The Rural Lobbyist: Non-meandered water up for discussion with SB 199 and 24.

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Rural-Lobbyist-WEB-Banner-FINAL1 The Governor signed Senate Bill 26, which was introduced by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to require Class A grain buyers to provide a financial statement to the PUC quarterly rather than semi-annually. A small step to increase the transparency into their financial health. S. D. Farmers Union supported and urged its passage. Non-meandered water continues to be a hot issue. Wednesday evening the Senate Agriculture committee met for three hours on Senate Bill 199. The bill is brought by the camo coalition/sportsman groups and it seeks to provide a petitioning process to open and close lakes in South Dakota. Big THANK YOU to S.D. Farmers Union members that came to the evening meeting and spoke with legislators and testified in opposition. The bill was sent to the Senate floor with no recommendation, so it will have to be voted on to be calendared and debated. S.D. Farmers Union is opposed to the legislation and working to keep the Governors bill ,Senate Bill 24, which simply extends the solution from the summer special session to 2021. Stay tuned, water will be around all session! President Barry Dunn of South Dakota State University was in Pierre this week updating legislators and agriculture groups on the proposed Precision Agriculture Facility. The project consists of a new 129,000 square foot building and renovation of Berg Hall at 42,422 square feet. Total cost of the renovation and new building is $55 million. In addition to the donations listed below agriculture groups, legislators, and SDSU officials are meeting weekly to explore options for state participation to help complete the funding. To date the following organizations have committed to the project: South Dakota Corn Utilization Council--$6,000,000 Raven Industries--$5,000,000 Farm Credit Services of America--$500,000 First Bank and Trust--$500,000 Anonymous--$500,000 South Dakota Crop Improvement--$250,000 South Dakota Association of Cooperatives--$50,000 Grossenburg Implement--$50,000 Keith and Kari Alverson--$50,000 Discretionary Donations--$600,000 Plan to visit your state capitol for S.D. Farmers Union Legislative Day February 27. You will have the opportunity to meet others in the ag industry, talk with your legislators, sit in on committees, and enjoy lunch provided by S.D. Farmers Union!

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