PIERRE (AP) – A big boost for South Dakota nursing home funding was a major piece of the state budget the Legislature passed Wednesday, but lawmakers also granted spending hikes for education and state employees.
The Legislature's vote for the roughly $4.9 billion budget capped the main portion of the 2019 session. Here's a look at some of what they funded:
EDUCATION AND STATE WORKERS
The state spending plan for the 2020 budget year that begins July 1 includes 2.5 percent increases for education and state workers, matching the hikes Gov. Kristi Noem originally suggested in her January budget address. The measure also includes money to structurally balance the South Dakota State Employee Health Plan.
Lawmakers approved the budget for the upcoming fiscal year and also reshaped the current year's spending to add funding for Noem's priorities, including $5 million for expanding rural broadband and $4.6 million for improving state radio infrastructure. They also approved the Republican governor's push for $4.6 million to fight the methamphetamine epidemic, including more than $1 million for a meth media campaign and $2.1 million in ongoing funding for treatment.
The budget for the next fiscal year includes roughly $1.7 billion in general state spending, about $59 million more than the current budget year. It also calls for spending roughly $1.8 billion in federal funds and $1.4 billion in other state money. Republican Rep. Chris Karr, co-chair of the Joint Committee on Appropriations, said the measure balances the state's budget for the 130th year.