Governor Kristi Noem announces largest tax cut in South Dakota history

RAPID CITY, S.D.(DRGNews)- As part of her reelection campaign, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem is proposing to eliminate the state sales tax on groceries.

Noem says individuals and families are struggling and she blames the current economic conditions on President Joe Biden, his people and his policies.

Noem, who is rumored to be seeking a position in the White House in 2024, says cutting the sales tax on groceries is one way to help “protect our people from a disastrous White House.”

If legislation eliminating the sales tax on groceries is passed by the state legislature, Noem says it would be “the largest tax cut in South Dakota history.”

Noem says elimination of the grocery sales tax would reduce the tax burden on South Dakotans by $100 million. But, she didn’t lay out any plans for how the state may recoup the money or how many jobs and what services would have to be cut because of the reduction in sales tax revenue.

South Dakota’s budget surplus for the 2022 fiscal year was $115.5 million. Sales taxes grew by 12%. The state’s rainy-day fund grew to $422.6 million, 20.5% of the state’s budget.

Democrat candidate Jamie Smith responded to the announcement by posting on Twitter, calling it an attempt to win “political points.”

“Seven months ago, my colleagues and I proposed eliminating the sales tax on food and groceries,” he stated. “It would have saved each South Dakota family $468 a year on groceries. But the bill was opposed by Gov. Noem and killed in the Senate. Now she backs it to score political points.”