- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 21, 2018

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - Gov. Dennis Daugaard has signed a roughly $4.7 billion state budget that includes funding hikes for education, Medicaid providers and state employees for the upcoming budget year.

The Republican executive signed the measure Wednesday that sets state spending for the 2019 budget year, which begins July 1. Daugaard says South Dakotans can be proud of the balanced budget that funds increases for the state’s “three priority areas.”

The Legislature benefited from state tax collections projected to climb higher than Daugaard anticipated when he proposed his budget plan in December. The budget includes roughly $1.63 billion in general state spending, about $18 million above the governor’s proposal.

The new budget includes funding increases of 1 percent for education, 1.2 percent for state employees and 2 percent for community-based Medicaid providers and 0.5 percent for other providers.

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