CURRENT ISSUE
DEC. 7, 2016 - VOL. 52 No. 3

Headlines
Chair's Column
New Members
Member Anniversaries
Cover Story
Other News
Faces & Places
Ribbon Cuttings
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The Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Guide to Sioux Falls Area Legislators

Advocacy is a vital component of your Chamber membership. Decisions made by elected officials frequently and directly affect the way business is conducted.

The process by which the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce arrives at the issues that receive the most attention is methodical and involves great commitment among several committees and councils within the Chamber.

Providing the membership with essential information on the legislative process is a crucial element in fulfilling the Chamber´s advocacy objectives. This process begins each year with the development of the Issues Management Council-led Issues & Advocacy Survey, which was distributed to a random sampling of members in late November. Survey results aide in the development and refinement of policy statements and the Chamber´s platform, which are subsequently approved by the Issues Management Council and Board of Directors and ultimately guide the lobbying initiatives in Pierre. Both groups will approve the policy statements and platform in December; these documents will be published on siouxfallschamber.com in December and in the January edition of the Chamber News magazine. Public Affairs & Communications Director Mark Lee lobbies full-time on Chamber members´ behalf and the Chamber also retains a part-time lobbyist to represent the business interests within the Sioux Falls area.

Another way the Chamber helps inform members on advocacy initiatives leading into the upcoming legislative session is to provide information on Sioux Falls area legislators. The Sioux Falls area includes districts 6, 9-16 and 25. Each year the December issue of Chamber News gives legislators an opportunity to share with Chamber members the issues that they feel will be most important during the upcoming session. 

Several events will be held during the session to connect the business community with legislators. Please refer to the complete legislative calendar on page 28.

For more information about issues during the legislative session, read the weekly Bill Tracker (available via email or online at siouxfallschamber.com under the Advocacy tab) or contact a member of the Chamber´s Public Affairs and Communications team at (605) 336-1620.

 


DISTRICT 6 - SENATE
Ernie Otten

Sen. Ernie Otten
46787 273rd St., Tea, SD 57064
Occupation: Contractor Sales
Phone: (605) 368-5716
Email: ernie.otten@gmail.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
I actually have two, both which passed the legislature earlier this year, but were vetoed by the Governor:
a. SB 136 - Permit certain cropland along lakes, rivers, and streams to be assessed as noncropland (the buffer zone bill) to protect waterways and downstream lands from pollution.
b. SB 100 - Enhance South Dakota economic development through broadband infrastructure improvements. High population areas in South Dakota have multiple broadband options. However, rural areas have very few options for consistent, reliable broadband. I believe this is a critical infrastructure foundation to bringing in new and expanding businesses in South Dakota.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
It will be our budget deficit and trying to balance it to accommodate the newly passed IM 22. This includes funding democracy credits to fund political campaigns where two $50 credits would be issued to each registered voter, who would then assign them to participating candidates. The credits are redeemed from a program funded by an annual state general fund appropriation of $9 per registered voter. The program fund may not exceed $12 million at any time but will take its funding from other publicly funded programs such as education, etc. It also requires creating a powerful 5-panel ethics commission to manage the democracy credits among other wide-ranging duties.


DISTRICT 6 - HOUSE
Herman Otten

Rep. HERMAN OTTEN
Lennox, SD 57039
Occupation: Construction
Phone: (605) 941-1770
Email:hermanottendist6@gmail.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
In no particular order, the tech school board and increased funding, and remove the public funding of campaign financing due to the passage of IM 22.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
The potential Medicaid expansion and the budget shortfall

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I served 4 years as Mayor of Tea, 9 years on the Tea City Council and now 4 years as a State Legislator. Add to that being a small bussines owner and life long resident of the district are some of the things that help me be a good representative for District 6.

Issac Latterell

Rep. Isaac Latterell
PO Box 801, Tea, SD 57064
Occupation: Technology consultant
Phone: (605) 368-1002
Email:isaac@isaaclatterell.com
Twitter Handle: @isaaclatterell

No response provided.

