Six-man football, State Dual Wrestling Tourney Considered

By Dana Hess

For the S.D. Newspaper Association PIERRE —

Big changes may be on the way for football and wrestling after the first reading of handbook proposals at Monday’s meeting of the South Dakota High School Activities Association.

Among the many handbook changes considered were the advent of six-man football and the addition of a dual title to the state wrestling tournament. Starting in the 2019-20 season, six-man football would replace the 9B classification, leaving only two classifications of nine-man football.

The new classification would be open to any school with an average daily membership of 40 or fewer male students. That number was too high for Jay Wammen, head football coach at Harding County.

Wammen said he knew that some coaches would field a six-man team with 30 players on the sideline just so they could have a “powerhouse six-man team.” He suggested the number be cut to 25.

Wammen also noted that six-man football doesn’t offer players the full range of experience they would need to go on to play football in college.

“We hope a lot of our kids get to play at the college level,” Wammen said.

SDHSAA Assistant Executive Director John Krogstrand said the decision to use the average daily membership of 40 was designed to be more inclusive. Board member Sandy Klatt of Brandon Valley asked if the advent of six-man football would mean the dissolution of some football cooperatives. Krogstrand said that might happen, but it would be the only way that some small communities could get back to hosting high school football games.

“They can have their Friday nights back home,” Krogstrand said.

The board approved the first reading of the creation of six-man football on a 5-2 vote. Board members Dave Planteen of Baltic and Steve Morford of Spearfish cast the dissenting votes.

Krogstrand said wrestling coaches have been hopeful that the dual tournament would be reinstated.

“The coaches are hungry to get it back,” Krogstrand said. “If we’re bringing it back, we have to make sure that we do it right.”

Getting it right was the subject of a lengthy debate. The original proposal called for implementing the tournament during the next school year. Some athletic directors in the room, who already had their dual schedules set for next year, balked at making the change so fast.

Some board members agreed.

“I feel like we’re trying to build the airplane while we fly it,:” said board member Brian Maher of Sioux Falls.

The motion that passed unanimously called for implementing the tournament in the 2019-20 school year with SDHSAA staff tasked with figuring out how teams would qualify for the tournament.

In addition to the athletic handbook, first readings were also held for changes to the fine arts handbook. One of those changes included a major change for show choir.

SDHSAA Assistant Executive Director Brooks Bowman said each year fewer teams are taking part in show choir. The change approved Monday would discontinue the State Show Choir Competition to have it eventually replaced by an All-State Show Choir.

“We would not sponsor show choir next year,” Bowman said, explaining that the show choir advisory board is working on the details for the All-State event.

The handbook changes will have their second and final reading at SDHSAA’s June meeting.

Governor Daugaard to Receive SDNA Open Government Award

Gov. Dennis Daugaard’s commitment to improving government transparency during his two terms in office has earned him recognition as the 2018 recipient of South Dakota Newspaper Association’s “Eagle Award.”

The award is given by the newspaper association to an individual or group that has demonstrated outstanding efforts to protect and enhance open government and the public’s right to know.

Daugaard has improved public access to various state government functions and entities, including the creation of website for searching meeting agendas, minutes and other documents for state boards and commissions. He initiated the boards and commissions website after he became frustrated when he was unable to readily locate the information online.

The governor along with Attorney General Marty Jackley appointed a task force in 2012 to make legislative recommendations for open government issues. Five of the eight recommendations made by the task force ultimately became law.

After he took office during his first term, the governor made public the names of some of the people who are invited to the annual governor’s pheasant hunt in Pierre and the buffalo roundup at Custer State Park. Public access to those lists had long been a contentious issue in the news media prior to Daugaard becoming governor.

Daugaard also has been a consistent supporter of the publication of government public notices such as school board and city council minutes in local newspapers as an effective means for taxpayers to know what local government is doing.

“As a candidate for governor, Dennis Daugaard said he would pursue increased openness, transparency and accountability in government,” said Tim Waltner, former publisher of the Freeman Courier and chair of the SDNA First Amendment Committee. “When he was elected governor, he kept his word. Throughout his two terms in that office, Gov. Daugaard has consistently been an ally and strong advocate in efforts to strengthen South Dakota’s laws protecting citizens’ access to public records and to public meetings.”

Daugaard will receive the award during SDNA’s annual convention May 4 in Sioux Falls.

Among the past recipients of the SDNA Eagle Award were state Senator Corey Brown (2016), Sioux Falls resident Gordon Heber (2010), Attorney General Larry Long (2004) and the justices of the state Supreme Court in 2002, the first year the award was given.

South Dakota Newspaper Association, based in Brookings, represents the state’s 125 weekly and daily newspapers.

