Coming out at various points during her speech, Governor Noem’s office has released a number of talking points about her proposed budget for FY 2021.
Governor Noem’s budget builds partnerships with local governments to provide disaster relief resources and implement programs to mitigate future disasters.
Providing Disaster Relief
- Sixty-three South Dakota counties submitted disaster declarations following the record-breaking storms, tornadoes, and floods that damaged homes, businesses and public infrastructure this year.
- Governor Noem’s budget creates a new loan program for cities, counties, townships, and tribes that will make it possible to apply for loans from the Emergency and Disaster Fund and includes disaster funding for long-term recovery.
- Noem’s budget allocates $9,918,359 to fund disaster relief.
- Loans from the Emergency and Disaster Fund will provide cash flow for infrastructure repairs and assist local governments that demonstrate a need for state support.
Mitigating Future Disasters
- Mitigation plans identify an area’s most likely hazards and document projects that can better protect people and property against similar circumstances.
- Governor Noem’s budget adds state dollars to lower the match requirement for local governments and encourages local participation in mitigation projects.
- The Emergency and Disaster Fund will be used for loans to provide cash flow for mitigation projects.
Highlighting Existing Resources
- Governor Noem is expanding awareness of disaster-related programs available to counties and communities.
Governor Noem is building sustainable models of care to ensure individuals have improved access to quality, long-term care services.
Supporting Long-Term Care Services
- For Fiscal Year 2020, Governor Noem signed a budget that included a 10 percent inflation rate for nursing home providers, equating to nearly $18.1 million in total ongoing funds for South Dakota nursing homes.
- Governor Noem’s budget proposes $2.6 million in total funds to help change the assisted living care reimbursement model, which will better equip providers to accommodate individuals.
- With this change, assisted living facilities will be reimbursed using actual cost report data, and tiered rates will be implemented with increases based on average care staffing wages.
Governor Noem’s budget better equips educators and schools by adjusting funding formulas for general and special education.
- During Fiscal Year 2021, general education student counts are projected to increase by approximately one percent.
- Governor Noem’s budget includes funding for increased enrollment in South Dakota’s public K-12 schools.
Strengthening Special Education
- During Fiscal Year 2021, special education student counts are projected to increase by approximately two percent.
- Governor Noem’s budget adjusts the amount of funding schools receive for special education disability levels. These adjustments will increase funding to South Dakota school districts by nearly $14 million.
- For Fiscal Year 2021, allocations will be adjusted as follows:
- Level One (Mild Disability) – $5,665.27 to $6,148.00
- Level Two (Cognitive Disability or Emotional Disorder) – $13,074.98 to $14,646.00
- Level Three (Hearing Impairment, Deafness, Visual Impairment, Deaf-Blindness, Orthopedic Impairment, or Traumatic Brain Injury) – $16,664.57 to $19,182.00
- Level Four (Autism) – $16,160.97 to $15,395.00
- Level Five (Multiple Disabilities) – $28,865.25 to $32,328.00
- Level Six (Prolonged Assistance) – $8,314.11 to $8,256.00
Governor Noem is prioritizing the safety of families and communities by combating the meth epidemic and equipping law enforcement with modernized communication tools.
Combating the Meth Epidemic
- Compared to the national average, twice as many children in South Dakota, ages 12 to 17, have reported meth use in the past year.
- From 2014 to 2018, South Dakota has seen a 200 percent increase in people seeking treatment with a primary diagnosis of meth.
- Addiction to meth requires more intensive therapy than many other addictions, which is why providing the necessary resources is crucial to combating the meth crisis in South Dakota.
- Governor Noem is committing $3.7 million to support intensive meth treatment and enforcement.
- With this funding, Governor Noem has made a commitment to ensure the criminal justice system has the necessary resources to enforce the law.
Equipping Law Enforcement with Modernized Communications Tools
- In 2003, South Dakota created the state radio system that formed a single, uniform communications system for first responders across the state. The aging infrastructure and software need an update.
- Governor Noem’s budget dedicates $5.1 million to improve the statewide communication systems for local law enforcement and first responders across South Dakota.
- This builds on the $4.6 million appropriated by Governor Noem and the legislature last year to fulfill the State’s commitment to law enforcement and ensure a smooth transition to the new, modernized system.
Governor Noem is strengthening families by designating funds for foster parent training, supporting family reunification, and improving services for child maltreatment victims.
Supporting Foster Families
- This year, Governor Noem has worked to highlight the need for more foster families, and South Dakotans have risen to the challenge.
- Governor Noem’s budget designates $129,420 in general funds for additional foster parent training.
- These funds will be used to provide more resources that allow interested individuals to complete the required training classes and home studies.
Supporting Family Reunification
- Nearly one in 10 South Dakota children have had a parent incarcerated at some point in their childhood.
- Governor Noem’s budget includes $118,366 to create a new position in state government that will help prepare female offenders to return to their families and communities after completing their sentence.
- The position will utilize evidence-based case management proven to reduce the likelihood female offenders will recidivate.
Improving Services for Child Maltreatment Victims
- The success of the next generation is stunted when children are raised in unsafe homes.
- Governor Noem’s budget allocates $100,964 for comprehensive child maltreatment victim services.
- Through this allocation, the State will add a position dedicated to ensuring child safety, leading maltreatment investigations, and facilitating comprehensive services for child maltreatment victims across South Dakota.
Governor Noem is investing in next generation industries by increasing high-speed internet access, bolstering cybersecurity development, and investing in healthcare training programs.
Connecting South Dakota
- This year, Governor Noem invested $5 million that leveraged more than $11.4 million in project costs to increase connectivity across South Dakota.
- Eight projects were awarded funding to bring internet access to approximately 4,800 households and more than 100 businesses in underserved parts of South Dakota.
- Governor Noem’s budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2021 allocates $5 million to continue expanding internet access – and online opportunity – throughout the state.
- Governor Noem’s budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2021 invests $396,000 for the Cyber Cync Incubator and Entrepreneurial Center at Dakota State University.
- This investment will further enhance DSU’s cybersecurity operation to spur economic development, visibility, and thought-leadership – in turn, providing greater opportunities for South Dakota families and helping keep top talent in South Dakota.
Investing in Healthcare Training Programs
- South Dakota continues to see a greater demand for health professionals, and Governor Noem is allocating dollars to train the workforce to meet it.
- Governor Noem’s budget invests $5 million toward the construction of a new School of Health Sciences Building