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   From the desk of News Director Kevin Larsen

Category: Local News

Haunted Tales Of Pierre To Be Highlighted At Rawlins Library Event Saturday

Friday, August 28, 2015

Get ready for a scary afternoon of bizarre ghosts, wicked spirits, and deadly poltergeists as a national ghost hunter has put all of his most haunted cases into one creepy presentation for the Rawlins Municipal Library- including haunted tales of Pierre's LaFramboise Island.
As the author of numerous books on SD folklore including. The South Dakota Road Guide to Haunted Locations, award winning author Chad Lewis has combined all of his research of the mysterious surrounding area into a visual road trip to South Dakota's most haunted places. 

This presentation on Saturday afternoon at the Library, takes the audience on a ghostly journey to some of the most paranormal places in the South Dakota. From deadly devils of Spirit Mound to the spectral horsemen prowling the Badlands to graveyard apparitions located in your own backyard, no place in SD is without its own haunting. 

 Complete with photos, case history, eyewitness accounts, ghost lore, and directions, this unique presentation encourages Pierre area residents to visit these places for your own supernatural story. 

The free “Haunted South Dakota” event will take place at Rawlins Library,1000 E. Church St, this Saturday August 29th at 2 pm. Everyone is urged to attend.  

For over two decades Chad Lewis has traveled the back roads of the world in search of the strange and unusual. From tracking vampires in Transylvania and searching for the elusive monster of Loch Ness to trailing the dangerous Tata Duende through remote villages of Belize and searching for ghosts in Ireland's castles, Chad has scoured the earth in search of the paranormal. 

With a Masters Degree in Psychology, Chad has authored over 20 books on the supernatural, and extensively lectures on his fascinating findings. The more bizarre the legend, the more likely it is that you will find Chad there.

Pierre is very lucky to have Chad come to town, so everyone is urged to attend this event. Once again, that is Saturday afteronne at 2:00 P.M. at the Rawlins Library.

CategoriesLocal News,

Sobriety Checkpoints Planned In Hughes, Stanley Counties

Friday, August 28, 2015

South Dakota Highway Patrol troopers will conduct sobriety checkpoints in 17 counties, including Hughes and Stanley, during September.


The monthly checkpoints are meant to discourage people from drinking and driving.


September checkpoints are scheduled for Beadle, Brookings, Brown, Brule, Butte, Clay, Codington, Grant, Hughes, Kingsbury, Lincoln, McCook, Meade, Minnehaha, Roberts, Pennington and Stanley.


The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.

CategoriesLocal News,

Local Group Gives Pierre Residents Something to Cluck About Thursday

Friday, August 28, 2015

A small, but vocal handful of people weighed in on a push to bring urban chickens to Pierre on Thursday night.

The event that was held at the Pierre chamber of commerce building saw about a dozen area residents, some even from Fort Pierre, vocalizing their thoughts on how to get a new city ordinance passed to allow urban chickens in the capitol city.

Back in April of 2014, in what was one of the most discussed topics of the time in Pierre, the Pierre City Commission unanimously voted down a proposed ordinance that would allow up to six hens, no roosters, in town.

Greater Oahe Action League Lead member Anne Lewis facilitated the informal meeting, and says that it was very beneficial to have comments from both sides of the isle…

(Lewis Chickens 1)

One of the major questions that surround the community is will urban chicken’s lower property values. Lewis says no…

(Lewis Chickens 2)

With the obvious fact that there were very few people that attended the highly publicized meeting, Lewis says that a lot of people don’t really care either way on this issue…

(Lewis Chickens 3)

Lewis, along with other league members, will be compiling the comments and will meet again September 8th to keep working on the proposed ordinance. For more information, and the details of the proposed ordinance, visit

CategoriesLocal News,

Lower Brule Sioux Tribe Misses Deadline For Land Buy Back Program

Friday, August 28, 2015

Acting Chairman Kevin Wright announced that the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe has missed the deadline for administering their Cobell Land Buy Back Program.

“At the August 5th, council session we were notified that we missed a deadline for the Indian Buy Back program,” Wright posted on his Facebook page.

