South Dakota House Bill 1216, “a bill to open up franchise agreements to ethanol blends” passed in the House Transportation Committee on Tuesday morning. The bipartisan bill from Representative Mitch Fargen and Senator Russell Olson was brought forward after gas station owners were unable to install blender pumps because of franchise agreements after attempting to use grant money from state legislation passed in 2010.
“We had people telling us that their franchise agreements wouldn’t allow them to install blender pumps,” said district 8 Representative, Mitch Fargen. “This bill will open up franchise agreement so we can put in higher blends like E15 and E30 and install ethanol blender pumps.”
The bill has a number of co-sponsors and is being supported by the governor’s office as it expands on Governor Daugaard’s plan to continue building up the states ethanol blender pump infrastructure.
Fargen closed his testimony by saying, “This does not mandate anybody to put blender pumps in, it does not mandate anybody to use higher blends, all it does is get the restrictions out of franchise agreements giving local co-ops the option of installing blender pumps .”
HB 1216 is expected to be read in the House of Representatives later on this week.