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Capitol Building
February 22, 2016

Crackerbarrel Lets Lawmakers Answer Questions On Teacher Pay and Transgender Issues

The recent crackerbarrel in Rapid City focused mainly on the issue of teacher pay, with some discussion on the transgender bill, reports the Rapid City Journal.

Thirteen State Representatives and Senators met with a crowd of 350 to answer questions face to face. The audience, including Rapid City School Board President Jim Hansen, wanted to ask the lawmakers what their plan was to fund a raise for teachers. Rep. Craig responded by saying he would reconsider and vote yes on HB 1182 when it goes up for discussion again on Monday afternoon. Rep. Gosch said he would not change his vote against the bill.  Rep. DiSanto explained that she ran for office on a platform of not supporting additional taxes, and would not change her vote.  She added that there were other viable plans that hadn't yet been voted on. Sen. Tieszen also wanted to hear other plans.

According to KOTA, one alternative option, SB 151, was voted down early Monday morning. Alternative bills that have not been voted on yet include HB 1130, which calls for taking money from the video lottery fund; although detractors mention that plan also calls for a 10% cut across the board in state government funding.  Another plan calls for cutting back on the 1 billion dollars in tax exemptions currently granted by South Dakota.

Also mentioned during the crackerbarrel were transgender issues. Rep. Craig explained why he voted for HB 1008, and Sen. Tieszen explained why he voted against it.

For more on the current legislative session and news on these subjects, please visit our news archives.


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