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Although Deadwood city staff have recommended awarding a bid for the demolition of the Deadwood Pavilion, Deadwood City Commissioners voted to allow two more weeks for consideration. According to the Black Hills Pioneer, he plan recommended by city staff includes demolition of the Deadwood Pavilion and construction of a parking lot for $416,503 to be completed on June 14 or…
The Meade County Director of Equalization recently proposed a reduction in agricultural land values due to drought conditions, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. A recent report from the United States Drought Monitor indicated that over half of Meade County is in a severe drought category while the other half is listed under moderate drought. Last summer, much of Meade County…
The physical education classes at the Newell middle and high schools gained additional, alternative topics in recent weeks, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. Topics addressed ranged  from environmental health, maintaining a healthy relationship, and careers in outdoor science and emergency medicine. Students were visited by a variety of professionals with careers related to health. Jason Boerboom, a district conservationist with…
The Lawrence County Commission is seeking to update its comprehensive plan with the help of the Black Hills Council of Local Governments, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. Lawrence County’s last comprehensive plan was completed in 2005 based on information from 1997, according to Lawrence County Commissioner Brandon Flanagan. Commissioners hope to place emphasis on resident engagement in this iteration of…
A $3 million art studio is in the works for the Pine Ridge Reservation, reports KOTA News. The 8,500 square foot studio will be located across from Oglala Lakota College next to the Pine Ridge Area Chamber of Commerce on BIA Highway 2. The space is a collaboration between First Peoples Fund and Lakota Funds and will be focused on…
Rapid City Collective Impact is currently laying the groundwork for the operations of the OneHeart Campus, reports KOTA News. Stakeholders are considering how multiple care providers can collaborate to achieve the shared goal of assisting individuals in transitioning out of poverty and homelessness to independent living. Project Manager Charity Doyle hopes that the OneHeart Campus will be able to partner…
The City of Rapid City settled its years-long lawsuit with Epic Outdoor Advertising concerning digital billboards, as reported by KOTA News. The two entities were at odds after the city passed an ordinance banning full animation and motion billboards after Epic already had been utilizing the new technology. Under the settlement agreement, the current billboard ordinance will remain, but an…
Two new rule changes were approved by the South Dakota Commission, according to the Black Hills Pioneer. One rule pertains to the notification of the legal age to gamble while the other concerns policies involving individuals under the age of 21 in casinos. Gambling establishments must now prominently display the legal age required to gamble. The signs must be permanently…
Two B-1 bombers from Ellsworth Air Force Base recently departed to Qatar, reports KOTA News. The B-1 bombers will support missions that are currently battling against terrorist organizations. B-1 bombers have not assisted in combat since 2016, when the fleet was pulled for substantial upgrades. Prior to 2016, the bombers had been in continuous combat since 2001. While over half…
Jeff Simmons, a former principal at Sturgis Brown High School, was recently selected to serve as the Meade County School District Superintendent, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. In his cover letter for the position, Simmons addressed his work at the high school and his strong, personal connection to the school district. Simmons will return to Sturgis this July. In a…
The U.S. Forest Service recently issued its 2017 Forest Health Survey for the Black Hills National Forest, reports KOTA News. Aerial surveys indicated that approximately 2,900 acres were impacted by mountain pine beetles last year—a slight uptick from 2,500 in 2016. However, as the species is native to the region some trees will continue to perish each year which is…
After a strong showing in January 2018, gambling numbers in Deadwood declined in February 2018, according to the Black Hills Pioneer. South Dakota Commission on Gaming data indicates that slot machine gambling dropped by 6% while table games fell by 12%, resulting in an overall 7% decline for the month of February. While gaming revenues in Deadwood were down, hotel…
Three candidates have been selected to be interviewed for the superintendent position at the Meade County School District, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. Charlene Crosswait of Menno, Charles Hanson of Hill City, and Jeff Simmons of Aberdeen will be interviewed at the end of March. An outside consultant, McPherson & Jacobson, LLC, assisted the Meade County School District in their…
In 2017, the Western South Dakota Juvenile Services Center handled 51 cases of minors using methamphetamine, reports KOTA News. The center serves Butte, Custer, Fall River, Lawrence and Harding Counties. 2017 marks a substantial increase from 34 cases handled in 2015. Western South Dakota Juvenile Services Center partners with Regional West for short-term treatment programs. However, Butte County State’s Attorney…
Following the filing of a federal lawsuit which involved Pennington County’s adherence to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), there has been an increase in kinship placements of Native American Children in foster care. As reported by KOTA News, kinship placement is foster care with either relatives or other tribal members and is a key component of ICWA. Prior to…
Both the Hill City and Hot Springs School Districts are facing cuts in staff, reports KOTA News. This month, the Hill City School Board voted to eliminate several positions while the Hot Springs School Board voted to reduce two full-time counselor positions to half-time and eliminate a Spanish language teacher. The Hot Springs School Board is aiming to gain back…
In order to receive community feedback for a comprehensive plan, Deadwood officials have scheduled community visioning sessions for March 27 and 29, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. The meetings are intended to help create a collective vision and goals for the city. Deadwood has not updated its city plan since 2001. As the State of South Dakota requires communities to…
Rapid City recently became the first city in South Dakota to pass the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) resolution, as reported by KOTA News. Of the total 194 member states of the United Nations, 187 countries have signed the resolution. The United States is one of the seven countries that has not signed…
Adult fees for bus tours of the Mt. Moriah Cemetery in Deadwood will be increasing from $1 to $2 this year, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. A fee increase was previously implemented for Mt. Moriah visitors who chose to visit the cemetery by foot in 2016. While the fee for adults is increasing by $1, children under the age of…
PACE Strategic Development, LLC, a consultant hired to facilitate the Spearfish Community Strategic Plan, recently presented to the Spearfish City Council, reports the Black Hills Pioneer. During the presentation, members of the public, city council, city staff and others listened to and helped determine priorities for 2018-2020. Some of the highest priorities for Spearfish include a recreational path to Exit…
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