And I thought it had the makings of a slow news day.

I was thinking it was going to be a humdrum news day, and I'd spend some time coming up with a logo for the nanny-staters or something to that effect. And then the Capital Journal drops this story in our laps:

(Click to enlarge)

Go pick up the dead tree edition of the Cap Journal, or wait until it's on-line here about 9 or 10 this morning. The SD State Government saying that a federal game warden is officially shunned is not something you see every day. Neither is noting that it's time to take the matter to the congressional delegation.

This might be the sleeper issue of the day.


Anonymous said…
Skjonsberg is a jerk and highly underqualified for his position.

I'm not a sportsman, do not know what the situation was and do not know the warden, but based on what I've seen and heard of Rob's "leadership" I suspect some of Rob's friends got reprimanded and they whined to him to do something.

What I found MOST alarming is that instead of talking to the guy or going to his supervisor first, Rob takes his temper tantrum to the paper. That's just not how a mature person reacts.

I've heard rumors Rob is leaving the gov's office soon. Don't let the door hit you on the way out!
Anonymous said…
Actually that federal warden is a total jackass and has been a major source of discontent among sportsmen. This is the end result of many complaints and this is long overdue actually.Many complaints have been made to his supervisors including by me, The door should hit the federal wardens ass and anyone who is informed would agree.
Anonymous said…
Well tell us what he did! I think we should all know what he has done.
Anonymous said…
The biggest thing was he stopped paid hunting over baited fields, and it was contested to the court system and the courts upheld the warden charges and stopped the hunting over bait. He may be gruff and not a friendly guy, but he was doing his job in this intance.
Anonymous said…
Is there such a thing as Chief of Staff of South Dakota? I guess I always thought it was the chief of staff of the governor's office or the governor's staff. How does Skjonsberg have authority to order GF&P officers around?
Anonymous said…
Anon 10:57 - Skjonsberg has the authority because Gov. Rounds has given it to him. Rob is more powerful than you think. Every department in state government is under the control of the Governor's Office. Rob can mandate certain behavior by employees in every agency from Heatlh to Social Services to Tourism to Corrections. Scary.
Anonymous said…
Skjonsberg is a stud. Prieksat is a problem. Period. The state does all this work to try and make game wardens as pleasant as possible for sportsmen, and now we're finding that this jerk may have been the problem the whole time.
Anonymous said…
Neither the Governor or Rob have any authority over federal agents.
Anonymous said…
that's right, no one in the state has any power over a federal agent, and that's why there's a stand-down order. i know of some friends who reported complaints due to this agent, and it seems like he just doesn't like hunters. that's not good, especially in pierre.
mhs said…
What a hoot. The local outdoor industry bitched just as bad about John Cooper when in his early years as the Fed warden. The son of a gun actually had the audacity to enforce the law!

How quickly some forget.

These guys aren't nicey-nice license checkers. They're trained as Federal law enforcement officers, not Park Rangers in funny hats. Their job is to bust felons, not hug trees. If a local FBI agent had the same personality, you think they'd order DCI not to work with them?
Anonymous said…
The paper is not the place to air this issue. Period.

Rob has once again bungled the public relations aspect of the governor's office.

Of course, I'm sure he loved to see his name in the paper - what an idiot! Rounds could and should do better!
Anonymous said…
Right, the paper wasn't the place to air this but after waiting, and waiting, and waiting for the Federal Bureacrats to do something, this is what we get.

Personally, I seen the guy and heard the stories, he's a nut. He likes the f*word, everyone is a f*ing liar. He yells this at women, kids, people in wheel chairs. It's a joke and I don't blame the governors office for taking a stand. They've probably been getting calls on this guy in the Pierre area non-stop.

Do you think Rob S. would do this with out the governor's approval. No way. This is from the top down. Good for them. If this guy was a state officer he'd have been gone years ago, that's the problem. He's still here.
Anonymous said…
The comparison to Cooper is apt. Cooper and Prieksat are close friends and think just alike. Both are arrogant bullies who consider all hunters and landowners to be criminals.

You should be aware that the west river hunting lockout fiasco is directly attributable to Cooper, Prieksat, and a couple GF&P employees who were working with them along with the GF&P aerial predator control pilot who since has been barred from hunting after a felony conviction when he was convicted of almost killing his second wife.

This is a step in the right direction and let’s hope the GF&P cleans their own house as well.
Anonymous said…
It is really funny how the people who dont follow game laws cry foul when caught, and when there is a good or great agent who I admit needs some attitude adjustment, but he is one hell of a game warden. The people crying the loudest are the ones who he has pinched....
Anonymous said…
Or the father of the 10 year old he made cry.
Anonymous said…
(a) skjonsberg is a STAR. i have worked with five or six chiefs of staff; he is the fastest and the most honest.

(b) every now and then, the government should police itself. Prieksat is BADGE HAPPY. chiefs of staff are hired to protect us from the government, when it overreaches. Yes, its true, once a badge happy guy gets hired by the feds, he is untouchable, jobwise, and can issue "goose jerky tickets" all he wants, but that does not mean the state GFP should be his lackeys. Why? they actually answer to someone.

(c) i truly fear the day that ANY guy with a badge does not answer to anyone....99% of law enforcement dont need supervision, but for the one percenters, im glad there is someone in government who will say "stop that!"

(d) GFP Secretary Vonk has been on the job what, three weeks? Skjonsberg was right to lean in and take this one on the chin.

(e) Final point. Sportsmen are NOT the enemy...a point lost on Prieksat. Stay tuned and see if ANY charges worth a crap come out of his latest US Attorney worth squat is going to press that lame case.
Anonymous said…
I might add that landowners aren't the enemy either; a point totally lost on Prieksat, Cooper and several of the current GF&P higher ups.

It's interesting to note that the governor's office didn't have a problem with these jerks until hunters started complaining. There are several GF&P personnel who should be shown the door for their actions against landowners, but what do you want to bet the governor won’t do anything with them. After all, there aren’t many landowners so why bother with their concerns.

Landowners raise the public’s wildlife without any compensation so GF&P can sell licenses to hunters and use the money to pay the very employees who have done all they can to make life miserable for those same landowners. This all happens with the governor’s knowledge and consent, so there is no reason to believe anything will change.

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