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Jones named in guardianship dispute

Jana Jones, the Democratic candidate for state superintendent of schools, has been named in a guardianship dispute with her brother-in-law, Idaho Education News reports today. The brother-in-law, Michael Von Jones of Twin Falls, charges that Jones and her husband convinced his parents to write off a loan made to the couple for a business, and charges that the parents need a guardian and conservator. A doctor found that the couple was capable of living independently, but the brother-in-law is pressing for a second opinion; the other siblings and the parents are objecting to the brother-in-law’s move. Al Barrus, attorney for Jones' in-laws, Ross V. and Lorraina Jones, called the brother-in-law's filing a “smear campaign.”

John Ohman, an attorney for Jones and her husband, Ross J. Jones, said the brother-in-law is engaging in a “mean-spirited” attempt at political sabotage; he served Jones with court papers in the sealed case at a political debate in Twin Falls. “Jana Jones has no involvement in the guardianship or conservatorship at all,” Ohman told EdNews reporter Kevin Richert. Jana Jones told Richert she was “disgusted” by the move, and said of her husband’s parents, “They are very supportive of me, and they always have been.” The couple has contributed $1,500 to her campaign, including a $1,000 contribution on Oct. 18. Richert’s full report is online here.

 

Idaho guv debate most heated yet

Idaho's final gubernatorial debate showcased the most heated exchanges yet between the candidates seeking the seat, the AP reports. GOP Gov. Butch Otter faced off against Democratic candidate A.J. Balukoff and Libertarian candidate John Bujak. The three agreed on little, writes AP reporter Kimberlee Kruesi, and often interrupted the moderator and debate panel to respond to zingers thrown out by their opponents, while discussing education, the economy and same-sex marriage. Click below for the AP's full report.

Also, the Twin Falls Times-News has a full report here on the debate, headlined, “Otter on defensive on CCA in last debate.” Reporter Nathan Brown writes that both Balukoff and Bujak slammed Otter's handling of the private prison matter, including a $1 million settlement with Corrections Corp. of America releasing the company from civil liability for understaffing the state's largest prison and overbilling the state, and his handling of the state's current troubled contract for the Idaho Education Network, a broadband network linking the state's high schools. Otter said he doesn't know if the CCA settlement was fair. “I'll know when the FBI is done investigating,” he said.

A night of lively political debates in Idaho…

Here’s a link to my full story at spokesman.com on tonight’s lieutenant governor debate, the only debate in the race between GOP Lt. Gov. Brad Little and Democratic challenger Bert Marley. In the polite but pointed televised debate, Little and Marley outlined sharply differing views of how Idaho’s faring as it works to recover from a big economic downturn.

The lieutenant governor debate, which ran 30 minutes, followed a heated debate in the governor’s race, in which GOP incumbent Butch Otter, Libertarian John Bujak and Democrat A.J. Balukoff clashed on everything from Idaho’s private prison debacle to education to jobs. Among the interesting moments: Otter referred at one point to his opponents by a combined name: “Balujak.” After Bujak was asked about his legal woes in Canyon County – which resulted in multiple acquittals – he said, “I’m surprised that I get the questions about scandal, with Gov. Otter standing next to me.” Balukoff called for scrapping the troubled contract for the Idaho Education Network: “Undo that contract, rebid it,” he said.

Otter said Idaho’s never been able to meet its constitutional mandate to adequately fund schools because of the state’s rural nature, and only now with initiatives like the IEN is it beginning to bring more uniformity to education. Balukoff and Bujak both disagreed; Balukoff said Idaho did a pretty good job funding school operations before the 2006 law that shifted funding from property taxes to the sales tax.

Otter said he’d sign a bill to add the words “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the Idaho Human Rights Act, if lawmakers send it to his desk, but said he’s “not ready to surrender” on same-sex marriage. Bujak said, “At this point the ship has sailed. … You’re just throwing good money after bad.”  Balukoff asked, “Friends, is our state better off under Gov. Otter? The answer is no.”

Meanwhile, the two candidates for state superintendent of schools, Republican Sherri Ybarra and Democrat Jana Jones, met for their final debate – this one organized and run by high school students in Idaho Falls. Idaho Education News reporter Clark Corbin has a full report here.

