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Wild Card/Thursday — 9.18.14

And so another work day dawns in “dangerous” Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, my home town, where the politicians are conservative, the waterfront is viewtiful, and dogs cower under cars when police are nearby. The weekend is rushing toward us. Here's today's Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 9.18.14

Southern Columbia’s Mike Klebon, center, jumps in front of Shamokin intended receiver Preston Burns, right, to intercept a pass during the second quarter of a high school football game Friday, near Catawissa, Pa. (AP Photo/Bloomsburg Press Enterprise, Jimmy May)

Most Commented Stories — 9.18.14

The posts that received the most comments today are: Espy: Why was I pulled over? (26 comments), and: Arfee: Officer returned to scene (13 comments).

Comment Of The Day — Susan Cuff

Susan Cuff (RE: Espy: Why was I pulled over?): Full disclosure for those who don’t know me: I’m married to a retired law enforcement officer. You might think that makes my opinion biased and no longer relevant. What it actually has been for me is an opportunity to know the human side of law enforcement officers. To know how they struggle with their choices, agonize over decisions, and bear the brunt of what is often - literally - a spat-upon job. They are not perfect but I believe in my heart that the majority of them are in it for the right reasons and do the right thing. I have never worked in a job in which every day that I go to work is a day that someone could potentially look down the barrel of a gun and take a shot at me. It would be hard to do that job for self-centered reasons.

PM Headlines — 9.18.14

Coeur d’Alene Fire Chief Kenny Gabriel said last weekend’s open house at Fire Station No. 3 was by far the best attended event the department has ever sponsored. The theme this year was “Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives.” Kids especially liked the fire extinguisher demonstration and exploring the fire engines. It was all part of the department’s 125-year anniversary celebration. (Coeur d'Alene Today photo: Keith Erickson)

Cutline Contest — 9.18.14

Time 2 Vote …

Facts: Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi, of Italy, crashes during practice for Sunday's San Marino Moto GOP grand prix in Misano Adriatico, Italy earlier today. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

Wednesday Winner — Psalm 37, with 10 likes: “You're right Steve, your hair conditioner does make your beard softer and silkier than the brand I use.” You can see Wednesday photo and all Cutline Contest entries here.

PM Scanner Traffic — 9.18.14

  • 4:49 p.m. Bearded driver of light-blue vehicle swerving on e/b I-90/MP 2 (Pleasantview).
  • 4:30 p.m. Coeur d'Alene Police Department activities report for Sept. 17-18 here.
  • 4:21 p.m. PFPD officer ticketing red Pontiac Firebird parked in handicap spot @ 701 Spokane/Post Falls.
  • 4:06 p.m. Officer on scene of Atlas/Boekel crash says he needs extrication equipment, will begin triage.
  • 3:59 p.m. Someone penned in vehicle after rollover crash b/n car-dump truck @ Atlas/Boekel, Rathdrum Prairie.
  • 3:46 p.m. Undisclosed animal problem reported @ 500 block of Prairie Avenue/Hayden.
  • 3:37 p.m. Male is banging on baby-sitter's vehicle, w/baby inside, @ Post Falls resident.
  • 3:36 p.m. Patrol officer has happened on unreported crash @ H95/H53 (Garwood area).
  • 2:30 p.m. 2 officers are stopping to talk to male dressed all in black in front of public defender's office, unknown reason.
  • 2:28 p.m. Older male w/younger female in older brown van behind Les Schwab's, seems suspicious to caller.
  • 2:22 p.m. 2-vehicle, non-injury accident reported @ n/b H95/MP 451 (Bonner County line, north of Athol).
  • 2:02 p.m. Someone has found an abandoned bike on Lakewood/Riverstone, CdA.
  • 1:31 p.m. 18YO pregnant woman in Coeur d'Alene needs medical help for undisclosed reason.
  • AM Scanner Traffic

Senate OKs Bill To Arm Syria Rebels

The Senate on Thursday easily approved a $1 trillion government-funding bill that gives President Obama new authority to battle the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Lawmakers voted 78-22 in favor of the bill, with 9 Democrats and 12 Republicans voting “no,” along with one independent. The “no” votes included several senators seen as prospective presidential candidates in both parties, including Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). The legislation, which has now been approved by both chambers of Congress, now heads to the White House for Obama’s signature/The Hill. More here.

Question: Idaho U.S. Sens. Crapo & Risch said they opposed this legislation because President Obama hasn't laid out a clear plan to fight the ISIS threat. Do you agree/disagree with their thinking/vote?

Allergy Reporter: Tips For Dining Out

At her Allergy Reporter Web site, Taryn Thompson provides tips for anxious people with food allergies who are considering eating meals at a restaurant. She begins: “For those with a life-threatening food allergy, eating outside the home isn’t just dangerous, it can also be extremely stressful. A little pre-planning and research can ease some of the anxiety people with food allergies might experience when dining out.” You can read Taryn's tips here.

