House Bill 1117–“Riot Booster” Bill is on the Senate Floor TODAY after passing Senate Judiciary Committee on a 6-1 vote Tuesday evening.

Riot and intentional damage to property are already crimes, so the bill is unnecessary. It creates a serious chilling effect on exercise of constitutionally-protected freedoms of speech and assembly due to its vague language. Even in committee, Governor Noem’s staff was unable to define exactly what “Riot Boosting” means–and the bill isn’t clear about it, either.

It will likely result in false riot charges–clogging up our courts and jails and leading to unnecessary taxpayer expense as demonstrated in North Dakota. Read the bill HERE.

Call Senators to OPPOSE this bill: (605) 773-3821 or email them:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,


Senate Bill 157–the County Zoning Bill–is heading to the House Floor Monday after a 10-3 vote in House State Affairs Wednesday morning.

Governor Noem claims this bill “streamlines” the permitting process while protecting, or even “enhancing” local control. That simply untrue. There are a number of ways this bill undermines the local process and forces counties to fall in line with industry demands–see below for specifics.

Additionally, there are legal questions with this bill because under our constitution, the state is not allowed to legislate county and township affairs. And lastly, with counties strapped for cash, the need to weigh and mitigate potential negative impacts with large-scale projects (particularly around roads & bridges) makes fast-tracking the wrong approach.

Click HERE to read the bill–section numbers of problematic parts of the bill are indicated in brackets below. Feel free to use any of the above or below points in your communications with House Members!


  • SB 157 undermines local control in these ways:
    • REMOVES supermajority vote option for conditional use permits and forces a simple majority of members present vote on permits. [Sections 2 & 6]
    • NULLIFIES counties’ ability to set their own expiration date for permits issued and sets in place an across-the-board standard of two years following the conclusion of an appeal–no matter how long that appeal process takes. [Section 15]
    • REMOVES the vote on special permitted uses and forces administrative approval. [Sections 3 & 4]
    • Due to all of these changes, passage of the bill would force ALL counties with zoning to update their ordinances, adding a further burden to already overburdened counties.


  • SB 157 cuts people out of the democratic process in these ways:
    • Entices counties to use a “special permitted use” process that is administratively approved–no public notice or hearing–undermining due process [Sections 3 & 4]
    • Severely limits those who have standing to file an appeal–beyond what the courts have previously ruled [Section 1]
    • Subjects those who do appeal to costs of preparing transcripts, which can run into the thousands of dollars [Section 11]
    • Subjects those who appeal & lose to paying winner’s attorneys fees (though if an appealing party wins, the county is exempt from paying) [Section 14]


Senate Bill 151–The “Critical Infrastructure” Bill was brought to our state through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which legislators and corporate members have been fleeing for a number of years due to the highly controversial and potentially unconstitutional nature of the “model” bills they push. SB 151 (read HERE) will be up for a House floor vote on Monday.

It adds pipelines, pipeyards, and related infrastructure to a list of “critical infrastructure” and creates enhanced penalties (felonies) for tampering or disrupting in any way the construction, maintenance, or operation of those facilities. It’s important to understand that tampering with infrastructure we rely on for basic services is already a crime–this bill targets protest and non-violent direct action against the Keystone XL pipeline.

Contact House of Representatives members to OPPOSE County Zoning & Critical Infrastructure bills by calling (605) 773-3851 or email members:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,