South Dakota Tribes and Marijuana

Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded all Justice Department marijuana policies from the Obama-era on Jan 4, 2018. Change is coming and the following information will be updated as it happens.

The U.S. Justice Department issued a policy in 2014 regarding marijuana on tribal lands. It allows federally-recognized tribes in states with legalized marijuana to decide their own policies and self-regulate the growing and sales of marijuana on their reservations.

Cannabis is Illegal in South Dakota

Cannabis is illegal for all purposes in South Dakota. Testing positive for marijuana is a felony crime. Possession of a small amount is a crimal misdemeanor.

South Dakota's Federally-Recognized Tribes

There are eight federally-recognized tribes in South Dakota. The DOJ marijuana policy on tribal reservations applies to these South Dakota tribes. Each is federally recognized as sovereign by the Bureau of Indian Affairs in the U.S. Interior Department.

Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of the Cheyenne River Reservation, SD
Crow Creek Sioux Tribe of the Crow Creek Reservation, SD
Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe of South Dakota
Lower Brule Sioux Tribe of the Lower Brule Reservation, SD
Oglala Sioux Tribe
Rosebud Sioux Tribe of the Rosebud Indian Reservation, SD
Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate of the Lake Traverse Reservation, SD
Yankton Sioux Tribe of South Dakota

For a complete list of South Dakota tribes and their locations, see our page about South Dakota Tribes.

Cannabis Opportunities for South Dakota Tribes

South Dakota tribes recognize the challenges and business opportunities of the cannabis industry, but have not announced their interests or business plans.

Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe Plans First U.S. Marijuana Resort

Sept 29, 2015

The Santee Sioux tribe announced plans for the first U.S. recreational marijuana resort. It will be built on their reservation next to their Royal River Casino and Hotel.

The tribe will grow marijuana and sell it in a smoking lounge featuring a nightclub, arcade games, bar and food venue. Later plans include slotmachines and an outdoor music center.

"We want it to be an adult playground," said tribal President Anthony Reider. "There's nowhere else in American that has something like this."

Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe Stops Plan for Marijuana Resort and Stops Cultivation

Nov 7, 2015

The Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe announced it has temporarily suspended plans for a marijuana resort and is seeking legal clarification from the federal government. The tribe has also stopped growing marijuana and has destroyed its entire crop.

There has been no further public announcements.