 

Candidates draw lots before tonight’s gubernatorial debate

Prior to the start of tonight's final debate in the governor's race, the candidates - Gov. Butch Otter, Libertarian John Bujak and Democrat A.J. Balukoff - drew to determine the order for their opening and closing remarks; Bruce Reichert, executive producer at Idaho Public TV, used his vintage white cowboy hat to hold the lots. Tonight's debate runs 90 minutes and starts at 7 p.m. I'm on the reporter panel, along with Kevin Richert of Idaho Education News and Rocky Barker of the Idaho Statesman; Melissa Davlin of Idaho Public TV is the moderator.

Tonight's gubernatorial debate will be followed by the lieutenant governor debate between incumbent Brad Little and Democratic challenger Bert Marley. Check here later for links to full coverage of both debates. 

Candidates for governor face off in final debate tonight

The final debate in Idaho’s governor’s race is tonight at 7 p.m. on Idaho Public Television. It’s part of the “Idaho Debates,” co-sponsored by the Idaho Press Club and the League of Women Voters of Idaho. Tonight’s debate will run for 90 minutes and feature three candidates: GOP Gov. Butch Otter, who is seeking a third term; Democratic challenger A.J. Balukoff; and Libertarian challenger John Bujak.

After the governor’s debate, the candidates for Idaho lieutenant governor, incumbent Republican Brad Little and Democratic challenger Bert Marley, will face off in a 30-minute debate at 8:30 p.m.

The Idaho Debates conclude on Sunday with the final matchup, between 2nd District Congressman Mike Simpson and Democratic challenger – and former 2nd District congressman – Richard Stallings. That debate will air at 7 p.m.

After they’re broadcast, the Idaho Debates are available for viewing online here. That includes all seven debates – in the races for governor, lieutenant governor, 1st and 2nd District congressional races, state treasurer, Secretary of State, and state superintendent of schools. An eighth debate had been scheduled in the U.S. Senate race between GOP Sen. Jim Risch and Democratic challenger Nels Mitchell, but Risch declined to participate. Risch did agree to a single debate against Mitchell on Boise TV state KTVB; that debate can be seen online here.

Sandpoint tech firm approved for big state tax break for expansion

Kochava, a high-tech company that launched in Sandpoint in 2011, how now been approved for the same type of state Tax Reimbursement Incentive that Amy’s Kitchen received yesterday for a new plant in Pocatello, the state of Idaho and city of Sandpoint announced today. The firm plans to add 35 new employees in the coming months and 50 over the next five years; it will get a rebate of 28 percent of its state corporate income, sales and payroll taxes for the next five years.

Kochava had 26 employees in Sandpoint in June; a year earlier, it had just eight. The new tax break, approved by lawmakers this year, started July 1; it’s for new or expanding companies that will add at least 20 jobs in rural areas or at least 50 in urban areas, if the jobs pay at least the county average wage. The incentive can be for up to 30 percent of a firm’s state corporate income, sales and payroll taxes for up to 15 years; a state commission decides who gets how much.

The first recipient was SkyWest, for a new facility in Boise; the second was frozen food producer Amy’s Kitchen, which announced yesterday that it will move into an abandoned Heinz plant in Pocatello. That firm also was awarded a 75 percent break on its property taxes by the local county commissioners; no property tax break has been announced for Kochava. Amy’s Kitchen was awarded a 26 percent tax rebate on its state taxes for 15 years. Skywest got a 25 percent tax break for 12 years. Some economists say tax breaks like this don't work, as the growth would come anyway; Northwest Nazarene University economist Peter Crabb told the Idaho Statesman today, “We're giving away the farm again.”

Sen. Shawn Keough, R-Sandpoint, said of the Kochava announcement, “This is great news! This is exactly what I hoped would be the outcome of my support for the governor’s initiative – growing jobs of existing businesses right here at home.” Click below for the state’s full news release from Gov. Butch Otter’s office.

Politics in North Idaho county ‘not fun any more’ amid disaffection, splits…

Bonner County is seeking disaffection and splits within its Republican Party, Bonner Bee correspondent David Gunter writes today, in an extensive piece examining the state of politics in the county and how they reflect the state. “I’ve heard the comment from some longtime Republicans that, ‘This isn’t fun any more,’” Bonner County Republican Central Committee Chairman Danielle Ahrens told the Bee. The full article is online here.