Reminders of Our Outlaw Days


Every region has favorite outlaws and villains but few have the outlaw-rich history of Dakota Territory and South Dakota.

Those who came to Dakota Territory were either bravely adventurous or very desperate. The faint of heart did not leave family, friends and comforts of home for a dangerous and uncertain existence. South Dakota remains the center of the American frontier, and we are surrounded by remnants and reminders of territorial history.

Furthermore, descendants of some of our most colorful characters still live here. Not too long ago, South Dakota Magazine featured an article on outlaws. We wrote about a man who had lured investors to the Hills by switching mineral samples. The suckers realized they had been duped when miners processed 3,000 tons of ore and extracted only $5 in gold. It’s a good story, but one of our readers took offense. “My grandfather was not a crook!” wrote a nice lady from West River. It turns out her ancestor was also a pillar of the Rapid City community.

Other reminders of our outlaw past remain in every corner of the state. In Geddes the cabin of fur trader Cuthbert DuCharme sits in the city park. DuCharme, called “Old Papineau” because of a talent for whiskey-making (Papineau is French for pap water, or whiskey), lived along the banks of the Missouri River. His roadhouse boomed when Fort Randall was established, and wild parties were held every night.

On the other side of the state, a tree used for hanging three accused horse thieves still stands on Skyline Drive. The tree died long ago, but the trunk is now embedded in concrete, a grey reminder of an era when hangings were punishment for a crime that might not merit a prison sentence today.

One of those killed that night was a teenager. His two traveling companions admitted their guilt, but declared to the very end that the boy was innocent. Some Rapid Citians felt there was a curse on their city because of the boy’s hanging.

Yes, our past is hard to escape. A new gravestone now marks the Gregory County burial site of Jack Sully, the famous Robin Hood of the Rosebud country. The shackles worn by Lame Johnny on his last stagecoach ride (vigilantes stopped the coach and hanged him) are now split between the State Historical Society in Pierre and the 1881 Custer Courthouse Museum. Potato Creek Johnny’s 7.75 ounce gold nugget can be seen at the Adams Museum in Deadwood. And you can still sleep at Poker Alice’s house in Sturgis. Reminders of our outlaw history are all around. South Dakota Magazine’s book South Dakota Outlaws and Scofflaws is about the colorful characters who settled Dakota Territory. The book also points readers to historical places that can still be visited today — like Old Paps’ cabin and the hanging tree. For more information visit or call 1(800) 456-5117.

Attorney General Jackley Touts Milestones Reached in 24/7 Sobriety Program

Attorney General Marty Jackley announced the State of South Dakota is continuing its ongoing success of the 24/7 Sobriety Program.

“The 24/7 Sobriety Program was based on a vision by then Attorney General Larry Long and has been made successful by the tireless work of our sheriffs running the county programs,” said Jackley. “The Program has proven to be a success, not only measured by the participants’ sobriety, but by the drop in conviction numbers. Total DUI felonies have dropped nearly 50% from FY 2007 until FY 2017.”

The Program has reached milestones in the testing area as well. The State has officially hit the 10 million mark on preliminary breath tests since its inception in 2005. In addition, the State has hit the 1 million mark in ignition interlock breath tests, which were introduced in 2012.


January 1, 2005 – February 1, 2018  48,014 Participants  10 Million Tests administered  Passing Rate: 99.05%


July 1, 2007 – February 1, 2018  10,437 Participants  288,442 Tests administered  Passing Rate: 94.86%


July 1, 2011 – February 1, 2018  1,779 Participants  15,300 Tests administered  Passing Rate: 75.5%


October 10, 2006 – February 3, 2018  10,996 Participants  1.89 Million days monitored  1,855 Confirmed drinking events  6,590 Confirmed tampers  Per test compliance: 99.6%  Fully compliant participants: 74%


October 1, 2012 – February 1, 2018  549 Participants  1,000,736 Tests administered  995,567 Tests passed  Passing Rate: 99.48

% On April 1, 2018 long-time Turner County Sheriff Byron Nogelmeier took over the position of the 24/7 Program State Coordinator. This position was previously held by Art Mabry for 7 years before retirement.

National Work Zone Awareness Week is April 9-13

“Work Zone Safety: Everybody’s Responsibility”

National Work Zone Awareness Week for 2018 is April 9-13, and the South Dakota Department of Transportation is teaming up with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and state transportation departments across the country to remind motorists to drive safely through work zones.

The department is asking motorists driving through work zones to slow down, give their full attention to the cars and work going on around them, and to expect the unexpected. Nationwide, four out of every five work zone fatalities are motorists.

