Rep. Ladner tells commission tax reform is most pressing issue

By Cathy Nelson

HOT SPRINGS – South Dakota District 30 Representative Trish Ladner presented an update on tax reform to the Fall River County Commission during the meeting on Thursday, June 9. Ladner said that the Legislative Research Council approved the Property Tax Structure and Tax Burden Study that she proposed last March. The scope of the study is to examine the existing property tax structure; consider the means by which the total property tax burden of South Dakotans could be decreased; and to compare the property taxation of similar states by examining those states’ property tax assessment guidelines, their respective definitions of the tax base and determination of tax rates.

“This is the most pressing issue, not just in District 30, but all across the state,” Ladner said. The first committee meeting is scheduled for June 27 in Pierre at 10 a.m. Agendas will be posted on the Legislative Research Council (LRC) website, and all meetings are open to the public to attend in person or via “Teams.” Anyone wanting to attend via Teams will need to call and register with the LRC, 605-773-3251, to be invited to the forum.

Later in the meeting, the commissioners heard next year’s budget request for Southern Hills Economic Development (SHEDCO). Executive Director Andrea Powers gave updates on  SHEDCO’s current and future projects. Some of the projects she talked about are the new picnic shelter at Brookside that Rotary built, the new sidewalk being constructed downtown along the river that will be accessible for people with disabilities, and the need for workforce housing in Edgemont and Hot Springs. She said there are plans to build four and eight plexes.

Next to speak was Dave Tyson, who has lived in Smithwick for 42 years. He said the Smithwick Road (County Road #1) needs better gravel and that the highway department workers who maintain the road need better supervision. He asked the commissioners for heavier gravel, for a better foundation on the road and to have the workers trained to run the road equipment.

In other business, the commissioners voted to waive a conflict of interest for State’s Attorney Lance Russell in regard to the old Oxnard Hotel in Edgemont that the city is talking about taking down. Russell is the city attorney for Edgemont, as well as the county’s state’s attorney. Commissioner Deb Russell voted no, while the other four commissioners voted in favor of the motion to waive the conflict of interest.

The commissioners approved the following business items.

• Appoint Don Olstad to the Hot Springs Rural Fire District to fill a vacancy

• Set formation election for Angostura Land Estates Road District for July 12

• Change the date for the next commission meeting to June 23

• Approve purchase of 2022 replacement 911 road signs in the amount $3,044.30

• Abatement for Gail Saxonis and Glen and Esther Denton

• Advertise for Extension and 4-H personnel

• New Black Hills Forest Plan Memorandum of Understanding

The meeting was adjourned to conduct the official canvass for the 2022 primary election.

Fall River County Herald Star

EDGEMONT OFFICE: 410 2nd Avenue   Edgemont, SD 57735-0660 | 605.662.7201
HOT SPRINGS OFFICE: 334 S. Chicago St.  Hot Springs, SD 57747 | 605.745.3930
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