In-depth ‘In Crisis’ series examines shortfalls in Idaho’s mental health care system

The Idaho Statesman and Boise State Public Radio are running an extensive, five-part reporting project this week on Idaho’s mental health system, titled, “In Crisis.” Among the revelations so far: Involuntary mental commitment cases in the state rose from 2,337 in 2007 to 4,686 in 2013. The state is short on both treatment facilities and providers, and its suicide rate is 48 percent higher than the national average. More than 22 percent of uninsured adults who don’t qualify for Medicaid now – but would if the state expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act – were in “serious psychological distress.” And prisons and jails are among the state’s top mental health care providers.

The series also reported that Idaho's per-capita spending on mental health was the nation's lowest except for Puerto Rico at $37, but the state Department of Health & Welfare disputes that figure, saying a glitch in how data was examined for a Kaiser Family Foundation report comparing states left out part of Idaho's spending, which H&W says actually came to $143.56 for fiscal year 2010, above the national average of $120.56. You can see the full series, which continues tomorrow, online here and here; it includes audio, video, data and more.

Tax breaks help lure food company to Pocatello

Gov. Butch Otter was in Pocatello yesterday to announce that Amy’s Kitchen, a manufacturer of frozen vegetarian food, will move into the vacant H.J. Heinz plant there, lured in part by the state’s new Tax Reimbursement Incentive Act. Amy’s Kitchen will get rebates on 26 percent of its state corporate income, sales and payroll taxes for 15 years. It also will get a 75 percent break on its property taxes, approved by the Bannock County Board of Commissioners, on the plant and any future investments.

Amy’s expects to hire 200 people in the coming months at salaries of just over $33,000 a year, slightly over the county’s average wage, and could employ up to 1,000 people within 15 years. The Heinz plant formerly had 400 workers.

Idaho Statesman reporter Zach Kyle reports today that the state tax incentive for Amy’s is estimated at $6.7 million. The new tax reimbursement incentive law took effect July 1; Skywest was its first recipient, for a plant in Boise. State Commerce Director Jeff Sayer told Kyle that Idaho competed with New Mexico to win the Amy’s plant; and that the state is now negotiating similar tax incentives with companies considering relocating or expanding in Post Falls and Sandpoint.

Two economists told the Statesman that tax incentives don’t work, and companies getting the breaks might have come to Idaho anyway. “We’re giving away the farm again,” said Peter Crabb, an economics professor at Northwest Nazarene University. Kyle’s full report is online here.

Otter, in a news release, said the plant is scheduled to open in December, and called it “exciting news for both the community and the state.” Bannock County Commission Chairman Howard Manwaring said, “It’s a win-win for everyone involved.”

AdWatch: Hockey ad seeks to balance barrage of negative ads in gov’s race

There’s more skating and hockey-playing than political images in the latest ad in Idaho’s governor’s race, as Democratic candidate A.J. Balukoff dons an Idaho Steelheads hockey uniform for his final campaign commercial of the race. “In politics, taking shots at your opponent is just business as usual for some,” Balukoff says in the ad, “but skating around Idaho’s problems with cheap shots won’t get results. … It’s time Idaho families get a fair shot.”

The commercial takes aim at negative ads that have been airing in the race, both from outside groups backing GOP Gov. Butch Otter and from Otter’s campaign, whose latest ad accuses Balukoff of “falsely smearing” Otter over a private prison scandal. It comes as an array of messages from various groups is airing in Idaho, as the race comes down to the wire ahead of Tuesday’s election.

“I think it’s a clever ad, and it addresses the negative advertising that he’s been a recipient of,” said Jim Weatherby, Boise State University professor emeritus and longtime observer of Idaho politics. “It might attract some voters who have tuned out to all the negative ads that are so prominently displayed right now.” You can read my full AdWatch story here at spokesman.com, including a look at controversial radio ads airing in eastern Idaho that claim to be from Balukoff’s campaign, but actually are from an Otter supporter.

Balukoff’s past campaign contributions went to both R’s and D’s - including one to Otter in ‘04

Here’s an interesting tidbit: After reading in the Twin Falls Times-News today that A.J. Balukoff, Democratic candidate for governor of Idaho, donated to Republican Mitt Romney’s presidential campaigns both in 2007 and in 2012, I searched FEC records for Balukoff’s donations in federal races. Both those donations showed up, $2,300 in 2007 and $2,500 in 2012. So did several others – donations both to Republicans and Democrats over the years. In federal campaigns, Balukoff has donated to Democrats Shirley Ringo, Nels Mitchell and Walt Minnick; and to Republicans Larry Craig (2001), Mike Simpson (1998), Mark Stubbs (1998).

