South Dakota governor proposes spending $1B on infrastructure, state employee raises

South Dakota Gov. Kristi NoemKristi Lynn NoemSunday shows preview: US reaffirms support for Ukraine amid threat of Russian invasion Pence to deliver keynote at fundraising banquet for South Carolina-based pregnancy center Trump by the numbers: 2024 isn't simple MORE (R) proposed to spend $1 billion on infrastructure and state employee raises in a budget address to state lawmakers on Tuesday.

Noem wants to use the billions of dollars given to South Dakota by the federal government to give a six percent wage increase to state employees, such as teachers and government employees, The Associated Press reported

She also wants to allocate money for housing, emergency responders, daycare facilities and water infrastructure.

ADVERTISEMENT

The infrastructure projects include updating prisons, a public health lab and cyber security training center. 

Noem said the money from the federal government in addition to big tax revenues will help achieve her budget goals.

She also went after the Biden administration in her speech, saying the wage increases for employees are needed due to the increase in inflation, according to the AP.

“They’re suffering under the strain of horrifically high inflation stemming from the administration in Washington DC’s policies,” Noem said.

However, Noem did acknowledge the state received  “a giant handout from Washington, D.C..”

“We are going to put these funds to work for our state to address our state’s most pressing needs, to make fiscally responsible decisions, one-time expenditures that will not grow the government but will instead save our people money in the long run,” she said. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Democratic Sen. Reynold Nesiba said Noem should have been more grateful to the Biden administration for the money given to the state.

“Today’s speech was sponsored by the Biden administration,” he said.

State lawmakers will meet in January to finalize the budget and consider Noem's proposals, as well as add their own, the AP noted.