PIERRE, S.D. — South Dakota state lawmakers want to hear from the public on how to spend unused federal COVID-19 funds and have slated five committee hearings in September to hear that testimony. Individuals, businesses, and organizations in South Dakota are encouraged to sign up to testify during the hearings and make suggestions as to how federal COVID-19 funds could be used, according to a press release from the Legislative Research Council.

The hearings will be held at the State Capitol in Pierre in Room 414.

  • Joint Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee will meet at 9 a.m. Monday, Sept. 14
  • Joint Commerce and Energy Committee, schedule pending
  • Joint Education Committee will meet at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16.
  • Joint Health and Human Services Committee will meet at 8 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 22.
  • Joint Local Government Committee, schedule pending.

"Members of the public wishing to testify are encouraged to participate remotely. In-person testifiers are encouraged to follow CDC guidelines regarding social distancing and the wearing of face coverings," the release states.

Testifiers can register by email, using the address indicated on each committee's web page.

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Written testimony will also be accepted by email through the committee's web page and must be received at least 48 hours prior to the meeting to be considered at the meeting.

When registering to testify or submitting written testimony, the individual should include their full name, whom they are representing, city of residence and brief comments.

By the numbers

South Dakota’s current hospitalizations due to COVID-19 sharply increased by 13 on Friday, Sept. 4. A total of 89 South Dakotans are currently hospitalized.

Four percent of the state’s hospital beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients, according to the South Dakota Department of Health.

Total hospitalizations are at 1,062, though out-of-state residents are not counted in the hospitalization case totals.

The death toll from COVID-19 increased by one to 170. The death was of a Minnehaha County man in the 80 or over age range.

The state reported an increase of 259 positive cases on Friday, bringing the state’s total case count to 14,596.

The active case total is currently at 3,032.

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