Report shows visitor spending supports 1,111 jobs in local economy

Interior, SD – A new National Park Service (NPS) report shows that the combined 1,198,040 visitors to Badlands National Park and Minuteman Missile National Historic Site in 2017 spent $76.4 million in communities near the park. That spending supported 1,111 jobs in the local area and had a cumulative benefit to the local economy of $93.7 million.

“Badlands National Park and Minuteman Missile National Historic Site welcomes visitors from across the country and around the world,” said Superintendent Mike Pflaum. “We are delighted to share the story of these places and the experiences they provide. We also feature the parks as a way to introduce our visitors to this part of the country and all that it offers. National park tourism is a significant driver in the national economy, returning $10 for every $1 invested in the National Park Service, and it’s a big factor in our local economy as well. We appreciate the partnership and support of our neighbors and are glad to be able to give back by helping to sustain local communities.”

The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas of the U.S. Geological Survey and Lynne Koontz of the National Park Service.  The report shows $18.2 billion of direct spending by more than 330 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. This spending supported 306,000 jobs nationally; 255,900 of those jobs are found in these gateway communities. The cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy was $35.8 billion.

The lodging sector received the highest direct contributions with $5.5 billion in economic output to local gateway economies and 49,000 jobs. The restaurants sector received the next greatest direct contributions with $3.7 billion in economic output to local gateway economies and 60,500 jobs.

According to the 2017 report, most park visitor spending was for lodging/camping (32.9 percent) followed by food and beverages (27.5 percent), gas and oil (12.1 percent), souvenirs and other expenses (10.1 percent), admissions and fees (10.0 percent), and local transportation (7.5 percent).

Report authors also produce an interactive tool that enables users to explore visitor spending, jobs, labor income, value added, and output effects by sector for national, state, and local economies. Users can also view year-by-year trend data. The interactive tool and report are available at the NPS Social Science Program webpage:

To learn more about national parks in South Dakota and how the National Park Service works with South Dakota communities to help preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide outdoor recreation, go to


1. Call to Order – Roll Call – Pledge of Allegiance

2. Approval of Agenda

3. Approval of Minutes – April 30th, 2018 Meeting

4. Declaration of Conflict of Interest

5. Public Presentations – Public Hearings – Public Comments

            a. 2017 Audit Presentation

            b. Custer Area Chamber of Commerce Presentation

c. Custer BID Board Presentation

d. Executive Proclamation – Arbor Day


6. Old Business

            a. HomeSlice Media Contract – Custer BID Board

            b. Toby Brusseau Productions Contract – Custer BID Board

            c. Marketing Manager Contract – Dolsee Davenport – Custer BID Board

7. New Business

            a. Drainage Evaluation & Design Services Proposal – ACES

            b. West Dam Reconstruction Contract Amendment #3 – Banner

            c. Mailbox Replacement Policy




8.  Presentation of Claims –

9. Department Head Discussion & Committee Reports –

10. Executive Session – Personnel, Proposed Litigation, & Contract Negotiations (SDCL 1-25-2(1-4))

11. Adjournment



Planning Commission Meeting – May 8th, 2018 5:00 P.M.

General Government Committee Meeting – May 14th, 2018 4:30 P.M.

Park & Recreation Committee Meeting – May 15th, 2018 5:30 P.M.

Regular City Council Meeting – May 21st, 2018 5:30 P.M.

Public Works Committee Meeting – June 4th, 2018 4:30 P.M.

Regular City Council Meeting – June 4th, 2018 5:30 P.M.


PIERRE, S.D. — Qualifying South Dakotans have until July 1 to apply for the Sales or Property Tax Refund for Senior Citizens and Citizens with Disabilities program.

Under the program, qualified applicants will receive refunds of sales or property taxes based on their income. Refund checks are issued at the end of August. Applicants must apply for the program on an annual basis.

To qualify for the program, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Be at least 66 years old on or before Jan. 1 of the current year or be disabled during any part of the year
  • Must have a yearly income less than $12,060 if you live alone or live in a household whose members’ combined income is less than $16,240
  • Be a South Dakota resident during all of 2017

Applications for the program may be obtained on the Department of Revenue’s website,, or at the applicant’s local county treasurer’s office. For more assistance, call the Department of Revenue’s toll-free helpline at 1-800-829-9188.


PIERRE, S.D. – The latest edition of cowboy poet Badger Clark’s most popular volume has just been published by the South Dakota Historical Society Foundation.

“Sun and Saddle Leather” has been in continuous print since it was first published in 1915. The volume contains two of Clark’s most popular poems, “Ridin’” and “A Cowboy’s Prayer.”

