Sen. Otten receives Housing Award



Last month, District 6 Senator Herman Otten received the SD Partner in Housing Award. This award from the South Dakota Home Builders Association was started in 2020 and was awarded to Governor Kristi Noem. The award is given to someone who helps to push forward housing initiatives across the state.

Executive Vice President of the South Dakota Home Builders Association Tony Jockheck said that Senator Herman Otten was selected because he was the prime sponsor and a huge champion for the Housing Bill SB92.

Senate Bill 92, requires that certain proposed rules include a housing cost impact statement. Whenever an agency looking to implement a new rule, or code, onto the housing industry, they must now perform a housing cost impact statement showing the direct cost on homes to achieve the new rule or code. Once the statement is prepared, they must publish to the public before any hearing in which the rules or codes would be implemented. SB 92 will help keep unnecessary and costly rules or codes out of homes in South Dakota. The bill was signed into law by the Governor in March 2021.

Jockheck said Senator Otten has been a friend to the industry for years.

“With him having the background in construction, it’s like having boots on the ground,” said Jockheck, “He knows what builders are going through.”

Senator Otten has been representing the people of District 6 since 2013, first serving in the South Dakota House of Representatives. Otten was formerly the mayor of Tea. He also owns his own business, Herman Otten Construction Inc.

Otten has been building homes since 1996, and in the construction industry since he was 16 years old, either working for, or with his father, and since 1996 on his own. Otten Construction specializes in custom homes, additions and remodeling.

Otten said he was humbled by the award.

“I’d like to thank the SD Home Builders Association and President Todd Boots for awarding me with the South Dakota Partner in Housing award at the state banquet,” said Otten. “I’ve always tried to be a strong advocate for the construction industry but never expected to be singled out as there are many voices, I am humbled by the award. Thank you, Todd, and the SD Homebuilders Association.”