He wonders aloud about Frank VanderSloot, the local founder of Melaleuca, an online wellness company that brings hundreds of jobs to the rural east Idaho region. “He’s a billionaire,” Knudsen says, and it wouldn’t surprise him if VanderSloot does business with lawmakers. “But he’s a good guy. He puts on the Fourth of July fireworks every year. The biggest in the West, they say.”
That folksy trust extends to the capital, Boise. “There’s not a huge problem in Idaho — I don’t think there is,” Idaho House Speaker Scott Bedke reportedly told lawmakers considering ethics reform two years ago. “I know most of you well, I know your hearts.” While Bedke may know them, the public has no way to, because financial reporting isn’t required. Full story here.