PIERRE, S.D. – Gov. Dennis Daugaard announced today the authentication of historical documents proving North Dakota and South Dakota are actually one state. Overlooked addendums to the statehood proclamations of both states indicate the existence of a single state, “Dakota.”

“It’s the most incredible discovery; this raises a number of interesting questions,” said Gov. Daugaard, of the State Formerly Known as South Dakota. “We’ve got a lot of work to do to get this squared away, that’s clear.”

President Abraham Lincoln established Dakota Territory in 1861. Prior to the recent discovery, it was believed that the territory was divided into the states of North Dakota and South Dakota on Nov. 2, 1889, via a proclamation signed by then-President Benjamin Harrison.

A pair of historians conducting archival research in the Library of Congress uncovered identical addendums attached to both statehood proclamations that rescind the previously signed orders and establish a single, united state.

The addendum reads, in part, “I hereby affirm the creation of the state of Dakota; they were born together – they are one.”

Gov. Daugaard is undertaking a comprehensive process to determine how to proceed. He indicates that a special joint session of both state legislatures may be needed to determine whether to stay as Dakota, or return to their previous status as separate states.


State Treasurer Rich Sattgast encourages attendees at this year’s Black Hills Home Show at the Rushmore Plaza in Rapid City, March 9-11, 2018 to visit his staff for possible lost money that may be owed to them.  The State Treasurer will have a booth where the public can search the Unclaimed Property database. The database contains records of millions of dollars held by the State Treasurer and waiting to be reclaimed by their rightful owners.

Unclaimed property refers to accounts in financial institutions and companies that have had no activity or contact with the owner for a year or longer and can include savings or checking accounts, uncashed payroll checks, refunds, security deposits, stocks and life insurance policies. The state holds the money in a custodial capacity until the money can be returned to the rightful owners.

Currently, the Unclaimed Property Division is holding over $432 million in unclaimed funds. The State Treasurer has returned over $17 million to the rightful owners since the beginning of the current fiscal year in July.

“The goal is to put money back into the hands of South Dakotans,” Treasurer Rich Sattgast said. “That money ultimately makes its way into our economy which is good for our state.”

Specialists in the Unclaimed Property Division of the Treasurer’s Office will be available during the Black Hills Home Show.  Residents who are unable to attend the event can search the database online at



WASHINGTON, Feb. 26, 2018 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced the appointment of 30 members to serve three-year terms on the National Potato Promotion Board beginning March 1, 2018.

Newly appointed producer members are:

  • Jared B. Smith, Alamosa, Colo.
  • Wes Pahl, Aberdeen, Idaho
  • Tyson Ruff, Aberdeen, Idaho
  • Kasey Poulson, American Falls, Idaho
  • Eric Searle, Burley, Idaho
  • Mike Larsen, Declo, Idaho
  • Ryan Christensen, Grace, Idaho
  • Jeff Blanksma, Hammett, Idaho
  • Steve Elfering, Idaho Falls, Idaho
  • P.J. Stevens, Idaho Falls, Idaho
  • Blake Matthews, Oakley, Idaho
  • Blake Thorlund, Greenville, Mich.
  • Jeffrey B. Jennings, Camden, N.C.
  • John Coombs Jr., Elmer, N.J.
  • Kyle Michael, Urbana, Ohio
  • Adam W. Weber, Moses Lake, Wash.

Reappointed producer members are:

  • Dan Moss, Declo, Idaho
  • Jeff Harper, Mountain Home, Idaho
  • Kent Bitter, Shelley, Idaho
  • Kyle Lennard, Sturgis, Mich.
  • Jeff J. Edling, Becker, Minn.
  • Gary H. Gray, Clear Lake, Minn.
  • Chris Hansen, Bliss, N.Y.
  • Jeff Van Ray, Pingree, N.D.
  • Tyler P. Young, Little Compton, R.I.
  • E. Phillip Hickman, Horntown, Va.
  • Randi Renee Hammer, Pasco, Wash.
  • Molly Connors, Richland, Wash.
  • Heidi Alsum-Randall, Cambria, Wis.

Marilyn Freeman Dolan, Atwater, Calif., is reappointed as the public member.

“The United States is recognized as the world leader in potato production with products that offer high-quality, consistency and variety,” said Perdue. “Representing nearly 2,500 American commercial potato growers and 450 importing companies, the work of the members of the National Potato Board provides an invaluable service for the U.S. farm sector and the American economy as a whole.”

The National Potato Promotion Board consists of producers, importers, and one public member. The board is authorized by the Potato Research and Promotion Act and the Potato Research and Promotion Plan. Since 1966, Congress has authorized 22 industry-funded research and promotion boards to provide a framework for agricultural industries to pool their resources and combine efforts to develop new markets, strengthen existing markets and conduct important research and promotion activities. The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) provides oversight, paid for by industry assessments, which helps ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity.

More information about the board is available on the National Potato Promotion Board page on the AMS website and at, the National Potato Promotion Board’s website.



WASHINGTON, D.C. – Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue today announced the appointment of two members to serve three-year terms on the Popcorn Board.

Newly appointed are:

  • Dan J. Sleaford, Manito, Ill.
  • Rachel C. Foley, Delphi, Ind.

“These appointees have a deep understanding of an industry that provides about 13 billion quarts of popcorn to consumers each year,” said Perdue. “I truly appreciate their time and the expertise they have agreed to provide to keep their industry robust.”

The Popcorn Board is composed of five popcorn processors. The Popcorn Promotion, Research and Consumer Information program, operating as the Popcorn Board, helps maintain and expand existing markets and develop new markets for popcorn and popcorn products.

