SD Voters Deserve Better than Governor Daugaard’s “Better Government” Initiative

South Dakota Democrats urged Governor Daugaard to give open government the force of law now that Daugaard is reversing his opposition to longstanding Democratic ideas creating more transparent government.

“While we applaud the Governor’s new office policy, office policies can change,” says Ben Nesselhuf, Chairman of the South Dakota Democratic Party. “We hope Governor Daugaard will work with Democrats to make open government the law of the land rather than an internal rule subject to change.”

Nesselhuf noted that Governor Daugaard’s staff opposed the same open government legislation sponsored by Democrats during the 2011 legislative session that they are now trumpeting in their “Better Government” Initiative. Examples include the following:

  • HB 1181, sponsored by Rep. Mitch Fargen (D-Flandreau), would have required by law that Governor Daugaard release the names of guests at the Valhalla State Lodge. Dusty Johnson, Daugaard’s Chief of Staff, gave the only testimony in opposition to the bill.
  • HB 1202, sponsored by Rep. Bernie Hunhoff (D-Yankton), would have created an economic database to track taxpayer dollars spent on economic development. Mark Youngberg from Governor Daugaard’s office gave the only testimony in opposition to the bill.

For more information on open government, please contact Ben Nesselhuf at 605-271-5405 or ben@sddp.org

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