And, perhaps most interesting of all was this donation: In 2004, Balukoff donated $250 to a GOP candidate for Congress – Butch Otter. Mike Lanza, Balukoff’s campaign spokesman, said, “He once believed that Butch Otter would deliver on his promises. He no longer believes that.”

The politics of the pratfall…

An analysis of the “politics of the pratfall” in this year’s race for Idaho state superintendent of schools, penned by Idaho Education News reporter Kevin Richert, examines how a series of high-profile blunders by the GOP candidate, Sherri Ybarra, could resonate in the race between Ybarra and Democratic rival Jana Jones. “It becomes a pattern, and I think that’s a big issue,” College of Idaho political scientist Jasper LiCalzi told Richert. Longtime Idaho political observer Jim Weatherby told Richert, “This will be a real test of the power of the ‘R’ behind her name.” Richert’s full article is online here.

Meanwhile, Richert reports today that Ybarra, who has stressed throughout her campaign that she's still working full-time in education as an administrator in the Mountain Home School District, has taken time off to campaign, but neither she nor the district would provide details; that report is online here.

Seven more charge sexual abuse at state juvenile detention center, seek millions in damages

Seven more people have come forward to say they were sexually abused by staffers at a state-run juvenile detention center in southwestern Idaho, the AP reports today. The new allegations were detailed in a tort claim filed with the state late Tuesday afternoon, and bring the number of former detainees at the Idaho Department of Juvenile Correction detention center in Nampa alleging sexual abuse there to at least 10. Click below for a full report from AP reporter Rebecca Boone.

Ysursa predicts 58 percent turnout in November, says it should be higher

Idaho Secretary of State Ben Ysursa is predicting 58 percent turnout in the Nov. 4 general election – that’s 58 percent of registered voters, and is equal to roughly 39 to 40 percent of Idaho’s voting-age population. “It’s not something to write home about,” he said. “I am disturbed, troubled and concerned about the decline in voter participation.”

In a brown-bag luncheon speech to ISU alumni in Boise today, Ysursa said Idaho’s voter turnout has been on a steady decline since the record 1980 election in which Steve Symms defeated Idaho Sen. Frank Church. That trend has continued even though Idaho has removed many obstacles to voting – it’s one of just eight states with election-day registration at the polls, and it now offers no-excuse absentee voting and early voting.

“What is the answer to increasing voter turnout?” Ysursa asked. “I’ve been trying to figure that out for 40 years. … I do know that the process needs to be inclusive and not exclusive.” Click below for more.

RGA video sparks clash between Balukoff, Otter over 2008 presidential vote

The Republican Governors Association has been touting a video of Democratic candidate for governor of Idaho A.J. Balukoff being asked by a cameraman who he voted for in the 2008 presidential race, a question Balukoff doesn’t answer, saying instead, “I’ll have to see if I can remember.” Today, the Twin Falls Times-News reports that Balukoff’s campaign says he voted for Barack Obama in 2008, and then for Mitt Romney in 2012. Reporter Nathan Brown writes that Balukoff said he considered voting for John McCain in 2008, but decided against it when he chose Sarah Palin as his running mate. “As he’s said before, he doesn’t just vote the party line,” campaign spokesman Mike Lanza told the Times-News. “He tries to check individuals and their experience, and what their ideas are and what they represent.”

Balukoff contributed to Romney’s campaigns in both 2007 and 2012.

Lanza said the video was shot by a cameraman who followed Balukoff around the state for a month, and initially declined to say for whom he was filming, but later acknowledged it was for the RGA. The RGA is the biggest outside spender in Idaho’s governor’s race this year, Brown reports, having spent $700,000 on an independent campaign against Balukoff that’s included three TV commercials. The ads seek to tie Balukoff to Obama. The Times-News’ full report is online here.

Lanza told the Times-News, “Gov. Otter’s allies in Washington, D.C. are pulling out all the stops to try to distort A.J.’s positions and record. They’re doing this in order to avoid a conversation about Gov. Otter’s terrible record on education and jobs in his eight years as governor, not to mention that his insider deals for campaign supporters have now cost Idaho taxpayers millions of dollars, with the tab still growing.”

