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Mt Rushmore fireworks paid from state business economic fund

 Fireworks at Mount Rushmore
Fireworks at Mount Rushmore (KSFY)
Published: Jul. 2, 2020 at 8:52 PM CDT
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While preparations continue for fireworks this weekend at Mount Rushmore, some people see the price tag as an economic investment for the state, others worry about the money being spent, and say, it could be spent elsewhere.

A presidential visit with fireworks encircling the faces at Mt. Rushmore will certainly get attention. Teri Schmidt, Executive Director of Experience Sioux Falls says the event will benefit the entire state.

"They see the state they see the beauty they see Mount Rushmore, and it causes a lot of good conversation, we hope," said Schmidt.

Typically the cost of such an event made up through economic growth.

"It will benefit South Dakota because it will bring in people for the weekend. People will travel in, they will enjoy the South Dakota, they will spend money here, but also they will see the quality of life we have the quality of businesses that we have they may decide to relocate here," said Schmidt.

The $350,000 cost of the fireworks is funded by the Governor's Office of Economic Development, a resource for business start-ups, growth, and relocation to South Dakota. Some question if it's the right spending choice. Linda Duba represents district 15 in the House of Representatives.

"I am concerned about taking $350,000 out of our future fund. That fund is really designed for economic development. We also use that for job development, especially in times of great need and, and we are in a time of great need right now in our state," said Duba.

Duba says The National Guard providing security for the event is a good thing. She's worried about more expenses after the event.

"They are being asked to quarantine for 14 days. So that 14 days also equates to additional dollars coming out of the state budget," said Duba.

Dakota News Now made attempts to reach a spokesperson from the Governor's Office of Economic Development and did not receive a response.

Whether you're for or against the price tag for the fireworks, there is no doubt, all eyes will be on Mount Rushmore this weekend.

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