Eye On Boise archive for April 2011

FRIDAY, APRIL 29, 2011

From left, Betsy Russell, Jim Weatherby, Kevin Richert and host Greg Hahn discuss Idaho political happenings on Friday's "Idaho Reports," the last show of the season; the program will return next January. (Idaho Public Television / Kevin Rank)

Tonight is the last 'Idaho Reports' of the season

On tonight's “Idaho Reports” on Idaho Public Television, I join Jim Weatherby, Kevin Richert and host Greg Hahn for this year's final show, in which we discuss the school reform turmoil and referendum campaign, wolves, nullification and more; also, Greg interviews state Superintendent of Schools...

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Third Conoco megaload to hit road tomorrow 

The third ConocoPhillips megaload is scheduled to leave Lewiston on Saturday and head across U.S. Highway 12 en route to Billings, Mont., the Idaho Transportation Department announced today. This comes as an Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil megaload remains parked 5 miles this side of the Montana border,...

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Steele saga unfolds in court...

Wild stuff continues to come out in the Edgar Steele murder-for-hire trial in federal court in Boise; here' s a link to today's full story from S-R reporter Meghann Cuniff, which includes testimony from Steele's wife, Cyndi, the victim of the alleged plot; she defends...

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THURSDAY, APRIL 28, 2011

Test megaload delayed again... 

The "test validation module" for 200-plus Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil Highway 12 megaloads will stay where it is - in a chain-up area at milepost 169.1, about five miles west of the Montana state line on Highway 12 - until at least Monday night, ITD has announced,...

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From left, BLM Director Robert Abbey, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, and Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson learn about how smokejumpers' parachutes are packed from Hector Madrid, base manager for BLM smokejumpers at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise. The officials toured the center Thursday and got a briefing on the upcoming wildfire season. (Betsy Russell)

Fire season outlook: Not bad here, not good down south...

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and U.S. Bureau of Land Management Director Robert Abbey joined Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson today for a tour of the National Interagency Fire Center, from which nationwide wildland firefighting operations are coordinated, and a briefing on this year's fire season....

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Judge rejects gag order in prison violence case

A federal judge has sided with the Associated Press and rejected Corrections Corp. of America's request for a sweeping gag order in the lawsuit over prison violence at Idaho's privately-run state prison, the Idaho Correctional Center south of Boise. Click below for a full report...

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 27, 2011

Test megaload stalls again, this time due to snow 

The Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil "test module" that's demonstrating how the biggest megaloads will fare on U.S. Highway 12 won't travel tonight after all, ITD has announced, because forecasts call for snow near Lolo Pass. Weather permitting, the giant load, now stopped just short of the pass...

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Lawyers from all sides, including Laird Lucas, second from right, of Advocates for the West, and Larry Allen, right, of the Idaho Transportation Department, confer after the close of testimony Wednesday in the Highway 12 megaloads contested-case hearing; in the background is the hearing officer, retired Idaho District Judge Duff McKee. (Betsy Russell)

Megaloads testimony: 'We learn the most from setbacks' 

Today's testimony in the Highway 12 megaloads contested-case hearing has wrapped up, but lawyers aren't done questioning ITD motor vehicle administrator Alan Frew, who'll be back for more in the morning. Here, the lawyers huddle to go over tomorrow's schedule at the conclusion of today's...

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First day of murder-for-hire trial a doozy 

The first day of the Edgar Steele murder-for-hire trial in federal court today was a doozy. After opening arguments, initial witnesses included Larry Fairfax, the hit man-turned-FBI-informant, who told the court, "Mr. Steele was getting agitated, and he said if i didn't take care of...

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Frew takes stand at megaloads hearing 

Alan Frew, motor vehicle administrator for the Idaho Transportation Department, has been called to testify at today's contested-case hearing on the proposed Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil megaloads on U.S. Highway 12. Frew is the one who signed off on the memorandum of decision to grant the permits....

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Steele trial revs up in federal court

There's pretty wild stuff coming out in federal court in Boise today at the Edgar Steele murder-for-hire trial; you can read about it at S-R reporter Meghann Cuniff's "Sirens and Gavels" blog here. In federal prosecutor Marc Haws' opening argument, he told the jury it'll...

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Of power outages and tree-trimming... 

Asked about the incident in which the ExxonMobil "test module" for its megaloads transport knocked out power to two Idaho towns, ITD District 2 maintenance engineer Doral Hoff said the load immediately was pulled over at a nearby turnout and the road was closed. "We...

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Test megaload traveled 100+ miles last night

After a two-week delay, the "test module" for Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil's giant loads of oil equipment traveled more than 100 miles on U.S. Highway 12 in north-central Idaho last night, ITD reports, and reached a chain-up area near the Idaho-Montana border. The megaload arrived at milepost...

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ITD District 2 maintenance engineer Doral Hoff answers questions from ITD attorney Tim Thomas, left, at a contested-case hearing on proposed megaloads on Wednesday. (Betsy Russell)

Megaloads testimony: 'Potential for them to possibly get stuck'

ITD District 2 Maintenance Engineer Doral Hoff is testifying at the megaloads contested-case hearing this morning, answering questions from ITD attorney Tim Thomas about the transportation plan that the Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil's hauler, Mammoet Transportation, submitted to ITD. "The main purpose of the transportation plan is...

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TUESDAY, APRIL 26, 2011

Test megaload to resume travel tonight

ITD reports that a "test module" for Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil's giant loads of oil equipment will begin traveling on U.S. Highway 12 in north-central Idaho again tonight, after stalling for two weeks. The rig was halted at milepost 61 after causing a power outage April 11...

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Megaloads hearing wraps up second day

The contested case hearing on Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil's plan to run 200-plus giant megaloads of oil equipment across scenic U.S. Highway 12 in north-central Idaho has wrapped up its second day, after a full day of testimony. In the morning, ITD employee Regina Phipps was questioned...

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H&W layoffs draw age discrimination lawsuit

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: LEWISTON, Idaho (AP) — The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is being sued by five former workers who say they were laid off because they were closer to retirement and had higher wages than their colleagues....

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Eye On Boise

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




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