March 14, 2017
PIERRE, S.D. – Gov. Dennis Daugaard today signed four ethics bills to replace concepts of Initiated Measure 22 which were supported by the public. The bills are in addition to the five IM 22 replacement measures signed into law last week.
“State officials on both sides of the aisle worked together to deliver on the promise of replacing Initiated Measure 22 with constitutional, workable legislation,” Gov. Daugaard said. “Nine replacement measures were passed to honor the citizens’ expectation of honest government, an open and transparent campaign finance system, and a legislative process which allows lobbyist influence only through their arguments.
Among the bills signed was Senate Bill 151, a measure sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Blake Curd. SB 151 creates an ethics complaint process for elected officials and other public employees and gives the Secretary of State the authority to levy penalties and refer repeated violations to the Division of Criminal Investigation.
Gov. Daugaard also signed Senate Bill 54, which includes makes a number of clean up and clarification provisions. The bills also establish prohibitions on the use of campaign money. Candidates may only use campaign funds for campaign expenses, expenses created by being a current or former elected official, or donations to other political campaigns.
“SB 54 creates a sensible change in campaign finance law. Campaign funds should be limited to the three uses spelled out in the bill and should not be rolled into a candidate’s or elected official’s personal account,” said the Governor.
The two other measures signed today, Senate Bill 171 and Senate Bill 27, create a task force on campaign finance and allow tougher criminal penalties for conflict of interest cases where a public official used public money illegally.
On Friday, March 10, Gov. Daugaard signed into law Rep. Karen Soli’s bill to establish a government accountability board and Speaker Mark Mickelson’s lobbyist gift ban bill, as well as three other ethics measures.