First, it was a plan. Now it's a website.
So really, what's it going to cost?

I don't think I had noted it earlier, but South Dakota Democrats have posted their Common Ground Plan on a common ground website with pictures at (what else)

So, really guys... How much is it going to cost?


Anonymous said…
How much has Rounds' "2010 initiative" cost so far? How far along is it? (It should be halfway there by now). How much more will it cost? What is it intended to accomplish?

Why isn't Rounds out there with charts showing progress on 2010? Could it be because regardless of how much it has cost already, Rounds's 2010 plan is floundering?

The real question is: Is "Common Ground" worth doing? Go to the website and decide for yourself.

The Dems have a real plan for SD's future. We invite Republicans, Independents, Libertarians, Constitutionals, everyone to join us to make this plan happen.
Anonymous said…
"Why isn't Rounds out there with charts"
Because whenever he presents data to back up his statements, it is pooh-poohed by the Dems. "Figures, figures, figures," said Billion during a radio debate.
Anonymous said…
So Rounds doesn't tell us about the progress of his 2010 initiative because he's afraid of pooh-pooh?

Maybe he's just afraid of justified criticism because his plan is floundering.
Anonymous said…
Rounds talks about the progress the 2010 Initiative is making all the time. That is a huge part of his speech. Every time he cites an improvement SD has made, Billion acts like its no big deal. Since Rounds took office, SD has had the fastest growing economy in the nation.

And the difference between the 2010 Initiative and "Common Ground" is that the 2010 Initiative is already in place, and is already working - Rounds can tell you what it has cost, and he can tell you what progress we have made.

In contrast, the Dems CANNOT (or will not) tell you what their plan will cost - and they certainly have presented no plan to pay for it.
Anonymous said…
If you haven't heard Rounds talk about the progress towards his 2010 goals, you just haven't been around him much, or more likely haven't been listening.

Of course, that would be good news... just the thing that the Dems hate to hear about.
nonnie said…
All these things sound wonderful,but to quote Billion, "figures, figures, figures." Where are the figures of how much this will cost, exactly where are the funds coming from, how much does he plan to take out of reserves, how would that impact the interest from such reserves that the state curretly relies on?

If the minimum wage is raised for high school kids working part-time at the local fast food joint, how will that impact the number of kids that local employer can hire? Minimum wage is used to base other wages on in many cases. How will that impact employees of other companies whose union wages might be tied to a minimum wage? We'd all like more money, who wouldn't? But explain all the ramifications of a higher minimum wage besides more money in my own pocket. This is just one example of how the Dem's pie in the sky platform needs to be fully explained.

Somebody has to pay for all these wonderful new programs, and that someone is you and me.
Anonymous said…
Everyone wants to know how much? I'm late to the party. Has it already been decided by all parties that it's the right direction?
Anonymous said…
Facts from the Common Ground website:

Government has grown 19.9% per year under Rounds. Democrats will introduce legislation to curb that uncontrolled/undisciplined growth. How much will it cost? nothing. This part will save taxpayer money.

Democrats will use some portion of the reserves to help farmers/ranchers/businesses affected by the drought. How much has Rounds done? Zero! Democrats at least acknowledge the problem. How much will it cost? Democrats haven't put a number on it, but any proposal would have to go through the Republican legislature. Is it worth doing? You decide.

Better funding schools: The education enhancement fund has gone from $85 million in 2002 to $370 million today. In the last 3 years we have added $31 million in unused interest alone. Can we afford to better fund education? No question about it!

Democrats want to help cover the 90,000 uninsured. The healthcare trust fund has $94 million in it, up from $65 million in 2002. Can we afford to do something other than merely stockpile money? It would take leadership to do something instead of nothing.

Rounds prefers to simply accumulate taxpayer money in reserves while he does nothing for anyone. Our 5 main reserves have gone up from $500 million in 2002 to $862 million today.

Rounds is not using the money for the purpose it's intended (education fund, healthcare fund, property tax reduction fund), and he's not giving tax cuts either. He's just not doing anything at all.

We need a governor who's not just a lump.
Anonymous said…
The figure that the Dems keep citing for growth of government amounts to something like 6.5% a year. That is above inflation, but if you look at the state's budgets, the growth has been driven by:
1 - Increasing Medicaid costs - this is a national problem which is caused by the feds shifting the cost
2 - Increasing prison costs
3 - Growth in non-general fund expenditures, particularly in the area of research at the state universities funded by private and federal grants - I can't imagine the Dems are against this.

Something like 70% of the increase in FTEs since Rounds took office is within the university system - and is attributable either to increasing enrollments (which require more profs) or research.

The Dems also lump together TRUST FUNDS and RESERVE FUNDS. The TRUST FUNDS are constitutionally established and are to be used to produce steady income each year - these were established by the legislature and voted on by the people. The RESERVE FUNDS are the "rainy day" funds, which we accumulate to smooth out the ups and downs of tax revenue. The RESERVE FUNDS have actually GONE DOWN since Rounds took office.

The Dems either don't know this information, don't understand it, or are trying to deceive. And how can they criticize Rounds for "growth of government" on one hand, and then propose massive new spending with a coherent funding plan (besides robbing the TRUST funds)?
Anonymous said…
Anon 1:19. Time for another smoke screen is it? Or have you become so complacent with your position that you don't actually have to look at the facts.

The 19.9% growth in state government excludes medicaid, and reflects the additional bureacracy being created by the Rounds administration.

Boy, aren't we glad we have the state to step in and market our beef for us. There was no way we can do it on our own. After all, who's going to pay the advertising company to come up with a fancy logo? No the producers, no way - that's the state's role.

