Last Legislative Coffee Ends with Legislators and Voters Opposing Senate Bill 149
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Nearly every seat in the room was filled and voters came ready with their questions and one question voters had for lawmakers was on Senate Bill 149.
On Wednesday, the bill passed the senate and is now heading for a hearing on the house floor. However, many are seeing the legislation as a setback as opposed to good.
“There are better ways to strengthen things for foster families, instead of limit them, “says Billy Mawhiney, non-supporter of SB 149.
If the bill passes the house, it would allow faith-based adoption agencies to turn away same-sex couples from adopting based on their religious or moral beliefs. All while receiving taxpayer funding.
Senator Reynold Nesiba says it’s wrong to use state money and discriminate towards same-sex couples.
“There were a number of gay and lesbian people here today; that I think would make really remarkable parents. And for us to systematically say that they wouldn’t be is really offensive, “Says Senator Nesiba from District 15.
Billy Mawhiney says he hopes lawmakers start to see the non-need for this bill.
“They are getting a better understanding of the potential discrimination and the potential lawsuits that could happen from things like this, “says Mawhiney.
Despite the opposition, Representative Steven Haugaard, says the bill does not restrict anyone from participating in foster care or adoption. What it does is protect the religious liberties we quote, “all enjoy.”
There are two weeks left in the legislative session. Lawmakers encourage voters to continue to contact them to voice their concerns.