South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands
|South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands|
|Office website:||Official Link|
|2014 FY FY Budget:||$839,955|
|Term limits:||2 consecutive|
|Length of term:||4 years|
|Authority:||South Dakota Constitution Article IV, Section 7|
|Name:||Vernon L. Larson|
|Assumed office:||August 16, 2013|
|Next election:||November 4, 2014|
|Last election:||November 2, 2010|
|Other South Dakota Executive Offices|
|Governor • Lieutenant Governor • Secretary of State • Attorney General • Treasurer • Auditor • Superintendent of Education • Agriculture Commissioner • Insurance Commissioner • Commissioner of School and Public Lands • Natural Resources Commissioner • Labor Commissioner • Public Service Commission|
The current South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands is Vernon L. Larson. Governor Dennis Daugaard announced on May 20, 2013 that he would appoint Larson to fill the vacancy created by Republican officeholder Jarrod Johnson's resignation. Johnson was first elected in 2006 and subsequently re-elected in 2010. He announced on April 5, 2013 that he would resign from office before the end of his term to spend more time with his family.
Larson previously served as State Auditor and State Treasurer. Serving as South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands makes him the first person in South Dakota to have held three different constitutional offices. Larson stated upon the announcement of his appointment that he would not seek election to a full term as commissioner in 2014.
Article IV, Section 7:
|Other Executive Officers--Powers and Duties
There shall be chosen by the qualified electors of the state at the general election of the Governor and every four years thereafter the following constitutional officers: attorney general, secretary of state, auditor, treasurer, and commissioner of school and public lands, who shall severally hold their offices for a term of four years. Commencing with the 1992 general election, no person may be elected to more than two consecutive terms as attorney general, secretary of state, auditor, treasurer, or commissioner of school and public lands.
There are no specific qualifications for the office of South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands.
South Dakota elects the Commissioner of School and Public Lands in midterm elections, not presidential election years. South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands election years included: 2006, 2010, 2014, etc.
To view the electoral history dating back to 2002 for the office of South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands, Click [show] to expand the section.
- Is removed from office;
- Fails to qualify as provided by law;
- Is no longer a resident of the state;
- Is convicted of "any infamous crime or of any offense involving a violation of his official oath;"
- Or, breaches of his or her official bond.
If a vacancy occurs in the office of Commissioner of School and Public Lands after May 30 of an even numbered year, it is filled till the end of the vacated term by gubernatorial appointment. If the vacancy is created prior May 30 of an even numbered year, it is filled by election, unless the year the vacancy is created in a year when the term of office would normally expire. If a person is elected for to fill a vacancy, the newly elected commissioner waits to take office until the day of that year when a full term for that office would normally commence.
- See Energy policy in South Dakota for information on the state's energy portfolio and goals.
The office was mainly created to deal with lands designated for educational use by the federal government. Section 4 lays out the details for appraising such school lands that might be sold. It states that the commissioner sits on a board of appraisers that evaluate all school lands that are to be sold. This is board also includes the auditor and county superintendent of schools. Section 6 describes that such sales are to be conducted through the commissioner's office. All sales are subject to approval by the governor. Section 9 details the commissioner's role in leasing these lands.
Funds that are generated from the sale and lease of these lands and their mineral rights are used to fund education in the state.
Other duties of the Commissioner of School and Public Lands include:
- Managing Permanent Trust Fund
- Issuing and maintaining grazing leases
- Inspecting and repairing state owned CCC and WPA Dams
- Issuing and monitoring all mineral leases for the State
- Controling noxious weeds on school and public lands, state-owned dams and meandered lakes
- Recording land transactions for easements on right-of-ways and state-owned lands
- Purchasing and selling property as requested by the legislature or other state agencies
- Issues Seismic Permits on state-owned mineral acres
- Education Permanate Trust Fund
- Minerals Acres
- Surface Acres
South Dakota School and Public Lands had an appropriated budget of $839,955 for the 2014 fiscal year.
- See also: Compensation of state executive officers
The South Dakota Commissioner of School and Public Lands was paid $83,135.17 in 2013.
There have been 26 South Dakota Commissioners of School and Public Lands since 1889. Of the 26 officeholders, 22 were Republican and 4 were Democrat.
|List of Former Officeholders from 1889-Present|
|1||Osmer H. Parker||1889 – 1891||Republican|
|2||Thomas H. Ruth||1891 – 1895||Republican|
|3||John L. Lockhart||1895 – 1899||Republican|
|4||David Eastman||1899 – 1903||Republican|
|5||C.J. Bach||1903 – 1907||Republican|
|6||O.C. Dokken||1907 – 1911||Republican|
|7||F.F. Brinker||1911 – 1913||Republican|
|8||Fred Hepperle||1913 – 1917||Republican|
|9||N.E. Knight||1917 – 1925||Republican|
|10||O.P.J Engstrom||1925 – 1933||Republican|
|11||Ben Strool||1933 – 1939||Democratic|
|12||Earl A. Hammerquist||1939 – 1943||Republican|
|13||John A. Lunden||1943 – 1949||Republican|
|14||Bernard Linn||1949 – 1971||Republican|
|15||Ralph Ginn||1971 – 1972||Republican|
|16||George D. Kane||1972 – 1979||Democratic|
|17||John J. "Jack" Gerken||1979 – 1983||Republican|
|18||F. Julian Cheney||1983||Republican|
|19||David L. Volk||1983 – 1984||Republican|
|20||John J. "Jack" Gerken||1984||Republican|
|21||Sheldon E. Cotton||1985 – 1987||Republican|
|22||Timothy H. Amdahl||1987 – 1990||Republican|
|23||Curtis J. Johnson||1991 – 2003||Democratic|
|24||Bryce Healy||2003 – 2007||Democratic|
|25||Jarrod Johnson||2007 –2013||Republican|
|26||Vernon L. Larson||2013-||Republican|
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South Dakota School and Public Lands
500 East Capitol Ave.
Pierre, SD 57501
Phone: (605) 773-3303
Fax: (605) 773-5520
- South Dakota School and Public Lands, "Commissioner Jarrod Johnson," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota State News, "School & Public Lands Commissioner Johnson To Resign In August," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota State News, "Governor Daugaard To Appoint Vern Larson As Commissioner Of School And Public Lands," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota Codified Laws, "Title 3, Chapter 4, Section 1," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota Codified Laws, "Title 3, Chapter 4, Section 3," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota Codified Laws, "Title 3, Chapter 4, Section 6," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota School and Public Lands, "Office of School & Public Lands Duties and Responsibilities," accessed August 13, 2013
- Bureau of Finance and Management, "State of South Dakota Budget in Brief Fiscal Year 2014," 53, accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota Bureau of Finance and Management, "Executive Salaries Required by SDCL 4-7-10.1 as of 8/13/2013 2:00:56 AM," accessed August 13, 2013
- South Dakota Blue Book 2009, "Chapter 4," accessed August 14, 2013