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Eye On Boise archive for Jan. 1, 2009

MONDAY, DEC. 7, 2009

Be careful out there...

It's been snowing like mad on and off all morning in Boise, and some roads are slick. But here's the odd thing: It's sunny up at Bogus Basin, our local ski resort, which still doesn't have enough snow to open. That's not how it's supposed...

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State Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Eagle, shares a laugh with his kids before announcing his candidacy in the GOP race for a chance to take on 1st District Democratic Rep. Walt Minnick in 2010. (Betsy Russell)

Labrador announces for 1st CD

Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Eagle, formally announced his candidacy for the 1st District congressional seat this morning, to a loudly cheering crowd in the rather cramped third-floor lobby of the Capitol Annex. Labrador, a second-term state representative who was an outspoken opponent last session of Gov....

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Not a campaign ad...

The TV commercial features images of women over 40, transforming into a large pink ribbon that fills the screen. "185,000! That's the estimated number of women who will be told they have breast cancer this year," a narrator intones. "Early detection is key to survival,...

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Three inches fell in the Boise foothills overnight, leaving this scene Monday morning. (Betsy Russell)

A snowy day in the foothills...

Awoke this morning to three inches of fluffy new snow, arousing excitement in this household about possible skiing soon. However, we soon learned it was a localized phenomenon - Bogus Basin, where it's 1 degree this morning, got only half an inch, and most locations...

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FRIDAY, DEC. 4, 2009


Speaker: Get 'er done quick 

House Speaker Lawerence Denney has sent a memo out to all House committee chairs and vice-chairs asking them to take steps to wrap up the upcoming legislative session by April 1 to help the state save money. Denney told Eye on Boise he's "trying to...

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Sen. Stennett names temporary sub

Sen. Clint Stennett, D-Ketchum, announced today that his wife, Michelle, will sub for him for the first part of this year's legislative session. Stennett missed last year's session while undergoing treatment for brain cancer; former Sun Valley Mayor Jon Thorson filled in for him. Thorson...

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Now everyone under 65 can get H1N1 vaccine

Idaho public health officials have decided to open up the H1N1 swine flu vaccine to everyone under age 65 immediately, including healthy adults. This after vaccines through the season thus far have been limited to specific high-risk groups; the flu strain has contributed to the...

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THURSDAY, DEC. 3, 2009


Semanko gets RNC budget seat

Idaho GOP Chairman Norm Semanko has been tabbed for a seat on the Republican National Committee's budget committee, which state party executive director Jonathan Parker said "other than the executive committee, is the most influential committee on the RNC." The budget seat previously had been...

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WEDNESDAY, DEC. 2, 2009

Idaho Lt. Gov. Brad Little, right, presides over a meeting of the governor's transportation funding task force on Wednesday. The panel won't be proposing fixes for Idaho roads in upcoming legislative session; members said its work will take longer than that. (Betsy Russell)

No Idaho roads fix this year... 

The governor's transportation funding task force has wrapped up its third all-day meeting, but it won't be proposing any road fixes in the upcoming Idaho legislative session. The panel set its next meeting for Feb. 18th. "They're not going to propose anything for this legislative...

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POST chief fired, no reason given

The head of Idaho's POST Academy was fired on Nov. 5, the AP reports today, and the state didn't publicly acknowledge the dismissal until the Associated Press inquired about it this morning. Jeff Black, executive director of the academy and a former longtime state trooper,...

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Labrador plans Monday announcement

Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Eagle, said today that he'll announce his candidacy for the 1st District congressional seat on Monday, with announcements in Boise and Coeur d'Alene. Already in the GOP primary race is Iraq war veteran Vaughn Ward; state Rep. Ken Roberts, R-Donnelly, dropped out...

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How we're falling short on roads...

Tom Cole, chief engineer for the Idaho Transportation Department, is presenting figures to the governor's task force on how much the state is falling behind on preservation and restoration of state and local roads and bridges. If our goal as a state were just to...

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State lawmakers and others on Gov. Butch Otter's transportation task force drew a full-house audience for their meeting in Boise on Wednesday. (Betsy Russell)

What Utah did...

The governor's transportation funding task force got an overview of a "Utah case study," looking at what that state did to increase transportation funding. It started with a year and a half-long "growth summit" in 1995, which involved citizens across the state in envisioning how...

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Idaho relies on feds for transportation money 

Idaho ranks 12th in the nation for relying on federal aid to fund its transportation program, according to transportation consultant Tom Warne, at 52 percent. State fuel tax supplies 26 percent, and registration fees, 13 percent. The least reliant states are Wyoming, 13 percent, and...

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Tom Warne, transportation consultant and former Utah transportation director (Betsy Russell)

Expert: Toll roads won't work in Idaho

Toll roads are among the top proposals supported by the Obama Administration for increasing transportation funding, transportation consultant Tom Warne told Gov. Butch Otter's transportation task force, but, he said, "There are places like Idaho and Utah where there's probably limited opportunity for toll roads,...

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Gov. Butch Otter's transportation funding task force opens its meeting in Boise on Wednesday morning. (Betsy Russell)

'Huge need to invest in transportation'

Gov. Butch Otter's transportation task force has opened its third meeting this morning, with a full house. First up is a presentation from Tom Warne, former director of the Utah Department of Transportation and now a transportation consultant, on the regional and national transportation funding...

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TUESDAY, DEC. 1, 2009


Silver Creek fish OK to eat after all 

The Idaho Department of Health & Welfare has lifted a mercury advisory for consuming fish from the famed Silver Creek area near Picabo, after it turned out that test results showing dangerous mercury levels in brown trout from the watershed were in error. “This is...

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