2018 SD Legislative Sessions – Tom Pischke Week 5 Update

Pischke_2017The South Dakota Legislature concluded its fifth week of session Thursday with one of the heaviest legislative loads most of the current legislators have ever experienced.  Currently there are over 500 bills that have been submitted for consideration which is among the largest number of bills in over a decade.


•  HB 1070, a 65-page measure to revise and repeal certain provisions regarding alcoholic beverage laws, many of which are considered antiquated and unenforceable, passed the House of Representatives this week on a 63-5 vote. The ‘liquor law reform bill’ enjoyed unanimous support in committee last week, and is expected to easily move through the State Senate in coming days.

•  HB 1157 authorizes alcohol manufacturers and wholesalers to enter into certain licensing agreements with certain alcohol retail licenses. This was a state practice for many years, but a recent interpretation of the law did not allow for it. This bill passed the House Judiciary Committee 11-1 and passed the House Floor 40-27.

•  HB 1219 allows sportsmen to use night vision when hunting. However, they may only use certain kinds of ammunition and must receive written permission from the landowner. This bill passed House Agricultural and Natural Resources 10-2 and passed the House Floor 46-21.

• HB 1190 revise the time period for which certain motor vehicle plates are used. Instead of issuing new license plates every 5 years, this changes it to 10 years. The reason for the change is savings to the state of roughly 6 million dollars for the roads and bridges fund. This bill passed House Transportation 9-4 and passed the House on a vote of 41-27.

• HB 1250, a measure to raise South Dakota’s legal smoking age from 18 to 21 passed House Health and Human Services 8-4. The matter is still pending, as a fiscal note was requested. This bill will likely be voted on by the entire house chamber early next week.

• HJR 1001 would change the current law regarding legislator pay and amend the Constitution to make it one fifth of median South Dakota pay. This resolution would submit the issue to the ballot for the voters to approve the change. This resolution passed out of House State Affairs 9-3 and passed the House floor as amended 38-26. HJR 1001 was referred to Senate State Affairs and will be heard next week.

• House Bill 1071 moved through both the State House and the Senate at a rapid pace, with the unusual step of the Senate suspending committee assignment after the House heard it as part of the joint appropriations process. The bill to authorize the relocation of the School for the Blind and the Visually Impaired and transfer of its existing real estate and facilities to Northern State University passed the Senate on a 34-1 vote. This measure will provide for the construction of a new School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, which will cost an estimated $13.6 million, but will be paid for through private donations.


• SB 137 changes the minimum hunting age in South Dakota from ten years old and effectively leaves the matter to parental discretion. The child must be hunting with a parent or a “hunting mentor.” A hunting mentor is the child’s parent or guardian or any other competent adult who has the written consent of the child’s parent or guardian. The hunting mentor shall be a resident of this state, shall be unarmed except as provided in this section, shall have successfully completed a hunter safety or hunter education course and they must also have a license for the game being hunted. This bill passed Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources 9-0 and passed the Senate Floor 30-4.

• SB 50 allows for the construction of the American Indian Student center at South Dakota State University and allows for an appropriation. SB 50 passed the Joint Committee on Appropriations without opposition and passed the Senate Floor 28-6.

• SB 54 to provide additional funds to counties to pay for extraordinary litigation expenses on an emergency basis passed the Senate 25-9, and now moves to the House. This fund assists counties with the cost of prosecuting criminals, and the additional appropriation reflects higher than anticipated expenses in the current fiscal year.

• House Bill 1043 was passed unanimously by the State Senate 35-0 to provide for the construction of a National Guard Readiness Center at the Rapid City Airport. This represents the first installment of $500,00o to help fund the construction of a $20 million building next to the Guard’s existing Army Aviation Support Facility at Rapid City Regional Airport.  The state’s ultimate share of the project cost is expected to be $5 million, while $15 million in federal funding has already been secured.

