Aug 4 Set For Referendum Election On Sturgis Annexation

STURGIS, S.D. (AP) – The Sturgis City Council has set August 4th for a referendum election on annexing 30-acres on the south side of the city that includes the race track owned by the Jackpine Gypsies motorcycle club.

The only polling place will be the Sturgis Community Center with voting from 7 AM to 7 PM.

The council approved the annexation resolution on June 1st, but opponents led by the club successfully collected enough signatures to force a public vote.

August 4th was chosen for the election because it’s nearly a week before the start of the Sturgis Rally, reducing congestion and the risk of a broader spreader of the coronavirus.

The city tried for months to negotiate a voluntary annexation, saying the Jackpine Gypsies should be paying for municipal services the land currently receives for free.

The club was worried about both the financial impact of property taxes and the possible loss of the track to city ordinances, but Sturgis officials insist there are no plans to close the track or require changes in its use.