“We understand work zones can result in delays and frustration,” says Secretary of Transportation Darin Bergquist. “But, when motorists drive recklessly through work zones, they are putting the lives of highway workers, themselves, other drivers and passengers at risk.”

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), speed is the number one concern in work zone safety. When traveling at high speeds drivers can arrive at a roadway work zone too fast to stop safely. If speeding is combined with in-vehicle distractions and inattentive or aggressive driving, the potential for a life-changing and potentially fatal crash increases.
“We want motorists who are tempted to speed or drive distracted through work zones to remember that these are real people with real families and friends,” says Bergquist. “Driving is a serious job, and preventing crashes that result in injuries or deaths is everyone’s responsibility.”

To bring even more awareness to work zone safety, the FHWA is asking everyone to wear orange during for “Go Orange for Safety” day on Wednesday, April 11, and to post their safe selfies on social media using the hashtags #orange4safety and #orangeforsafety and tag @SouthDakotaDOT.

The SDDOT encourages motorists to practice the following safety tips when traveling through work zones:

Don’t Speed – Reduce speed before entering a work zone. If other motorists are speeding, don’t follow the bad example. Remember, fines are double in work zones.
Stay Alert – Dedicate full attention to the road. Remember, somebody’s loved one is working in that area.
Pay Attention – Avoid distracting activities like adjusting the radio and talking or texting on a cell phone.
Expect the Unexpected – Be extra vigilant because the traffic patterns and speeds are different than normal.
Be Prepared to Stop – Signs and work-zone flaggers save lives.
Don’t Tailgate – Maintain adequate and safe distances from workers and other vehicles.
Be Patient – Remember, road crews are working to improve your future ride. Someone’s family is expecting them home at the end of their shift.

To obtain the most recent road construction information in South Dakota, please visit and click on the orange signs or dial 511.

“A Moment Can Save A Life” video produced by the National Asphalt Pavement Association is a good reminder of how one second of inattentiveness can change lives forever. and more information at:

Attorney General Marty Jackley Helps Lead Bipartisan Coalition of State AGs in Demanding Answers from Facebook

Attorney General Marty Jackley helped lead a bipartisan coalition of 37 state and territory Attorneys General in sending a letter demanding answers from Facebook about the company’s business practices and privacy protections. The letter to Facebook, was led by Attorneys General Tim Fox (R-MT), Marty Jackley (R-SD), George Jepsen (D-CT), Ellen Rosenblum (D-OR), and Josh Shapiro (D-PA).

“Facebook provides its users significant opportunity to share events and personal information,” said South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley. “As Attorney General, I am working to protect consumers from the loss of personal information through data-harvesting and breaches. Facebook is being cooperative with our office in determining the best course of action to deal with the data loss that might have occurred for South Dakota residents.”

As the Attorneys General write in their letter to Facebook, news reports indicate the data of at least 50 million Facebook profiles may have been misused by third-party software developers. Facebook’s policies allowed developers to access the personal data of “friends” of people who used certain applications – without the knowledge or consent of these users.
mThe Attorneys General raise a series of questions about the social networking site’s policies and practices, including:

 Were those terms of service clear and understandable?
 How did Facebook monitor what these developers did with all the data that they
 What type of controls did Facebook have over the data given to developers?
 Did Facebook have protective safeguards in place, including audits, to ensure
developers were not misusing the Facebook user’s data?
 How many users in the states of the signatory Attorneys General were impacted?
 When did Facebook learn of this breach of privacy protections?
 During this timeframe, what other third party “research” applications were also able to access the data of unsuspecting Facebook users?

The Attorneys General write in the letter: “Facebook apparently contends that this incident of harvesting tens of millions of profiles was not the result of a technical data breach; however, the reports allege that Facebook gave away the personal data of users who never authorized these developers to obtain it, and relied on terms of service and settings that were confusing and perhaps misleading to its users.”

Gov. Daugaard Signs Veterans Cemetery Bill

Gov. Dennis Daugaard signed Senate Bill 91 to establish a new state veterans cemetery in East River South Dakota. The law authorizes the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide for the design and construction of a cemetery in Minnehaha County on land donated by the City of Sioux Falls.

“This new veterans cemetery will give veterans a final resting place close to their homes and families,” said Gov. Daugaard. “This cemetery has been a longstanding goal of veterans organizations, and I am pleased to see it come to fruition.”

The legislation creates the South Dakota Veterans Cemetery endowment fund within the South Dakota Community Foundation. The endowment fund will provide a fund for any person who wishes to contribute to the construction and operation of the South Dakota State Veterans Cemetery. The foundation’s goal is to reach $3 million by July 2023.

In addition, the state has appropriated $450,000 from the general fund and $6 million in federal fund expenditure authority to the Department of Veterans Affairs for the purpose of creating the cemetery.

