April 1, 2020


            The Miner County Board of Commissioners met in special session April 1, 2020 via Teams Meeting & telephonically.  Members present:  Roger Wentland, Garrett Gassman, Alex Protsch, Voni Durant and Tom Reisch.  Absent:  none.  Others in attendance were Director of Equalization Tami Severson and District 8 State Representative Marli Weise.  Chairman Wentland called the meeting to order.  The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.  Motion by Reisch, seconded by Protsch and carried to approve the agenda.  No persons appeared for public comment.

            The second reading of Ordinance 2020-02 was read by title.  It was then moved by Gassman and seconded by Reisch to adopt the following ordinance.  Voting aye:  Gassman, Durant, Protsch, Reisch and Wentland.  Voting nay:  none.





WHEREAS, the Miner County Commission has the authority to pass ordinances for the purpose of promoting the health, safety, morals and general welfare, of the community and the promotion of health and the suppression of disease; and   

WHEREAS, an outbreak of the disease COVID-19, which is caused by the novel coronavirus, has been confirmed in more than 100 countries, including the United States; and

WHEREAS, COVID-19 is a severe respiratory disease transmitted by person-to-person contact, or by contact with surfaces contaminated by the virus. In some cases, especially among older adults and persons with serious underlying health conditions, COVID-19 can result in serious illness requiring hospitalization, admission to an intensive care unit, and death; and  

WHEREAS, the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services have declared the outbreak of COVID-19 as a public health emergency; and          

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, the President of the United States declared a national emergency in response to the global pandemic of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on the same day, Governor Kristi Noem, issued Executive Order 2020-04 which declared a state of emergency to exist in the State of South Dakota in response to the spread of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in South Dakota; and

WHEREAS, the CDC and health experts have recommended social distancing to slow the spread of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, social distancing is a method of slowing down or stopping the spread of a contagious disease by reducing the probability of contact between infected persons and those not infected in order to minimize disease transmission; and

WHEREAS, in response to the need to implement social distancing all schools in the state have been closed for at least until May 4th; and

WHEREAS, on March 16th, the White House issued guidance recommending that social gatherings of more than ten people be avoided and that people avoid eating or drinking at bars, restaurants, and food courts; and       

WHEREAS, the guidance issued by the White House further recommended that in states with evidence of community transmission, bars, restaurants, food courts, gyms, and other indoor and outdoor venues where people congregate should be closed; and

WHEREAS, many states and communities across the country have already implemented the White House recommendations by ordering all bars, restaurants, food courts, gyms, and other indoor and outdoor venues where people congregate be closed until the public health emergency is over; and

WHEREAS, the failure to successfully implement social distancing will likely result in higher numbers of infected individuals and has the potential to overwhelm the capacity of the County’s health care providers; and

WHEREAS, it is important that control measures be taken to reduce or slow down the spread of COVID-19 in order to protect the health and safety of the County’s residents, especially for seniors and those with underlying health conditions that make them particularly vulnerable to COVID-19.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED, by the Miner County Commission that:

1.         Effective immediately, all Miner County Facilities are closed to the general public.  County and Unified Judicial System offices will continue to operate and conduct business by mail, email, online, by phone or by arranging to work face-to-face/in person on a case-by-case basis.

2.         Effective immediately, in cases when a member(s) of the public displays symptoms of COVID-19, as specified by the South Dakota Department of Health, the County offices are directed to refuse face-to-face/in person service and encourage the individual(s) to seek medical attention as specified by public health authorities.

3.         All restaurants, food courts, coffee houses, bars, breweries, distilleries, wineries, clubs, cafes and other similar places of public accommodation offering food and beverages for on-site consumption, including any alcohol licensees with on-sale privileges, are closed to on-site/on-sale patrons. These businesses may continue to operate in order to provide take-out, delivery, curbside service, drive-thru service. Any business continuing to operate in order to provide off- site service should implement procedures to ensure social distancing and operate in compliance with federal and state health guidance in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

4.         All recreational facilities, public pools, health clubs, athletic facilities and music or entertainment venues are directed to close and cease operations. 

5.         Effective at 12:00 a.m. on April 2, 2020, all bingo halls, casinos (video lottery) and other similar recreational or entertainment facilities are directed to close and cease operations.

6.         The prohibitions and closures in this order do not apply to the following businesses:

a.         Places of public accommodation that offer food and beverages for off-site consumption, including grocery stores, markets, retail stores that offer food, convenience stores, pharmacies, drug stores, and food pantries, other than any portion of such business which would be subject to the requirements of paragraph #3.

b.         Health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and correctional facilities.

c.         Any emergency facilities necessary for the response to the current public health emergency or any other community emergency or disaster.

7.         This ordinance shall remain in effect until such time as it is amended or repealed.

8.         Any violation of this ordinance is subject to a maximum fine not to exceed $500 for each violation or by imprisonment not to exceed 30 days per violation or by both fine and imprisonment.

BE IT FURTHER ORDAINED, that this ordinance is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, safety, and welfare of Miner County and shall become effective immediately upon passage.

Dated this 1st day of April, 2020.



Roger Wentland, Chairman


ATTEST:  Susan Connor, Auditor


            Having no further business, the meeting adjourned until April 7th.  Dated this 1st day of April, 2020.

                                                                                    Roger Wentland, Chairman

                                                                                    Miner County Board of Commissioners

Attest:  Susan Connor, Miner County Auditor



Contact Info

Please see department pages for direct contact information.

Physical Address: 

Miner County Courthouse

Park Ave. & Main St

401 N. Main St.

Howard, SD 57349


Office Hours: 

7:30am-12:00pm & 12:30pm-4:00pm

Monday - Friday

(Sheriff/Dispatch Office Open 24/7)