Now that Gov. Dirk Kempthorne is spending most of his time – including all of last week and part of this week – back in D.C. preparing for his confirmation hearings as the nominee for Secretary of the Interior, Lt. Gov. Jim Risch is serving as governor. But on Friday, Risch, in that role, went to Spokane to participate in a meeting with the governors of Washington and Montana and 14 Columbia Basin Indian tribes to talk about regional salmon recovery efforts.
“This historic meeting of three state governments and numerous tribes from across the Columbia River Basin was essential to the ongoing dialogue between the decisions makers working to recover this living symbol of our region,” Risch said of the gathering. “Our meeting continued our tradition of cooperation and added to the foundation for collaborative efforts well into the future.”
But when he was out of state, who was the acting governor back in Boise? Following constitutional succession rules, it was Senate President Pro-tem Bob Geddes, who officially served as governor on Friday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. “Those were the hours he (Risch) was out of state,” said Mike Journee, the governor’s press secretary. Had Geddes not been available, next in line would be House Speaker Bruce Newcomb.