Senate Bill 91 contains an emergency clause, making the law effective immediately.

Governor Signs Micro-Brewing Legislation; Additional Alcohol Bills

Gov. Dennis Daugaard signed Senate Bill 173, which removes barriers for microbreweries by increasing the production limit to 30,000 barrels of beer per year and allowing microbreweries to self-distribute their product.

“This is an economic development win that will help our homegrown craft breweries grow and thrive,” said Gov. Daugaard. “Previously, South Dakota law capped microbreweries at 5,000 barrels of beer per year and prohibited an in-state microbrewery from selling its product directly to a retailer. The changes will allow us to better compete with our surrounding states which allow self-distribution and have higher distribution caps.”

Gov. Daugaard also signed five additional alcohol-related bills below today:

· HB 1313 – an Act to revise certain provisions regarding the licensing of certain alcoholic beverage manufacturers.
· HB 1146 – an Act to revise certain provisions regarding the consumption of alcoholic beverages by passengers aboard vehicles operated by licensed carriers.
· SB 178 – an Act to provide certain exceptions from alcoholic beverage provisions regarding events conducted by certain civic, charitable, educational, fraternal, or veterans organizations.
· SB 187 – an Act to establish certain provisions regarding the licensing of wine manufacturers.
· HB 1067 – an Act to revise certain provisions regarding the licensing of wineries.

Gov. Daugaard added, “South Dakota’s alcohol laws were written over 80 years ago, after prohibition ended, and they have been amended many times. I thank legislators for passing these bills which streamline and modernize our statutes, so that they make sense for a 21st Century economy.”

Attorney General Jackley’s Legislation to Combat Meth and Opioids Signed into Law

Attorney General Marty Jackley extends his appreciation to the South Dakota Legislature and Governor Dennis Daugaard for signing SB 63 and SB 65 into law that will strengthen enforcement for distribution and manufacture of methamphetamine and distribution of opioids in South Dakota.

“America is living a meth and opioid epidemic and it is directly affecting South Dakota families and communities. This legislation will give our men and women in law enforcement the tools they need to protect our communities and send the right message to drug dealers that South Dakota is off-limits,” said Jackley.

Senate Bill 63

• Increases the penalty for the distribution and manufacturing of 5 grams or more of methamphetamine that includes to minors.

• Provides for a mandatory state penitentiary sentence for the distribution and manufacture of methamphetamine or distribution of opioids. Current law provides for mandatory sentences that are not consistently applied.

• A court would have discretion to go below the mandatory sentence if the court makes written findings that a defendant meets the following criteria that are designed to protect communities and to assist law enforcement in stopping drug distribution:

(1) the defendant does not have a prior violent felony

(2) the defendant did not use violence or credible threats of violence or possess a firearm or other dangerous weapon

(3) the defendant did not induce another participant to use violence or credible threats of violence or possess a firearm or other dangerous weapon in connection with the offense;

(4) the defendant was not an organizer, leader, manager, or supervisor of others in the offense; and

(5) the defendant has truthfully provided to the State all information and evidence the defendant has concerning illegal drugs;

(6) the offense did not result in death or serious bodily injury to any person.

Senate Bill 65

• Enhance penalties for persons who distribute and manufacture controlled substances when a person dies as direct result of using that substance  any person who for consideration intentionally and unlawfully distributes or manufactures a controlled substance and another person dies as a direct result of using that substance would have their sentence of the principal felony enhanced by two levels.


More than 60 municipal officials representing 13 cities gathered at the South Dakota Municipal League’s annual District 4 Meeting, held in Geddes on March 14, 2018.

Yvonne Taylor, South Dakota Municipal League Executive Director, spoke about the outcome of the 2018 Legislative Session, and the effect new laws will have on South Dakota municipalities. Taylor also discussed the direction and future of the Municipal League and services offered to the municipalities.

“More and more we are seeing the need to get better information out to the citizens and legislators. Municipal government provides a vast array of services, and people need to be informed of where their tax dollars are going. This type of education can only benefit municipal government. The taxpayers would be very proud of their local government if they were fully aware of how much service a municipality provides at a relatively low cost,” Taylor said.

Mike Wendland, SDML President for 2018 and Mayor for the City of Baltic, was also on hand to discuss his priorities for the current year as well as to conduct the election of District 4 officers for the upcoming year. Others in attendance were representatives of various state agencies and representatives of groups affiliated with the Municipal League.

Becky Brunsing, Finance Officer in Wagner, was re-elected as District 4 Chair and Larry Lucas, Trustee in Pickstown was re-elected as Vice-Chair.

In other business, those attending voted to hold the 2019 District 4 Meeting in Winner.