Steve Barnett

The State Auditor is a separately elected and constitutionally independent office holder who deals with all of state government. This includes each agency, office, division, department and every individual employee, either through the payment of reimbursable expenses or the payroll process.

The independence of the office is guaranteed by the constitution and is subsequently answerable to the South Dakota electorate.

The State Auditor serves as the taxpayers' watchdog. It is the State Auditor who scrutinizes the manner in which state tax dollars are being spent. Simply stated, the Office of State Auditor is constitutionally the office of "checks and balances" of state government.

Checks and Balances:

Computer technology has permitted many efficiencies in the Office of State Auditor during the first century of
South Dakota, but the constitutional mandates developed in 1889 in making the Office of State Auditor responsive
to the voters as the "checks and balances" of state government has remained the same.


To pre-audit all claims against the state, issue warrants, administer state employee payroll, record and monitor all fund balances and all fund transfers; to reconcile fund balances and submit numerous reports to agencies on the state's financial condition as set forth by the rules of the State Auditor, the State Board of Finance, and of other state agencies; to deposit with the Internal Revenue Service, the social security and federal income taxes withheld from employees of the state of South Dakota and the state universities in a proper and timely manner; to audit and correct all wage data and social security records of the employees of the state of South Dakota, state universities, and 740 governmental subdivisions, including counties, cities, school districts, townships and water districts; and, to serve as a repository for W-2s for state employees.

Contact Information

Office of the State Auditor

500 East Capitol Avenue

Pierre, SD 57501-5070

Tel: (605) 773-3341

Fax: (605) 773-5929