2023 Legislative Session - Week 1
The 2023 South Dakota legislative session is off and running, and AARP South Dakota has Pierre covered for you!
Let’s first go back to early December and Governor Kristi Noem’s annual budget address. The Governor estimated that $216 million in one-time money is available to be spent through budget adjustments to the Fiscal Year(FY) 2023 budget, along with $310 million in new, ongoing money to be allocated through the FY2024 budget. Two initiatives that AARP South Dakota supports were addressed by Governor Noem during her budget address. She reaffirmed her commitment to eliminating the state sales tax on food, estimated to cost $102 million in ongoing funds. Governor Noem also committed to implementing Medicaid expansion, which was passed by the voters in November. Her budget reflects state and federal funding of just under $6 million to implement Medicaid expansion in FY2024. AARP South Dakota looks forward to working with the Governor on these important issues.
The proposed budget for FY2024 proposes a 5% Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for Medicaid providers, state employees, and K-12 education. Nursing homes will see a 21% increase and Community Support Providers will see a 17% increase under the Governor’s budget. In addition, the proposed budget includes $450,000 for elderly and disabled tax refunds.
As is the tradition in Pierre at the start of the annual legislative session, the Governor provides a State of the State Address. Governor Noem spoke to a joint session of the Legislature on Tuesday, January 10. During her speech, the Governor noted there are record surpluses in the state’s resources. Another $10 million in revenue came in December, after her initial budget speech, to be added to available resources for the Legislature to appropriate. The Governor also reaffirmed her commitment to repealing the sales tax on food to return extra state dollars to the taxpayers
Moving forward with the 2023 session, here are some of the issues/bills that AARP South Dakota will be working on:
- Medicaid expansion implementation
- Voting access
- Health care access
- Property tax relief
- Consumer protection
Keep reading every week to learn about these and many more issues during the 2023 South Dakota legislative session. If you aren't already part of our advocacy network, you can sign up for email updates and opportunities to contact elected officials at www.aarp.org/get-involved.
Here's my contact information if you need to reach me with comments or feedback on legislative issues:
Erik Nelson, Associate State Director – Advocacy
AARP South Dakota