Pierre, SD (KELO-AM) The overwhelmingly Republican state lawmakers investigating the EB-5 scandal have blocked Democrat Susan Wismer's request to subpoena a former head of the program.
Gubenatorial Candidate Wismer says Joop Bollen is the only one alive who can really talk about the controversial program in South Dakota since the death of Richard Benda last year.
In a press release, Wismer said “After the Government Operations & Audit Committee meeting today, I've come to believe that this committee is not faithfully executing the charge our legislature gave us under HCR 1010. The resolution gives us the right to seek additional information, yet we have sought no information outside the parameters dictated by the Daugaard administration,”
Rep. Wismer finds the current answers inadequate and believes South Dakotans deserve to know if their tax dollars were mismanaged through this program. Seeking additional information ensures that all aspects of HCR 1010 are fulfilled and state business is conducted transparently and ethically.
Wismer adds the committee is acting like a sherriff who doesn't want to call the witness who knows everything. She says lawmakers are just not doing right by the people of South Dakota.
State Attorney General Marty Jackley says criminal investigators interviewed Bollen as part of their probe and the file ws forwarded to federal authorities.
Bollen ran South Dakota's EB-5 program for nearly a decade. Benda was the former director of the Governor's Office of Economic Development.