Haggar: South Dakota families are counting on legislators to keep their word.

Americans for Prosperity State Director Don Haggar has a new editorial in the Aberdeen American News encouraging state legislators to keep their promises when it comes to reducing the sales tax rate, based on South Dakota’s favorable verdict in the Wayfair case:

When our state Legislature back in 2016 raised the sales tax from 4 percent to 4.5 percent, it added the so-called Partridge Amendment. Essentially, the amendment was a promise legislators made to South Dakota taxpayers that if our state was ever able to collect sales taxes from online retailers with no physical presence here, the sales tax would be reduced.


Unfortunately, it isn’t. During the 2018 special session to figure out how to implement the Wayfair decision, Gov. Dennis Daugaard’s administration issued a memo to legislators outlining what it called “ambiguities” in the Partridge Amendment, which needed to be addressed before the tax reduction could be implemented — and the promise to taxpayers kept.


State legislators vowed to reduce sales tax rates, and South Dakota families are counting on them to keep their word. Because in this great state, that’s what we teach our children to do.

Read the entire article here.

74 thoughts on “Haggar: South Dakota families are counting on legislators to keep their word.”

  1. Draft the bill, get the Gov’s office on board and let that be one of the first bills passed next session. Any Republican who doesn’t sign on will be targeted. It’s never too early to start!

  2. When it comes to taxes, if you believe a politician when he says the words “lowering taxes”, I have a bridge…..

    1. I remember when Governor Janklow wanted a 1 year tax to pay for railroad lines. We had a 1% tax until the state had enough to pay for the expense. As I recall we collected enough in less than a year. The tax was lifted when the funding was achieved.
      I also seem to remember when the estate tax was removed. As I recall Governor Janklow was against that one, but it happened over his veto.
      So it DOES happen. But it is rare.
      Now, about that bridge….

      1. Wouldn’t it be something if the tax to increase teacher’s pay was lifted because student’s scoring stays stagnant or drops.

        1. which is exactly the case….scores are flat. I can hear it now….well, the test instruments have changed and the curriculum is different, and what about all the unfunded mandates.

      2. The SD Inheritance tax was repealed with an initiative passed by the voters, including a lot of hard work by individuals and groups.

  3. “Keeping their word” about anything is unlikely (See: Mexico paying for wall.) Gotta have them talking points during the campaign though.

    1. That’s a fair point, Politicians don’t often keep promises.

      “Senator Clinton mandates that everybody buy health care. She’d have the government force every individual to buy insurance. Well, if things were that easy, I could mandate everybody to buy a house, and that would solve the problem of homelessness. It doesn’t. I won’t have an individual mandate because I don’t think the problem is that people don’t want health insurance, it’s that they can’t afford it. So, I focus on lowering costs.”

      –Barack Obama, 2008

        1. Trump has lied. Clinton lied. Obama lied. JFK had extramarital affairs, & Harding fathered a love child. FDR concealed his disability. Truman pretended he had a middle name. Few saints get elected.

        2. Did you care about Obama’s constant lying? I doubt it. You don’t have any integrity as you are a socialist who believes that any evil done to further socialism is well worth doing.

          1. Trump has already surpassed Obama on number of lies by almost ten fold. Trump lied more in the first year than Obama did in 8.

      1. I would much rather take my chances with a left leaning socialist like Hillary or even anyone running for POTUS today from the Democratic Party than to see Trump spend another four years in the White House destroying even more lives by his ridiculous policies.

        1. Plenty of people are grateful for Trump signing the prison reform bill. I saw a video of a black man, who was released because of this bill, giving Trump a hug asking to keep making America great. This man would disagree his life was destroyed by Trump.

          1. That is a function of a dysfunctional Congress and an overactive law making and enforcement branches of government rather than anything that should be of interest to all law abiding citizens. You have no idea what Trump has done to American industry by his strange behavior. Maybe someday it will all come out.

        2. What policies specifically are you referring to? Hillary is a rotten person is was Obama, as is Sanders, as is Harris, as is Booker, as is Warren, as is pretty much any socialist running for president. If you can’t see that the ideas being pushed by the anti-American left would harm the country then you don’t have the mental capacity to be involved in the conversation. Maybe you should go back to school.

          1. Or maybe you should understand socialism. Penalizing one group while benefiting another group, through something like tariffs – is socialism. Shifting costs to taxpayers and uninvolved parties to protect specific businesses, industries, and jobs, despite and in the face of a changing economic environment, is socialism.

            Or is it just the socialism you like that is acceptable? Or are you just a hypocrite?

            1. Trade is a two way street. Protectionism is destructiveness, it destroys jobs. Ronald Reagan 1987.

              When you get to my level you’ll know what capitalism and socialism means. What Trump is proposing and forcing on America is not capitalism but rather the worst kind of socialism.