Leadership of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe has been in question since their general election a year ago in September when Wright was elected as vice-chairman and Sonny Ziegler and DesiRee LaRoche were elected as council representatives.

According to Wright, the late Chairman Michael Jandreau, Secretary/Treasurer Red Langdeau and Councilman John McCauley stonewalled tribal council meetings for months by walking out of council.

Tribal Court Judge B.J. Jones ordered the tribe to resume meetings in March citing it was obstructing the rights of tribal citizens.

Jandreau’s death came amid controversy over a report accusing tribal leaders of mismanagement of millions of dollars “earmarked for programs meant to provide essential services, alleviate poverty, or promote much needed economic development.”

Wright’s takeover of leadership of the tribe was met with hostility from Jandreau supporters and shortly after taking charge, he ordered a freeze of all federal draw down monies until a full investigation of financial transactions could be conducted.

The most recent controversy has arisen over a question about who would administer the Land Buy Back Program for the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe and what has been termed “disallowable” costs.

According to Wright, they were informed that the way the tribe was trying to utilize Land Buy Back funds were considered “disallowable” costs.

Wright said he felt that it was Lee Brennan’s responsibility, as Tribal Manager, to inform the Chairman’s office about what was going on with the Land Buy Back Program and when Grounds presented this information, he felt appalled.

He has called for the termination Brennan because of what he terms “incompetence.”

As to whether or not the tribe will still get their land buy back he said, “I understand is that they will but it’s the government that will have final say as to who will benefit from the land buyback program,” Wright concluded.

CategoriesLocal News,

Judge Delays Implementation Of The Waters Of The US Rule

Friday, August 28, 2015

On Thursday, the District Court of North Dakota granted a preliminary injunction temporarily delaying implementation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) and Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps) rule redefining the “Waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS). Implementation of the WOTUS rule was slated to take effect on Aug. 28. The injunction delays implementation in South Dakota and the 12 other states party to the suit while the rule is in litigation.

“Without a doubt, the WOTUS rule, if implemented, would have negative repercussions across the state, but particularly for South Dakota’s farm and ranch families. Since the EPA and the Corps first announced the proposed WOTUS rule, Gov. Daugaard and the South Dakota Department of Agriculture have encouraged these federal agencies to work with states and producers to craft a rule that will protect our valuable natural resources in a way that respects and works with agriculture, not against it. Unfortunately, the EPA and the Corps chose to go ahead with implementation of this deeply flawed rule,” said Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch. “I would like to thank South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley for his efforts to prevent this significant federal overreach. While not a permanent solution, this injunction provides some temporary protection from this rule for producers in our state.”

On June 29, 2015, attorneys general from Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming filed a lawsuit against the EPA and the Corps over the WOTUS rule.

Agriculture is South Dakota's No. 1 industry, generating over $21 billion in annual economic activity and employing more than 122,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect, preserve and improve this industry for today and tomorrow.

CategoriesLocal News,

Transportation Commission Adopts New Rules For Highway/Bridge Improvement Plans

Friday, August 28, 2015

The South Dakota Transportation Commission adopted rules for the County Highway and Bridge Improvement Plans and the Bridge Improvement Grants (BIG) at their meeting on Thursday.

The rules for the BIG fund define the application process and timelines, guidelines and criteria the Commission will use to award and distribute money from the newly created fund.

The rules for the County Highway and Bridge Improvement Plan set forth definitions and criteria that county officials will use to create a highway and bridge improvement plan in order to be eligible for the BIG funds.

Once fully implemented, the BIG fund will provide $7 million dollars to specifically address local bridge needs. The SDDOT will add an additional $8 million in gas tax funds for a total of $15 million in the BIG grant program annually.

The next step is for the rules to be reviewed by the Legislative Interim Rules Committee (LRC) on Sept. 21, 2015. The rules will become official 20 days following LRC’s approval.

A copy of the guidelines and Commission approved rules can be viewed at

If you have questions about the new rules or associated guidelines, please contact the office of Local Government Assistance at 605.773.8148.