Western photos from the South Dakota State Historical Society-Archives were used to illustrate the new edition of “Sun and Saddle Leather.” Financial support was provided by the South Dakota Arts Council and the Clarkson Family Foundation.

“Cowboys said of Clark’s poems that ‘his words rang true.’ Clark’s tales of the open range and the West still ring true, 100 years after they were first published,” said foundation president Catherine Forsch. “The new edition continues efforts to keep Clark’s works in print.”

The foundation is the nonprofit partner of the South Dakota State Historical Society and has headquarters with the society at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The foundation began overseeing the reprinting and distribution of work by Clark in 2015.

Clark was born on Jan. 1, 1883, in Albia, Iowa. He and his family moved to Dakota Territory when he was three months old. After being diagnosed with tuberculosis at age 23, Clark went to Arizona and was hired on a cattle ranch near Tombstone. Clark put his feelings of enjoying the open range and his fascination with cowboys into poems, many of which he sent to his stepmother. She sent a poem called “Ridin’” to Pacific Monthly magazine, which paid $10 to Clark when it was published. Clark began sending poems to Pacific Monthly and other magazines on a regular basis.

Clark’s stepmother is also said to have encouraged her stepson to write a poem reflecting the cowboy religion. The result was “A Cowboy’s Prayer.”

Clark returned to the Black Hills in 1910. “Sun and Saddle Leather,” Clark’s first volume of poetry, was published in 1915. It was followed by “Grass Grown Tales.” The two volumes were subsequently gathered into one book under the title “Sun and Saddle Leather.”

Clark was named South Dakota’s poet laureate in 1937, a title he held until his death 20 years later.

“Sun and Saddle Leather” and other works by Clark are available from the foundation by calling 605-773-6346 or at the website


PIERRE, S.D. – State officials will meet with the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate to discuss public safety on the Lake Traverse Reservation and surrounding area on Tuesday, May 15, 2018, at 1 p.m. CDT at the tribal headquarters in Agency Village, S.D.

State officials attending the meeting include the Secretary of Public Safety, Superintendent of the Highway Patrol, the Director of the Division of Criminal Investigation, a representative from the Attorney General’s Office and the Secretary of Tribal Relations.

“On behalf of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux Tribe, we are grateful for the opportunity to host a joint law enforcement forum, whereupon our communities can discuss the public safety and jurisdictional challenges we have on the Lake Traverse Reservation. It also gives our two law enforcements, the Tribe and State, an opportunity to inform our community members about the issues and challenges we face together, such as drug trafficking, human trafficking and other violent crimes that impact both communities,” said Sisseton Wahpeton Sioux Tribe Chairman David Flute. “I am thankful for Governor Daugaard’s leadership in the state, and his support of the SWST hosting this community public safety forum for all our members, tribal and non-tribal, in northeast South Dakota.”

“We are honored that the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate leadership has invited us to present at this community meeting on public safety,” said Steve Emery, Secretary of Tribal Relations. “We want to make sure that our constituents in all areas of the state are well informed of public safety issues, challenges and solutions.”

This public safety meeting is open to the public and tribal community members are encouraged to attend.


PIERRE, S.D If you served with the Armed Forces any time after Aug. 2, 1990, or are currently active duty military, the State of South Dakota and South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs want to say thank you!

The Department administers a bonus program for those who were legal residents of the state for no less than six months prior to their active duty service and who meet other qualifications.

In the past 14 years, the department has made bonus payments of up to $500 to more than 9,400 service members for their active duty service after Jan. 1, 1993, through today. Since 2005, bonus awards have also been made to over 880 service members activated from Aug. 2, 1990, to Dec. 31, 1992. Bonus payments cannot be paid for Active Duty for training.

Read more about the state’s Armed Forces bonus under the “Benefits” tab on the Department website at, contact your local county or tribal veterans service office, or call the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs at 605-773-7251.


Mayor Corbin Herman called to order a special meeting of the Common Council at 5:30 p.m.  Present at roll call were Councilpersons Maciejewski, Heinrich, Nielsen, Fischer, Blom and Arseneault. City Attorney Chris Beesley was present. The Pledge of Allegiance was stated.


            Councilperson Nielsen made a motion to approve the agenda. Seconded by Councilperson Blom, the motion carried unanimously.


            Councilperson Fischer made a motion to approve the minutes from the April 16th, 2018 meeting. Seconded by Councilperson Nielsen, the motion carried unanimously.


No conflicts of interest were stated.