Otter’s campaign, in a news release sent out yesterday with the RGA video, said, “While voters want straight talk, Balukoff continues to avoid concrete facts, even when it comes to simple questions about his voting record. While he can’t recall who he voted for, it is apparent that Balukoff supports a liberal agenda including higher taxes, Obamacare, and the re-introduction of wolves. Balukoff’s stance on issues is a far cry from values important to Idahoans.”

The election is on Tuesday.

Groups spending on Idaho races as election approaches…

Today’s independent expenditure reports – documenting big independent campaign spending in the final days before the election, which must be reported within 48 hours – include an IACI-linked group, the Idaho Prosperity Fund, spending another $50,000 today on literature attacking Democratic candidate for governor A.J. Balukoff; the Idaho Republican Party spending $65,416 Monday on mailings supporting Butch Otter, Lawerence Denney and Sherri Ybarra and opposing A.J. Balukoff, Holli Woodings and Jana Jones; and Idahoans for a Strong Economy, a Democratic group, spending close to $140,000 yesterday and today on mailings, broadcast advertising (including radio ads) and literature supporting Jones and Woodings and opposing Denney. You can see the full reports online here.

Otter, Balukoff each report spending more than half a million on broadcast advertising in October

The 7-day pre-general election campaign finance reports were due by 5 p.m. today. Here’s what they show in the governor’s race: A.J. Balukoff, Democratic candidate for governor, reported more than $1.04 million in fundraising during the final reporting period, from Oct. 1-Oct. 19, with $995,000 of that coming from his own funds. Overall, Balukoff reported raising $3.2 million to date, more than $2.7 million of it his own money, and spending all but $7,552. (See below for more on this from Idaho EdNews reporter Kevin Richert.)

Libertarian candidate for governor John Bujak reported raising $11,565 in the final reporting period, including $5,000 each from his parents, Joseph and Jean Bujak of Coeur d’Alene; he raised $29,638 year-to-date, including an earlier $10,000 loan to his campaign, and still had $15,080 in the bank at the close of the reporting period.

Incumbent GOP Gov. Butch Otter reported raising $184,321 in the final reporting period, through Oct. 19, and $2 million to date, and spending all but $157,719 by the close of the reporting period. Both Otter and Balukoff reported that their biggest expenses during the reporting period were for broadcast advertising, with each spending well over half a million dollars.

The 7-day pre-general election reports only cover contributions and spending through Oct. 19, but big contributions in the final two weeks before the election must be reported on separate reports that are due within 48 hours. Both Otter and Balukoff filed 48-hour reports today. Balukoff reported $101,000 in contributions on Monday, with $100,000 of that his own money. Otter reported $18,400 in new contributions on Monday, with $3,000 from Hayden Beverage Co. and $2,500 from Rod Lewis of Eagle the largest on the list.

Also filing a 48-hour report today: Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden, who reported receiving a $5,000 campaign contribution from Facebook in Menlo Park, Calif. on Monday.

Idaho Education News reporter Kevin Richert tallied up Balukoff's reports in the governor's race, including the 48-hour reports, and came up with a total of $3.2 million in personal funds Balukoff has put into his campaign all told. Richert also has an overview of top races here, including two more races in which Democrats have out-raised their Republican opponents: Secretary of State, in which Democratic candidate Holli Woodings loaned her campaign another $100,000 and also collected twice as much in donations as GOP rival Lawerence Denney during the final reporting period; and state superintendent of schools, in which Democratic candidate Jana Jones continued to out-raise GOP rival Sherri Ybarra.

Idaho’s legal bill for same-sex marriage appeals tops $90,000

Idaho is paying another $10,000 to outside attorneys for its continued appeals of the federal court decision overturning the state’s ban on same-sex marriage as unconstitutional. According to records obtained pursuant to a public records request, Gov. Butch Otter’s office has agreed to pay Washington, D.C. attorney Gene Schaerr $10,000 for filing a petition to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals asking the court to have a larger, 11-judge panel re-hear Idaho’s case in an “en banc” review.

The flat fee of $10,000 is just for the petition; the agreement leaves open the possibility of Otter hiring Schaerr to do additional, related work. You can read it here.

