News Minute: Here is the latest South Dakota news from The Associated Press at 5:40 p.m. CDT

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LEAD, S.D. (AP) - A school district in western South Dakota is downsizing its staff as it prepares to face a $1.5 million budget deficit. The Black Hills Pioneer reports that the Lead-Deadwood School District is redistributing duties as six employees plan to retire or resign at the end of the school year. Superintendent Dan Leikvold says the district is using the staff reorganization as an opportunity to save money as it braces for the deficit in the upcoming budget cycle.

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) - An Aberdeen man accused of shooting and killing an Andover woman and setting her apartment on fire has pleaded not guilty. Thirty-six-year-old Jose Quinones-Rodriguez is charged with first-degree murder, arson and burglary, among other charges. Prosecutors say Quinones-Rodriguez killed 25-year-old Tawny Rockwood between Feb. 8 and 9. The American News reports that a judge on Friday denied a request to lower the defendant's $1 million cash bond. Trial was set for Jan. 2.

VERMILLION, S.D. (AP) - The South Dakota Board of Regents says a vice president at the University of South Dakota is among four finalists to become the school's president. Sheila Gestring is vice president of finance and chief financial officer at the Vermillion college. Other finalists are Kellie McCormack Brown, administrator at Georgia College & State University; Christopher Callahan, administrator at Arizona State University; and Philip K, Way, interim president at Slippery Rock University.

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - Three South Dakota American Indian tribes say they want to take over management of Sioux San Hospital in Rapid City from the U.S. Indian Health Service. The Great Plains Tribal Chairmen's Health Board says in the news release that the Oglala, Cheyenne River and Rosebud Sioux tribes passed resolutions approving the effort and authorizing the board to manage the hospital. The board says funding would continue to come from the federal government because of historical treaty obligations.

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