            Councilperson Fischer made a motion to approve Ordinance #802, Residential District, using Alternate Definition 2 for Family Day Care with original restrictions on parking being; Short Term Rental – all parking shall be restricted to off street. Seconded by Councilperson Heinrich, the motion carried with Councilpersons Maciejewski, Heinrich, Nielsen, Fischer and Blom voting yes and Councilperson Arseneault voting no.


            Councilperson Maciejewski made a motion to approve Ordinance #803, Zoning, Rezoning & Zoning Ordinance Amendments. Seconded by Councilperson Heinrich, the motion carried with Councilpersons Heinrich, Nielsen, Fischer, Blom, Arseneault and Maciejewski voting yes.


            Councilperson Fischer moved to approve Ordinance #804, Variances. Seconded by Councilperson Blom, the motion carried with Councilpersons Nielsen, Fischer, Blom, Arseneault, Maciejewski and Heinrich voting yes.


            Councilperson Heinrich made a motion to approve Ordinance #805, Conditional Use Permits, as presented. The motion was seconded by Councilperson Maciejewski. Following some discussion, Attorney Chris Beesley handed out codified law regarding substantially altering ordinances which created more discussion. The motion died with Councilpersons Fischer, Arseneault, Maciejewski and Nielsen voting no, and Councilpersons Blom and Heinrich voting yes.

            Councilperson Fischer made a motion to table the second reading of Ordinance #805, Conditional Use Permits to the May 21st, 2018 meeting. Seconded by Councilperson Maciejewski, the motion carried unanimously.


            Councilperson Nielsen made a motion to approve Ordinance #806, Board of Adjustment. Seconded by Councilperson Fischer, the motion carried with Councilpersons Blom, Arseneault, Maciejewski, Heinrich, Nielsen and Fischer voting yes.


            Councilperson Heinrich made a motion to approve the hiring of two seasonal Public Works Seasonal Employees. Seconded by Councilperson Nielsen, the motion carried unanimously.


            With no further business, Councilperson Arseneault moved to adjourn the meeting at 6:24 p.m. Seconded by Councilperson Heinrich, the motion carried unanimously.

ATTEST:                                                                                       CITY OF CUSTER CITY

Lisa Trana                                                                                    Corbin Herman

Deputy Finance Officer                                                              Mayor

Gov. Daugaard Touts Early Results of New Grants for Grads Housing Program

PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard today released early results of the recently launched South Dakota Housing Development Authority Grants for Grads program, which aims to assist recent graduates in purchasing their first home in South Dakota.

In the first three months of the program’s existence, 97 new homeowners have taken advantage of the program, a result that the Governor has touted as highly encouraging.

“We’re thrilled with the initial response and look forward to more recent graduates choosing to stay in the state or move here with this program,” Gov. Daugaard said. “There are so many reasons to settle down in South Dakota, and receiving support for your dream homebuying experience is just one of the many.”

The “Grants for Grads” program launched at the beginning of 2018 and is open to first-time homebuyers who:

·       Meet certain income requirements

·       Are purchasing a primary residence in South Dakota

·       Have not owned a home in the past three years

·       Select a home with a purchase price of $250,200 or less

·       Have earned an accredited associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degree within the past 60 months.

Grants for Grads is available for a limited time through participating lenders, with per-beneficiary assistance at five percent of the loan amount. In order to apply for the program, participants must contact a lender to schedule an appointment.

View a list of Grants for Grads participating lenders here:

SDDA Classifies Dicamba Products as Restricted Use Pesticides


PIERRE, S.D. – As of April 30, 2018, all pesticide products containing only dicamba, and having agricultural use labels, sold in South Dakota are classified as restricted use pesticides (RUPs). This includes over-the-counter herbicides that were previously sold to unlicensed applicators and producers. Since these products have been classified as RUPs by the State of South Dakota, but not by the federal government, they will not display the restricted use pesticide legend on the label. A list of 2018 registered products impacted by this new classification can be found on the South Dakota Department of Agriculture’s (SDDA) website,, by clicking on the “Dicamba Information” link under the “Happening Now” section.

Applicators will be required to be certified private or commercial applicators to purchase and apply these products. In addition to state certification, the SDDA encourages applicators to take a dicamba-specific training. An online training is available on the SDDA’s website. All applicators will be required to maintain application records for each application of these products and any other RUPs. The records of application must be kept for three years.

Three dicamba products, Xtendimax with Vapor Grip technology, Fexapan with Vapor Grip technology and Engenia, were classified as RUPs by the Environmental Protection Agency effective October of 2017. Separate regulations surround the sale and use of these products, including a requirement that applicators complete a dicamba-specific training.

Any questions about this change or the regulation of dicamba products can be directed to the SDDA at 605.773.4432.