South Dakota to build $400K fence around governor's residence amid coronavirus criticism

South Dakota is planning to build a $400,000 fence around the governor's residence following recommendations by security officials in response to unspecified threats against Gov. Kristi NoemKristi Lynn NoemMontana governor approves restrictions on transgender athletes in schools The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Emergent BioSolutions - Facebook upholds Trump ban; GOP leaders back Stefanik to replace Cheney Noem takes pledge to restore 'patriotic education' in schools MORE (R), her office confirmed to The Hill on Thursday.

Noem, who has aligned herself with President TrumpDonald TrumpCaitlyn Jenner says election was not 'stolen,' calls Biden 'our president' Overnight Health Care: FDA authorizes Pfizer vaccine for adolescents | Biden administration reverses limits on LGBTQ health protections Overnight Defense: US fires 30 warning shots at Iranian boats | Kabul attack heightens fears of Afghan women's fates | Democratic Party leaders push Biden on rejoining Iran deal MORE in recent months, has championed a hands-off approach to the coronavirus pandemic. Her response has reportedly led to personal threats against her.

Last week, thousands of bikers arrived in South Dakota for the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, making it one of the largest public gatherings in the country since the pandemic began.


“It’s no secret that a few individuals don’t like some of the decisions the Governor has made on behalf of the people of South Dakota during this pandemic and otherwise,” a Noem spokesperson told The Hill. “In America, we debate issues; we don’t turn to violence. But it only takes one, and per the Governor’s security team, putting up a fence around the residence is critical at this time.”

The security plans were first reported by The Associated Press.

Noem’s administration last year proposed an 8-foot fence with a guardhouse, but the plan was abandoned.

The governor’s office told The Hill that the guardhouse will no longer be part of the security perimeter. It's unclear how much of the project will be taxpayer funded since some of the money will reportedly come from private donations.

Updated at 11:39 a.m.