DVCC funding fuels dispute between S.D Senate candidates

By | April 01, 2002
Senate candidate U.S. Rep. John Thune (R-S.D.) spoke to members of the Dakota Value Capture Cooperative (DVCC) in Pierre, S.D. this month, telling them he would continue efforts to hasten the delivery of $6 million in federal money that has been approved for the DVCC ethanol plant and custom feedlot.

On the other hand, the office of U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) released a memorandum the same day challenging Thune's role in the process. Apparently, the two political foes - both strong advocates of ethanol production - would like credit for initiating the grant process with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Energy.

DVCC President Curt Mortenson said the cooperative is thankful for the grants and does not want to get in the middle of a political argument. "We're a politically neutral group," he said. "We'll take help from anybody."