State lawmakers seek foreign-owned land investigation

The state House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee passed a bill on Thursday designed to start closing a loophole in the foreign ownership of ag land.

Currently, state law prohibits ownership of more than 160 acres of ag land.  House Majority Leader Will Mortenson said it does not address foreign-owned companies.

Mortenson said it’s a tough nut to crack because there are a lot of ways to own land.  He said House Bill 1189 is a start. It adds one question to the form that all South Dakota companies file every year.

Mortenson said they need to find out the extent of hidden foreign ownership.

The Governor’s office and several farm groups spoke in favor of the bill.

No one testified against the measure. It passed 13-0 and moves to the House floor.


February 10, 2023

(Thanks, Brookings Radio)