If you have any questions and/or comments on these bills or any other legislation, please email me at tom.pischke@sdlegislature.gov

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DRMS Students Have GenCyber Day with DSU

DRMS_GenCyber_1Each grade level from the Dell Rapids Middle School was able to participate in the GenCyber Day for 35 minutes each on Friday, January 19. Students had the opportunity to work with littleBits, Dash robots, Ozobots, or the BB-8 robots. littleBits offered students the chance to build items that moved, made noise, or had lights blink. The Dash and BB-8 robots allowed students to code the robots using a mobile device to move or perform tasks. Students using the Ozobots (a robot the size of a bouncy ball) used blank sheets of paper to draw pathways with markers for the Ozobots to follow. Students were also able to use a particular scene to change the direction or speed of the Ozobots.

Dr. Ashley Podhradsky, an associate professor from Dakota State University in Madison, led of a group of undergraduate and graduate students that helped students with each station. DRMS_GenCyber_2

“While all of the connected toys are fun to play with, they all teach important fundamentals of computer science.  The kids learn linear logic they can apply as they advance their skills.  We know kids won’t be experts in a day, but if we can get them interested in cyber that is a big win,” commented Dr. Podhradsky.

DRMS_GenCyber_3Scott Headrick, one of the K-12 Technology Integrationists for the Dell Rapids School District, thought the event went well.  “We have great kids in Dell Rapids. It was wonderful to have students get an opportunity to learn problem solving skills and computer science! It was great to have Dr. Podhradsky and the DSU students lead us in such fun, learning activities!”

Submitted by Scott Headrick


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Community Blood Drive Scheduled to Help Holiday Needs

CommunityBloodBankDells Rapids, SD – Avera Dells Area Health Center will join forces with Community Blood Bank to help with holiday blood shortages by hosting a community blood drive. The blood drive will be held on Thursday, January 4 at Avera Dells Area Health Center from 7:00 am to 11:00 am and 12:30 pm to 2:30 pm. The public will have an opportunity to donate blood to help local patients in the hospital during the busy holiday season. All blood donations will go directly to saving patients’ lives at local hospitals including Avera Dell Area Health Center.

Every three seconds someone needs blood, and the only way to ensure that those needs are met is to rely on volunteer donors to donate blood. The need for local blood donors is immense. The Community Blood Bank supplies over 550 units of blood each week to people in the region. Among those who benefit from donated blood are trauma and burn victims, cancer patients and persons undergoing surgery.

“The holiday season is one the peak times for blood usage, as well as being one of the most difficult times to keep supplies at healthy levels,” states Ken Versteeg, Executive Director, Community Blood Bank. “With people addressing elective surgeries before the end of the year and a consistent need for blood for many types of medical treatment, we are asking for the community’s help by giving blood at this event.”

Donors must be at least 17 years old (16 years old with a signed parent consent form found at www.cbblifeblood.org), weigh 110 lbs or more and be in good general health the day of the donation. Please bring an I.D. It is recommended that a person eat and drink plenty of fluid prior to donating. For more information log onto www.cbblifeblood.org or call Avera Dells Area Health Center’s Laboratory at 605-428-5431. Community Blood Bank is not associated with any other blood bank organizations.

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7th/8th Grade Soccer Season a Success

By:  Coach Mike Ebbing

Last month we concluded our strongest soccer season yet for the 7th & 8th grade girls. This team is made up of girls from Garretson and Dell Rapids. It was great to see the girls gel and become one team. During the season many of the players were able to attend a Minnesota United (pro soccer) game in the Twin Cities, which was a lot of fun as well.

In speaking with our high school coach before the season began we changed our formation and adopted the same type of formation for this group. This gave the girls the chance to learn and develop this new system. It proved to be a very strong approach as the team went 8 – 0 on the season and captured first place in the Sioux Falls league!!! We had two close games beating the Brandon team 2 – 1 in a thriller and a 3 -1 win over West Central. It all starts with good goal keepers and we have two that were stout. We also had a very good back line of defense that would start the attack for us as we moved the ball up to our midfielders and strikers. Great job ladies!

With the sanction between Garretson and Dell Rapids for soccer, this is showing GREAT things to come this fall! If you have or know of a girls between the grades of 7th grade and Senior in high school that would like to play soccer, please call Steph Bittner (605) 212-5946.

