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Bill to fill initiative campaign finance gap heads to Senate

January 22, 2018

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — A bill aimed at requiring South Dakota ballot measure campaigns to disclose their donors while supporters gather signatures to get on the ballot is headed to the full state Senate.

The State Affairs Committee voted 8-1 Monday for the proposal.

It would require initiative campaigns to submit finance reports by July 1 in odd-numbered years when supporters collect signatures needed to get on the ballot.

Democratic Sen. Reynold Nesiba, the main sponsor, says residents deserve to know who is paying for the campaigns.

Current rules don’t require ballot question campaigns to disclose their donors until long after they’ve submitted signatures to the state.

Nesiba drafted the legislation after being contacted by The Associated Press about the issue.

Republican Sen. Stace Nelson, an opponent, says he thinks campaign finance disclosure is an infringement on people’s rights.

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