Ravnsborg Bill To End Mandatory Probation Killed In Committee


PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – An unusual coalition of South Dakota Democrats and conservative Republicans narrowly rejected a bill that would have barred people convicted of low-level drug felonies from receiving probation-only sentences if they refused to cooperate with law enforcement.

The bill, proposed by conservative Republican Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg was narrowly passed by the state Senate last week, but was voted down Wednesday by the House Judiciary Committee.

Lawmakers are searching for ways to curb what they describe as an epidemic of meth addiction in South Dakota, but they disagree on whether the state’s limited funds would be better spent on treating addiction, the approach favored by Gov Kristi Noem, or locking up users, Ravnsborg’s get-touch plan.