Question: I don't think I'm allergic to any food. And I'm grateful for that. Do you have food allergies?

New City Poll: Hiked Tubbs Hill Lately?

There is a new question on CityPoll:  “Have you hiked Tubbs Hill in the past year?”  Each month, a CityPoll question is posed on the city’s website so the city can learn how the community feels about a particular issue.  Responses will be reviewed by city staff and changes will be used in leadership strategic planning as guidance to assure we are offering the best possible services to our citizens. 

  • In August, the City Poll asked resident if they wanted to see more dog parks in Coeur d'Alene. 120 out of 200 (60%) said, No; 80 out of 200 (40%) said, Yes.

Sightem

North Idaho College Trustees Todd Banducci, right, and Ken Howard (checking cell phone) talk during Coeur d'Alene Chamber of Commerce business lunch at Hagadone Events Center at the Coeur d'Alene Resort Golf Course Wednesday. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

On North Idaho College campus Wednesday, Trustee Todd Banducci and a couple of other men (Gideons?) handing out Bibles in front of library.

Would You Forgive This $10 Ticket?

From the Public Comments roundup in City Clerk Renata McLeod's draft minutes of the City Council meeting Tuesday: “Jim Player, Coeur d’Alene, said he is a very new resident of the community, a Vietnam veteran, and currently living in transitional housing.  He received a parking ticket while trying to change his driver’s license and registration, because it took 2 ½ to 3 hours for him to be helped.  He filed an appeal with the Parking Commission and it was ignored.  He thinks that decency should prevail and that it was because of extenuating circumstances that he received the ticket.  He can’t afford $10.00 for a ticket and hopes that someone will contact him.  His address is 1516 E. Sherman Avenue, Apt. 9.”

Question: If you were the city parking czar, would you forgive this ticket?

Sagebrush Rebels Admit Being Wrong

The legislators behind stoking the embers of Idaho's perennial Sagebrush Rebellion have made a startling admission: They were wrong. Their idea of suing Uncle Sam into submission and acquiring 20 million acres of national forests and 15 million acres of federal range land? Ain't going to happen. “We're already pretty confident that from a legal perspective, we don't stand on very firm ground if it were a matter of litigating,” state Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, told the Spokesman-Review's Betsy Russell last month. Winder and state Rep. (and GOP nominee for secretary of state) Lawerence (Boss) Denney are the co-chairmen of an interim committee created on just such a premise/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: And yet Winder and Lawerence Denney continue to take their dog-and-pony interim committee on the road …

John Q. Citizen: License Bicycles

Also from the Public Comments period of City Clerk Renata McLeod's draft minutes of the City Council meeting Tuesday: “Roy Wargi, 2022 E. Coeur d’Alene Ave., said that he thinks that bicycles should be licensed the same as other vehicles in the city.  Mr. Tymesen said that the city has not had bicycle registration for probably the last 15 years, but he would suggest moving the request to the Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee for further study.  Council member Adams said that he is on that committee and bicycle licensing has actually already been studied and they have come to the conclusion that the licensing of bicycles restricts the use of bicycles when their objective is to promote more use of bicycles in the city.   Mr. Wargi commented that he has a bicycle that is equipped with turn signals and a brake light, but a lot of bicycles are running around going all directions into late in the evening and it is not right.  Without a license, there is no way to identify who is riding the bicycles.” (SR file photo, of bicyclist in Midtown)

Question: I can't believe I'm saying this, but Councilman Adams is right. This time. Licensing would discourage bike use. However, I empathize with resident Wargi. I would guess that few bicyclists know the rules of the road, including which side to ride on. Thoughts?

NRA Endorses Otter For Guv

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter serves as an auctioneer for an old gun that was auctioned at the North Idaho Political Action Committee luncheon in mid-April. The event raised about $32,000 for the NIPAC and was held in competition with the Lincoln Day Dinner that evening, sponsored by the county GOP Central Committee. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

And now a word from the NRA: “On behalf of our five million members across the country, the National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF) is proud to endorse Butch Otter for reelection as Governor of Idaho. Based on his support of and commitment to the Second Amendment, Otter has earned an “A” rating from the NRA-PVF in the 2014 general election.  An “A” rating is reserved for a pro-gun elected official who has consistently supported the NRA’s position on votes of importance to gun owners and sportsmen. “In the past four years, Butch Otter has done more than almost any other governor in the country to expand Second Amendment freedoms,” said Chris W. Cox, chairman of the NRA-PVF. “He is a champion of our Second Amendment rights.”

Surprised?

