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Senate Bills 189 and 190 have passed through both house of the South Dakota Legislature, reports the Rapid City Journal. The package of bills from Governor Kristi Noem deal with the penalties for violence that could arise in conjunction with potential protests of TransCanada’s Keystone XL Pipeline. The process moved quickly, with the Governor’s office introducing the bills Monday, March…
The current cold spell has held for over the last month, and conditions have been dangerous for Rapid City’s homeless population, reports KOTA Territory News. However, the Pennington County Care Campus has been able to provide safety for many during the inclement weather. At least three individuals in Rapid City died last winter due to the cold conditions, and law…
Members of the Spearfish School Board recently discussed the school district’s long-term goals, including the creation of a freestanding career and technology education (CTE) center near the existing Spearfish High School, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. The center would potentially be located north of the high school and east of the existing tennis courts. The new center would house all…
Rapid City’s Common Council voted unanimously to adopt new rules for downtown panhandling at their March 4th meeting, despite vocal opposition from meeting attendees and community members. According to NewsCenter1, the policy would expand to penalize “aggressive” panhandling downtown. Supporters of the ordinance assert that Rapid City already has a multitude of resources, like the Care Campus, Cornerstone Rescue Mission,…
A bill to repeal presumptive probation in South Dakota failed in the state Senate last week, despite the proposal’s support from new Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg. According to KNBN NewsCenter1, senators voted 18-12 against Senate Bill 19, which the Legislative Research Council predicted would cost the state $54 million in the next decade. Governor Kristi Noem also asked legislators to…
Deadwood’s City Commission recently accepted two petitions for voluntary annexation of land located off of Highway 14A in Boulder Canyon, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. The two parcels of land are connected and total a little more than 30 acres. Now that the petitions have been accepted, Planning and Zoning Administrator Bob Nelson, Jr. says that the city needs to…
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is seeking potential contractors to operate a new shelter for homeless veterans in the Black Hills. According to the Rapid City Journal, the VA posted a “request for information” last week. The shelter, which could open as early as September of this year, will likely be in Sturgis or Rapid City, and must accommodate…
Deadwood’s History and Information Center, located at 3 Siever St., will soon be home to an updated exhibit space as the City Commission approved $180,000 for updates, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. The project was awarded to Split Rock Studios of Arden Hills, MN, who also worked on Deadwood’s Welcome Center, and submitted the only bid for the project. Historic…
The South Dakota Senate State Affairs Committee voted unanimously to pass Senate Bill 126 on February 8th, after hearing testimony from a roomful of proponents, reports Native Sun News. The bill, which was primarily sponsored by Senator Troy Heinert of District 26, would amend previous law to recognize the Dakota, Lakota, and Nakota dialects as the official indigenous language of…
A little over two weeks ago, Serenity Dennard, a nine-year-old girl, was reported missing from the Black Hills Children’s Home. According to NewsCenter1, Kayla Sacca, a relative of Serenity’s, was deeply affected by her disappearance and wanted to take action. Sacca drafted an online petition through Change.Org to petition the South Dakota State Senate and House to create a “Serenity…
The Rapid City Council awarded almost $24 million in funding through the city’s Vision Fund to fourteen community and three city-proposed projects for use over the next three years. According to the Rapid City Journal, the Vision Fund was originally created during the 1970s, when citizens approved a half-cent sales tax increase to fund the construction of the Civic Center.…
According to both the Pope and Young and the Boone and Crockett Clubs, a bighorn ram killed in Pennington County on October 30th has broken the previous world record for largest hunter-killed bighorn sheep, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. The previous record had held for 20 years. Clayton Miller drew the first and only Bighorn Sheep permit in the Badlands…
The legislative session resumed Tuesday in Pierre, with a myriad of new bills coming before legislators in committee meetings and on the chamber floors. According to KOTA Territory News, this week lawmakers in South Dakota will discuss bills concerning journalist protections, sports betting, and the teaching of gender identity in elementary and middle schools. South Dakota’s new governor, Kristi Noem,…
Usage of telehealth services is on the rise at Fort Meade’s Veterans Administration Campus, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. Veterans are now able to contact their doctor, nurse, specialist, or other provider with the Black Hills Health Care System at Fort Meade through a variety of digital access points. The Veterans Administration first began using telehealth services 10-15 years ago,…
Teachers with Rapid City Area Schools (RCAS) will soon have contracts, as resolution of the Rapid City Education Association (RCEA) and school district’s dispute over teacher pay draws near. According to the Rapid City Journal, both groups attended a mediation hearing with the South Dakota Department of Labor in Pierre on January 9th. Michelle Faw, an administrative law judge issued…
Beginning this summer, weekly non-stop flights to San Francisco and Los Angeles will be available from the Rapid City Regional Airport. According to NewsCenter1, Airport Director Patrick Dame announced that the United Airlines flights will be available from June 22 through September 1, 2019, on Saturdays and Sundays. Dame said that this service is “transformational” for state and local tourism…
Thursday saw a vote for the Rapid City Area Chamber of Commerce to merge with Elevate Rapid City, reports NewsCenter1. The merger is seen as a key step in consolidating all of Rapid City’s economic development activity under one body. The merger also includes the Rapid City Economic Development Partnership and Economic Development Foundation. Proponents of the merger believe that the…
An outbreak of pneumonia among the northern hills’ bighorn sheep population is hindering the growth of the herd, reports the Rapid City Journal.  Bighorns were reintroduced to the area almost four years ago, after disappearing completely in the early 1900s. Wildlife officials hope to return the herds to health by removing the few infected individuals. The pneumonia was originally contracted…
Following discussion at December’s Meade School Board meeting on the future of the county’s rural schools, Superintendent Jeff Simmons has said he will lead no further discussion on potential rural school closures. According to the Black Hills Pioneer, the closure of the rural Elm Springs school is currently not on the table for the Meade School District.   At that December…
The United States Navy’s newest fast-attack submarine, the USS South Dakota (SSN 790), will be commissioned at Naval Submarine Base New London in Groton, Connecticut on February 2nd. According to the Black Hills Pioneer, the submarine will be the 17th Virginia-class submarine to join the fleet. Deanie Dempsey, wife of retired Army General Martin E. Dempsey, who served as the…

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