscal Management (BFM), which is the governor’s fiscal department, prepares the revenue projection based on economic indicators and the governor’s …

  • BY SEN. STACE NELSON R-District 19 (Fulton)
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I wish to start out my article thanking our newspapers and South Dakota’s investigative reporters. The free press, American journalism, is one of the pillars of democracy our nation was founded upon. The role of the news media in a free and democratic society requires journalists to constant…

  • Ruth Ann Dickman, Utica
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I am very disappointed with some of our lawmakers who want gambling to come to Yankton! I will not be voting for them in the next election. Some farms have been lost, some families have been torn apart, all due to gambling. We don’t need another Deadwood in the beautiful city of Yankton, or …

  • Erik Johnson, Avon
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I recently compared December, 2017, electric bills with my neighbor. I have Bon Homme-Yankton Electric, while he has NorthWestern Electric. My bill was $300.76 for 3320kwh of electricity, for an effective rate of 9.06 cents/kwh. My neighbors’ bill was $312.96 for 3880kwh of electricity, for …

  • Norma Andersen, Yankton
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On Sunday, Feb. 4, four retired ladies met at Perkins Restaurant for breakfast after church. When we were finishing our meal, the waitress stopped by to tell us a couple who had been sitting near us had paid for our meals.

  • BY KELLY HERTZ kelly.hertz@yankton.net
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It wasn’t your average Wednesday in Yankton. A world archery tournament officially opened, and it’s brought athletes from more than 30 countries to town.

  • Joe Healy, Yankton
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“They don’t still build those types of buildings, do they?” or “They haven’t been using those buildings for years” are common reactions I get when discussing CAFOs with citizens in Yankton County.

  • By Dr. Wayne Kindle Yankton School District
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Approximately two years ago, a District Wide Facilities Study was completed in the YSD. One of the top priorities was to improve student and staff safety at our of our attendance centers.

  • By Rep. Ray Ring D-District 17 (Vermillion)
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I mentioned last week that House Bill 1120, which would take away local school boards’ authority to set requirements for home-schooled students to participate in extra-curricular activities, had died in the Education Committee, with five in favor and nine opposed. This week it was “smoked ou…

  • Sean Williams, Washington D.C.
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In pointing out the many benefits that Chan Gurney Municipal Airport provides to Yankton, Mayor Jake Hoffner misleads readers about how modernizing America’s air traffic control (ATC) system would impact small airports. (“Yankton Airport Vital To Community,” Press & Dakotan, Feb. 5)

  • George Schnebel, Yankton
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Thanks to Rex Alberts’ letter (“Murder,” Press & Dakotan, Feb. 7). You are right. It irks me that our government funds Planned Parenthood. I am against abortion. I compare abortionists to Adolf Hitler, who murdered everyone who got in his way. To me, he was a saint compared to abortionists.

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President Donald Trump unveiled his proposed federal budget Monday, and like most such budgetary proposals, it probably won’t resemble what may likely emerge from Congress.

  • By Rep. Kyle Schoenfish R-District 19 (Scotland)
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I am the House prime sponsor of SB 74. Currently, state law says you have to be 10 years older than the person you want to adopt. Sen. Klumb from Mitchell brought this bill due to a local family’s situation of not being able to adopt because of this law. The stepmother, who is less than 10 y…

  • BY SEN. STACE NELSON R-District 19 (Fulton)
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Thank you for all the emails, texts, and messages. Please keep them coming. You and your family are the reason I serve. It has been great seeing middle and high school classes from our district at our Capitol. Well done to all the teachers who go that literal extra mile and bring their stude…

  • Yossi Dossett, Yankton
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Feb. 14 marks the beginning of Lent, the 40-day period before Easter, when Christians abstain from animal foods in remembrance of Jesus’ 40 days of fasting in the wilderness.

  • Curt Bernard, Yankton
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A couple weeks ago, on Jan. 26, Charles (Murph) Murphy passed away at home due to flu complicated by other health and issues.

  • By Sen. Craig Kennedy D-District 18 (Yankton)
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The issue of non-meandered waters surfaced in the Legislature last week. Non-meandered waters are waters that cover land that may be owned by private individuals. The focus is on two bills, SB 24 and SB 199.

  • By Sen. ARTHUR RUSCH R-District 17 (Vermillion)
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As of last Thursday, the 2018 Legislature has finished 20 out of the 39 days and is now past the half way point. This year has seen the heaviest workload in some time — 534 proposed bills have been introduced which is the most since 2001.

  • Jean Knodel, Yankton
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“Port Yankton,” though a progressive idea, seems to have gambling as its charging force. Many visitors are here for five months of the year. The rest of the year we would depend on our local residents, many of which are fixed income and low income to support this.

  • By Todd B. Woods Yankton County Commission
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With the start of a New Year, I am honored to have been elected Chair of the Yankton County Commission by my fellow commissioners.

  • Tom Prussa, Norfolk, Neb.
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I am disgusted! I used to watch the NFL a lot, but not anymore. With some of the players refusing to stand for the National Anthem, it’s a crime.

  • BY KELLY HERTZ kelly.hertz@yankton.net
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I was pressed into sports duty this week and sent to Avon to take photos of a basketball doubleheader with Viborg-Hurley. As I drove west through the wintry darkness of Highway 50, I began thinking about how things are different now.

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In Lieu Of Classes …

  • Kathy K. Grow, Yankton
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The excellent letter to the editor from Sarah Mannes Homstad (“Alternatives to Gambling,” Press & Dakotan, Feb. 2) has reminded me that I also need to say “out loud” that I am absolutely opposed to the gambling component of Port Yankton.

  • Fernande Bitsos, Yankton
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“Make America Great Again”?

  • Nick Zachariasen, Sioux Falls
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A rework of an effort last year, the 2018 legislative session’s HB1275 once again attempts to implement a geographic diversity requirement to signatures on initiative petitions.

  • BY REP. JEAN HUNHOFF R-District 18 (Yankton)
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Monday and Tuesday of this week Joint Appropriations heard the budget request from the Department of Social Services (DSS).

  • BY JIM VAN OSDEL For the Press & Dakotan
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Difficult to believe it has been almost  43 years since I was elected to serve as exalted ruler of Yankton Elks Lodge. One of the first responsibilities for the new executive officer was to get rid of the slot machines, forerunner to video lottery, to which we had become addicted in more way…

  • Tom Logue, Tyndall; Joe Plihal, Tyndall; Lee and Cheri Wittmeier, Tyndall; Gary and Evelyn Kronaizl, Tabor; Wayne and Arlo Schuurmans, Tyndall; Scott and Leslie Schuurmans, Tyndall; Frank Kloucek, Scotland
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At 10 a.m. Tuesday, Feb 13, a very important hearing will be held in House Transportation committee on HB 1284 in room 413 in the State Capitol. It is an effort to keep the four lanes on Highway 50 in Bon Homme County intact.

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South Dakota’s motor safety laws are some of the worst in the country, according to a recent report from the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety (AHAS). In fact, they’re THE worst in the country. This conclusion is based on where each state stands according to 16 optimal laws. South Dakota…

  • By Sen. ARTHUR RUSCH R-District 17 (Vermillion)
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As of last Friday, the 2018 Legislature has now finished 16 out of the 39 days scheduled for this year’s session. South Dakota used to have a short session and a long session, but now the maximum allowed for all sessions is 40 days except for special sessions.