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NIC Flyers Offer Questionable ‘Facts’

All three Reagan Republican candidates attempting to take over the North Idaho College Board of Trustees were parroting the party line that NIC taxes have soared over the past five years. They never mentioned, of course, that enrollment has soared during that time and that the current board of trustees had the foresight to purchase adjacent land for further expansion. Two flyers hit my mailbox this weekend. One touting Paul Matthews and Todd Banducci, the other, their sidekick in the takeover attempt, Ron Nilson. In the Matthews-Banducci flyer, the challengers made the claim that NIC taxes have gone up a whopping 73 percent. And this: "If divided by the population of Kootenai County, it means almost $600 in new property taxes for every family of four." Which leads me to believe that someone's telling a whopper here. My NIC taxes have gone up a grand total of $15 in five years.


NIC Wannabes Spend $32K So Far

The amount of campaign cash flowing into the North Idaho College Board of Trustee election races is up to $31,882. That's the total amount of contributions reported by 10 candidates involved in the races for three seats up for grabs on the community college's governing board. The deadline for candidates to file their seven-day, pre-election campaign finance reports was 5 p.m. Tuesday. This election is the first time community college trustees have had to disclose their campaign spending/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Is this too much money to spend on nonpartisan races for jobs that don't pay anything?

Meyer Leads NIC Trustee $$$ Raising

Incumbent Judy Meyer outraised challenger Paul Matthews in one North Idaho College trustee race and incumbent Mic Armon and challenger Paul Matthews were fairly even in the fund-raising in another race, according to the seven-day, pre-election campaign finance reports. Meyer (report here) has raised $6,356 to defend her seat on the NIC board, while challenger Matthews (report here) has raised $3987. In the second race involving an incumbent, challenger Todd Banducci (report here) has raised $5329, while incumbent Mic Armon (report here) has raised $5007. Matthews and Banducci are also aided by the considerable fund-raising of the Kootenai County Reagan Republicans, who have spent $30,402 so far this year to support a slate of candidates at county, legislative and nonpartisan levels.

  • Also: As reported Tuesday, Ron Nilson, owner of Ground Force, has raised $12,500, including a personal loan of $4539, in his six-way race for an open NIC trustee seat. Former legislator Dean Haagenson, his chief competition, still hasn't turned in his finance report. You can read the breakdown of Nilson's report and 4 others turned in here.
  • Also: Dean Haagenson, a candidate for the open seat, has turned in his finance report, showing he raised $1325, including $750 of his own money. You can see it here.

Question: Find anything of interest in the financial statements?

Nilson has $12,500 For Trustee Race

In his race for the open Trustee Seat C on the North Idaho College Board of Trustees, Ron Nilson of Ground Force has raised $8001 an loaned himself $4539. Nilson filed his 7-day, pre-election campaign finance report with the county clerk's office ahead of today's 5 o'clock deadline. In the latest reporting period, Nilson raised $1950, including $500 donations from Greg Gervais and David Bobbit. To date, Nilson has spent $6787. Nilson spent $1805 with Reagan Republican president Ron Lahr's Strategery Group during this reporting period. The Coeur d'Alene Tribe donated $1000 to Nilson during the last reporting period. You can read his latest campaign finance statement here and here. Dean Haageson, who is also running for the seat being vacated by Trustee Ron Vieselmeyer, hasn't turned in his campaign finance statement yet. Others in the race who have turned in their reports include: Vickie Ambrosetti here, Gary Coffman here, James Ruch here, and Fritz Widenhoff here.

DFO: Incumbents Judy Meyer and Mic Armon have turned in their reports. But there opponents haven't. I'll post those reports here when they're all in.

Mic: Mary Owes Students An Apology

North Idaho College Trustee Mic Armon (pictured): When i received the invitation to the ASNIC forum, in the body of the invitation it stated that the questions were attached. On my email there was not an attachment, so I emailed the sender and requested that the questions be sent. A few minutes later I received a second email with the questions attached. The email was addressed from Duncan Menzies, ASNIC Senator, dated 10/17/2012 @ 1:18pm and sent to all of the candidates that had responded that they would attend. When I arrived on Tuesday evening for the forum, we were handed a list of approx. 9 questions, some of which were on the original email and some that were new to all of us. We were instructed to choose 4 questions each to be asked during the first portion of the program. There was not any special treatment for any of the candidates, we were all treated the exact same. I believe that Mary owes the ASNIC students an apology for insinuating that they were anything but fair.


