As the Denny Sanford Premier Center prepares its third year of operations, the South Dakota Supreme Court deems the settlement over warped panels an open document. In 2014, the City of Sioux Falls expressed concern about the conditions of the outer curved panels on the then newly constructed Denny Sanford Premier Center. A settlement reached by the City of Sioux Falls and the contractors was subsequently sealed. Argus Leader Media fought all the way to the South Dakota Supreme Court to publish the settlement terms. Argus reporter Jonathan Ellis says his role is to hold public officials to their words and actions.
Ellis contends the lawsuit itself hinged on punctuation placement.
Going forward, Ellis believes that more work needs to be done to open more records to the public. The Supreme Court’s decision was not unanimous. Only Justice Steve Zinter dissented by saying that it’s the Legislature’s job to fix a poorly drafted statute.