Front row left to right:   Leigha Lacey, Tori Lodmell, Madison Ljunggren, Miriam Pickard, Olivia Mullin, Madison Decker, Jenna VanHolland, Morgan Damman, Payton Campbell

Back row left to right:  Kayla Genzlinger, Allison Ebbing, Madeline Reisch, Kylie Bittner, Logan Bly, Raegan Altman, Makayla Duinkerken, Mackenzie Garry, Coach Mike Ebbing

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Dell Rapids Post 65 Baseball Earns Postseason Awards

DellsBaseballLogoDell Rapids Post 65 was crowned champion of the East River Baseball League with a perfect 10-0 record. Other teams included McCook/Minor (9-1), Garretson (4-4), Volga (4-5), Humboldt/Hartford (3-5), Lennox (3-4), Madison (3-7) and Colton (0-10).

Multiple Dell Rapids Post 65 Legion baseball players received postseason recognition due their contributions during the season.

Brett Mogen was named MVP for the East River League. Mogen had a .480 batting average and 11 RBI. He also was 3-0 as a pitcher with 29 strikeouts. He had an ERA of .98 in 18 1/3 innings.

Nate McKee earned the Silver Slugger batting award given to the top hitter. McKee led the league with a .581 batting average and drove in 18 runs.

Cole Gassman from McCook/Miner earned the Cy Young Award as the top pitcher in the league. He had a 2-0 pitching record in 20 1/3 innings while striking out 37 hitters. His ERA was 0.34.

Three Dell Rapids players participated in the State American Legion Baseball All-Star game August 1 in Clark, SD. Mogen, McKee and Josh Roemen were selected from nominations across the state as All-State players. Eric Klein and Casey Hansen were chosen as Honorable Mention All-State players.

Dell Rapids finished the season with a 20-4 record. Team members included Brett Mogen, Nate McKee, Josh Roemen, Keegan Miller, Eric Klein, Seth Andersen, Casey Hansen, Carter Gullickson, Elijah Story, Adrian Juba, Ethan Brobjorg, Logan Ruesink, Matt Gillogly, Tyson Dahler and Lealand Randel.

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Dell Rapids Ace Hardware Softball 2nd at IYSA Tournament

The 14U/16U Dell Rapids Ace Hardware softball team placed second in the Interlakes Youth Softball Association tournament held July 18th through July 20th.  On Tuesday, July 18th, Ace Hardware defeated Volga 13-1 and Watertown 7-6.  On Wednesday, July 19th, Ace Hardware lost to Madison Rage in the semi-finals of the tournament.  They then went on to defeat Brookings in the loser bracket 14-0 to make it to the championship game.  The championship game was played on Thursday, July 20th.  Ace Hardware was defeated by Madison Rage 5-7 for a second place over all finish.


Back Row L to R: Head Coach Ashley Currey, Assistant Coach Connie Currey, Cassie Geraets, Hannah Sims, Ellie Schultz, Assistant coach Jess Schultz, Sydney Johnson, Zoe Mortrude, Assistant Coach Matt Brue

Front Row L to R:  Sam Price, Hannah Heiberger, Jordan Eining, Zoey Curl, Olivia Stelzer

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Softball Clinic to Benefit Daily Bread Food Pantry

By:  Steph Bittner

Growing up in a small town is quite often taken for granted!   As young children we grow up thinking how annoying it is that our parents know everyone, and everyone knows who we are, but as we get older, we realize how wonderful our small town is.  This really hit home this past year for a group of softball players I coach.  We participated in a tournament in Brookings where two younger Dell Rapids teams were also playing.  As my team played their first game on Sunday, all the girls noticed the younger Dells teams watching them play!  The younger girls were cheering for them, and knew most of their names.  My players, seeing all the young talent and excitement for softball, decided they wanted to do something to give back to these young players.   We decided to team up with the Daily Bread Food Panty and help their “still new” Back to School Program!  Last year, they supplied 51 local kids with all the school supplies they needed.  The girls feel this is a great cause and would like to help!

