Entries Tagged 'Elections' ↓

UPDATE: Will the Harrisburg School Bond election results give us some insight on the SF election

UPDATE: The Bond election passed with almost 85% approval (no surprises there) and like the SFSD election a low voter turnout, about 10%. I still wonder how these elections would have turned out if held with the Mid-Terms.

I think it will be very interesting to see the results of the Harrisburg School Bond tonight.

There are many differences. Harrisburg is taking out $40 million (not $190) and they are having NO tax increase attached to it (their levee is already higher than SF).

Another factor is that Harrisburg and other surrounding towns like Brandon and Tea tend to be a little more fiscally conservative when voting.

I still think it will pass, I’m even willing to say by 75%. But what if it is 85% or higher? Does that tell us that Sioux Falls 85% passage is believable? What if it is a lot lower? Or doesn’t pass (60%)?

The voter turnout will also be another factor.

While the results certainly can’t be compared 100% to the SF School Bond election, there will be some areas we can review and do some comparisons.

I also find it curious that the SFSD told voters they had to have the election in September because their budget HAD to be submitted to the state by September 30. So how is it that Harrisburg can have their election after that magical date in the middle of October and still be able to submit it to the state? Oh, that’s right, because the budget can be amended and submitted to the state later. Both Sioux Falls and Harrisburg school districts could have had their bond elections with the mid-term in November. It would have saved taxpayers money by holding it with the midterms. There would have been a larger voter turnout AND it would have been tabulated by a machine by an un-bias county auditor instead of having finance administrators count the votes by hand.

The results will be interesting.

Where does the GOP find these people?

Noem gets bailed out by the stinky rich

As we all suspected, Noem raised gobs of money when Trump came for his (private) visit in which SF taxpayers had to dole out $29K for security;

Kristi Noem’s fundraiser featuring President Donald Trump raked in $518,780, according to a new campaign finance report.

Quite the donor list. Number one donor, a person who has made millions from government subsidies and special exemptions to sell a fuel that takes food out of hungry mouths. A very ‘small investment’ for the returns he has been granted.

The four max contributors were Jeff Broin, of Dell Rapids, who is CEO and founder of Broin LLC; Thomas Everist, of the Everist Co. in Sioux Falls (Everist and Broin actually gave $25,000 and had to be issued $2,000 refunds); Michael Dalsin, of Sioux Falls, owner of Dalsin Inc.; and Eldon Roth, of Dakota Dunes, who is CEO of Beef Products Inc.

Jeff got a refund? LOL. Oh, that’s because of this little rule;

The use of a joint fundraising committee for the event allowed contributors to write one check for up to $23,000, even though state law caps individual contributions to statewide candidates at $4,000.

Poor Kristi, she had to form a PAC so she could get more than $4,000 in individual contributions. The next time you hear Kristi, or any Republican for that matter in this state running for office say they are looking out for you, just read the donor list attached to this story. That is who they are really looking out for.

SFSD uses mostly Finance Department District employees to count votes

I finally reviewed all the materials and will list my conclusions from the response of the SFSD to our documents request of the election below.


2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election Absentee Center Instructions

2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election Amendment to Everyone Counts Inc Software License and Master Service Agreement

2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election Instruction for Counting Board Workers

2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election materials spreadsheet

2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election Oaths

2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election Tally Sheets

2018-10-05 SFSD Special Bond Election Todd Vik Letter

Many questions were not answered, such as;

• How did the E-Poll Book software work?

• After the votes were tabulated and written on a tally sheet, how did they get into the computer system? In other words, who entered those numbers?

• Why are we NOT allowed to look at the ballots until after 60 days?

• Why are we being charged to view or copy the ballots after the 60 days?

• Were the undervotes just provisional ballots that were no good? Were the actual undervotes counted or just discarded (unmarked ballots in the ballot box).

• We were also confused by the statement below that the county auditor had control of the E-Poll book data. As I understand it, the county auditor was NOT involved in the election whatsoever.

As you can see from the list below, the SFSD district mostly used district employees to count the votes, and most of them worked in the finance office. While this may not be illegal according to state law, it is certainly ethically questionable. The SFSD should have strived to find volunteers to count the votes that had ZERO ties to the SFSD. They really should have reached out to the major political parties and independents to count the votes and the ages should have ranged.

