Press Releases


Rounds Questions Legality of Army Corps’ Implementation of WOTUS

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today at an EPW Subcommittee hearing questioned the legality of reports that the Army Corps is implementing the Waters of the U.S. rule (WOTUS), despite a nationwide stay on the rule in October 2015. Specifically, Rounds questioned Damien Schiff, the Principal Attorney of the Pacific Legal Foundation, about the implementation methods of the Waters of the U.S. rule (WOTUS). "When ag… Continue Reading


Rounds Issues Statement Following VA’s Announcement to Voluntarily Implement Bipartisan Provision to Enhance VA Medical Care

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today made the following statement in response to news that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is moving to voluntarily implement one of the key proposals from the bipartisan Veterans Health Care Staffing Improvement Act, which he introduced with Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.). The legislation would help make sure that veterans can get the care they n… Continue Reading


Rounds Acknowledges South Dakota Students Offered Appointments to U.S. Service Academies

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today acknowledged the South Dakota students who were offered appointments into the nation's service academies for the fall 2016 semester with his nomination. "It was an honor to nominate these young South Dakota students to become the next generation of military leaders, and I congratulate them on their appointments into the service academies," said Rounds. "The United States service academies are looking for the best and brightest to join their ran… Continue Reading


Rounds Statement on Obama Administration’s New Overtime Mandate

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today issued the following statement on the Department of Labor's final rule that would more than double the salary threshold under which employees qualify for overtime pay. "The Obama administration's new overtime mandate will hurt both our employees and the employers who hire them," said Rounds. "Under this rule, restaurants, retailers and small businesses across South Dakota will be faced with increased labor costs or be forced to transition their… Continue Reading


Delegation Demands Answers From the Indian Health Service

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sens. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) and U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem (R-S.D.) recently joined Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, in sending a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell requesting that the Indian Health Service (IHS) provide answers regarding the recent system improvement agreements executed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the IHS. These agreeme… Continue Reading


Rounds Statement on Committee Passage of NDAA

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, today issued a statement after the committee's passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The bill includes a number of provisions he introduced, including his provision requiring the administration to define a cyber act of war. "Passing the NDAA each year is critical to protecting and advancing our national security," said Rounds. "It's a testament to Chairman McCain and Ranking Memb… Continue Reading


Senate Passes First Appropriations Bill of 2016 with Rounds Support

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today supported the Fiscal Year 2017 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act of 2016, which passed the Senate by a vote of 90-8. This is the earliest the Senate has taken up an appropriations bill on the Senate floor in more than 40 years. The Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act funds critical Department of Energy programs and infrastructure projects managed by the Army Corps of Engineers. "The federal government has a duty to spen… Continue Reading


Rounds Urges Indian Affairs Committee to Consider Audit of Failing IHS System

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today wrote to Senate Indian Affairs Committee Chairman John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) to thank him for his commitment to fixing the systemic problems within Indian Health Service (IHS) and identify areas which an external audit may be helpful in finding solutions to the crisis. "Over the last year, my office has been looking deep into the financial, structural and administrative problems at IHS so we can better understand how to fix the broken agency and pro… Continue Reading


Rounds Statement on Meeting Between U.S. Army and Tribal Representatives to Discuss Bringing Remains of Native Youth Home

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Rounds (R-S.D.) made the following statement after representatives from his office participated in a meeting with Army representatives and tribal representatives in Rosebud, South Dakota. The meeting was to discuss returning the remains of Native American children buried at Carlisle Indian School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, to their rightful home on their tribal land: "During the 19th and early 20th centuries, nearly 830,000 Native American children were forcibly removed f… Continue Reading


Rounds Will Introduce Bill Requiring Administration to Define a Cyber Act of War

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), today will introduce the Cyber Act of War Act of 2016. The Cyber Act of War Act of 2016 would require the administration to develop a policy to determine whether a cyber-attack constitutes an act of war. "With the Internet playing a major role in nearly every aspect of our lives, we not only face the threat of losing our personal information online, but we are at risk of having our daily lives … Continue Reading


