Immediate Release: Monday, April 18, 2016
Dems: Government Reform Must Not End Incomplete
Sioux Falls, SD (April 18, 2016)-
Responding to comments made by Republican Governor Dennis Daugaard that he believed recent legislation would prevent government fraud and abuse similar to the situation with Mid Central Education Cooperative, the South Dakota Democratic Party urged that government reform must not end incomplete.
“The conflict of interest prohibitions passed this last session apply to only 22 of over 130 governmental boards that oversee state agencies. It also provides a mechanism for conflict of interests to be approved by the partisan Government Operations and Audit Committee (“GOAC”) which failed to push for a larger investigation of EB-5 we now know is needed based on recent indictments. We need broad-based, independent reform if we hope these measures will have the teeth necessary to prevent government corruption. Otherwise, they simply sweep it under the rug,” said Suzanne Jones Pranger South Dakota Democratic Party Executive Director.
HB 1214, sponsored by Rep. Mark Mickelson (R-Sioux Falls), came under fire from the Rapid City Journal for doing “little to change the political culture that enabled Education Board members Kelly Duncan of Northern State University and Stacy Phelps of Rapid City to receive sizable contracts approved by fellow board members” in the Gear Up fiasco.