South Dakota’s next legislative session is around the corner. I head to Pierre to take Oath of Office on January 10th, and opening day is January 13th. I join Senator Jim Peterson and Representative John Wiik representing you in District 4.
House and Senate members also received appointments to legislative committees. I will serve on House Education and the Commerce and Energy Committees.
The Education committee deals with issues relating to our schools, including K12, technical education, and higher education. It’s a subject that many are passionate about, and I’m hopeful my experience as a school board member will be beneficial.
Education funding will again be an issue. We’ll likely see a bill to increase sales tax by a penny during the summer months. Revenue from the tax is designated to go into a fund to be used to increase teacher salaries. Other legislation that I understand will come to the committee includes Common Core, standardized testing, and South Dakota’s teacher shortage.
Commerce and Energy deal with matters pertaining to business issues like insurance, banking, and labor; and secondly with issues relating to energy, like electoral transmission and much more.
Although the 2015 legislature will likely debate many hundreds of bills, I expect the hottest debates of the session to revolve around funding for public road and bridge improvements, drainage, healthcare, and the education issues I mentioned above. I will do my best to inject common sense into the discussions and keep you posted as the debates around these issues take shape.
The very best way to keep up to date is to check my posts on line at www.drfredsplace.com or join me on facebook. Please keep in close contact and please share your thoughts with me as bills move forward. The best way to reach me is by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you again for the privilege of serving as your South Dakota Representative.
All my best to you and yours.