NIC Candidates Debate Partisanship

A question about partisanship is the one that most clearly divided North Idaho College trustee candidates participating in Tuesday's forum held on the college's downtown campus. Eight contenders running for three seats on the college's board of trustees squared off Tuesday during a forum held on campus and hosted by the Associated Students of North Idaho College, NIC's student government organization. A written question, one of several fielded from audience members, asked the candidates if they felt the nonpartisan nature of community college trustee elections is important. It also asked those who have chosen to run from a partisan position to explain why/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here. (NIC Trustee Judy Meyer gives a thumbs up during candidates' forum Tuesday night)

Question: Challenger Todd Banducci has missed both forums for North Idaho College trustee. He's running against incumbent Mic Armon. Does he deserve your vote?

Nilson Wants NIC Trustee Spot

Ron Nilson said he's running for a seat on the North Idaho College Board of Trustees because the community's future leaders are its children, and their success relies on the quality of the education they receive and how well they are taught to maximize the use of their skills as they move forward. Nilson, 60, is running for election to Seat C on the NIC board. Ron Vieselmeyer, who currently holds that position, is not seeking re-election. "I support Joe Dunlap, the new president of NIC, and his efforts, and I am committed to working with him to build a bridge between the private sector and the college," Nilson said. A Coeur d'Alene resident, Nilson is president and CEO of Ground Force Worldwide, a Post Falls-based multinational company that manufacturers mining equipment. He has lived in Kootenai County for 12 years/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Other Press trustee profiles

Question: Do you think Nilson will play well together with other NIC trustees, if he is elected but other two challengers on his Reagan Republican ticket aren't?

Matthews: Cut NIC Remedial Ed

Coeur d’Alene Press interview with Reagan Republican candidate Paul Matthews offers his stand on an important issue:

“He said the college is spending too much on remedial education — non-credit course work required by students lacking the skills to take college-level classes. This is another indication, he said, of clear direction missing at NIC. ‘The governor’s workforce training initiative calls for Idaho to cut remedial education in half, and yet, our capital improvement plan calls for NIC to become a remedial education center,’ Matthews said.” More here.

Question: Do you think remedial education is an important educational function provided at North Idaho College?

Armon: NIC First, Not Political Party

NIC Trustee Mic Armon: Being that I am one of the so named “current board” that is supposedly endorsed by the local Democratic Party, I will respond to those concerns. First, at last week’s Democratic candidate forum which Judy Meyer, Gary Coffman, Dean Haagenson, Fritz Wiedenhoff & I all attended, they announced there that they would not be endorsing any candidates for the NIC Trustee position. Second, this is a non-partisan race, so it should not be about either party. I am running to represent all of the citizens of Kootenai County, not just 1 party. Third, I have worked on a number of political campaigns over the years for individuals running as Republicans and have been a Republican my entire life, but in this race I am running as a candidate under neither parties banner. Lastly, I have had numerous conversations with citizens that are from both sides of the political spectrum and they are supporting me for my experience and vision to keep moving North Idaho College forward, not because of a party affiliation.


Christie: Nilson & Co. Have Agenda

Christie Wood (re: Judy & Ron chat at NIC event): udy is a class act. I wish to have her grace someday. I am hoping she will eventually rub off on me. I tend to call people on being insincere so it is unlikely you will see me chatting it up with Ron. I say this but wish to take nothing away from the credit he deserves for all of his charitable contributions in the community. But I believe Ron has a clear agenda to change the direction of the college and that is why he is running. The contrast is when I ran for the board it was to give back to the community, and work on behalf of a college that brought such positive change to my life. I am deeply concerned that NIC has become the next pawn in the Reagan Republican chess game. Nilson, Mathews and Banducci are their hopeful “game changers." I am well aware that we have many talented citizens that can fill our board positions. None of us expect to be lifetime trustees. In this election however, we have candidates running that I believe have a do harm agenda all in a quest for power, and to promote their ideology. More below.

