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Eye On Boise archive for Jan. 1, 2009

MONDAY, DEC. 14, 2009

A plan to cut taxes? 

AP reporter John Miller reported over the weekend that three House Republicans are working on legislation to cut Idaho's individual and corporate income tax rates, even as the state struggles to balance its budget in the face of falling tax revenues at the existing rates....

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FRIDAY, DEC. 11, 2009

Wheeler resigns from Common Interest board 

Former House Resources Committee Chairman Cameron Wheeler, R-Ririe, now a state Fish & Game commissioner, resigned from the board of The Common Interest yesterday after founder Keith Allred told him he was running for governor as a Democrat. "Common Interest was nonpartisan, and that was...

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THURSDAY, DEC. 10, 2009

Keith Allred testifies to an Idaho legislative committee earlier this year as a citizen lobbyist for The Common Interest, the good-government group he formed. Allred filed recently to run for governor as a Democrat, challenging GOP Gov. Butch Otter. (Betsy Russell)

The big news in Idaho politics... 

Here's a link to my full story at spokesman.com on Keith Allred's filing to run for governor today, which stunned Idaho's political establishment. Allred's been distinctly nonpartisan in his political activity to date. Now, he's filed as a Democrat to run against GOP Gov. Butch...

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Allred's message to Common Interest members

Keith Allred has sent a long, heartfelt letter to the 1,500-plus members of The Common Interest, the good-government citizens group he founded, explaining why he's decided to run for governor. In the letter, he says he initially wasn't inclined to run, "because the vision that...

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Latest employment data fuels optimism

Here's a link to my full story at spokesman.com on the promising economic news unveiled today by Gov. Butch Otter's chief economist, Mike Ferguson. He told the Boise City Club that new, not-yet-published labor data shows that Idaho's non-farm unemployment levels, which have been sliding,...

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Idaho Dems 'delighted' Allred's running

The Idaho Democratic Party, in a news release, expressed "delight" over the decision by citizen activist and Harvard professor and mediator Keith Allred to run for governor as a Democrat, and said he's expected to formally announce his candidacy next week. "He will be an...

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Mike Ferguson, Idaho Gov. Butch Otter's chief economist (Betsy Russell)

Some good economic news...

Mike Ferguson, Gov. Butch Otter's chief economist, had some rare good economic news today: In a presentation to the Boise City Club, he said the most recent data suggests Idaho has hit bottom and is ready to begin emerging from the current recession. "What we've...

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Allred has filed 

Keith Allred has filed his initial paperwork to explore a run for governor as a Democrat, taking on GOP Gov. Butch Otter. Former state Rep. Margaret Henbest is his campaign treasurer. "In working with him in the Legislature with the Common Interest, I have great...

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Allred looking at governor's race

Keith Allred, founder of the non-partisan The Common Interest citizen group in Idaho and a Harvard professor and mediator, is expected to file initial paperwork today to begin exploring a run for governor of Idaho as a Democrat. "He is not a candidate because he...

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WEDNESDAY, DEC. 9, 2009


'Hope I can bring a little gender diversity' 

Jan Vassar is the first woman to serve on the Idaho Transportation Board since it was established in 1974, and also since its predecessor board, the Board of Highway Directors, was established in 1951, a distinction she called "pretty amazing." No women have previously served...

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Vassar: 'Big shoes to fill'

Jan Vassar, newly appointed member of the Idaho Transportation Board, said she was interviewed by Lt. Gov. Brad Little and members of Gov. Butch Otter's staff, but hasn't yet gotten a chance to speak with the governor himself. "So I can understand why he might...

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Cure for stress: Idaho vacation

Last spring, Idaho issued a call in Seattle for nominations for a "stressed-out" family member who could use an Idaho vacation. Julie Lumpkin nominated her hard-working husband, Toby, and the couple and their two young children beat out more than 50 other contestants to win...

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TUESDAY, DEC. 8, 2009

Unload the Guv's mansion? 

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — After spending $310,000 in private donations to remodel and furnish the governor's mansion, a five-member panel is now investigating whether to unload the vacant hilltop home. The Governor's Housing Committee decided late Monday...

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MONDAY, DEC. 7, 2009

Labrador fires back at Jorgenson 

Rep. Raul Labrador fired back at Sen. Mike Jorgenson's criticisms of him on immigration, saying he's working with Rep. Phil Hart on an immigration bill now that "would actually penalize employers who knowingly hire illegal aliens," among other provisions. Jorgenson criticized Labrador for voting against...

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Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Eagle, center, greets supporters in Boise before announcing his candidacy for Congress. (Betsy Russell)

'We welcome Raul to the race' 

Here's a link to my full story at spokesman.com on today's developments in the 1st District congressional race, in which Rep. Raul Labrador formally entered the GOP primary race while Sen. Mike Jorgenson called on him to withdraw. Jorgenson, R-Hayden Lake, backs GOP rival Vaughn...

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Rep. Clark: 'A strong conservative'

As the candidates in the GOP primary race for the 1st CD continue to try to out-conservative each other, Rep. Raul Labrador's campaign has put out a statement from "Conservative Representative Jim Clark," a Hayden Lake Republican and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, backing...

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Lawmakers, activist back Labrador

Among those posing for pictures with Raul Labrador after his 1st CD announcement this morning were several other lawmakers who are supporting him: Sens. Russ Fulcher and Shirley McKague, both Meridian Republicans; and Rep. Cliff Bayer, R-Boise. "I'm supporting my House colleague. I think he...

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GOP lawmakers clash on immigration 

Sen. Mike Jorgenson, R-Hayden Lake, put out a press release this morning calling on Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Eagle, to withdraw from the 1st District congressional race, just as the GOP candidate was formally announcing his candidacy. "Raul Labrador is an immigration attorney and admits to...

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