South Dakota agency head resigns amid scrutiny of Gov. Noem

National News
Kristi Noem

FILE- South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks during the Family Leadership Summit, Friday, July 16, 2021, in Des Moines, Iowa. The South Dakota Supreme Court has upheld a lower court’s ruling that nullified a voter-passed amendment to the state constitution that would have legalized recreational marijuana use. Gov. Kristi Noem instigated the legal fight to strike down the amendment passed by voters in November. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — The director of a South Dakota agency has resigned amid scrutiny over Gov. Kristi Noem’s hands-on role in the agency prior to his arrival and as it was evaluating her daughter’s real estate appraiser license in 2020.

Scott Amundson took over as head of the state’s Appraiser Certification Program last summer. He says he resigned but declined to publicly comment on his reasons for doing so.

Amundson replaced the longtime director of the Appraiser Certification Program, Sherry Bren, after she was pressured to retire by Noem’s cabinet secretary.

The episode has drawn criticism from government ethics experts.

Amundson had no role at the agency during the time that a legislative committee has focused on.

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