Question: What do you think of Christie's comments that the three Reagan Republican-endorsed candidates have an agenda to change North Idaho College?

Press: Why NIC Election Important

Coeur d'Alene Press editorial today: Most people have a good feeling about what North Idaho College means to the region. Even its staunchest critics had to raise an eyebrow, though, over the recent report on NIC's economic impact. According to a study that was released at last week's meeting of the NIC board of trustees:

  • NIC has a positive impact of $165 million on the region's economy — that's 2.7 percent of the total regional economy.
  • For students, the impact translates to an annual 16 percent return on their investment.
  • For taxpayers, the annual return on investment is 6 percent.

Whether or not you buy those numbers isn't critical to our discussion today. What does matter is that there is agreement over NIC's place not just on the local academic landscape, but on the economic one, as well. More here.

Question: The Press editorial writer goes on to credit the NIC board of trustees for its solid job in running the college in these trying times, name Trustees Mic Armon and Judy Meyer, two incumbents seeking re-election. But not naming any of the challengers. What do you make of that?

Ex-NIC Teachers Back Armon, Meyer

North Idaho College Trustees Judy Meyer (pictured) and Mic Armon have won the endorsement of a group of prominent former NIC instructors with 337 years of collective experience, including Tony Stewart, Virginia Johnson and Rolly Williams. In a letter to the local media, the 10 former instructors said of the two incumbents: "Our recommendation is based on our having worked, shoulder-to-shoulder, with students to help them build a successful future. Judy and Mic also work creatively to support the college missions." Meyer is being challenged by Paul Matthews of Rathdrum. Armon will face Todd Banducci of Coeur d'Alene. The county Reagan Republicans have endorsed Matthews and Banducci in these nonpartisan races. The 10 former instructors listed five notable achievements of the two incuments, who are seeking re-election Nov. 6. You can read those achievements and the rest of the letter here.

Question: Do you realize the importance of the nonpartisan North Idaho College trustee elections after watching the turmoil caused by partisan politics in wake of the 2011 Coeur d'Alene School Board election?

DFO: NIC Trustees Work Magic

In a candidate profile in the Coeur d'Alene Press Thursday, North Idaho College challenger Paul Matthews was quoted as saying: "In her last term alone, she led the Board in more than doubling the tax levy rate!  By contrast, I know that every tax rise is a pay cut for some struggling family." The comment is consistent with Matthews' campaign literature that correctly states that his opponent, Judy Meyer (candidate profile here), and the NIC Board of Trustees have raised the tax rate 107% in five years from 2007-12. But, intentionally or not, Matthews is telling only half or a quarter of the truth. What he isn't saying is that property valuations have tumbled in those same five years. Toss in the homeowners exemption, and most property owners are paying slightly more today for NIC property taxes than they did five years ago. I'm paying $15 more today than in 2007. For that $15, or an average increase of $3 per year (25 cents per month), I'm getting elected college leaders who have had the foresight to buy the old DeArmond Mill (a move opposed adamantly to the point of lawsuit by some local Republicans) while balancing the needs of a burgeoning student enrollment with hard economic times. In the same five years, student enrollment has jumped from 4448 to 6483. Many of the students are desperate for retraining in order to find work in the ongoing Great Recesson. What else does my extra $15 per month help buy? It supports an institution that has a $164M impact on the local economy and growing, according to a recent survey. If local Republicans weren't blinded by their Hard Right ideology, they would applaud the nonpartisan trustees who have worked financial magic in face of a growing enrollment and challenging times, rather than circulate quarter-truths — DFO.