Absentee Precinct Workers

John Gauer, former Principal elementary school, 36 years SFSD

Dolores Gauer, John’s wife, also worked for school district, retired

Judy Sperling, Minnehaha County Republican Women (not sure if she has ties to the SFSD)

Sharon Redenius, IPC, Finance, SFSD

Counting Board

Anita Wheelhouse, IPC Finance, SFSD

Bert Keiser, IPC Finance, SFSD

Kayla Haines, IPC Finance, SFSD

Deb Muilenburg-Wilson, IPC Director of Special Services SFSD

Laura Raeder, Assistant Principal of Roosevelt HS, SFSD

Carly Uthe (Leither), – IPC Superintendent’s Office, SFSD

Joey Leither, – Carly Uthe’s husband

Elsa Johnson (Tabulating Superintendent), IPC, Curriculum Services, SFSD

Dustin Jansick, Works for Private video company  Could be relation to SE Tech Employee or Megan Jansick or both

Megan Jansick, Works for Sioux Falls Development Foundation – Could be relation to SE Tech Employee or Dustin Jansick or both

Joni DenHoed, IPC Finance, SFSD

Peter Poindexter, Works for Private company, Could be relation to Dawne Poindexter

Sarah Vanoverbeke, Could be relation to Lisa VanOverbeke

Lisa Vanoverbeke, IPC, Finance, SFSD

Ann Smith, IPC, Curriculum Services, SFSD

Michelle Bishop, IPC, Human Resources, SFSD

Maritza Carrizales, IPC, Superintendent’s office, SFSD

Dawne Poindexter (Tabulating Superintendent), IPC – Finance, SFSD

Some of the names listed in the SFSD election documents were either misspelled, mis-hyphenated or misrepresented (shortened/nick names or maiden names).

While we received the oath sheets that WERE signed, there was NO printed name next to the signature. Most of the signatures were unreadable. Not sure if this has any significance or NOT. Same goes for the TALLY sheets, while signed there was NO printed name.

The Everyone Counts contract only listed costs and services and did not really explain how the E-Poll Books work. But interestingly enough they plan to use the books again this Spring for the next school board election.

There was also a lot of ‘crossing out’ of numbers on the tally sheets with NO initials saying they were corrected or who corrected them. And the number of provisional ballots was completely crossed out on the main form. Not sure if this had to do with confusion or deception?

We will be responding to the SFSD in writing since many questions were unanswered and these documents presented even MORE questions.

Is a Minnehaha County Commissioner Candidate Incumbent planning to resign after being elected?

There is a rumor going around that one of the Republican incumbent Minnehaha County commissioners plans to resign if/after they are re-elected. While I have a pretty good guess who that may be, I have NO idea if they plan to resign soon after the election (so someone can be appointed) or wait two years (when the next election is held for the county commission).

If this is true, my guess is they will put in a couple of months and resign after January so they can appoint another Republican and create a FAKE incumbent like they did with Jean Bender.

It’s a little trick the Republican’s pull all the time in the legislature and now it seems they are getting used to the practice on the County Commission.

Like I said, at this point it is a rumor, but had a pretty reliable source tell me about it.

Sioux Falls School District responds to Open Records request

The SFSD has responded to Bruce Danielson, Citizens for Integrity and our media partners. Bruce received a packet over the weekend from the District with bond election documents and resources. We are going to review with our partners and let you know what we find.

Stay tuned!


I also found the agenda interesting tonight, Item#13 is 1st Reading of stricter open enrollment rules (Which I 100% support). But I find it interesting that NONE of these changes were discussed BEFORE the election. If you look at the red notes in the exhibit you can tell they probably have been working on these changes for MONTHS. Makes you wonder if they knew showing these proposed changes to parents before the election would have affected the outcome? Slippery Petes.

(FF: 45:00)

Billie Sutton Interview; Re-Post from 4/28/2018

Could Billie Sutton pull off the governor’s race?

My only interview with Sutton. Afterwards I told people, “He is one sharp cookie!”

Well, if I were a betting man, I would still give the win to Noem, but a lot can change in a month.

First the negatives. Billie has an uphill battle on several fronts;

• He’s a Democrat. Though he tries to bill himself as a conservative Republican loving moderate independent, he still has a ‘D’ behind his name, and in governor races that hasn’t worked well in almost 50 years. He also has a HUGE gap to close. I believe by last counts there are 97,000 more registered Republicans in the state than Democrats. He also will have to work with a mostly Republican majority in the legislature (even though I think the Dems will pick up more seats in the mid terms). I also think that Seilor has a good chance of winning AG (that one is tight to) if they BOTH can pull it off and Republican voters also have similar confidence in that team, it can close the gap.

• He’s a tax raising Democrat. Not true at all. While Billie did vote for the half-penny tax increase for supposed teacher pay, it wasn’t his idea at all. It was the Governor’s with the help of Republican legislators. I actually railed on Billie for supporting it because he had a better idea and should have pushed it. It would have raised sales taxes a full penny, but here’s the kicker; it would have included eliminating a lot of exemptions special interest groups now have with sales taxes, it would have included a massive property tax cut, it would have eliminated the food tax AND it would have been written into law that the money HAS to go to teacher pay and NOTHING else. While I am disappointed in Billie for voting for the Republican tax increase, it really wasn’t his plan or idea. That tax increase can only be attributed to Republicans who have slowly chipped away at it taking money from teacher pay increases. (Side note; this is why you should vote NO on IM 25, it is not dedicated to tech schools, just a suggestion.)