A softball clinic will be held Tuesday, July 25th, with registration beginning at 6:00 pm and clinic from 6:30-8:00 pm.  The clinic is for all girls who play softball from U6-U12 age groups.  It will be held on Fields A and B at Dell Rapids City Park.  The “cost” for the clinic is two donations to the Daily Bread Food Pantry’s Back to School Program.  Feel free to donate anything on the school supply list for all ages!

If you have any questions or would like to help with the clinic, feel free to call or text Steph Bittner (605) 212-5946, Ryan Rinehart (605) 951-1211, or Amber Fountain (605) 359-4530.


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Local Boy’s Dream Comes True

HeadshotLocal Racer Competes for National Spotlight in AMA National Motocross Championship
Historic Loretta Lynn Ranch Set to Host Largest Amateur Motocross Championship
By:  Jess Hoyer

Colman, SD: Colman’s Camdyn Hoyer just made his dream come true. The 7-year-old dirt bike racer has qualified for the largest amateur motocross race in the world, the 36th Annual Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship, presented by AMSOIL, to be held this August at the historic Loretta Lynn Ranch. Hoyer took on over 22,000 hopefuls from across America to earn one of just 1,482 qualifying positions. Hoyer will be the very first South Dakota kid to compete in the 50cc class.

“The Amateur National at Loretta Lynn’s is the event every motocross racer in the country wants to compete in,” said Event Director Tim Cotter. “A win at Loretta’s gives a racer instant national notoriety and can serve as a springboard to a lucrative professional motocross career.”

Most of America’s top professional motocross racers, including James Stewart, Ricky Carmichael, Travis Pastrana and Ryan Dungey, have won AMA Amateur National titles at Loretta Lynn’s.

Camdyn Hoyer, who attends Chester Area School in the 1st grade, has been riding dirt bikes since he was 5 years old.

Camdyn’s older brother Callyn Hoyer, who is 9, made it past the Local division in the 7-8 class and moved on to regionals in IL where he finished his Lorretta career for the year. For now he will focus on his 65 for next years races. He will be cheering loud for his little brother and be helping him train for his big event over the next couple weeks.

With the help of sponsors such as Hoyer Construction, Storm Racing, Al & Janet Dorn AKA Nana & Papa, Aunt Rachael & Uncle Tim Feekes, Ahrendt Designs, Paul & Becky Beirne Family, Falcon Plastics, Deanna Hoyer AKA Granny Dee, Hoyer Farms, Spearfish Canyon Fireplace and Spa, Jami and Jen Jensen and Lance Anderson who help pay his way to the races, Hoyer has had the opportunity to pursue his dreams. He has won 19 races in the last 2 years and competes nearly every weekend at local tracks such as Fiddler Creek in Homer NE, SVCC in Renner SD, Spring Creek in Millville MN, Dirty Dozen MX in Kellogg MN, MotoCity Raceway in Little Falls MN, 4GMX winter series in Rapid City SD or “in AMA local to national races across the country”.

Hoyer will make the long journey to Hurricane Mills, Tennessee along with his mom and dad/mechanic Clark and Jess Hoyer two sisters Jennilee and Jayda, big brother Callyn Hoyer and grandma Dee Hoyer. In the meantime, Hoyer will have many family members and friends cheering him on from back home in SD. The race runs July 31st-Aug 5th, 2017. Hoyer and his family will be camping onsite for the week-long event, and will participate in many non-racing evening activities.

Hoyer is just one of the over 22,000 racers across the country who spent the last four months qualifying for the event. The top Ticket to Nationalsfinishers in Area Qualifiers and Regional Championships earn a gate position in the National Championship race at Loretta Lynn’s. Racers may enter a wide variety of classes, from minicycle classes for children as young as four, all the way up to a senior division for riders over 50. There are also classes for women and classes for both stock and modified machines. In total, there are 38 different classes of competition. Hoyer will compete in the highly competitive 50cc Limited 4-6 class.