DISTRICT 9 - SENATE
Deb Peters

Sen. Deb Peters
705 N. Sagehorn Dr., Hartford, SD 57033
Occupation: Small business owner/accountant
Phone: (605) 321-4168
Email: deb@debpeters.com
Twitter Handle: @DebPetersForSD

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
I don't have one issue that is more pressing than any other. I hope to ensure the government operates as efficient and effective as possible with our limited resources.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
There will be many burning issues this session. The budget may end up stealing the show with revenues not coming in as projected.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I am a small business owner, wife and mother of two teenagers. There are many life lessons learned with that combination and I feel that gives me a unique perspective on legislative decisions.

DISTRICT 9 - HOUSE
Paula Hawks

Rep. Michael Clark
45979 253rd St.
Hartford, SD 57033
Occupation: Customer service representative
Phone: (605) 212-5913
Email: kc0maz@gmail.com
Twitter Handle: @clarkmic

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Economic development and working on a balance between all infrastructure needs.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Funding of IM 22 is going to be a big issue; some of last year's transgendered bills might be making a comeback.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I work in a cube farm, where a good number of people in and around Sioux Falls work. They are not from the top of the pay grade, and they are not at the very bottom. These are the people who work hard for every dollar, and are proud of what they do. These are the people I represent.

Steve Hickey

Rep. Wayne Steinhauer
26581 E. Shore Pl.
Hartford, SD 57033
Occupation: Business owner
Phone: (605) 359-6298
Email: repsteinhauer@gmail.com
Twitter Handle: @repsteinhauer

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Working to increase the availability of skilled nursing home beds where needed and increase home and community based care in South Dakota.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Reduced sales tax revenue will make appropriations difficult. Medicaid expansion and proper funding for existing Medicaid providers will be prominent.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have served as a legislator for one session, and have had many years experience in urban and long range planning as well as volunteering in the non-profit world. Additionally I have run a large international manufacturing business and also own a small business in the tourism/hospitality industry. So I have a varied business background and creative analytical approach to problem solving.

DISTRICT 10 - SENATE
Jenna Haggar

Sen. Jenna Haggar

P.O. Box 763
Sioux Falls, SD 57101
Occupation: Entrepreneur
Phone: (605) 610-9779
Email: jenna.haggar@sdlegislature.gov
Twitter Handle: @jennahaggar

No response provided.

DISTRICT 10 - HOUSE
Don Haggar

Rep. Don Haggar
PO Box 1532,
Sioux Falls SD 57101
Occupation: Insurance Sales
Phone: (605) 360-8130
Email: don.haggar@sdlegislature.gov
Twitter Handle: @donhaggar

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Balancing the budget in light of weak sales tax revenues.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Business climate, workforce development, and the initiative/referendum process.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
My experience in business and finance, my agricultural background and my legislative tenure all combine to help me effectively represent my district and the state.

Steven Haugaard

Rep. Steven Haugaard
47629 258th St.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
Occupation: Attorney
Phone: (605) 334-1121
Email: steve@haugaardlaw.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
The budget must become the equal responsibility of the Legislature to ensure a balance of power. I intend to review previous tax increases as well as to more closely review agency expenditures.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Review of justice reforms and drug prevention.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have practiced law for 33 years and understand the ramifications of ill-conceived and/or poorly crafted legislation. Also, the practice of law revolves around the successful development of relationships and the ability to advocate and negotiate, all of which are essential qualities to effectively represent the citizens of South Dakota.

DISTRICT 11 - SENATE
David Omdahl

Rep. Jim Stalzer
5909 W. Bristol Dr.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57106
Occupation: Retired (information technology)
Phone: (605) 838-0354
Email: jim.stalzer@gmail.comjim.stalzer@sdlegislature.gov
Twitter Handle: @jimstalzer

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Increasing the number of nursing home beds in Sioux Falls and Rapid City.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Unfortunately I think the fallout from the unconstitutional provisions in Initiated Measure 22 will dominate and occupy way too much of our time.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I'm a U.S. Air Force Veteran with training as an electronic technician and a BS in Business Administration. My work history includes 15 years in manufacturing management, teaching vocational electronics and college level classes in Production Management, Finance and Money & Banking. I also did installation and support for core banking software. I spent the last 20 years of my career in Information Technology; duties included supporting multiple networking operating systems, web, email, secure data transfer, data base servers and Internet security, etc. This experience plus my involvement in numerous volunteers organizations as an officer or director, have given me a very broad base of experiences to draw on.

