Latest from The Spokesman-Review
HAYDEN - The Hayden City Council tonight will consider amending its firearms ordinance.
Jeremy Morris, his wife, Kristy, and their daughter, Savannah Claire, 3, are seen in front of their home in Hayden on Thursday. The couple enlisted the help of volunteers to direct traffic around their festively lit home. Kathy Plonka, SR, photo.
The students and staff at a Coeur d’Alene elementary school are in for one long field trip starting next fall. Winton Elementary School will pack up and move out for the 2014-2015 school year to allow workers to rebuild the 89-year-old school – the oldest in the Coeur d’Alene district. School officials announced Monday that the 320 students and 24 staff members will relocate five miles north to the Hayden Kinder Center, an all-kindergarten school that formerly was Hayden Lake Elementary School. That will require the district to move about 260 kindergarten students into Atlas, Ramsey and Skyway elementary schools for the year. Once the new Winton Elementary is open, the kindergarten students will reclaim the Kinder Center in Hayden. Winton, about four blocks south of Kootenai Health, will undergo a massive rebuild at an estimated cost of $5 million. The project will start next summer/Scott Maben, SR. More below. (SR file photo: Winton School)
ATLANTA — A man accused of slapping a crying toddler on a jet is set to go on trial this week. Joe Rickey Hundley faces a misdemeanor simple assault charge in the February incident, and his trial is scheduled to start Thursday in federal court in Atlanta. Authorities say Hundley used a racial slur to refer to the 19-month-old boy and then hit him under the right eye as the flight from Minneapolis began its descent to the Atlanta airport. Hundley, who has pleaded not guilty, faces up to a year in prison if convicted. His lawyers say Hundley’s son was in a coma in Atlanta, and he was flying there to decide whether to take him off life support. Hundley lived in Hayden, Idaho, at the time but has since moved to North Carolina/Associated Press. (Kathy Plonka SR file photo: Hundley is shown a year ago when he served as president of Unitec Composites and Structures in Hayden)
HAYDEN - Officials at Hayden City Hall so far are planning for a 9 percent increase for next year's general fund and public works budget compared with the current fiscal year.
On Tuesday night, the city council conducted the final of three budget workshops.
Mayor Ron McIntire and the city council during the workshop instructed city staff to put a 3 percent across-the-board salary increase in place for next year for the city's 26 full-time employees.
"That way everyone gets something," McIntire said. The increase would cost the city $45,600. More. David Cole, Cda Press
Item: Hayden chamber talks anti-discrimination: It is unknown if City Council will address possible ordinance/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press
More Info: Panelists representing both sides of an anti-discrimination ordinance geared at protecting homosexuals discussed why they support or oppose the ordinance Thursday at the Kroc Center during the Hayden Chamber of Commerce's membership breakfast. Whether the Hayden City Council ever takes up the ordinance remains to be seen — nobody is proposing to pitch it that way yet — but supporters said an ordinance wouldn't harm local businesses if it did. They also said cities are doing the right thing by taking on the measure because protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people from discrimination is an issue Congress should address, but hasn't.
Question: Do you think the 2014 Legislature will address this issue, now that six Idaho cities have?
A panel featuring human rights advocate Tony Stewart will discuss the recent antidiscrimination ordinance adopted by the city of Coeur d'Alene when the Hayden Chamber of Commerce meets for breakfast at 7 o'clock Thursday, June 27, at the Kroc Center. Stewart will be joined by Idaho state Sen. Steve Vick, R-Dalton Gardens, and Coeur d'Alene council members Mike Kennedy and Dan Gookin. A press release for the event reads: "Since there are ongoing efforts to bring similar ordinances to the surrounding communities, there is a potential for this legislation to affect businesses in the Hayden Chamber. In response the Chamber will be hosting a panel of individuals to discuss the impacts on businesses."
Question: Am I reading the tea leaves correctly — that Hayden will be asked next to approve an antidiscrimination ordinance?
