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  • Writer's pictureCaleb Finck

Rep. Finck - Impeachment Conclusion

The finish line at last, the main run of the 2022 legislative session is now over and the budget is set for another year. I believe there are many things to be proud of in this years budget and some things that we will need to continue to work on in the coming years. A few good things to note include a full 6% increase to State Education, State Workers, and Medical Providers. Tuition freezes will be in affect at both our Universities and our Tech Schools in South Dakota, this will help keep tuition affordable moving forward into the future as well. This year we also are sending additional funds to at risk Nursing Homes but that is just a band-aid for now. This next year brings a process called Re-Basing to our long term providers, which will calculate and determine the updated costs for providing services at these facilities. Re-basing only takes place every few years and typically we need to make adjustments to reimbursement rates following a re-base and with revenues forecast to level off in the next budget cycle this is going to be an issue we look at carefully moving forward. I was also very pleased that we were able to move one of my priorities across the finish line this year with additional funding for our Rural Access Infrastructure Grant program. In the end, we were able to secure an additional $25M spread across the next 3 years for our rural infrastructure. When we started on this endeavor this past year we had two goals in mind: 1) Understand the scope of the problem that exists, 2) find a funding mechanism to fit the need that exists. I am incredibly proud of the work that has been done across the state in the past year understanding and inventorying all of our Small Structures and culverts across our Counties and Townships on our secondary roads. We will not be finished with the inventory until late May of this year but we already know we have over 9000 culvert and small structure locations with what I estimate as only about 60-70% of the inventory completed. $25M marks a substantial investment into fixing the aging infrastructure that we have today and will last us decades into the future. Now that the celebrating is over there is still much work to be done and for me that also includes a change in the scenery. As you may know by now, when we completed the redistricting process this past year I will no longer be in District 21 and instead will be in District 19. While I am very excited to be in a new district that is a little closer to home for me I am also going to miss the great people of District 21. To be honest, growing up around Tripp meant that I really didn’t know a whole lot of people in Tripp County or Gregory County for that matter. However, I have been so very blessed to have met so many people that I can now call my friends from Avon all the way to Carter and back and I will miss being your Representative. With that said, the districts may be changing but I am not going anywhere, if you ever need anything don’t let the district line stop you, because it will not be stopping me. I ran for the legislature because I believe it is the duty of our legislature to lead South Dakota to a better place every year and I am blessed to have 104 other South Dakotans that share that vision with me, even if we approach it from different angles. May God Bless you all and may God Bless South Dakota! Rep. Caleb Finck Cell: 605-933-2042

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