DISTRICT 11 - HOUSE
Jim Stalzer

Rep. Chris Karr

7421 W. Luke Dr.
Sioux Falls, SD 57106
Occupation: Small business owner
Phone: (605) 695-0391
Email: chris@karrforhouse.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
My highest priority in Pierre will be making sure that South Dakota maintains a strong economy and remains an attractive place to raise a family and operate a business. It is important that we have representatives with a business background that understand how a strong private sector is vital to a healthy economy. The leadership decisions made in Pierre can provide incentives or disincentives to small business owners and corporations alike. I will strive to provide guidance and oversight to ensure decisions are benefitting our economy, our businesses and our taxpayers.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
No matter what issues arise during this legislative session, I will examine them objectively and thoroughly and work hard to represent the voters that elected me.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
As a small business owner with a background in economics and finance, I understand how policy and regulation directly affect our economy. It is important that we have representatives with a business background that understand how a strong private sector is vital to a healthy economy. We need smart people making decisions about our budget and expenses who understand how legislation affects the economy and the people of South Dakota.

Mark Willadsen

Rep. Mark Willadsen
7712 W. Bernelli Cir.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57106
Occupation: Insurance agent
Phone: (605) 361-6104
Email: mark.willadsen@sdlegislature.gov

No information provided

DISTRICT 12 - SENATE
Blake Curd

Sen. Blake Curd

Occupation: Orthopedic surgeon
Phone: (605) 331-5890
Email: blake.curd@sdlegislature.gov
Twitter Handle: @blakecurd

No information provided

DISTRICT 12 - HOUSE
Arch Beal

Rep. Arch Beal
4815 N. Northview Ave.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57107
Occupation: Business owner
Phone: (605) 336-3034
Email: arch.beal@sdlegislature.gov

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
At this point in time, there are no bills that I will be the primary sponsor for, although, if I find there is a need for certain legislation it will be presented. During the 2016 session I was assigned to the Commerce and Energy and the Taxation Committees.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
With newly elected officials and the passing of new legislation it is difficult to identify what topics we will be facing, but as legislators it is our duty to consider the matters that affect our constituents.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I am honored to be representing the great people of District 12 and I do not take this responsibility lightly. I have been active in the South Dakota legislature for over 40 years. At a very young age I took on the role as general manager and owner of Beal Distributing in Sioux Falls. My experiences as a 40 year business owner, the father of 7 respectable children and an incumbent legislator have given me the leadership qualities that make an effective legislator.

Alex Jensen

Rep. Greg Jamison

6300 S. Grand Prairie Dr.
Sioux Falls, SD 57108
Occupation: Owner/operator Jamison Advertising
Phone: (605) 310-1930
Email: greg@jamisoncompany.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
My number one focus in the 2017 legislative session will be to propose and legislate a process/plan for city, county, and the state government to work in collaboration. If and when the majority of a county's population resides in the same city, I will propose incentives to create more collaboration between all governmental bodies. It´s clear with a little guidance, communities across the state could create a better customer experience, improve services with efficiencies and save tax dollars.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
I would look for criminal justice, education, and overall general budget funding to be hot topics. Plus, the IM 22 should be a topic of review as the session starts.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
As a former member of the Sioux Falls City Council with 8 years of legislative service, I can hit the ground running. A large part of my state legislative district is the same as my previous city council district, the legislative process from city to state is similar in nature but now I have a much larger constituency to serve.

DISTRICT 13 - SENATE

Sen. Jack Kolbeck

1124 E. Plum Creek Rd.
Sioux Falls, SD 57105
Occupation: KAM for Beal Dist. Inc.
Phone: (605) 332-6490
Email: jrkolbeck@sio.midco.net

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
A Balanced Budget. The state sales tax revenues will be down from what was projected in 2016 so it is important that we so not spend more than we have. Our constitution makes very clear that we must maintain a balanced budget in the state of South Dakota.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
I am sure there will be concerns with the budget and some of the new initiatives that were passed as to how they will be funded. Any increase in taxes and state government spending will be on my agenda to watch. I believe that we are taxed enough and any increases in taxes or state spending will be one of my biggest concerns.  

