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The 2021 session of the South Dakota legislature has started now. Tuesday, Jan. 12 was the first day of the new session. There are 105 legislators — 35 in the Senate and 70 in the House of Representatives. We were told that there are more women legislators this year than ever before in the h…

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I am a fifth-generation farmer in Yankton County. Our family came to the Yankton area in 1892 and settled the family’s original homestead just north of Yankton in 1903.

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Yankton County citizens will have the opportunity to hear from and submit questions to their District 18 legislators at two Legislative Cracker Barrels sponsored by the Yankton Area Chamber of Commerce Governmental Affairs Committee.

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I am writing this to thank President Trump for all he has done to make America great again, for bringing companies back in to the U.S. and strong leadership to help foreign countries from taking us over.

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As Joe Biden takes the reins of the presidency, one of his first major tasks is to pass a proposed $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill made up of numerous facets. In general terms, the relief measure is needed to both get the pandemic under control and get the U.S. economy moving again.

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The Joint Appropriations Committee began their work on Monday of last week. There was an orientation session for new members of the Committee that day. The House has six new members to the committee and the Senate two new members. Hearings started on Tuesday.

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The 2021 South Dakota legislative session officially began Tuesday, Jan. 12, with the swearing in of South Dakota legislators and the State of the State Address by Gov. Kristi Noem.

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Gov. Noem, your comment about communists being elected in Georgia was as hate-filled as what has been spewed out by the current occupant of the White House. You have been a total sycophant encouraging the rage at a level nearly as bad as that which Trump has done. You are inciting those same…

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Across America these last several months, we have witnessed a very troubling situation where violent actors are trying to do an end-run around public discourse. This is done to intimidate and silence voices. These folks want to short-cut public debate through fear. They want to make people s…

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Among all the extraordinary things South Dakotans had on their radar heading into 2021, few of us probably would have guessed that a debate over civic education would show up less than two weeks into the New Year.

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South Dakotans should encourage their Senators John Thune and Mike Rounds to oppose the nomination of Xavier Becerra for Secretary of Health and Human Services. Joe Biden has indicated he will nominate the current California Attorney General to the position.

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Yankton’s newest Citizens of the Year were revealed early last week (which now feels like an eternity ago), and in terms of the mechanics involved in this process I help oversee each year, all’s well that ends well. The choice was made, I contacted the winners, Jake and Sandy Hoffner, and th…

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What happened in Washington on Jan. 6 is living proof of the socio-political poison that is radical conservatism. Trump is a thug and a complete bigot and he always has been.

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I am writing about how grateful I am for all teachers. I think they deserve an award. Thank you for making videos about our lessons, and thank you to my teachers for trying so hard to keep us in school. I think all teachers and principals should get an award for how hard they work.

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I think that Stewart School is an amazing school to go to. There are a lot of kind kids and teachers.

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My writing is going to be about life-changing people, like Rosa Parks.

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Like Donald Trump, Kristi Noem is dangerous —  not just to South Dakota, but to America.

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I feel that smoking is very dangerous because you could get cancer and die, or you will suffer with heart disease by damaging your airways.

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I think that we should recognize the American Red Cross for all that they do for our hospitals and people. If not for them we wouldn’t have blood for those who need it.

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I believe that people shouldn’t litter. It’s hurting our environment and it is even killing some animals.

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When we can occasionally turn our attentions away from the dramas roiling our lives these days, many eyes will be turning toward Pierre and the start of South Dakota’s 2021 legislative session.

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In my opinion, smoking should be banned in public. I don’t think that people want to see a cigarette on the floor by the store entrance.

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The terrible incident at the Capitol Building in Washington last Wednesday was a brutal day for this country, and it demands a response.

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I sent the following letter to Sen. Thune and others should follow suit.

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I strongly believe that we should plant trees whenever we cut down trees. I feel this is very important, because so many trees are cut down every day. You can help too by planting trees in your own backyard!

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Wednesday was perhaps the saddest and most disheartening day in America that I’ve seen in my lifetime.

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I strongly feel that people should have to pay a few cents for a plastic bag at stores. I think people should have to pay a few cents for a plastic bag because they will start to bring reusable bags or reuse their plastic bags.

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I am writing this letter because I think that all kids should be able to read books because they give kids more imagination. I think that they should be able to read.

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I think we need to help out our homeless people. Here is a way we could help our homeless people: All of the schools in Yankton could do a fundraiser and donate it to our homeless shelter.

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This letter is not about any conspiracies ... Just oddities.

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I strongly think we should stop using fossil fuels and polluting the air. Instead, we should use renewable energy such as wind energy, hydroelectric energy and solar energy. If we keep using fossil fuels there will be none left, and there would be toxic chemicals in the air.

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I strongly believe that everyone should wear masks in public. I think it will help a lot. I want this because I get worried about people that do not wear masks in public. Some people including me do not like wearing masks, but I still do it. I choose to wear masks, because I want to be healt…

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In my opinion football is the best sport. The Nebraska Huskers are my favorite college football team because it was my Grandpa’s favorite team!

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Where is the Pony Express? Sent a package to Chicago; in post office from Monday night until Thursday early a.m. to delivery on Thursday. We had a $3,000+ check sent on Oct. 28 arriving Nov. 27. Sender stopped payment so still no money.

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I strongly believe healthcare workers are the best!!! They help everybody, even when they know that their health is at risk.

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I’m writing about people that abuse pets. Not only pets but other animals as well. In my opinion and I hope in your opinion as well, abusing animals is a terrible thing to do!! I get it if you just bop your cat on the nose for doing something bad, but you shouldn’t ever step on them or kick …

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You know when you hope your kid grows up to be a good person? Well, I hate to say it but, humanity won’t survive, nothing will. There are only a couple of things we need to do. Everyone needs to get electric cars because our atmosphere is breaking, until we find a way to bring back the ozone…

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On Wednesday, congressional lawmakers are scheduled to convene in Washington to certify Joe Biden’s Electoral College presidential victory over Donald Trump. This is traditionally a formality, since it validates decisions that have been certified by the states — decisions based on the prefer…

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South Dakota’s values and beliefs are rooted in our agricultural heritage and our boundless natural resources. Together they drive our economy, feed our families and provide world class outdoor recreational opportunities. We all have a vested interest in protecting and preserving South Dakot…

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Huether Family Aquatics Center: What a bargain to have clean, safe fun during the summer. The cost is quite reasonable! (Check similar aquatic centers in other areas). Ten dollars a day for a day of fun might seem like a lot but the $67 individual pass would be paid for in less than seven da…

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Exactly one year ago today, I was brooding over the end of a very difficult 2019 — a year in which my mother passed away and I faced other adversities on several levels — and looking forward to the better things that simply HAD to be coming in 2020 …

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New is the year, new are the hopes, new is the resolution and new are my warm wishes just for you as 2020 fades away. Wishing you a promising and fulfilling New Year!

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My wife and I would like to give a big thank you and shout out to the City of Yankton Solid Waste workers who collected our garbage Wednesday, Dec. 23. They worked through the severe blizzard raging that day. Their work was by far above and beyond the call of duty.

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This has been a year to remember, seemingly for all the wrong reasons. COVID-19 devastated families across our country. In other states, violent riots and looting tore communities apart. And it seems like political divisions are only increasing.