Since 1966, Congress has authorized 22 industry-funded research and promotion boards to provide a framework for agricultural industries to pool resources and combine efforts to develop new markets, strengthen existing markets and conduct important research and promotion activities. The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) provides oversight, paid for by industry assessments, which helps ensure fiscal responsibility, program efficiency and fair treatment of participating stakeholders.

Popcorn Board’s webpage.

Think It Might Be Time To Repaint ?

WOONSOCKET, RI – It’s no wonder so many people want the city to repaint the fire hydrants in front of their houses – they look like crusty old relics from a shipwreck.

“Some of them haven’t been repainted for a decade, maybe more,” says Public Works Director Steve D’Agostino. “Some of them are 80 years old. They’re deteriorating.”

And oh, that salmon-like shade of pinkish-orange paint that’s flaking off some of the rusty hydrants? The color used to be fire-engine red. It looks the way it does because rust is seeping into the paint.

“It’s oxidized,” said D’Agostino.

Full story here.

Aberdeen SD Police Department Awarded $53,000 To Insure Public Safety ?

Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP; /ˈɛmræp/ EM-rap) is a term for United States military vehicles produced as part of the MRAP program that are designed specifically to withstand improvised explosive device (IED) attacks and ambushes. The United States Department of Defense MRAP program began in 2007 as a response to the increased threat of IEDs during the Iraq War.[1] From 2007 until 2012, the MRAP program deployed more than 12,000 vehicles in the Iraq War and War in Afghanistan. MRAP vehicles have been used by the United States military and others. Photo: United States Department of Defense
Herb Ryan
November 28, 2017

The South Dakota Attorney Generals Office announced today that several law enforcement agencies throughout the state have been given awards from the Attorney General’s Drug Control Fund. The Drug Control Fund is funded by drug forfeiture monies to be used for enforcement in drug control and apprehension purposes. The award money distributed for this most recent cycle totaled $188,593.10.

The highest award  $53,911.92 went to the Aberdeen Police Department to retrofit a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected Army surplus vehicle with a turret that could easily accommodate a 50 caliber machine gun. I am sure a vehicle like this would be the envy of any small police department that is engaged in community protection, especially the vehicle implied improvised explosive device threat in Aberdeen, SD. Now with the addition of a turret, the possibilities are endless. I am sure it will be impressive in parades with everyone all slicked up in armour and rambo fatigues.

A total waste of funds that could been used to purchase body armour and body worn cameras.

Additional Drug Control Fund Awards:
Faith PD      $4,990.00- in-car video equipment
Kingsbury County SO    $27,298.48- in-car video equipment and tasers
Lake County SO     $13,009.75- body worn cameras
Lincoln County SO    $13,249.00- interview recording systems
Mobridge PD     $3,000.00- pistols and ipads
Roberts County SO    $21,500.00- K9 kennel and laptops
Tripp PD     $10,580.95- tasers, body worn cameras, in-car video equipment, body armor
Yankton County SO    $33,053.00- vehicle and equipment

Trump Hawks See-Through Border Wall at Huntsville Rally For Luther Strange

September 23, 2017

Huntsville. Alabama
A Doctor Strangelove Moment

“Believe me, folks,” he said. “The wall is happening.”

Trump said that there’s already a wall along the border and that the administration is renovating it over the next six to seven months to be “pristine, perfect, just as good as new, although we may go a little bit higher than that, but that’s okay.” And Trump said that he’s collecting samples for building a new wall that’s “see through.”

“If you can’t have vision through it, you don’t know who’s on the other side,” Trump said, later explaining that building is what he does best, though he’s also pretty good at this politics thing.

Without a see-through wall, a criminal in “wonderful, wonderful” Mexico could use a catapult to throw “a hundred pounds of drugs” over the wall.

“And it lands, and it hits somebody in the head — you don’t even know they’re there,” Trump said. “Believe it or not, this is the kind of stuff that happens. So you need to have a great wall, but it has to be see-through.”

Trump praised Twitter, slammed the media, questioned pricey consultants from the “Harvard school of something,” pointed to a campaign hat in the crowd, declared that “Luther is your man” and disclosed that he and Sen. Richard C.  Shelby (R-Ala.) recently gossiped about which members of Congress are the “smart ones” and which are “the less-smart ones.”

A Smoke Complaint And Perceived Fire Safety

By Herb Ryan
August 13, 2017

I readily accept that fire and smoke are a reality in the Black Hills –however I do not accept unnecessary smoke blowing into my house from a fire that consist of wet pine bark and garbage. Most non brain surgeons understand that wet wood will smolder and smoke pretty bad. Dry wood .. obviously. burns clean, fast and will create smoke but not like wet wood. Yesterday, my neighbor was creating an unusual amount of “stinky” smoke. Went over and told them it was a nuisance and could they please wait until the stuff dried out a bit. Sorry about that, but we have a (blah blah blah) this week and have to clean up the mess. Today they started burning again, I made a phone call, the fire department showed up and told them they needed to get a permit but could continue to let the pile burn and smoke as long as they did not add anything to it today.
So apparently they will be able to continue to burn wet smokey wood in the future.

You may have noticed the clothesline in the background.. Me, I like fresh smelling clothes, not smoke scented. And you will notice the smoke is right on the other side of the fence, the burn pile is about ten feet from the house, kinda close. In the future if there is smoke coming from any place but the wood stove chimney, I’ll have to assume they are burning trash/wet wood again and deal with it.

We have several slash piles to burn this season, if they smoke, I guess there is nothing I can do about it. And yes, I will have a permit in hand.

I do consider these people a careless fire hazard and plan to take appropriate action to protect my property.