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have been a businessman in Sioux Falls for over 41 years and very active within the community. My experience working with the legislative process over these years has given me the knowledge to understand what it takes to represent the people in District 13 and the state. I also listen to what concerns people may have and after going door to door and attending many functions and service group meetings during my campaign, I have become even more aware of these concerns. Since I am a new Senator I need to listen and learn from my constitutents so I can make decisions that are right for them and for the people of the state of South Dakota.

DISTRICT 13 - HOUSE
Mark Michkelson

Rep. Mark Mickelson

2901 S. 5th Ave.
Sioux Falls, SD 57105
Occupation: Mickelson & Co.
Phone: (605) 951-7690
Email: mark@markmickelson.org
Twitter Handle: @micksd

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
The technical school governance model.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Expanded health insurance for adult indigent population through federal Medicaid program, and declining state revenues.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I take a business approach and look for common ground on issues that matter with the goal of finding an acceptable solution for all stakeholders.

Rep. Sue Lucas-Peterson

6405 S. Killarney Cir.
Sioux Falls, SD 57108
Occupation: Former banker, track coach
Phone: (605) 371-1668
Email: suefordistrict13@gmail.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
As a new legislator, I intend to listen and learn the process so that I am able to accurately and effectively represent the views of my constituents in District 13 on the issues we will be facing.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
As of this writing, the state is facing a $12 million unfunded mandate imposed by IM 22, along with reported declining sales tax revenues, making the job of finding funding for essential services the most prominent issue of the 2017 session.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
As a former commercial banker, track coach, wife, mom and community volunteer, I have had a very broad range of experiences at a variety of levels in South Dakota. I will listen to a variety of perspectives and take the time to research an issue before making a decision.

DISTRICT 14 - SENATE
Deb Soholt

Sen. Deb Soholt
2628 E. Regency Ct.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57103
Occupation: Registered nurse/healthcare director
Phone: (605) 321-5931
Email: deb.soholt@sdlegislature.gov
Twitter Handle: @senatorsoholt

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Reducing regulatory barriers for small business and access to health care.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Meeting public obligations with flat/declining revenues.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
My husband Jerry and I raised our family of three children in District 14 where we fully participated in every aspect of what it means to be a part of a community. I have worked fulltime as a registered nurse for over 35 years in multiple roles that have taken me from the bedside to the boardroom. I have been fortunate to serve on local, statewide and national boards both as member and many times elected leader, which helped me grow professionally and develop skills that translate into the legislative arena.

DISTRICT 14 - HOUSE
Larry Zikmund

Rep. Larry Zikmund
2405 E. 52nd St.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57103
Occupation: Retired (association management and education)
Phone: (605) 373-0975
Email: lzikmund@sio.midco.net

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
It is important to take time to listen and be responsive to constituents. The legislature needs to ensure our children and grandchildren have a good education from K-12 to post-secondary, and have opportunities in the workforce available across the state. My focus will continue to be on creating the right conditions so businesses can create jobs. This includes being an advocate for a strong education system including vocational and technical education, and maintaining South Dakota´s business friendly tax and regulatory structure while being a good steward of tax dollars. It is also important to safeguard our personal freedoms and rights while taking care of the elderly and supporting our veterans and first responders who make our way of life possible.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Revenue figures may be lower than anticipated which means the legislature will have to keep a watchful eye during the budgeting process. It will be important to ensure South Dakota has a balanced budget, that conditions which foster job creation and economic growth are still in place, and investments in education are protected. The governor recently announced that Medicaid expansion is off the table so that will no longer be an issue that makes a lot of headlines. It will also be critical that implementation of Amendment R (Tech Institute governance) which passed during the election is properly implemented.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
My professional background includes work on statewide issues including economic development, workforce development, and education. While State Director of Adult, Vocational and Technical Education, and President and CEO of the Associated General Contractors Building Chapter, I worked on statewide economic development issues with community leaders, business leaders, and elected officials. This experience provided a strong understanding of policies that promote growth and job creation. I also served in the United States Air Force and continue to be active in the Veterans Community including the Chamber´s Veteran´s Affairs Committee. While at the AGC, I helped pioneer Operation Opening Doors which remodels and constructs new homes for our returning disabled veterans. This program has been replicated nationally.