CategoriesLocal News,

Pierre/Fort Pierre Workforce Development Council Meets For The First Time

Friday, August 28, 2015

“We have trouble recruiting and finding employees.”

That was the statement that came out of most everyone’s mouth during the initial meeting of the Pierre/Fort Pierre workforce development council on Friday morning.

A major cross-section of about 30 government, quasi-government, and private industry stakeholders met for the first time to hopefully come up with one ultimate goal: figure out Pierre and Fort Pierre’s workforce needs and barriers and ultimately come up with a solution.

The Workforce Development Council, which was put together by Pierre Mayor Laurie Gill, will in the next 18 months ultimately come up with some strategy to combat the workforce shortage issue.

The meeting began with a presentation of data, which ultimately reassured everyone in the room’s knowledge that Pierre/Fort Pierre has a very low unemployment rate in town and most businesses have more jobs than they have workers.  

Mayor Gill was happy with the initial meeting…

(Gill Work Meeting)

Kim Olson from Senator Rounds’ office facilitated the meeting and got those in attendance talking and brainstorming. “Workforce is a marathon, not a sprint,” added Olson.

The council laid out goals for the future meetings and set up what topics need addressed.

One of those on the council is Chris Rounds of Fisher Rounds and Associates. He was the first to speak up saying that the lack of affordable housing is a main barrier in this whole subject.

Rounds said, “Housing is very expensive. Everyone says they are shocked about how expensive housing is in town.”

Another council member, Stanley County Superintendent Dan Martin, reiterated that statement saying, “We have had teachers not come to town just because they could not find any affordable housing.”

Gill adds that the council will meet bi-monthly…

(Gill Work Meeting 2)

Ross Petersen of Petersen Motors was one of the more vocal people at the meeting, and probably more down to earth than the rest. He addressed the lack of affordable housing and he lack of employees that actually don’t even have basic work etiquette in town.

One statement got Petersen a chuckle from the crowd. “There is a perceived notion in Pierre that if you work for the state or the city, you are a lot better off. It’s kind of like winning a mini-lottery.”

The group will meet again in October. 

CategoriesLocal News,

Stanley County Announces Homecoming Royalty

Friday, August 28, 2015

The 2015 Homecoming Royalty Court has been announced for Stanley County High School. 

Seniors chosen include Kady Nielsen, Kelsey VanDenHemel, Kaycee Cronin, Colten Drageset, Lukas Chase and Kevin Boring.  Tessa Rasmussen and Coy Ludemann will be the second grade students who will serve as crown bearers. 

School officials indicate that coronation festivities will be Tuesday, September 8 at 7:30 pm in the middle/high school gym and the homecoming parade and the football game against Lyman will take place on Friday, September 11.

CategoriesLocal News,

Cherry Creek Man Convicted Of Abusive Sexual Contact By Force

Thursday, August 27, 2015

A Cherry Creek man convicted of Abusive Sexual Contact by Force was sentenced earlier this week.

46 year old Kenneth John Counting, a/k/a John Counting, was sentenced to 37 months in custody, followed by 5 years of supervised release.

The conviction arose from an incident that occurred in late October of 2013, when Counting visited a neighbor in Cherry Creek. During that visit, Counting engaged in sexual contact by force with the victim. The victim tried to resist and attempted to push Counting away, but he was too strong and continued to touch the victim.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe Law Enforcement Services. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Miller prosecuted the case.

Counting was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service. 

CategoriesLocal News,

Senator Rounds To Be LIVE In The KCCR Studio This Afternoon

Thursday, August 27, 2015

South Dakota Senator Mike Rounds is making several stops around the state during the August break, and one of those stops is the KCCR studio.

Rounds will be live in the KCCR studios Thursday afternoon at approximately 1:30 P.M.

Rounds will recap what he has been hearing from South Dakotan’s while on break and what he anticipates when he returns to Washington D.C.

If you have any questions for Rounds that you want answered, make sure to e-mail them to or phone them in by calling 605-224-1240.

Once again, a LIVE edition of “Ask The Senator”, this afternoon at 1:30 only on Today’s KCCR.

CategoriesLocal News,
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