South Dakota federal coronavirus funds go to law enforcement

FILE - In this June 22, 2020 file photo, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks at the Sioux Falls city hall in Sioux Falls, S.D. As the state looks to use $1.25 billion in federal coronavirus relief funds, one of the largest expenditures has been for law enforcement. The funds came with the stipulation that they be used in addressing the pandemic and anything unused would be returned at the end of the year. Gov. Noem's administration opted to use the money to pay salaries for law enforcement officers.(AP Photo/Stephen Groves File)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — As South Dakota looks to use $1.25 billion in federal coronavirus relief funds, one of the largest expenditures has been for law enforcement. The money sent by Congress as part of a $2.2 trillion stimulus was a major windfall for South Dakota. But the funds had to be used in addressing the pandemic and unused money must be returned at the end of the year. Gov. Kristi Noem’s administration found they could use the money to pay salaries for law enforcement officers. That decision has drawn questions from legislators on a committee auditing the budget.