Oh... and let's give the Board of Regents everything they want. Because there's a bundle in research grants out there - and those investments turn over in our economy.

Except... wait a minute... we're not going to put any of this reasearch into use ourselves, are we? Because for that... we'd need to improve our K-12 education system. And, after all, on the surface our education system is fine. Our national scores have nothing to do with our white demographics. And, the fact that when you compare white kids in South Dakota with white kids around the nation, we're below the mendoza line on achievement scores.

But... see, that's all too much to explain. Our voters can't handle being informed. They're simple folk, who care about low taxes and being left alone.

And, that's just what they'll get.
Anonymous said…
1:19, None of our funds has gone down since Rounds took office. Whether you call them trust funds or reserve funds doesn't matter. They have all gone UP! And I am sitting here with the numbers right in front of me from Legislative Audit. You obviously don't have the numbers, or you wouldn't be making your false claim. The fact is that Rounds has stockpiled money in every fund, AND has raised taxes, AND has grown government.

Rounds hasn't done anything except for himself and his brothers: new mansion, new plane, new distillery. Rounds is a lump. A worthless, do-nothing lump.

You are the poster child for why people need to become informed.
Anonymous said…
From the Common Ground list of supporters.
* John Buxcel is an Indpendent associated with the Democratic Party

Note the spelling of his affiliation. I'd think they'd look it over a bit.
Anonymous said…
Either you can't read or you are a liar because the state's reserve funds have gone done since Rounds has taken office. I have the figures right in front of me.
Trust funds have gone up but not the reserve fund.
I hate to disappoint you but the 19.9% growth DOES INCLUDE MEDICAID.
1:19 is right and what I want to hear from all you Common Ground supporters that talk about how spending had gotten out of control is where are you going to cut? Ask your Democrat Appropriators because they know the budgets. I want to hear from anyone who can tell me what part of that 19.9% growth are your going to cut? Quit dodging the questions!
Anonymous said…
10:27. You are a liar. 2:28 has numbers from Legislative Audit that show that the budget reserve fund as gone up along with our other 4 major funds.

Numbers don't lie - people do, 10:27 does.
Anonymous said…
Obviously anon 10:27 is a cowardly legislator who won't reveal his or her name. Then again, I'm not going to either, so, what's that say about me.

Either way, what's going to be cut? How can you possibly expect anyone, other than someone with intimate knowledge, to answer that?

We give an unreal amount of money to the Board of Regents. And they continue to raise private funds, and raise tuition. We buy land for new campuses. We build new facilities. Anything the BOR asks for, the appropriators rubber stamp, cause thats what the gubna tells em to do.

I say you get rid of the department of tourism. Let the tourism industry develop their own marketing arm.

Stop selling SD Certified Beef. Let the beef producers do it.

Dig in and find a way to REDUCE the cost of healthcare for seniors. Work with other states... FIGURE IT OUT.

How about requiring all state vehicles to run on biofuel? There's some monetary savings.

And why, for the love of god, has the Attorney General's budget increased over 100%.
Anonymous said…
3:24 is really burning the midnight oil. I am really glad you said what you said because it illustrates that those who say they are going to cut all this growth really don't know how or what because they don't have the "intimate knowledge". Before you start bragging about how you are going to cut this growth, don't you think you should figure out what you are going to cut other than a percentage?
As far as the BOR is concerned, just say you are referreing to USDSU and believe me there was no "rubber stamping" going on. A quick clarification while I'm on this subject is the state didn't purchase any land for a new campus, the state already owned it.
Yes the state has been spending money on higher ed to create more opportunities for our young people to get a better education.
Let's get rid of Tourism? Really? Let's get rid of Dept. of Ag while were at it, those farmers don't need them. COOL legislation, forget that too since the beef producers should "figure it out."
I don't think we need to worry so much about reducing the cost of healthcare to seniors; it's everyone else!
This biofuel requirement annoys me because currently the state uses biofuel whenever it's possible. Not every town has E-85 or biodiesel. Do some of you people think that the legislature or Gov. has something against biofuels that if it were 100% logistical that the state wouldn't mandate that? Come on folks!
I can't tell you every reason why the AG's budget has gone up but I can give you a few examples:
Huge loss of federal funding (Byrne funding)
Replacement of broken building
New sex offender responsibilities
Anti-terror responsibilities
Anonymous said…
So, you're suggesting that the COOL Legislation is being enforced?

And I am the first one to say that our elected officials should have authority over the budget. Since you're willing to provide reasoning... let's go at it.

Where has the 23% increase in the Department of Ag gone?

There's over a 100% increase in the Department of Tourism. Why weren't the voters asked if they wanted a tax increase to support the state government becoming a marketing agency for the state? Are there any private funds being contributed? Seems to me that if appropriators can't fund public broadcasting, and balk that they don't do enough private fundraising, they should be asking the same thing of the tourism industry.

The 27% increase in Game, Fish and Parks? For boats? Specific boats?

Regents is up 15%. And, yeah... that the same time we make more opportunities available, you allow them to raise tuition and price poor, underprivaledged kids out of a college education.

Corrections is up 28%. What programs are intended to make that number GO DOWN?

State Auditor is up 25%. Whonder why?

Judicial system is up 14%.

Oh yeah... and, just as an afterthought... K-12 education over the same time period... up 3.5%

If you exclude K-12, Medicaid and Sale-leaseback, state government has grown 19.7%.

We're collecting more taxes. We're issuing more services. But... if you asked the average tax payer whether they want the Tourism budget to go up 100% or they'd like to see education get more money, I wonder what they would say.

But... I'll give you a chance to explain all those other areas. Thanks.

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