              1. Thus I’ll take my chances with the liberals who only appear just to talk about it but never implements it.

            2. I wish Republicans would get this. Instead, they follow lock step behind the guy who is making us all look like fools. Apparently everything they disagree with is anti-american and you are all socialists. They are like senile old people who have the same defense for everything they can’t defend or don’t understand.

          2. Pretty much all of them are rotten people including Trump right? What about the socialism that Trump is pushing in picking winners and losers in industry for those that can live or die? The left talks about socialism, the right practices it.

  4. Wa wa. This is laughable. South Dakota most likely has the lowest or near lowest state sales tax in the nation and they want it to go even lower. The infrastructure needs improvement and many other issues need to be resolved and a higher sales tax would help while the old inherited money in South Dakota gets away like thieves not paying their fair share of taxes.

    1. News flash: lower taxes stimulate the economy. If you think we need more government spending and involvement in “..resolving many other issues”, you are out of touch with most South Dakotans. I suppose next you think we should regulate cow flatulence…oh wait, that has already been suggested.

      1. News brief. Your statement is a contradiction in terms and if what you say is true South Dakota’s very low taxes should mean the state is booming. It isn’t and never will due to its archaic infrastructure and lack of economic development. Other than Sioux Falls, no other city in South Dakota has shown any growth or advancement; almost like it is still in the 19th Century.

        1. You don’t much about the 19th century!!

          Got any data to back up your IQ claims? The avg SDakotan’s IQ? The avg American’s IQ? Anything?

          1. Don’t need to. You just proved my point in not being able to construct a proper sentence.

            1. FWIW, state sales tax rates below SD’s in Delaware, Alaska, Colorado, Wyoming, Virginia, Oregon, NY, NH, MT, Missouri, Louisiana, Hawaii, & Georgia. Of course, some of those states collect income tax.

              Lowering our sales tax a bit would help SD’s working families. We’d recapture some lost govt revenue b/c consumption increases.

              1. FYI Oregon doesn’t have a state sales tax but allow cities to collect and can tell you its a lot more than South Dakota’s state sales tax. Please do your homework. Oregon is also booming unlike South Dakota and did so because it diversified its economy unlike South Dakota.

                1. I’m good at homework 😁

                  2018 Economic Growth By State

                  1st Quarter
                  Oregon GDP growth +1.9%
                  South Dakota GDP growth 3.1%


                  2nd Quarter
                  Oregon GDP growth +3.5%
                  South Dakota GDP growth + 3.5%


                  3rd Quarter

                  South Dakota GDP growth +3.6%
                  Oregon GDP growth +3.5%


                  Next Report Due May 1, 2019.

                  1. What? You don’t want to point out their sentence structure mistakes?

                    Well-done, love those facts.

                    1. LOL, Facts? You comparing Oregon to South Dakota. Please look at the per capita GDP and notice they are close only because in South Dakota a vast proportion of SD per capita are farm owners realizing a larger farm income compared to a city like Portland whose income is derived from high income economic base. Most in South Dakota work at poverty or near poverty wages disregarding its only industry, agriculture. Most people don’t even know where South Dakota is on the map or never even heard of it.

              2. Stupid argument. 4% of 0.5% is less than 0.5% of 100%. I call French Math on you!

                    1. And you are the quintessential South Dakotan with a near single digit IQ. Maybe if you stop French kissing goats you may recover from your gibberish replies. I hear, BTW, that bestiality is a big problem in South Dakota…at least that is what I heard.

          1. Please inform which ones. Rapid City may have grown a tiny amount but other than that very little growth other than Sioux Falls.

            1. If you go city by city, Aberdeen, Watertown, Brookings, you find they are growing. Mitchell and Chamberlain are starting to grow again. You can go through a long list if you want. According to a site called World Population Review, as of this month the state’s overall growth rate is 1.17% which ranks it 11th in the country for population growth. They aren’t all moving to Sioux Falls.

              1. For what I know, Aberdeen and Huron have expanded by only the importation of unskilled foreign workers working at poverty wages in those cities that do not add to the wealth and well being of those cities but rather are a welfare conundrum waiting to happen if these businesses leave. Again, Sioux Falls is the only city that is growing gainful employment jobs while the rest of the state continues to stagnate because of poor Republican leadership in the State. South Dakota is setting itself up to be a welfare state which is fitting for a state with only one basic industry, agriculture.