That brings the state’s legal bill to challenge U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy Dale’s May 2014 decision overturning the state’s ban on same-sex marriage to $91,477 so far, including $86,920 for private attorneys hired to represent Otter. The figure also includes some costs incurred by Attorney General Lawrence Wasden’s office in the original appeal to the 9th Circuit, but Wasden used staff attorneys, so the expenses were small.

The state also could be on the hook for the plaintiffs’ attorney fees and costs for the original federal lawsuit, since the state lost; a pending motion asks the U.S. District Court to order Idaho to pay nearly half a million dollars. The state also could be asked to pay the plaintiffs’ fees and costs for the state’s unsuccessful appeals.

Land Board sets more cabin-site auctions over the next three years

Idaho’s state Land Board has approved a plan to auction off at least 60 cabin sites at Priest and Payette lakes each year for the next three years. That’s beyond an already-scheduled auction set at Payette Lake for January for 36 cabin sites, six of them vacant. In August, the state auctioned off 59 lots at Priest Lake, with nearly all of them selling for appraised value to the people who had long leased the lots and built cabins on them.

The state endowment has been trying to gradually move out of the business of renting lots on which people build cabins or homes; the practice has led to years of legal fights over appropriate rents for the ground under the lakefront lots. Idaho’s Land Board is required by the state Constitution to manage the endowment lands for maximum long-term returns to the endowment.

The lots selected for each year’s auctions would be randomly selected from among those eligible, state Lands Department real estate services bureau chief Kate Langford told the board. Denny Christenson, president of the Priest Lake State Lessees Association, said the plan doesn’t give lessees any certainty as to whether or when they’ll be eligible to participate in an auction; he called for instead auctioning 80 Priest Lake lots each year for the next three years. That would bring the most money to the public school endowment the soonest, Christenson said. State Lands Department Director Tom Schultz said the Land Board could add additional lots in subsequent years if it chose. “We are trying to bring you a package we can deliver on,” he said. The board agreed to look into a way to schedule all eligible leased lots for future auctions so lessees know what’s coming.

Christenson also told the board that his term as president of the lessees’ association is nearly up, and the new president will be former Congressman George Nethercutt, R-Wash.

Consultants: Timber land a good investment for Idaho’s endowment, but not Idaho commercial real estate

Idaho’s state Land Board today heard an extensive report from a consulting firm, Callan and Associates, on the asset allocation and governance of the state endowment’s assets, whose earnings largely benefit public schools. Among the findings: Timber land is an excellent investment for Idaho’s endowment, and balances the volatility of the endowment’s financial investments. But Idaho commercial real estate is not. The consultants are recommending “prudent divestment” over time from the endowment’s commercial real estate holdings.

When analyzed on the basis of earnings potential, rather than on land appraisals, timber land currently is 39 percent of the endowment’s assets, the review found. “What you have now is good,” Janet Becker-Wold of Callan and Associates told the Land Board. In fact, financial models would support increasing that to 49 percent, she said, though that might not be practical.  

Grazing land, on the other hand, is a “marginal investment,” Becker-Wold said, with “a fairly low expected rate of return.” She said, “You can see that what you do on grazing, in the scheme of asset allocation, it doesn’t move the needle.” Grazing land is only 2 percent of the endowment’s assets when analyzed on the basis of earnings potential, the Callan review found. “And yet in terms of land holding, it’s very large,” Attorney General Lawrence Wasden noted.

Stocks and bonds are “good complements” to the endowment's land investments, Becker-Wold said, and the endowment’s current asset allocation is “appropriate.”

As far as commercial real estate, the review found that Idaho commercial real estate is not a good investment for the endowment. A case could be made that up to 5 percent of assets could be invested in professionally managed commercial real estate assets – not in Idaho but nationwide or global, the review found, and not property by property. No good case could be made for enlarging the endowment’s current investments into Idaho commercial real estate.

The recommendation for Idaho’s current commercial real estate holdings: “Prudent divestment,” Becker-Wold said. There should be “no fire sales,” she said, and “no hurry to get out of it,” as returns are “actually very good” at this point. But, she said, “From a broad investment perspective, we think a more diversified portfolio makes sense.” The review still is being finalized; the final version is scheduled to be submitted to the Land Board on Nov. 18.

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About this blog

Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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