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Debate: ‘Do you have so little respect for those of us in the north?’

Rep. Cindy Agidius, R-Moscow, made an impassioned plea to the House against SB 1117, the bill to allow extra-heavy, 129,000-pound trucks statewide. “My concerns center around safety,” she said. “Last week, many loggers, truckers and county commissioners came to the transportation hearings to try to explain what a bad idea this is. … They reminded us of all the severe geographical differences we have in the northern parts of the state, and what it’s like when a big truck jackknifes on a narrow, icy road because they cannot control their trailers.”

She said, “I did not oppose the lifting of the sunset on the pilot project on the trucks in southern Idaho. … Do you have so little respect for those of us in the north that you would force something on us in our region in a manner that you would not have allowed in your own?”

Agidius said before extra-big trucks are allowed up north, there should be studies, designated routes, a sunset clause and other restrictions, just as there was in southern Idaho, where a 10-year pilot project concluded successfully this year. “Please listen to the concerns of the people who live in the north,” she said. “We don’t want to impede the expansion of the big truck routes in southern Idaho. We love agriculture, too. I live in the middle of wheat country. … Let’s say no to this bill. Let’s write a different bill that lets the great agricultural businesses that we have in southern Idaho try more routes, but let’s also write something that doesn’t have the potential to cost lives in North Idaho.”

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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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