SR News Quiz 9.16-19.2014

How much do you know about Bing Crosby memorabilia, Spokane's biggest cycling event, gay-marriage issues in Idaho and other news of note? Find out in the weekly Spokesman Review News Quiz, where you could win two movie tickets or a $50 gift card to the Davenport Hotel. You can take the News Quiz here.

  • Answer to Question No. 1: Use the deep wells as heat exchangers for the development
  • Leaderboard: 3 HucksOnline readers are among the 27 finalists on this week's Leaderboard — SFredrickson, RayNTim & LetsTalk. Deadline for entering the competition for tickets/$50 Davenport Hotel certificate is 5 p.m. Friday.

Few Attend UI Guns On Campus Event

Unease about repercussions for concealed weapons sightings was the main concern for attendees of a “guns on campus” forum Wednesday at the University of Idaho. The forum was part of UI's Campus Safety Week and was held to discuss the policy developed by the university in response to the so-called guns on campus law passed by the Idaho Legislature earlier this year. Kent Nelson, university general counsel, and Matt Dorschel, university executive director for public safety and security, led the discussion, which was lightly attended by only a few students and faculty members. “What's most important to realize is that our policy for how we react to weapons sightings has not changed,” Nelson said. “If it's a properly concealed weapon, you shouldn't see it at all”/Kaitlyn Krasselt, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Why do you think a forum to discuss the controversial new guns-on-campus policy at UIdaho attracted so few?

Marrying The Girl Next Door

Sixty years ago Keith Gehr married the girl next door. It turned out marriage was just the first of their many adventures together. They met in Hopewell, Virginia, in 1952, when Keith moved into the apartment next to Betty and her family. “It was a hot Virginia summer and some of us young people would gather in the evening and cool our feet in a kiddie pool,” Betty recalled. “One day Keith’s buddy wanted to go to the beach for the day.” They asked Betty and another girl to join them and that one date quickly evolved into a relationship. “I knew I had a winner,” she said. “There was something so real about Keith. What I saw was who he really was – there was no façade.” They’d both served their country during World War II/Cindy Hval, SR. More here. (SR photo by Jesse Tinsley: Keith and Betty Gehr, shown Sept. 10 at their Spokane home, are celebrating 60 years together)

Question: Did you marry a girl/boy from your neighborhood?

Christie: Yes, We’re Your Friend

Sgt. Christie Wood (RE: Is the policeman our friend?): DFO it as if you sent out the bat signal:) How do I not respond? Of course you should teach children policeofficers are their friend. If a child is in crisis they need to feel comfortable seeking out an officer. It could mean the difference between life and death. We are public servants. Not all of the services we provide to the public such as traffic enforcement are popular when you are the one being pulled over. The flip side of that is we have numerous citizens asking us to provide enforcement action in order to keep the roadways safe for their loved ones. That is our role and we will continue to do it, but with it comes with an educational component whenever possible. Most drivers respond well to warnings and informational stops about equipment failure or expired license plates.

DFO: This post would be a good candidate for the “Comment of the Day” if I hadn't felt compelled to publish it now. I agree with Christie. The police(wo)man is our friend. I'd teach my kids that. I'd teach my grandkids that (if I ever had any). Yes, I know there are a few bad apples in law enforcement. But I consider them to be in the superminority. I'm glad the men & women in blue are out there. Thoughts?

AM Scanner Traffic — 9.18.14

A Coeur d'Alene restaurant released surveillance video Wednesday that filmed possible suspects in a string of bicycle thefts. KREM2 provides 5 photos of the two possible suspects here.

  • 11:49 a.m. Strong smell of propane in basement of building along Spokane Street/Post Falls.
  • 11:45 a.m. Logger reports grass fire on east end of Carpenter Loop near the stateline.
  • 11:30 a.m. Post Falls Police Department activities report for Sept. 17-18 here.
  • 11:18 a.m. 3YO CdA boy, complaining of chest pain, has locked himself in bathroom.
  • 10:45 a.m. Resident @ 4100 block of Upriver Drive reports male in gray PT Cruiser peeled out after argument.
  • 10:23 a.m. Brush fire extinguished in wooded area behind Target, Canfield Avenue/CdA.
  • 10:16 a.m. Suspicious male reported in front of Hawaiian Tanning, 6848 Govt Way/Dalton Gardens.
  • 10:03 a.m. Undisclosed medical emergency reported @ 500 block of Idaho Street/Post Falls.
  • 9:58 a.m. Distraught female is threatening to kill her dog and herself.
  • 9:44 a.m. Post Falls female is vomiting after taking accidental overdose of prescription meds.
  • 9:36 a.m. A dog is running loose @ Miles Avenue/Reed Road, Hayden.
  • 9:23 a.m. 50-by-50 fire in woods behind Target store. Firefighters on scene.
  • 9:17 a.m. Smoke reported in woods behind Target store, 3151 Canfield Ave/CdA.

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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