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Latest from The Spokesman-Review

Merrill Ripped For Wasting Toilet $$$

As lawmakers question state Parks Director Nancy Merrill this morning, Rep. Wendy Jaquet, D-Ketchum, said she didn't see anything in the state parks mission about advocacy, and questioned why the department spent $11,000 to send letters to 32,000 registered boaters about the possible closure of the 3rd Street boat launch in Coeur d'Alene. “$11,000 could buy an SST, a 'sweet-smelling toilet' - I remember that number,” Jaquet said. “It just seems like $11,000 you could have used in a different way”/Betsy Russell, SR. More here.

Question: Have you ever been to a public restroom with 'sweet-smelling' toilets?

Hucks Poll: Merrill Wasted Money

  • Tuesday Poll: Mary Souza and the OpenCDA crowd may support the $11,000 expense incurred by the state Parks & Rec department to warn boaters about possible 3rd Street boat launch closure — but Hucks Nation doesn't. A supermajority — 46 of 157 respondents (68.15%) said the state agency shouldn't have spent the money for the mailing. 46 of 157 (29.3%) supported the action. 4 were undecided.
  • Today's Poll: How would you rate President Obama's State of the Union speech, in baseball terms?

Mary: P&R Director Deserves Thanks

Mary Souza, of OpenCDA.com, sees no problem with the Idaho Parks & Recreation Department spending $11,000 to warn boaters in 42 states that Coeur d'Alene has proposed to close the 3rd Street boat launch. In fact, the usually fiscally conservative Souza uses the expense in her latest newsletter to jab at her favorite pincushion, Lake City Development Corp. Then, she harangued state Sen. John Goedde, "who is cozy with City Hall," for launching a "Senate inquisition" of P&R Director Nancy Merrill this week. "What, is he looking for heads to roll on this?" wonders Mary. Ultimately, Mary says that Merrill "deserves a thank you, not a grilling," for sticking up for boaters.

Question: Does P&R Director Nancy Merrill deserve a 'thank you' or 'a grilling' for spending $11,000 to send out 36,000 letters to boaters in 42 states re: possible closure of the 3rd Street dock?

Agency Boat Launch Warning Costs $11K

Item: Boat launch goes nationwide: Dept. of Parks and Recreation sends letters to 42 different states/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press

More Info: Those votes could come from 42 of the other 49 states in the union, after the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation sent out roughly 32,000 letters to registered Kootenai County boaters notifying them of the potential plan to reshape McEuen Field and its boat launch. Of the 32,000, nearly 13,000 were sent out of state, while 6,183 had Coeur d'Alene addresses. … City officials were aware, but the letters' reach - which cost $11,000 in postage and supplies - caught the parks department off guard.

Question: Did the Idaho Department of Parks & Recreation spend wisely by paying $11,000 to send 32,000 letters off to warn registered boaters of a possible closure of Coeur d'Alene's 3rd Street boat launch?

Merrill Ripped For Boat-Launch Letters

Idaho lawmakers called their state parks director on the carpet Monday over letters that were sent to 32,000 boaters about the possible closure of the 3rd Street boat launch in Coeur d’Alene. State Parks Director Nancy Merrill told the Senate Resources Committee she was just doing her job as required by state law: Standing up for boater access on state waters. But Coeur d’Alene city officials say the city always planned to replace the launch with another one just as good, if it removes the downtown launch as part of a big renovation of McEuen Field into a waterfront park - and that message got lost. “I appreciate that they are looking out for boater access - we are doing the same thing,” said Coeur d’Alene Mayor Sandy Bloem/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here(SR file photo: Kathy Plonka)

Question: Would you be more open to an alternative boat launch for the current 3rd Street one, if state funds were available to help build it?

Hucks Poll: No To Ed Corridor Launch

  • Thursday Poll: 80 of 148 respondents (54%) were against constructing a boat launch in the North Idaho College Education Corridor to replace the popular one at the end of 3rd Street. 62 of 148 supported the project. 6 respondents were undecided.
  • Today's Poll: Do you support the legalization of medical marijuana in Idaho?

Proposed Plan For Ed Corridor Launch

One of my many Berry Pickers nabbed a site schematic of the possible boat launch proposed by the city of Coeur d'Alene at the new Education Corridor, to possibly replace the Third Street boat launch. To get perspective, the buildings on the northern part of this plan comprise the wastewater treatment plant. The launch is proposed to take up 3 acres of the 17 acres in the Education Corridor.

Question: What do you think?

Hucks Poll: Don’t Repeal Health Care

  • Health Care: Hucks Nation narrowly supports the 2010 Health Care Act. 80 of 154 respondents (52%) don't want to see congressional Republicans succeed in repealing the health care reform pushed through by Democrats last year. 71 of 154 (46%) do. 3 were undecided.
  • Wednesday Poll: 69 of 143 respondents (48%) don't think the split 112th Congress will perform as well as the Democratic-controlled Congress of the last 2 years. 50 of 143 respondents (35%) said the current Congress will do better. 21 of 143 expects the same level of (in)competence this year. 1 respondent was undecided.
  • Today's Question: Should the city of Coeur d'Alene close the 3rd Street Boat Launch?