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Eye On Boise

House takes up controversial dairy spying bill

The House has taken up SB 1337, the dairy spying bill. “This bill addresses interference with our agricultural operations,” Rep. Gayle Batt, R-Wilder, told the House. “Havoc has been brought on a broad spectrum of agriculture,” she said, decrying “activist groups” that use “extreme” tactics. “Let me be clear, Idaho’s ag industry does not condone abuse, plain and simple,” Batt said.

Earlier today, opponents of the bill delivered petitions with more than 113,000 signatures to Gov. Butch Otter’s office, urging him to veto the measure. It was proposed in the wake of a graphic video of cows being severely abused at a southern Idaho dairy that was taken surreptitiously by an activist who got a job at the dairy; the employees involved in the abuse subsequently were prosecuted.

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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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