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County home sales drop; prices rise

The number of homes sold in Kootenai County dropped sharply during the first half of the year.

Through the end of June, 959 homes changed hands, a reduction of nearly 24 percent over the same period in 2006, according to the Coeur d’Alene Multiple Listing Service.

Sales of new homes also dropped, MLS statistics indicate. New construction accounted for about 25 percent of all Kootenai County home sales during the first half of 2007, down from 37 percent of the market during the first half of 2006.

Median sales prices for the county rose slightly to $204,500.

Last year, the median sales price was $201,590 for the first six months of the year.

The prices varied by community. Coeur d’Alene and Dalton had a median sales price of $200,000, compared with $197,652 in Post Falls.

Hayden had the highest median sales price – $235,000 – while the Rathdrum and Twin Lakes area had the lowest, $189,950. Median sales prices are the midpoint, indicating that half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.


U.S. Silver buys Dayrock Mine

U.S. Silver Corp. has bought the historic Dayrock Mine and mill facility in Idaho’s Silver Valley for $175,000.

The purchase includes 80 acres located about 3½ miles northeast of the company’s Galena Mine complex near Silverton.

The Dayrock Mine operated intermittently from 1924 until 1977, producing lead and silver. U.S. Silver will do an engineering study of the property, determining whether it would be feasible to put the mine and mill back into production, company officials said.


Boeing settles in overbilling case

The Boeing Co. has agreed to pay more than $1 million to settle allegations that it overbilled for materials used in installing new KC-135 aircraft engines, the U.S. attorney’s office announced Monday.

The settlement stems from an investigation into payment requests that Boeing made from 1998 to 2003.

In a news release, U.S. Attorney Eric Melgren said the government alleged that Boeing double-billed for materials used in modernizing KC-135 Stratotankers and RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft. The materials included nuts, bolts, rivets and fasteners.

Prosecutors alleged that Boeing charged for the materials even though those costs were included in the company’s contract with the government.

Boeing claimed the contract allowed the transfer of costs, so the billing was not done improperly.

Under the settlement, Boeing will pay $1,093,236 to the federal government for the refund of the charges plus interest.

“Protecting the government from fraud and abuse and ensuring accountability in the way federal tax dollars are spent is important,” Melgren said in a written statement.

A Boeing spokesman did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment Monday.

From staff

and wire reports


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