Reader: Ward Claims Grossly Wrong

RE: Armon: Challengers' property tax claims bogus/HucksOnline

A Faithful Reader emails: "In discussions yesterday you questioned the accuracy and conflicting representations made by Paul Matthews and Todd Banducci (countered by Mic Armon) concerning NIC property taxes.  RR leader Jeff Ward responded that the levy rate had more than doubled, so the 107% increase assertion was correct.  Either he doesn't understand property taxes and the caps that limit them or he is being intentionally deceptive.  When property values fall (as they have in recent years) levy rates increase just to maintain tax charges at an even keel.  It is essentially a zero-sum process, plus the 3% increase per year, plus any foregone tax amount (as Mic Armon identified for the Ed Corridor) plus new growth at the prior year's levy rate (otherwise all new construction would get an unfair free ride and rapid growth would erode local services at a precipitous rate).  If taxable value of a property goes down from $60K with a .04 levy rate to a $40K value, the levy rate goes up .06 - but the taxes paid stay the same - plus a small annual increment.  Simply stated, 4 times 6 equals 6 times 4.  Jeff's assertions are grossly incorrect. The increase of taxes for NIC has not come close to approximating the increase in demand met by NIC during the recent recession.  It is as close to a modern-day fishes and loaves story as one could find.

DFO: I checked my tax bills from for North Idaho College from 2007 through 2011 — and I'll guarantee you that the taxes didn't double in those five years, even though thetax  rate did. I'm paying $15 more in NIC taxes today than I was in 2007. I'll discuss this more in a mini-editorial later this morning.


Armon: Challengers’ Tax Claim Bogus

From Trustee Mic Armon re: claims by challengers Paul Matthews and Todd Banducci that North Idaho College taxes increased by 107% between 2007 and now:

Regarding the statement that both Paul & Todd use in their campaign flyers that “The current NIC Board has doubled our tax rate since 2007; a 107% increase in the middle of a recession”. Here are the actual facts: Property Taxes paid by residents of Kootenai County in FY2007 $7,994,105. Taxes paid in FY2012 $13,364,250 ($2,380,000 was foregone taxes taken to fund the purchase of the Ed. Corridor) Total increase since 2007 with the purchase of the Ed. Corridor is equal to a 67% increase, but total to educational funding ( minus the cost of the Ed. Corridor) is 37%. The idea of doubling or 107% increase is totally false. Also in that same time frame, the enrollment increased by 2237 students or 46%, and tuition increased by 53%


NIC Challengers To Speak To RRs

Reagan Republican/Strategery Group candidates Todd Banducci and Paul Matthews will address the noon luncheon of the Kootenai County Reagan Republicans at Fedora restaurant today. Banducci is running against incumbent North Idaho College Trustee Mic Armon, while Matthews opposes incumbent Trustee Judy Meyer, a former member of the Idaho Board of Education whose family donated $1M to the Health & Science building. In his campaign literature, Matthews says: "The NIC Board of Trustees has raised our taxes each year since 2007 and the tax rate has increased a total of 107% in just five years. We've tightened our belts, it is time the NIC Board of Trustees did the same thing."

Question: Just curious. In real dollars, how much has the NIC budget affected the tax bill of the average property tax owner in Kootenai County? Also, for kicks, I'd like to know how much the Ron Nilson-backed KTEC school (which I voted for) has affected the tax bill of the average property tax owner.

NIC Has $146M Impact On Region

What if North Idaho College didn't exist? A recent economic impact study shows there would be a $164.6 million hole in the region's economy. Conducted by EMSI (Economic Modeling Specialists, Intl.), the results of the study were presented to trustees Wednesday during their regular monthly meeting. "This is a really important study to undertake because, especially in our current economy, education is perceived as a budget item, a cost item, and not an investment," said Gabriel Rench, a representative of the Moscow-based EMSI. EMSI analyzed NIC's investment value to students and taxpayers and also reviewed the college's effect on the economic growth of Idaho's five northern regions/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: And you wonder why the election for the Board of Trustees for North Idaho College is important?

NIC Defends Response To Threat

A North Idaho College student is no longer allowed on campus after, according to police, Patrick Budig (pictured) made a veiled threat to his counselor, referring to Columbine in his comments. Budig, 33, is being sought by both Coeur d'Alene Police as well as police in Spokane where he lives. The college has since been working closely with police the last few days to keep tabs of the situation and, so far, there hasn't been an imminent danger to the campus and no need to let students know what was going on right away. While classes are going on as usual, some students expressed concerned about the police officers around the NIC campus. "We had a right to know. This campus should have been shut down," student Amanda Razzaia said/Anusha Roy, KXLY. More here.

