By Rich Landers
Jan. 21 – Runners are gaining ground on wildlife photographers as the most likely people to be mauled by a grizzly bear in the Northern Rockies.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s grizzly bear recovery coordinator says long-distance trail runners are approaching photographers as the backcountry group most likely to be badly hurt in an animal encounter.
Chris Servheen told the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee on Thursday that running in grizzly country at dawn and dusk is risky, but he is not interested in proposing regulations to restrict the sport.
By Jim Camden
Jan 18 – While we’ve all been proceeding on the assumption that Washington will get a tenth congressional seat this year, it hasn’t really been official.
As in not signed, sealed and delivered official from the folks who have the ultimate say in such things, the U.S. House of Representatives.
But the Washington secretary of state’s office now has in its hot collective hands a sealed notice from the Clerk of the House, stating Washington shall be entitled in the 113th Congress (which starts in 2013) and each succeeding Congress through 2022, to TEN REPRESENTATIVES in the House of Representatives.
Eye on Boise
By Betsy Russell
Jan. 19 – Rep. Leon Smith, R-Twin Falls, says he’s been getting heat ever since the last legislative session about last year’s hastily enacted “conscience law,” which is aimed at letting health care providers decline to provide abortion-related services if they violate their conscience, but also takes in “end of life care.”
So Smith drafted a bill adding a clause to the law citing Idaho’s existing Natural Death Act, which guarantees that living wills and such orders must be complied with, and stating that the measure can’t override that. The Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to introduce the bill, clearing the way for full hearings.
Sirens & Gavels
By Meghann Cuniff
Jan. 21 – A federal jury convicted a man of assaulting two nurses at the Spokane Veteran Affairs Medical Center.
James D. Scott, 42, was drunk when he attacked a nurse after his girlfriend brought him to the emergency room on Aug. 19, 2009. His lawyer told jurors that post-traumatic stress disorder caused Scott to drink and urged them to acquit him of two felony counts of assaulting a government employee.
Scott faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and three years probation.