You Want $16 Million For What?!

In the backroom that is our state’s capitol, Republicans have voted to give Governor Daugaard $16 million to spend on his corporate cronies.  Ridiculous?  We think so.

House Republicans voted along party lines on SD House Bill (HB) 1230 to take away $16 million per year from the general fund for education and health care and redirect it towards a slush fund for large corporations. HB 1230 represents the Republicans’ misplaced priorities at best and a crass corporate giveaway at worst.

Daugaard faced criticism during the Rounds Administration for using economic development funds for a TransCanada pipeline that has created few permanent jobs in South Dakota and would have been built in South Dakota with or without the governor’s funds.

Yet, in his budget recommendations, Governor Daugaard has proposed cutting $60 million to our children’s education and denying $75 million dollars in Medicaid for families and seniors in need.

As SDDP Chairman Ben Nesselhuf points out: “Businesses that come to South Dakota require the best systems education to equip workers with the skills businesses need to succeed in the 21st century economy. Cutting funding for education in order to bankroll the governor’s slush fund will neither train our workers nor attract new businesses to South Dakota.” Smart guy, that Ben.

Expanding the governor’s slush funds for corporate welfare is especially dangerous in South Dakota, a state ruled by a single political party, and without any “pay to play” restrictions on quid pro quo political contributions from beneficiaries of grants, gifts and low interest loans.

South Dakota can do better.  Join us.

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