Tom Holmes

Rep. Tom Holmes
4709 Shields Ave.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57103
Occupation: Retired educator
Phone: (605) 988-7527
Email: thomas.holmes@sdlegislature.gov

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
The most important issue this year will be health care in South Dakota. Workforce development will, as always, be an important consideration as well.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
My experience as an educator has helped me to develop skills that have served me well as a legislator. I have also been involved in the community, participating on the historic preservation and Sioux Falls Tomorrow committees. In addition I have spent time volunteering at Dougherty Hospice House and at the Humane Society. I have also participated in the Meals on Wheels program and I have been a member of the Sioux Falls Blood Bank for over 30 years. Finally, I must say that going door to door during my campaigns has helped keep me grounded and in touch with my constituents.

DISTRICT 15 - SENATE

Sen. Reynold F. Nesiba

201 S. Menlo Ave.
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
Occupation: Economics professor
Phone: (605) 371-6311
Email: nesiba@mac.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
There must be no back sliding on Initiated Measure 21. Over 75% of South Dakota voters support a 36% interest rate cap on payday, car title, and installment loans. The out of state payday bosses who are going to try and reverse this victory need to be aggressively opposed.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
I am looking forward to working with Governor Daugaard on his grassy strips bill to begin the process of cleaning up our waterways. I am disappointed that the incoming Trump administration has already taken action to deny the possibility of Medicaid expansion to 50,000 of our fellow South Dakotans. We must continue to figure out ways to meet their needs.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have been a college economics professor for over 20 years. In that role I have learned to think abstractly, analytically, and in terms of systems. These are valuable skills for public policy making. I'm also the son of an auto mechanic who had his own shop and a mom who ran her own café. Thus, I grew up understanding how small business works and how it opens possibilities even for those who lack a high school diploma. We must continue to support small business. There was a time in my life when my own children benefitted from food stamps, WIC, and Medicaid. I understand how essential these programs are for low-income families.

DISTRICT 15 - HOUSE
Karen Soli

Rep. Karen Soli
810 W. 6th St.,
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
Occupation: Clergy
Phone: (605) 338-5934
Email: karen.soli@sdlegislature.gov

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
I will work to protect the progress we made for education by increasing teacher pay and to find other ways to strengthen education. I also hope to increase accountability so we can reduce corruption in our state government. I will continue to support legislation in the spirit of our corrections reforms that offers rehabilitation for nonviolent offenders whenever possible. I am looking forward to supporting legislation that improves our treatment of those with mental illness in our criminal justice system.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
I think all of the issues mentioned above will be important along with efforts to revise the laws set in place by IM 22 and proposals brought forth by the Regulation of Nursing and Assisted Living Beds Interim Committee on which I served. Other interim studies will bring their important issues to the table as well.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I am a person who has spent her life working with people and groups in positives ways as a parish pastor and church leader on local, state, and national levels I bring many skills from this vocation to my work as legislator. My district is the most diverse and urban in the state and requires that I represent a variety of people, many of them striuggling to make ends meet. My experiences as a pastor and a director of a mobile food pantry help me listen to their concerns and represent those who are sometimes ignored, neglected or misunderstood by those in power.

Rep. Jamie Smith

512 n. euclid ave.
Sioux Falls, SD 57104

No information provided

DISTRICT 16 - SENATE

Sen. Jim Bolin
403 W. 11th St., Canton, SD 57013
Occupation: Retired Teacher
Phone: (605) 261-9669
Email: jwbolin@gmail.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Developing a new formula for the submission of measures and constitutional amendments to the ballot. This needs to change, especially for proposed amendments to the South Dakota constitution. Our process is being hijacked by out of state interests.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
The state budget and the making of necessary cuts. We are not meeting our budget projections, therefore cuts will be needed. We must reduce spending judiciously and possibly access some state reserves. We should not consider any more tax increases at this time.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have lived in the area south of Sioux Falls for many years and know the people and the area very well. I meet personally with people in Lincoln and Union counties often and get feedback from them on a regular basis. I was re-elected in 2016 with 72% of the vote which is humbling to me. My views reflect the small towns that are between Sioux Falls and Sioux City very accurately.

