Senators reject out-of-state money cap for ballot questions

February 28, 2018

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — A Senate panel has rejected a proposal meant to cap the flow of money from outside South Dakota into the state’s ballot question campaigns.

The Senate State Affairs Committee voted 5-4 Wednesday to defeat the plan.

The measure would have restricted out-of-state donors to $100,000 in contributions to a South Dakota ballot question campaign per general election cycle.

House Speaker Mark Mickelson, a supporter, says lawmakers have a compelling public interest in preserving the initiative process for South Dakota citizens.

The plan failed in the same committee last year. Critics say it’s unconstitutional.

A more restrictive ballot question sponsored by Mickelson that would ban out-of-state fundraising for citizens’ initiatives will go before voters in November.

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