SD senator recaps the 87th legislative session

The 87th legislative session ended the same way it began: busy. South Dakota lawmakers had to make do with more bills in a shorter amount of time.

“With two days down with Governor Bill [sic] Janklow‘s memorial we still tried to accomplish it,” said Senator Jeffrey Haverly of Rapid City.

A shorter calendar was just one challenge. The Republican senator describes another.

“The biggest challenge at least from the senate’s perspective … was the ability to negotiate through the house and the senate,” Haverly said.

But with a March 2nd deadline looming, state legislators in both chambers were able to push bills through to the governor’s desk. They were able to pass laws that would allocate money to Ellsworth Air Force Base and give state workers and teachers a bonus. Lawmakers were also able to finalize next year’s $4 billion state budget.

“I think we were able to accomplish everything that I think both houses wished to accomplish and the governor … there were a couple of agencies that I think got hurt in the previous year’s cuts,” said Haverly.

If he could turn back the hands of time Haverly says he wouldn’t change a thing. “I’m extremely happy right now;South Dakota weathered the storm fairly well if you look in comparison to the other states.”

All bills passed this session now await Governor Dennis Daugaard‘s signature. Lawmakers plan to return to the state capitol for a final day, March 19th, to consider any vetoes issued by Governor Daugaard.

As for Senator Haverly, he has decided not to run for re-election after serving as a state lawmaker for 10 years.

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