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Guv’s transportation panel sets first meeting for Aug. 6

Gov. Butch Otter’s transportation task force will hold its first meeting on Aug. 6, next Thursday. The governor’s named the panel his “Task Force on Modernizing Transportation Funding in Idaho.” Lt. Gov. Brad Little, who chairs the task force, said, “Our first meeting will largely be an organizational one, but we intend to make substantial progress this year and return to work after the 2010 legislative session.” I’ll be gone on vacation all next week, so I won’t be covering that one, but I’m interested to hear what comes out of it. I will be back in time for the next meeting of the joint legislative task force that’s trying to fill the hole created by this year’s legislation eliminating gas tax funding for the Idaho State Police and for trails programs in state parks; they’ll meet the following Tuesday, Aug. 11, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Click below to read the full announcement about the governor’s task force’s initial meeting, which includes a link to the agenda. The meeting is open to the public.


GOVERNOR’S TRANSPORTATION TASK FORCE
MEETS AUGUST 6TH

    (BOISE) – Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter will deliver opening remarks, setting the agenda for the first meeting of his Task Force on Modernizing Transportation Funding in Idaho at 9 a.m. on Thursday, August 6, in the Joe R. Williams Building in Boise.

    The Governor’s task force will examine and recommend traditional and non-traditional ways Idaho can fund the maintenance and preservation of highways and bridges now and in the future. The Idaho Legislature passed a concurrent resolution earlier this year supporting a task force, and Governor Otter created it in June through Executive Order 2009-11. http://bit.ly/19I4aB

The task force will meet over 18 months and make recommendations throughout the process to the Governor, with a final report due no later than Dec. 1, 2010.  The Governor said he would welcome the task force’s findings and recommendations as soon as they are ready.

“Beginning this work is an important step toward addressing our transportation revenue needs for the long term,” Governor Otter said. “This is part of the plan that we put together in collaboration with the Legislature. It takes into account the fact that we didn’t get in this situation overnight, and that dealing with it isn’t going to be quick or easy. But I’m confident that the collective wisdom of this task force will provide workable solutions for getting the job done.”

The task force is chaired by Lieutenant Governor Brad Little. It includes five members each from the Idaho House and Senate, four citizens and two members of the Idaho Transportation Board.

In addition to Governor Otter’s opening remarks, the agenda for the first meeting includes an overview of Idaho’s current transportation system and how it is funded, and discussion of a planned study evaluating the fees passenger vehicles and commercial trucks pay.

“Our first meeting will largely be an organizational one,” Little said. “But we intend to make substantial progress this year and return to work after the 2010 legislative session.”

The agenda for the August 6 meeting, additional information about the task force, and a way to submit suggestions or questions can be found at http://itd.idaho.gov/

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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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