Question: Was the North Idaho College response in this situation appropriate?

NIC Campus On Alert Most Of Day

Coeur d'Alene police are seeking a 33-year-old North Idaho College student from Spokane who allegedly made a veiled threat to a disability counselor about "Columbine" over a discipline issue Friday, according to a police news release. Police were told of the possible threat by Patrick Ryan Budig at 7 this morning. Budig was expected back on campus this morning. However, the news release said, detectives had information that Budig was in Spokane. The news release added that officers from the city and the Sheriff’s Department spent the majority of the school day on campus, and had every entrance and exit covered in case Budig arrived. The campus wasn't locked down. Budig is currently wanted in Washington for 3rd Degree Assault with a Weapon. Coeur d’Alene Detectives are currently working with Spokane law enforcement agencies to locate Budig, who is described as 5’11, 180 lbs. with brown hair and blue eyes. His photo is attached to this release. He has two vehicles he is known to drive. They are as follows: 2006 silver Mini Cooper and 1999 Dodge Dakota.

Christie: Beware Of RR NIC Wannabes

Christie Wood: I saw your thread that the RR’s (Reagan Republicans) are targeting Judy Meyer and Mic Armon because they want to replace them with more conservative people. It just does not. make. sense. to. me. There does not seem to be any dialogue about education itself and what we need to have in place for future students. Past candidates have been very vocal about their oppostion to the Ed. Corridor. As I rode through there today it became very clear people must get involved and vote in small local elections. If the other candiates had prevailed the Ed. Corridor would still be a closed mill site with an old industrial look to it, with no public waterfront access. Students that are seeking programs in the health sciences (the long term goal of Ed Corridor programs)would need to leave home for those education opportunities.Long story short, Mic and Judy are to be thanked for their contributions, and I certainly hope they retain their board seats.

DFO: The choices for 2 or the 3 North Idaho College trustee positions are easy: incumbents Judy Meyer and Mic Armon are superb trustees. The third choice is more complicated since Trustee Ron Vieselmeyer is not seeking re-election. Ground Force boss Ron Nilson is running again, with support of the Reagan Republicans. Also in the race are: Gary W. Coffman, of Coeur d'Alene; James W. Ruch, of Coeur d'Alene; Fritz Wiedenhoff, of Rathdrum; and Dean Haagenson, of Hayden.

Question: Who would you pick for the third trustee, if you don't support Nilson?

Reagan Repubs Target NIC Board

The KCRR officially endorsed the following candidates for North Idaho College Board of Trustees:

Seat A, Paul Matthews
Seat B, Todd Banducci
Seat C, Ron Nilson

KCRR President Ron Lahr explained, “Our conservative Board of Directors looks for qualified conservative candidates who will be effective in office.” “The current NIC Board of Trustees have raised tax rates in Kootenai County by 107% since 2007. Kootenai County deserves a conservative change and these three candidates can provide it” Lahr said. Lahr also said “we believe that these highly qualified NIC Trustee Candidates will work to spend our tax money in a fiscally responsible way that really helps students as well as taxpayers.” Full news release here.


3 NIC Trustees Face Election

The last day candidates can file declaration/petition of candidacy forms with the local clerk of the North Idaho College district for the three open positions on the NIC Board of Trustees is 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31. Individuals who miss this deadline will not be placed on the ballot. They may file as a declared write-in candidate if they file a declaration of intent no later than 5 p.m. on Sept. 21. NIC is governed by a five-member board of trustees elected at large from within Kootenai County for staggered terms. Seat A, Seat B, and Seat C currently held by Judy Meyer, Mic Armon, and Ron Vieselmeyer (pictured) respectively, will appear on this year’s general election ballot during Idaho’s general election on Nov. 6. All positions are four-year terms. More below.