The track is built on a section of Loretta Lynn Ranch and Campground in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee. The course contains a variety of jumps, corners and other obstacles designed to test the skills and stamina of the racers. The motocross track is used only once a year for motorcycles, so there is no hometown advantage. Racers compete in three 15-20 minute races over the course of the week per class, sometimes in grueling temperatures. Proper training and preparation are paramount.

Most riders attend the event with the help of their families. In fact, many consider the event their family’s summer trip, nicknaming it the “World’s Greatest Motocross Vacation.” Besides the races, the week-long event hosts many family-friendly activities, including swimming, talent show, concerts, and live entertainment.

The race action will be broadcast live daily at www.RacerTV.com, July 31st-Aug 5th, for a total of 40 hours of live coverage. In addition, two highlight shows featuring the event will air on NBC Sports Network in the fall.

For additional information on the Amateur National, visit the official website at www.mxsports.com or call (304) 284-0101. Also, follow the official Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts for exclusive content and to catch the latest news.

About the Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship

The Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship is the world’s largest and most prestigious amateur motocross racing program. The national qualifying program consists of 59 Area Qualifiers (February through May) and 13 Regional Championships (May through June), hosted at select motocross facilities across the country. The qualifying system culminates in the National Final (first week in August) hosted annually since 1982 at the home of country music star Loretta Lynn in Hurricane Mills, Tenn. Nearly 22,000 racers attempt to qualify in 38 classes for the 1,482 available positions at the National. Christened “The World’s Greatest Motocross Vacation”, the National event serves as a launch pad for some of the biggest names in professional motocross and supercross, including Ricky Carmichael, James Stewart, Ryan Villopoto, and Ryan Dungey. The national program is produced by MX Sports, Inc., a West Virginia-based race production company and is sanctioned by the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA). For more information, please visit www.mxsports.com.


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Dell Rapids 14U Softball 2nd in League Tournament

The weekend of July 7th, Sioux Empire Fast Pitch Softball Association held their annual league tournament. The girls played through a long, hot weekend, and Dell Rapids took 2nd place in the U14 division. Kylie Bittner led Dell Rapids with 24 strikeouts in 12 innings of pitching.  Autumn Tomes added five strikeouts in four innings of work.  The top batting averages for the weekend were Kylie Bittner with .750, Kenzie Garry with .727, Haileigh Barnhart with .636, Makayla Duinkerken with .538, and Cara Rice, Leigh Lacey, and Audi Uriqujo with .545.


Top row (left to right): Coach Ryan Rinehart, Coach Amber Fountain, Kenzie Garry, Mallory Krempkes, Rylee Rinehart, Autumn Tomes, and Coach Steph Bittner
Bottom row (left to right): Leigh Lacey, Cara Rice, Audi Uriqujo, Haileigh Barnhart, Makayla Duinkerken, and Kylie Bittner

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Dell Rapids 14U Softball Wins Tony Tournament

On Sunday, June 25th, the Dell Rapids 14U softball team traveled to Lake Benton for the 7th Annual Tony Tournament.  The tournament for U14 was set up as a true round robin tournament.  Dell Rapids played a series of three games.  The tournament was compiled of wins, losses, and points scored.   At the end of the rainy day, Dell Rapids took first place!  Kylie Bittner lead the team in pitching with 17 strikeouts and only one walk in the tournament.  Top batting averages were Makayla Duinkerken and Bittner with an .833 average.  Kenize Garry, Cora Alderson, and Autumn Tomes all had an .800 average, and Leigha Lacey finished with a .667 batting average. Tony Awards were given to one girl each game for the following:  Garry for her outstanding skills at 1st base, Autumn Tomes for her two triples she hit in one game, and Lacey for some great plays she made playing catcher.


Top row (left to right): Kylie Bittner, Mallory Krempges, Leigha Lacey, Rylee Rinehart, Autumn Tomes, Cora Alderson, Kenzie Garry
Bottom row (left to right): Haileigh Barnhart, Audi Urquijo, Makayla Duinkerken, and Cara Rice.

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