Eye On Boise archive for May 8, 2009

FRIDAY, MAY 8, 2009

The session that was...

Here's a link to my full story at spokesman.com on the final day of Idaho's legislative session today - the 117th day - and here's a link to my sidebar on the snafu in which Rep. Frank Henderson's Garwood-to-Sagle bill got killed in the House...

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Otter: 'The people of Idaho need good roads' 

Otter's message as lawmakers leave town: "If an admittedly stop-gap measure can provide a level of certainty and predictability, this is it. Our work is just beginning, but this will enable us to meet our most immediate needs ... while planning how best to pay...

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Gov. Butch Otter says on Friday, "I'm a user-pay guy." (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

'I'm a user-pay guy' 

"I'm a user-pay guy, and the people that buy gasoline use the roads," Gov. Butch Otter said, explaining why he wanted a gas tax hike to fix roads. But he said more than that, he wants revenue to fix the roads, and he wants certainty...

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Gov. Butch Otter joins with lawmakers at a press conference at the close of the legislative session on Friday afternoon. (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

Otter: 'We do have a short term solution'

Opening his press conference at the close of the legislative session, Gov. Butch Otter said he wanted to "run over" some of what happened, then stopped himself, amid laughter, saying perhaps that wasn't the best phrase. "I've already signed 313 pieces of legislation," he said....

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House has adjourned sine die

When Majority Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, moved to adjourn the House for the session - sine die - Minority Leader John Rusche, D-Lewiston, responded, "Mr. Speaker, I can't tell you how happy I am to second that motion." Unlike most days, when Speaker Lawerence Denney...

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House won't consider combo bill

"This is kind of tough for me," House Majority Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, told the House just now. When SB 1147, the bill to allow design-build contracts at ITD, arrived at the House, it'd been amended in the Senate. "To kind of clarify one of...

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Lt. Gov. Brad Little adjourns the Senate for the session. Already stacked up by the desk are packed cardboard boxes; the next legislative session will be out of its temporary quarters in the Capitol Annex and back in Idaho's renovated state Capitol. (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

Senate has adjourned sine die

The Idaho Senate has adjourned sine die, Latin for "without a day," meaning they've ended their work for the legislative session. Lt. Gov. Brad Little banged a rubber mallet on a foot-long wooden handle that serves as his Senate gavel, to close the session. "Very,...

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Senate revives Garwood-to-Sagle issue

The Senate has just agreed to amend SB 1147, the design-build bill for ITD - adding into it the sections from HB 286 about the Garwood-to-Sagle project on Highway 95 in North Idaho. Senate Transportation Chairman John McGee, R-Caldwell, told the Senate, "These amendments should...

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Amended ethanol bill clears House

The House has voted unanimously, 58-0, on final passage of HB 338, the ethanol bill as amended in the Senate. "We're still waiting on one appropriation bill from the Senate to come over," said Rep. Ken Roberts, R-Donnelly, the House majority caucus chairman. The House...

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Rep. Frank Henderson, R-Post Falls, speaking from his seat in the House balcony, asks the full House on Friday to refuse to concur in Senate amendments to his bill, HB 286, about the Garwood-to-Sagle road project.  (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

House won't concur

Rep. Frank Henderson, R-Post Falls, asked the House to not concur in the Senate amendments to his bill, HB 286, and the House unanimously agreed. Henderson said lawmakers long ago signed onto policies stating that they wouldn't pick highway projects, they'd leave that role to...

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House girding for possible non-concur...

The House has been waiting around all morning for the Senate to send it the last few bills. Now, the House is preparing to go on the floor. First up: "Probably not concur to the Senate amendments in HB 286," said House Majority Caucus Chairman...

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The Idaho Senate debates HB 376 on Friday, to shift funding for the Idaho State Police and state parks off the highway fund a year from now to free up $21 million for road maintenance. If no new funding sources are identified for then for those departments, their funding would have to come from the state's general fund. (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

Fund shift for roads clears Senate

Senators have reluctantly approved HB 376, to shift the ISP and state parks off the highway fund a year from now, as of July 1, 2010. Sen. Elliot Werk, D-Boise, dubbed it "pretty much a shell game" and said it offers "an illusion of having...

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Amended highway bill clears Senate

HB 286a, Rep. Frank Henderson's bill to pinpoint the southern end of the Garwood-to-Sagle freeway project on Highway 95 in North Idaho, came up for a vote in the Senate as amended - with two Senate additions. One also pinpoints the northern end of the...

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Senate passes HB 374 

After much debate, the Senate has passed HB 374, House Education Chairman Bob Nonini's virtual education bill, on a 23-9 vote. Sen. Dick Sagness, D-Pocatello, charged that the bill was part of a deal with the House, and if the Senate didn't go along with...

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Sen. Dick Sagness, D-Pocatello, a fervent opponent of HB 374, the virtual education bill, begins debating against the bill in the Senate on Friday. Moments into his debate he was gaveled down for "lecturing" the bill's sponsor. (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

Tempers flare in Senate

Tempers flared in the Senate just now, as Sen. Dick Sagness, D-Pocatello, was gaveled down mid-debate on HB 374, the virtual education bill. Sagness, speaking against the bill, addressed its Senate sponsor, Senate Education Chairman John Goedde, R-Coeur d'Alene, and said, "You said on the...

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Guv's task force approved, 30-1

Next, the Senate took up HCR 34, the resolution to endorse a gubernatorial task force to explore long-term transportation funding issues. "Senators, this is part of the going-home transportation package and I would urge your aye vote," Senate Transportation Chairman John McGee, R-Caldwell, told the...

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Senate unanimous for funding task force

The Senate this morning dived right into business, taking up HCR 32, the House-passed measure to create a task force to find a new dedicated funding source for the Idaho State Police and the Idaho Department of Parks & Recreation. "I think this body understands...

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Reps. Brent Crane, Mike Moyle and Scott Bedke listen as Sen. Chuck Winder presents a bill in the House Transportation Committee on Friday morning regarding design-build contracts at ITD. (Betsy Russell / The Spokesman-Review)

House committee hears bill early

The House Transportation Committee is holding a hearing this morning on a bill that actually hasn't yet passed the Senate. SB 1147a, from Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, would allow the Idaho Transportation Department to enter into design-build contracts, something that's been permitted for other public...

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Eye On Boise

Short takes and breaking news from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.








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