Hailie Velasco searches for familiar names on the bricks at the Hayden City Hall during the Hayden Memorial Day observance Monday She was accompanied by her mother Lindsey Osborn. They were looking for two names in particular, Sgt Nate Beyers and Spc Nicholas W Newby. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)
Hayden — Children tiptoed around Monday morning on the memorial pavers that line the ground in front of Hayden City Hall. Nearby, an older veteran moved slowly along the sidewalk bricks. Like the children, he was head down, reading the names engraved into the walkway, all part of the city's PFC Robert J. Gordon Veterans Memorial Plaza. A man walked over, another leading him to look at a particular brick. "That's me," he said, smiling. "My wife didn't want to wait." Then, Jay Lee Lillefloren, Master Gunnery Sgt., United States Marine Corps, moved along, reading the other names around his. His wife, Diana, leaned over the inscription of her husband's name, rank and dates of service, and held a cell phone out to capture an image of it. "It's the first time we've seen it," she said, before apologizing for the tears on her face/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.
Question: Did you attend a Memorial Day service yesterday?
I don't know why I'm so captivated by a couple of Lyndon LaRouchers from Seattle spending part of their day today in front of the Hayden post office, collecting signatures calling for the impeachment of President Barack Obama. Do you suppose that I miss the excitement of the failed Coeur d'Alene recall attempt when it was hard to drive anywhere in town without someone trying to get you to sign their petitions? Hard to say. But I appreciate the photos emailed to HucksOnline by photographer Duane Rasmussen.
Question: Why do you suppose the Seattle LaRouchers picked the Hayden post office for their HQ?
Lyndon LaRouche people from out-of-stater were in front of the Hayden post office today collecting signatures in an attempt to impeach President Barack Obama. Remember that Scanner Traffic item re: loiterers on the sidewalk in front of the post office. Apparently, it was these guys. Huckleberries hears … that they were polite and moved away from certain areas when they were told to do so. (BTW, I noticed that Hitler-type mustache on President Obama's photo in case you were wondering.) Duane Rasmussen photo special to HucksOnline.
Question: Why would anyone come to Idaho to waste time gathering signatures for the impeachment of President Barack Obama?
Troy Evans, photographed Thursday,recorded home-security video of the shooting of Justin Todd by police following a high-speed chase that ended in the cul-de-sac outside his home in Hayden on March 12.He questions the police version of what happened. More here. (Jesse Tinsley SR photo of Troy Evans)
A homeowner says his surveillance video brings into question the official account of why law enforcement shot and killed a North Idaho fugitive three weeks ago, though police warn against drawing too many conclusions from the footage because it captures just a portion of the chaotic 20-minute chase and final encounter. Video from a home in the Hayden cul-de-sac where Justin Earl Nicholas Todd, 33, was cornered by police shows a Post Falls officer apparently firing at Todd as the fleeing felon tried to drive past the officer. The officer nearly slipped on the icy road before steadying himself and firing several more shots/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR. More here.
A woman was escorted away from the scene of an officer involved shooting in Hayden earlier today. A 33-year-old North Idaho man was shot and killed by a police officer after reportedly using his car to strike an Idaho State Police trooper. (SR photo: Kathy Plonka)
Latest: A North Idaho man with an extensive criminal history was shot and killed by a Post Falls police officer early today after striking a state trooper with his car, police say. Justin Earl Nicholas Todd died at Kootenai Medical Center after a nearly 20-minue police chase ended with shots fired in a residential area near St. Estephe Court and Bordeaux Drive, just west of Ramsey Road and south of Honeysuckle Drive in Hayden. The Idaho State Police trooper had tried to stop Todd’s car after the car triggered an alert system on Interstate 90 that detects stolen vehicles and fugitives. Todd had an arrest warrant in Kootenai County for eluding police/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR. More here.
Scanner Traffic Redux (from 5:28 p.m. Wednesday, March 7: "Officer chased man wanted named Justin on felony warrants in white Nissan from 4th & Best until losing him near Dragonfly & Acorn. Fleeing man was speeding at 55-60 mph on city streets — and is wanted on felony charge of eluding police.
A Hayden Lake man is to spend more than six years in federal prison for possessing child pornography. Charley Brigham Leighton II, 41, also is to be on probation for 15 years, forfeit the computer and media used in the crime and register as a sex offender under a sentence imposed today in U.S. District Court in Coeur d'Alene. Investigators seized computers from Leighton's home in August 2010 that contained pornography images of children. Leighton told investigators he'd downloaded more than 1,000 images in about a year, according to court documents. He pleaded guilty in October/Meghann M. Cuniff, Sirens & Gavels. More here.