DISTRICT 16 - HOUSE

Rep. Kevin D. Jensen

27808 484th Ave.
canton, SD 57013
Occupation: Business owner
Phone: (605) 987-4296
Email: kevinj@iw.net
Twitter Handle: @repjensen

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Real economic growth can only come from making it easier to start and expand small businesses. It´s hard enough to keep small businesses viable in a down turned economy and overregulation makes keeping those businesses open much harder. Increases in sales tax reduce the amount of disposable income in the hands of the voters and that means less money for goods and services which ultimately hurts the small businesses. Looking for ways to ease the pressures on small business is one of my main goals.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Unfortunately there will be significant effort expended to deal with IM 22 and the budgeting process to pay for the measure. This will add more layers of state government which will carry a high price tag for the voters. Finding ways to cover not only the campaign financing expense but covering the additional workforce expense will be difficult. I am also hopeful that the issue of Medicaid Expansion has been put to rest, at least for now.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I bring a unique set of experience from my work, volunteerism, and community involvement to District 16. My early career years included 17 years as a corporate IT Director for a pharmaceutical wholesale company working with organizations ranging from drug manufacturers to insurance companies and hospitals. I am currently a business owner/employer. My wife and I own Prairie View Prevention Services and I am the Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. For the past 20 years Prairie View has provided drug and alcohol prevention, intervention and outpatient services for youth in Union, Lincoln and Minnehaha counties through school based services. Additionally I am currently serving in my 16th year on the Canton School Board; 5 years as President and 5 years as Vice President.
I am an avid sportsmen, NRA Patron life member with an "A" rating, a firearms instructor, Certified Concealed Carry Instructor, former SD certified law enforcement officer, 4-H leader and shooting sports instructor, member of the Lincoln County 4-H Executive Committee, private pilot and proud parent of 3 sons (and their 2 wives and 1 fiancé) and grandparent of 6. I am also a deacon and worship leader for my church in Canton, and currently enrolled in Sioux Falls Seminary earning my Masters of Divinity degree. I have worked on all nine reservations and in most counties across the state offering training on issues ranging from drug endangered children to Meth issues ranging from prevention to Meth lab cleanup. All of this experience prepares me to deal with many of the issues and problems facing District 16 and the state.

David Anderson

Rep. DAVID ANDERSON
29177 477th Ave.,
Hudson, SD 57034
Occupation: Farming/insurance
Phone: (605) 310-1645
Email: david.anderson@sdlegislature.gov

No response provided.

DISTRICT 25 - SENATE

Sen. Kris Langer

600 W. 7th St.
Dell Rapids, SD 57022
Occupation: Realtor
Phone: (605) 331-9225
Email: tjlanger@siouxvalley.net

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Work force development.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Continued discussion of Medicaid provider pay and teacher salaries.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have served on the city council, economic development boards and come from a family farm. I am also a licensed realtor and active in my community.

DISTRICT 25 - HOUSE

Rep. Tom Pischke

503 E. 12th St.
dell rapids, SD 57022
Occupation: Insurance
Phone: (605) 999-2948
Email: tompischke@hotmail.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
The shared parenting issue is the most important to me. I plan on proposing legislation to make shared parenting the standard starting place when determining child custody in family courtrooms. Shared parenting is in the best interest of the children more often than not and it is well past the hour for family law and legislation to reflect that. Usually, loving capable parents (typically fathers) are being forced to become visitors in their childrens´ lives because family courtroom judges do not have adequate laws and procedures for today´s world.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
Since Medicaid expansion is off the table, I think our budget issues will be the most prominent topic discussed during this upcoming session. I´ve heard that our revenues are down and that we´re looking at a shortfall for the upcoming budget so it will be interesting to see how we can make everything work with less revenue.

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
I have a B.S. degree from Dakota State University and I´ve been working in the I.T. profession for over 10 years now. During that time, I´ve been involve in some very intense situations that have helped me develop a mindset to deliver results under pressure. It´s also helped me understand when I should speak up and when I should be quiet, listen and understand what is being said. I feel these traits are very important to being a good legislator.

