PIERRE, S.D. (KCAU) – Gov. Noem has announced that several new laws in South Dakota will go into effect on Wednesday, July 1.

All of these laws have been passed by the South Dakota State Legislation and the governor has signed during the past legislative session to put these reforms and benefits into effect.

HB 1047 is a bill is to better protect and help victims of human trafficking in South Dakota.

“People are not for sale in South Dakota,” said Governor Noem. “Fighting human trafficking has been a priority of mine for years, and it will remain a priority of my administration moving forward. This bill takes important steps to protect our state from the horrors of human trafficking, crack down on traffickers, and provide for victims through expanded services and resources.”

This legislation received unanimous support from both chambers of the legislature.

The bill takes a four-pronged approach to protect South Dakota from human trafficking by:

  • Ensuring traffickers are prosecuted for their crimes by amending the criminal code to add “purchaser” and prevent a defense of “consent” or “mistake of age.”
  • Paving a path to a clean record for minor victims with convictions for crimes they were forced to commit.
  • Increasing access to victim resources that includes reimbursement of expenses like hospital stays and mental health counseling.

It builds on the governor’s work in 2019 that further defines coercion and strengthens prosecution against traffickers.

According to the governor’s office, in Congress, she was an outspoken advocate on legislation that protects people against human trafficking and championed the decade’s most comprehensive anti-trafficking initiative.

To learn more about HB 1047, click here.

SB 186 is a bill that provides state employees with paid family leave.

“Strong families are the key to a strong South Dakota,” said Governor Noem. “Paid Family Leave will allow state employees to invest in their families by taking the necessary time to develop stronger bonds with newborn and adopted children. The State of South Dakota is leading the way for family-friendly employers, and strong benefits put South Dakota in a better position to attract top talent to our state.”

Paid Family Leave will provide parents with 60% of their normal salary for up to eight weeks when they welcome a new child through birth or adoption.

It can also be used in the first 12 months after birth or adoption placement. The benefit doesn’t set a mandate on private businesses or local governments.

For Frequently Asked Questions on the state’s Paid Family Leave benefit, click here.

SB 157 is a bill is to provide reforms to the county zoning and appeals process in South Dakota.

“South Dakota is open for business, and these crucial zoning reforms will allow South Dakota businesses to continue to grow and develop,” said Governor Noem. “These reforms provide a fair process and protect local control by putting the power of decision-making in the hands of the majority instead of the vocal few.”

The bill creates a fair, timely, and reliable process for getting economic growth projects sited and permitted.

It also defines a “person aggrieved” using established case law to ensure those with legitimate concern have standing to appeal permitting decisions.

The bill doesn’t limit either county permitting criteria or state environmental requirements.

For more information about SB 157, click here.

There are several reforms to occupational licensing that will take effect in the state on Wednesday.

“South Dakota is open for business, and we’re putting people over paperwork to grow business and strengthen communities in our state,” said Governor Noem. “These important licensing reforms streamline processes and eliminate barriers for South Dakotans to cut through red tape and get high-quality jobs.”

The following reforms are:

  • SB 10: revises certain provisions regarding cosmetology licensees.
  • SB 11: revises certain provisions regarding third-party insurance plan administrators.
  • SB 12: revises certain provisions regarding comity licensure in the technical professions.
  • SB 13: revises certain educational requirements for the practice of barbering.
  • SB 23: repeals the high school graduation or equivalent requirement for certain licensed professionals.