Ironman Coeur d'Alene race director Mac Cavasar has confirmed for Huckleberries that the bike leg of the triathlon will be changed this year to run along Highway 95 20 miles south of Coeur d'Alene to Missile Base Road in the Worley area. The Idaho Department of Transportation and Idaho State Police have signed off on the new course, which Cavasar says is safer than the old one. Which ran along Government Way through Hayden and beyond. The triathletes will bike along the northbound lanes of Highway 95, which will be blocked off for vehicular traffic which will be using the northbound lanes as a two-way roadway. The move was necessary this year because Ironman Coeur d'Alene was facing issues with road construction on the old bike course. Also, Cavasar said, he had heard complaints that the old course cut the communities of Coeur d'Alene & Hayden in half. "I've been looking at this for a couple of years," he told Huckleberries. Ironman Coeur d'Alene is now in its 10th year. Cavasar said he is trying to renew the contract for Ironman Coeur d'Alene, which expires this summer, for another five years. You can find a map of the new bike course here. (Dan Pelle SR file photo of 2009 Coeur d'Alene Ironman leg)
Question: Do you prefer the new course to the previous one that caused traffic problems on Government Way?
Mary Ann Head, 58, of Coeur d’Alene, pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court to making false entries in the books and records of a federally insured financial institution, announced U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson. According to the plea agreement, Head was employed by Bank of America at its Hayden branch from 1993 to 2009. In 1997, Head became the assistant branch manager. In her capacity as assistant branch manager, Head was the sole employee responsible for control of the automatic teller machine. Beginning sometime in 1997, Head began taking money out of the automatic teller machine. Head admitted that she made false entries in the books, reports, and statements of Bank of America in order to disguise her criminal activity, and that she continued to do so until it was discovered by the bank in December 2009/Pamela Bearg, U.S. Attorney's Office. More below.
A 64-year-old Idaho North Idaho man has agreed to pay more than $13,000 in restitution and fines and will lose his hunting, fishing and trapping privileges for life for illegally obtaining a Montana hunting license and killing a trophy bighorn sheep in north-central Montana, the Associated Press reports. Roger J. Woodworth of Hayden was sentenced Nov. 6 by District Judge Nels Swandal as part of a plea agreement with Fergus County prosecutors, according to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials/Rich Landers, SR Outdoors. More here.
Question: Just penalty?
"I didn't take many photographs of the Veterans Day Parade in Hayden this morning," posts Councilwoman Kerri Thoreson on her Facebook wall. "After seeing these two riderless horses honoring our local fallen soldiers from the 116th, Nick Newby and Nate Beyers, I was kind of overcome by the emotion of it all." Newby and Beyers, both of Coeur d'Alene, were killed by an improvised explosive device in Iraq in July. The explosion also severely injured another National Guardsman assigned to the Post Falls unit, Jason Rzepa
In a response to an editorial by Coeur d'Alene Press editor Mike Patrick urging the Hayden City Council and City Administrator Stefan Chatwin to get along, Councilwoman Nancy Lowery writes in an op-ed column in the Press today: " … Each trip he took to Portland reflects an upgraded King room with several room service charges. City policy states that Per Diem rates are to reflect standard GSA parameters. Lodging is paid to employees at the amount expended, but employees are given the charge to "make every effort to secure lodging that is reasonably priced, request the government rate and tax exemption, and carry the proper forms to secure such rates." Stefan booked upgraded rooms in hotels that are in the high rent district along the river in downtown Portland. Stefan's room service charges consistently exceed GSA guidelines. One breakfast charge was nearly $30 when the GSA guidelines specify that $12 is acceptable. There are other details that are questionable, but the largest red flag is that the council never had prior knowledge of these weekend trips to Portland, and has yet to be briefed as to the benefit the city received from those trips." Full column here.
Question: Any thoughts about the attempt to oust Hayden City Administrator Stefan Chatwin?
Under gray April skies, Bill Whisner pulled his fishing boat ashore at the Honeysuckle Beach ramp on Sunday. Hayden Lake was cold and high, and the dock alongside the launch was partially submerged. Guiding the boat and trailer into position, the fisherman jumped through a couple inches of lake water that had washed over the walkway. Whisner had launched his boat free of charge, per usual. But starting next month, fees will be collected at the Honeysuckle Beach ramp, city of Hayden officials said. The fees will be in effect from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The daily access fee for boats is $6 for city of Hayden residents and $8 for everybody else. A season pass is $30 for residents and $60 for those living outside the city/David Cole & Nick Rotunno, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here. (SR file photo for illustrative purposes, of sunbather on Honeysuckle Beach launch)
Question: Will the $6 launch fee at the Honeysuckle Beach launch prompt boaters to stay away from Hayden Lake this summer?