                1. one basic industry, agriculture

                  Yeah, if people ever quit eating we are so screwed.

                  expanded by only the importation of unskilled foreign workers working at poverty wages ….do not add to the wealth and well being of those cities … a welfare conundrum waiting to happen

                  Somebody outa build a wall or something

                2. If you haven’t noticed the growth in Brookings, in the past few years, then you don’t know much.

                  Or, you have your talking point, and you’re sticking to it without regard to reality.

                  1. I was just there, not much different except for a few new buildings and a better football stadium but just about the same when I went to college there over 35 years ago. Vast majority of the homes are still there but in bad disrepair just like all of South Dakota. Aberdeen’s population is less than what it was in the 1970’s. I don’t call that progress. People don’t want to come to SD because of weather and the poor economic climate, except Sioux Falls.

                    1. In 1990 Brookings population went from 16,384 to ~23,938 which I guess counters most other cities in the upper Midwest where cities are greatly losing population as economic opportunities dwindle. Brookings increases can be due largely or all of it due to its expanding university of SDSU and very little by increasing its economic base of the private sector. Other cities like Aberdeen have lost population since the 1970 and gained some of it back by the influx of unskilled overseas workers which is a sign of an upcoming disaster for cities like Aberdeen and Huron.

    2. Um, I took a look. According to the Tax Foundation, there are 11 states with a lower combined state and local sales tax. I count 14 with lower state rates according to Sales Tax Institute. While I agree we have low rates, I wold not say it is near the lowest, let alone the lowest.
      BTW, just how much of an income is someone’s “fair share”?

      1. Put it all together duggersd. Do they have state income tax and high property tax and a higher population that spreads the costs out more. UM, South Dakota is a cheap state to live in and with that low wages and a poor quality of life.

        1. A poor quality of life according to who? Maybe to someone who doesn’t live in SD?

          1. The largest export of South Dakota are its people looking for a better life and a fulfilling career. Does that answer your question?

            1. People from every state say the exact same thing and always neglect to include the numbers. SD does not lead in mass exodus of their residents.

              See, I have been in SD for a long time and many of my extended family were born, raised and retired here. Same with my high school classmates. There are 3 out of my 125 graduating class who live out-of-state, and we could say that about many generations from countless towns across SD. You’ve never been to a small-town parade, have you? If you had, you’d notice all the floats filled with SDakotans bragging about how their class were the top-dogs.

              Many who have left, still own land and pay some taxes to SD. You don’t live here do you? How can someone who doesn’t know SD, have a place to speak on our quality of life?

              Your attempts to demoralize SDakotans do not work on all of us.

              1. Sorry, no they don’t and these other states are where people go and they go there for a reason. South Dakota’s economic atmosphere, its horrible weather, and its substandard political atmosphere where old money rules the state gives the state a poor reputation throughout the country. And your stats on how many stay here are completely reversed from reality. If one goes to college in South Dakota, they leave the state, plain and simple, searching for a better life.

        2. If the quality of life is so poor why don’t you move away? We’d most likely be better off without the likes of you.

          1. They are not a SDakotan. Some of their gibberish exposes that they have no clue what residents value.

          2. Likewise. It would be like moving out of here and moving to America or better yet civilization.

        3. I do not know if you are the original A. Nonymous, but if you read what was writting: ” South Dakota most likely has the lowest or near lowest state sales tax in the nation and they want it to go even lower.” the author was talking about sales tax. That is what I was commenting on. I don’t know if you are the A. Nonymous who was commenting upon someone else’s sentence structure, but if the original author of that statement wanted to include all taxes, then that person should probably know how to write a sentence that expresses that complete idea.

        4. I have already addressed the combined taxes question. You still do not address my question as to how much of someone’s income is their “fair share”.

          1. Representative Taffy Howard: “I want to start by saying how much I love South Dakota and believe it’s absolutely the greatest state in the Union…but it’s sad to see South Dakota the color it is here. Our taxes are too high (especially property taxes), and we spend too freely. Every year I have been in Pierre we have had “excess” revenue (we estimate a certain amount of revenue will come in and if it comes in higher than what we budgeted, then we have excess revenue)…which we have yet to even seriously consider returning to the taxpayer. For two years straight now I have brought bills to return the excess revenue via property tax relief, but unfortunately there are not enough people in Pierre who would like to reduce our property taxes…instead the money is spent creating new programs that will eventually require an INCREASE in taxes to keep them going. It’s a vicious cycle…

            I will mention again the habitat bill that eventually passed this year (we killed it three times in the House before it passed by ONE vote on the 4th try)…which takes YOUR money, gives it to a non-profit foundation, which will then disburse it, however they decide to, to select land owners to plant habitat on PRIVATE PROPERTY. We at least managed to amend it so commercial hunting operations can’t get any of the money…but once it goes to the non-profit we lose all control over the money in reality. How will this actually benefit the average citizen? More important question though…is this the proper role of government REGARDLESS of the cost/benefit? The reason the federal government and numerous states are broke is because instead of evaluating spending based on constitutional principles, they simply spend based on whether or not something is a good thing to do…and here in this state we go down that road far too often as well.

