PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — Gov. Dennis Daugaard’s public safety bill anticipating potential oil pipeline protests has passed its first legislative test.
A Senate panel voted 6-3 Wednesday to approve it over the objections of Democrats and tribal officials.READ MORE: Bahjo Mohamed, Pioneering Light Rail Operator, Dies In Somalia Suicide Bombing
The bill would clarify that the governor’s emergency response authority applies to potentially destructive protests, create new trespassing penalties and make it a crime to obstruct highways. If passed, the law would expire in 2020.READ MORE: State Officials Believe There's Enough Supply For Timely Vaccinations Of 12 To 15 Year Olds In Wake Of FDA Approval
Matt Konenkamp, a policy adviser to the governor, says that if the Keystone XL pipeline is built, it’s likely that South Dakota would see large-scale protests.
Crow Creek Sioux Tribe Chairman Brandon Sazue says the bill would further divide the state and South Dakota tribes.
Daugaard’s office has said it’s based on lessons North Dakota learned from Dakota Access pipeline protests.MORE NEWS: Gov. Walz Highlights Minnesota's Vaccination Efforts On Bipartisan Roundtable
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