Walmart assistant manager Phil Hunter walks in the store in Hayden on Wednesday. Opening day is Sept. 15. (SR photo: Kathy Plonka)
There’s still no Walmart in Coeur d’Alene, but the retail behemoth is about as close as it can get. A Walmart supercenter will open Wednesday in Hayden, a couple of blocks north of Coeur d’Alene city limits. It’s the second Walmart to open in North Idaho this summer. A new store on the west end of Post Falls, near Cabela’s sporting goods, opened Aug. 18. The 206,000-square-foot Hayden store is at the southwest corner of U.S. Highway 95 and Honeysuckle Avenue. Only one Walmart in Idaho – a Boise store – is larger/Scott Maben, SR. More here.
Question (also see poll): When new WalMart opens in Hayden next week, which of the Kootenai County WalMarts will you chiefly shop at?
I agree with the editorial in the Coeur d’Alene Press today in which the writer (M.E. Mike Patrick) remarks that the $4.5 million upgrade to Hayden’s portion of Government Way is a source of pride — whether or not it triggers economic revival. Quoth Patrick: ” … We would like to point out that despite the hefty investment, there isn’t a better property-tax bargain around. Government Way in Hayden is only a snapshot; the overall property-tax situation for all Hayden residents is the bigger picture.” I disagree, however, with the editorial premise that the jury is still out re: whether the corridor has had an economic impact. Not only does Hayden now have an identifiable center of town now, but it also has new, attractive business buildings lining the corridor, including the retrofitted City Hall. You can read the editorial here.
Question: Was the $4.5 million upgrade to Hayden’s part of Government Way worth it?
Item: Will they pay to play? Some users say fees no big deal, they pay them elsewhere/David Cole, Coeur d’Alene Press
More Info: It might be the last summer of free boat launching at Hayden’s Honeysuckle Beach. The city is looking at launching new fees there. Suzanne Cano, Hayden community services director, said Monday that the city is primarily aiming to offset maintenance costs. The boat launch and docks get a lot of use and wear.
Question: Would you be willing to pay to launch your boat on Hayden Lake — or other North Idaho waters?
Always nice to start the day with some dumb criminal news:
“A robber at a Hayden pharmacy Monday night got the controlled drug he asked for, and then left money on the counter to pay for it, according to the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department.
The man went to the prescription counter at Walgreens about 8:45 p.m. and asked the pharmacist for a drug.
When the man was told he needed a prescription, the man told the pharmacist he was robbing her, according to Lt. Stu Miller.
He was given the drug and left money on the counter before exiting the store. There was no mention of a weapon.” More.
Wonder if they’ll charge him with misdemeanor forgetfulness?
Planting his arm on the freshly painted front end of a 1978 Jeep pickup, Dick Panabaker gazed at the car parts strewn around his Hayden garage.
“I’m not going to live long enough to get on all of this,” the gray-haired man said with a chuckle. “I don’t know what my wife is going to do if I tip over tomorrow.”
For about the past five years, that was all the 68-year-old needed for his retirement. Greasy tools, a beat-up car and time to tinker.
But eventually the former Hayden mayor and county commissioner had to stick his head out from under the engine.
“When I looked at what was going on in our country, I thought, ‘You know, I’ve got time and a little bit of knowledge, maybe I could make a difference and help the town,’” he said.
What are you retirement dreams?
The U.S. Army Reserve made good on its promise to hold an “open house” on having some of its soldiers marching through Hayden one Sunday morning in almost full gear as part of a training exercise.
The “house” was open Wednesday night, but it was reminiscent of that old ‘60s poster: “Suppose they gave a war, and nobody came?”
A half-dozen men in camouflage BDUs showed up at the Hayden City Hall and occupied the council chamber on Wednesday night, and waited for anyone wanting to question them about an exercise last month which involved several platoons marching along neighborhood streets. As reported earlier in Spin Control, it didn’t cause much concern in town, but pictures of troops in full packs and M-16s began circulating on the Web, with some comments about how this was all a prelude to the government declaring marial law or coming to take away personal firearms.
The event was planned with minimal notice, and the good folks of Hayden either didn’t know or didn’t care. Other than someone from the Hayden city staff who let the soldiers in and out, and a janitor to clean up afterwards, the only person not connected with the military in some manner was a reporter.
And the Army Reserve couldn’t have been happier…