Rep. Dan Ahlers

913 Washington Ave.
dell rapids, SD 57022
Occupation: Small business owner
Phone: (605) 940-3071
Email: danahlers1973@gmail.com

1. What is your most important issue to work on during the 2017 Session?
Ethics Laws.

2. What issue or issues do you think will be most prominent during the 2017 Session?
1) Education Funding 2) IM-22 3) Healthcare

3. How does your experiences and background contribute to you being a good legislator for your district and South Dakota?
My previous legislative experience and Political Science degree give me a good understanding of the process. I have 30 years of business experience. Initially, I worked for large retailers. I have spent the last 18 years as a smaill business owner. This experience gives me multiple perspectives on issues of business and economics.

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Be informed during the legislative session

A lot happens quickly during the two month legislative session in Pierre. The Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce works to keep you informed of the issues being considered and decisions being made that may affect your business.

The Chamber tracks bills and communicates pertinent information to members via the weekly Bill Tracker email and online posting. Bill Tracker is published only during the session and rates bills based on their significance to the Chamber´s legislative platform.

Additional information about the legislative session can also be found in the weekly newsletter The Chamber Advocate. The Chamber Advocate tracks activities at all levels of government. Its purpose is to provide information and insight regarding issues that affect business and the growth and development of the Sioux Falls area. All Chamber members and their employees can receive this information at no cost. The Chamber Advocate is emailed each Friday.

As a Chamber member, you can sign up for both publications in the Chamber´s Members Only section at siouxfallschamber.com or by contacting the office at (605) 336-1620.

Follow the Chamber on Twitter to get legislative developments in real-time. The Chamber uses an advocacy-specific Twitter handle @SFAreaAdvocate during session. Many legislators are also on Twitter; you can find their handles with their profile information in the preceding pages.

Another great resource is the Legislative Research Council (LRC) website: legis.state.sd.us/. You can use this site to search bills by number, subject or the member who introduced the bill. You can also track committees and floor activities and find existing laws. The LRC site also contains contact information for every member of South Dakota´s House and Senate.

Chamber members are encouraged to save this issue of Chamber News for the legislative guide and to use it during the session to contact Sioux Falls area legislators. You can also get legislators´ contact information at siouxfallschamber.com under the Advocacy tab.

You can also reach legislators in Pierre. To leave a message for a Senator, call (605) 773-3821. To leave a message for a member of the House of Representatives, call (605) 773-3851.

Chamber members who have specific legislative questions can contact lobbyist and Public Affairs & Communications Director Mark Lee at (605) 336-1620 or mlee@siouxfalls.com.


Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
2016 Legislative Events

Governor´s budget address
Friday, Dec. 9
Best Western PLUS Ramkota Hotel
3200 W. Maple St.
7:30-8:30 a.m.

Details: The Governor will present information and will also
take questions from the audience. Breakfast will be served.

Cost: $25 per Chamber member

RSVP: tschreier@siouxfalls.com or (605) 373-2050


Good Morning Sioux Falls Legislative Breakfast
Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017
7-8:30 a.m.
Best Western PLUS Ramkota Hotel, 3200 W. Maple St.
Washington/Lincoln/Roosevelt Rooms

Details: Sponsored by the Chamber´s Diplomat Committee & Issues Management Council. Hear from Sioux Falls area legislators about their goals for the upcoming 2017 Legislative Session. Breakfast will be served.

Cost: $20

RSVP: vwillson@siouxfalls.com or (605) 373-2010


Sioux Falls Area Legislative Coffees Saturday, Feb. 4, 2017
Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017
Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017
10:00-11:45 a.m.
Ramada Hotel & Suites
1301 W. Russell St., Galley Ballroom

Details: Includes Districts 6, 9-16, and 25. More details will follow about the district assignments for each date.


Sioux Falls Day at the Legislature
Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2017
Pierre, SD
Luncheon: Capitol Rotunda

Details: More details will follow about the day´s agenda.

RSVP: tschreier@siouxfalls.com or (605) 373-2050


Business Day at the Legislature
Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017
Pierre, SD

Details: Sponsored by the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce & Industry.



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