But let’s look at Noem’s negatives, she has quite a few, ironically NOT much of it is her fault;

• She’s a woman, and say what you will about that, there has NEVER been a woman for governor in SD. I’m not saying the fine pigs in the Republican party will vote for Sutton because of this, I just think they won’t vote at all. I also believe that to be the case of people who supported Jackley. If Sutton can garner a large majority of independents and have a lot of under votes from Republicans he could squeak by.

But let’s look at Noem’s obvious problem, she is a do nothing legislator. She did nothing in Pierre and hardly anything in DC. And by not debating Sutton at all so far she is proving she has NO record to fight on.

While I still think the ‘Republican Light’ strategy Sutton is using is silly, at the end of the day it may work. But if he does win, it won’t be because of that strategy but because a lot of Republicans really don’t care for Noem.


Harrisburg School District proposing a $40 Million bond with NO tax increases

I know, you must be scratching your head a little, as am I. How can the Harrisburg school district propose a $40 million dollar bond without a tax increase? Oh, I don’t know, it’s that little thing called GROWTH!

Rasmussen said there are enough new homes and businesses in the district to support the proposed $40 million dollar bond vote without increasing taxes.

This was my argument about the SFSD bond, with record breaking building permits for over 6 years and the massive growth in Sioux Falls, why would we have to increase property taxes for our bond? Or better yet just build the schools out of the capital outlay without bonding and paying a $100 million in interest. How can a small community like Harrisburg figure out this simple math problem and NOT Sioux Falls? Sometimes arrogance gets in the way of prudence.

I think it would be safe to assume that the Harrisburg bond will pass the 60% threshold easily, especially with NO tax increases. It will just be interesting to see if they hit 85%. Yeah right.

UPDATE: Citizens for Integrity requests documents from Sioux Falls School Bond Election

Oh the secrets you hold.

This letter was delivered today to the IPC. Besides my blog, several other media sources in Sioux Falls have signed on to assist with the records request. I will have more updates tomorrow.

Listen to Patrick Lalley’s recent rant on this issue.

September 27, 2018

Bev Chase
Executive Assistant

SF School District

201 E 38th St

Sioux Falls, SD 57105

Dear Ms. Chase:

Under the South Dakota Sunshine Law, §1-27-1 et seq., I am requesting an opportunity to inspect or obtain copies of public records including ballots, tally sheets, computer software, poll books, oaths and all other planning documents related to the September 18, 2018 Sioux Falls School Bond Election.

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please inform me if the cost will exceed $200.00.  However, I would also like to request a waiver of all fees in that the disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest and will contribute significantly to the public’s understanding of September 18, 2018 Sioux Falls School Bond Election. I am asking for this material to be made available to a media pool being assembled for purposes related to news gathering involving this election.  This information is not being sought for commercial purposes.

Considering this election has just occurred, the information being requested should be readily available for inspection and testing. If access to the records I am requesting will take longer than a ‘reasonable’ amount of time, please contact me with information about when I might expect copies or the ability to inspect the requested records.

If you deny any or all of this request, please cite each specific exemption you feel justifies the refusal to release the information and notify me of the appeal procedures available to me under the law.

Thank you for considering my request.


Bruce Danielson

Citizens for Integrity

PO Box 491

Sioux Falls, SD 57101

Cell: (605) 376-8087

Email: bruce@brdan.com

UPDATE from Citzens for Integrity

As a clean and open election advocate for 52 years I have made some observations concerning the September 18, 2018 Sioux Falls School Bond election. These observations are my opinions based on being part of the process from the 1960’s into the age of computer based election. The insight I have gained into the deeper workings of modern elections was dealt with when I was Chairman of the Minnehaha County Election Review Committee in 2015.

In these years of observing and partaking in elections in South Dakota, I have seen some interesting election practices but I have never witnessed this elections poor practices. We must fight every day to keep elections fair to all participants, so we as citizens can accept the final outcomes as the voter’s choice.

This election may be the worst organized election I have witnessed in my life.

I have personally witnessed during absentee voting process:

1. No South Dakota Secretary of State Office direct support or oversight of election process

2. An unknown vendor support for computer based poll books (Everyone Counts)

3. No audit trail capability to verify the number of ballots issued and who voted absentee at IPC

4. Single clerk voter check-in of voters

5. No printed poll book at IPC absentee voting or any voting location to verify voter check-in

6. Voter check-in process with no hard copy verification by secondary individual

7. Voter check-in on a computer with the voter not able to verify data entered

8. Poll workers admitted no previous experience working an election

9. Voter check-in required voters to fill in absentee envelops with little guidance from inexperienced clerk

10. No label printers used in previous elections to guarantee legibility for absentee voting audits

11. Questionable ballot marking instructions

12. The election polling locations are disproportionally located in the southern part of the Sioux Falls. School district leaving citizens north of 6th street with no convenient polling place.

13. The Minnehaha County Election Review Committee recommendations for consistency in voting locations was ignored for election day

I am an advocate of hand counting and / or verifying ballot results when our election choices are controlled by machines. This election will be forever tainted no matter what the results are.