We have had a busy week as we prepare for the President's Day holiday - and there is still more work to do!
House Bill (HB) 1050, which revises certain provisions regarding the use and possession of scanning devices (skimmers), was up for consideration in the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. AARP South Dakota testified in favor of this consumer protection bill. As you likely know, fraudsters attach scanning devices, or skimmers, to ATM machines and outdoor pumps at gas stations in order to steal your credit card information. HB 1050 states that you can’t own mass amounts of these devices without a valid reason. It also updates South Dakota statutes to include credit card chips in the current magnetic strip statutes.
Along with AARP South Dakota, the South Dakota Retailers Association, South Dakota Bankers Association and the Independent Community Bankers of South Dakota testified in favor of this bill.
The House Judiciary Committee deferred action on HB 1050 until a Prison Impact Statement is completed.
On Thursday, AARP South Dakota testified in favor of Senate Bill (SB) 80, which makes a $100,000 appropriation to the Equal Access to Our Courts Commission. If approved the appropriation would allow South Dakota legal service agencies to provide additional legal services to low-income veterans, elderly and disabled individuals and victims of domestic violence.
AARP South Dakota receives several inquires throughout the year from individuals seeking legal representation, whom we often refer to East River Legal Services or Dakota Plains Legal Services. This appropriation would give these agencies more financial resources to offer legal assistance to those that need it most and can least afford it.
The Appropriations Committee deferred action on SB 80 until a later date.
House Bill (HB) 1268, which authorizes electronic monitoring of residents in assisted living centers and nursing facilities, was up for consideration in the House Judiciary Committee on Monday. This bill would allow a resident and their loved ones to place a camera in the residents’ room at an assisted living center or nursing home. Obviously, there are a number of privacy and cost parameters that have to be taken into consideration with this type of legislation.
AARP South Dakota could support the concept of this legislation, however, we were not comfortable with how HB 1268 was written. A number of healthcare partners were also uncomfortable with the language in HB 1268, but all have agreed to look into the issue further throughout 2019.
HB 1268 was killed in committee but it appears that the issue will be addressed again during the 2020 South Dakota legislative session.
Finally, Senate Bill (SB) 20, the consumer protection bill AARP South Dakota supported, has been signed into law by Governor Noem. For more information on this bill, visit our week two post.
Many of your state legislators return home after each week in Pierre to reconnect with their communities and to hear from members of their constituency. AARP SD is one of the many groups who help to facilitate these conversations by sponsoring legislative coffees in cities across the state. We encourage you to take an opportunity to get to know your elected officials and to let your lawmakers know you are watching what happens in Pierre! Learn more and find a legislative coffee near you!