            We also, unconstitutionally (violates article 12, section 2), are going to spend $5M on rural broadband. This was voted on even after learning that ND has gone down this road and has already spend about $80M. The money will be spent to incentivize the independent telecommunications companies to do what they are already doing, which is expanding their territories.

            Meanwhile, we continue to accept every federal grant offered, knowing that down the road the grant will expire and we will either have to stop the program, or start funding it with general dollars. Just this year we had at least three grants expired and not one single program was eliminated (even though we seemed to survive just fine without the programs until the feds came along and offered the grants).

            Don’t get me wrong, I believe we live in the best state in the Union…but there is so much more that we could be doing to restore economic freedom to our citizens.

            As Reagan once said, “Man is not free, unless government is limited.” We have much work to do to truly limit government in our state. Thank you again to everyone for your support this session!!!”

          1. Tara, that article has been debunked so many times for false facts especially showing California as one of the least taxed states which contrarily it is one of the top 3 taxed states in the nation. In fact almost everything that author wrote is backward from the facts. I saw that article too before that and please go down and read the comments. Almost everyone called bull**** on it.

    3. Old, inherited money, meaning you believe in wealth re-distribution. Why don’t you move to a state that has an estate tax so when your time comes you can support socialist policies. Better yet, why don’t you freely pay more money in taxes since you feel the government knows better how to spend money.

      1. LOL. Your IQ must be very low not to understand what “old money” means? Meaning: they run South Dakota politically and prevent economic development or anything that competes against them and their power. Got it?

        1. And this level of paranoia, boys and girls, is why we don’t want recreational marijuana in South Dakota.

          Go Bernie!?

        2. SD should be well over a million people. It is a very stagnant state, but a great place to live. It just needs fresh new independent leadership that puts the people’s interests first.

  5. Don’t be so quick to lower the rate simply because of the Wayfair decision. First, Amazon is by every measure, the largest internet retailer without a physical presence. Why I haven’t seen the figures lately, I recall something like half of all internet sales (w/o store presence) comes from Amazon. Amazon was already collecting sales tax prior to Wayfair.

    That leaves two remaining tiers of retailers to slice up the remaining pie. Tier One are merchants whose volume meets or exceeds the level of sales where the statute triggers collection. Tier Two, those smaller merchants who don’t make the sales volume hurdles and are therefore exempt from collecting the tax. Therefore, SD Revenue is only looking at the Tier One retailers to add to the general fund. Other than Wayfair and a few others, it isn’t entirely clear what the numbers will look like with less than a year of tax collection.

    Rushing into tax cutting mode to fulfill an irresponsible promise would be a very bad move for the long term fiscal health. Sound like AFP wants SD to push us into the mess created by Gov. Brownback in Kansas. No thanks.

  6. Other than the malcontents blogging here and the guys at AFP, I have not heard one single word from anybody complaining about the half penny sales tax. Not a one. It’s like nobody is aware of it. Seriously.
    What that means is, it can be increased by half a cent every year until people notice. It’s like a frog in a pot of water, failing to notice the water is getting warmer until it’s too late.

    1. Someone mentioned it at 7:33am. They mention lifting it if student’s scores stayed stagnant or dropped. It’s not in the same way you talk about it, but they did touch on it. The comment section is a mess, so I can see how it would’ve been easily missed.

    2. Just pay it. South Dakota needs a lot of infrastructure improvements and it could stand to pay 2 to 3 percent more.

      1. South Dakota also needs to increase traffic fines while eliminating the Class II Misdemeanor classification on all simple traffic tickets and a bill was entered into the SD legislature this past term (HB 1130), passed the House and failed in the Senate judiciary committee because law enforcement wanted it to stay. So in SD one gets a criminal prosecution for a simple traffic ticket…how wonderful and how abusive. South Dakota is probably the only state that classifies traffic tickets as a criminal act discounting of course DUI’s, reckless driving, high speed racing, etc. Very stupid and puts South Dakotans at a huge disadvantage in other states applying for jobs, etc.

  7. Most online retailers are smallish and likely won’t do enough business in the state to trigger sales tax collection. And many of the biggest companies have remitted sales tax for years long before the Supreme Court ruling. Soooo…. It wouldn’t surprise me if remittances have plateaued and revenue growth from sales tax collections never comes close to an extra $50 million a year that the campaign ads touted. In other words, no windfall. And no way will the state ever give up a half-penny in free money.

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