South Dakota Senators approve prison funding bill

Senators vote 27-6 to approve over 250-million dollars in state funds to plan and construct a new men’s prison.

SB 49 allocates $132 million in general funds and nearly $94 million in state reserves. It also provides $10 million in federal funds.

Senator John Wiik of Big Stone City carried the bill on the Senate floor. He says the new prison could top $700 million by the time it’s done and the right way to go about it is to set money aside and pay for it in cash.

Senator Jim Bolin of Canton represents the district where the Department of Corrections plans to build the new prison. He spoke against the funding mechanisms. He believes the state should bond for the bill and pay for it over a number of years.

Bolin says the state could use the funds for other vital projects if it bonded for the prison.

Wiik says the state is saving money by paying for it in full with cash.

The bill now heads to the House.


Februaru 28, 2024