Rounds Statement on the Passing of Colette Abbott

PIERRE - U.S. Sen Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) made the following statement on the passing of Colette Abbott, the wife of University of South Dakota President James Abbott: "Jean and I send our deepest condolences to Jim, his family and the entire USD community," said Rounds. "Colette dedicated her life to her family and bettering education for South Dakota young people. She touched countless lives throughout the years. Her kindness and generosity will be missed by all." ###… Continue Reading


Rounds: Bipartisan Veterans First Act Prioritizes our Nation’s Vets

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today praised the committee's rollout of the Veterans First Act, which is comprehensive, bipartisan legislation to improve accountability at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and enhance care for veterans. The bill includes major provisions of two pieces of legislation Rounds introduced, the Veterans Choice Equal Cost for Care Act and the Veterans Health Administration Spending and Transparency … Continue Reading


Rounds Delivers Tribute to Terry Redlin on Senate Floor

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today paid tribute to Terry Redlin in a speech on the Senate floor. Redlin, a famed painter from Watertown, passed away at the age of 78 on Sunday, April 24, 2016. Rounds' remarks, as prepared for delivery: Mr. President, I rise today to pay tribute to Terry Redlin, a citizen of South Dakota who rose to fame in the 1970s as an artist known for his vivid and vibrant outdoor paintings. On Sunday, April 24, Terry passed away at the age of 78 in … Continue Reading


Rounds Votes to Advance Legislation to Benefit South Dakota’s Water Resources

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today voted to pass the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (WRDA) out of committee. "Water is one of our most precious natural resources," said Rounds. "In South Dakota, we rely on the Missouri River system for energy, agriculture, recreation and more. The legislation we passed out of committee today includes provisions to improve water management and make certain we are being… Continue Reading


Rounds Statement on Meeting with Judge Garland

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) made the following statement after his meeting with Judge Merrick Garland, President Obama's nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court: "As a former governor, I respect the president's responsibility to make a nomination. Today I met with Judge Garland as a courtesy. During our meeting, I thanked him for allowing the president to place his name in nomination. However, I believe that Justice Scalia's replacement should be nominated by the next President of the… Continue Reading


Rounds Introduces Legislation to Help Treat PTSD Among Service Members

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Armed Services and Veterans' Affairs Committees, today introduced the Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Medication Prescribing Improvement Act of 2016. This legislation would require each branch of the armed forces to monitor the prescribing practices of medications to treat symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among service members. "Unless each branch of our armed forces carefully monitor prescriptions of medicatio… Continue Reading


Rounds Statement on Passing of Terry Redlin

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) made the following statement on the passing of Terry Redlin, devout wildlife conservationist and famed painter from Watertown: "I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Terry Redlin," said Rounds. "Terry had a passion for promoting South Dakota and he shared his appreciation for our great state with the world through his paintings. Jean and I send our condolences to his family, his friends and all who admired his work throughout his distinguish… Continue Reading


Rounds, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Encourage Greater Competition & Innovation in DOD Cyber Procurement

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), along with U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.), today introduced S. 2826, the bipartisan Promoting Value Based Defense Procurement Act. The legislation would make sure that the Department of Defense (DOD) seeks the best long-term value for the taxpayers during the procurement process for complex information technology and engineering services by providing greater clarity on DOD's existing Lowest Price, Technically Acceptable (LPTA) evaluation criteria. … Continue Reading


Rounds Offers Amendment to Energy & Water Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today offered an amendment to the Energy and Water appropriations bill that would authorize the use of up to $2 million within the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' (USACE) existing budget to implement Upper Missouri River Basin flood and drought monitoring systems. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) is a cosponsor. "South Dakotans deserve certainty that the federal government has taken steps to prevent another catastrophic event similar to the 2011 flood that for… Continue Reading


Rounds Issues Statement Following Senate Passage of Bipartisan Energy Bill

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today issued the following statement on the Senate's passage of the bipartisan Energy Policy Modernization Act, which included his easement disclosure amendment. The bill passed by a vote of 85-12. "For the first time in nearly a decade, the Senate passed legislation to modernize and update our nation's energy policies," said Rounds. "The bipartisan bill will increase energy securi… Continue Reading

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