Question: Do you expect a last-minute ticket of Republican hardliners to file in attempt to politicize yet another nonpartisan local government board?

Labrador Holds Town Hall Meeting

Congressman Raul Labrador fields a question from the audience during a town hall meeting at North Idaho College Tuesday night. (Phantom Photographer photo for Huckleberries Online)

Reflecting on difficulties faced in his career as a doctor, Norman Leffler had a dark prediction on Tuesday night. "I tell you what's going to happen under Obamacare. Doctors like myself in their 50s and 60s, if doctors are forced to take Medicare and Medicaid kids, they're going to quit, and you're not getting younger doctors coming in," Leffler said, shouting into a microphone in the North Idaho College Student Union. "I advise my kids against going into medicine because of what's going on." Responding to the Hayden man's words, Idaho's District 1 Rep. Raul Labrador said he hasn't supported the Affordable Care Act, either, because it doesn't address health care costs. "We need to do whatever we can to reduce the cost of health care," the congressman said/Alecia Warren & David Cole, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Do you feel well represented by Congressman Labrador?

Ex-NIC Cager Playing In Olympics

Former North Idaho College basketball player Tugce Canitez (shown above) is competing for her homeland, Turkey, in the 2012 London Olympics. Canitez played on the NIC women’s basketball team that won the 2011 National Junior College Athletic Association National Championship. This is the first time the Turkish women have ever fielded an Olympic basketball team, but are currently 2-0 after upsetting the Czech Republic on Day 3 of the London Olympics. The Turkish team plays USA’s team at 2:15 p.m. (22:15 London time) Wednesday. (NIC Press Room photo)

Edit: Gookin’s Right, It Isn’t Fair

Darn it, Dan, you're right. It isn't fair. We're referring to Parental Frustration No. 4,366, Article 119, subsection B. You could look it up. We're paraphrasing here, but this particular fairness doctrine involves difficulty in effectively communicating with college-aged children. In this particular case, Dan Gookin — a local author, member of the Coeur d'Alene City Council and proud pop — wrote a letter to the editor expressing his angst over several aspects of PF 4366. One of Dan's sons didn't see a "tuition due" email he'd been sent from North Idaho College, leading to his tuition not being paid, NIC withholding the son's certificate and rendering credit for summer courses in doubt. News flash: Many college-aged children have moved past email at lightning speed. It is as antiquated to them as snail mail has become to many a middle-ager. These days, as Mr. Gookin points out, text messaging and social media like Facebook and Twitter are not just the preferred methods of youthful communication, but in some instances are seemingly the only ways they communicate/Coeur d'Alene Press Editorial Board. More here.

Question: How often do you use traditional email to communicate with others?

Trustee Responds To Gookin Letter

On Sunday, the Coeur d'Alene Press published a letter to the editor from Councilman Dan Gookin in which Gookin criticized North Idaho College for sending a son's tuition notice via email. Gookin's son apparently didn't open his email and see the bill. In today's Press, NIC Trustee Mic Armon responds to Gookin's criticism:

I can understand your concern. I have had three of my own children/students enroll for classes at the University of Idaho, the University of Arizona, online at Boise State University, online at Brigham Young University and as a dual enrolled student at NIC. Every one of these institutions has the same policy. They are all very succinct in informing the incoming student that all communication including billing, grades, updates, etc., will be through their college email account. It is truly the student’s responsibility to stay informed and read their emails. Also, once the student reaches the age of 18, they are an adult, and even though you may be paying the tuition bill, all information will only be released to the student. More here.

Question: How responsible were you at 18?

Christie: Time For Sonny To Grow Up

Item: Gookin unhappy with North Idaho College email/Coeur d'Alene Press letter to editor

NIC Trustee Christie Wood: "Dan, If you are checking in here I certaily agree with your statement of “NIC is a great learning institution.” As for the rest of your concern it is really not an issue for the Board of Trustees. If your son is over 18 years of age then he is considered an adult and you are not privy to his bills or grades even if you pay the bill. It is up to your son to inform you. All of the students are assigned an email account and they are told upfront that is how they will receive their tuition notice, any communication from instructors, and their grades. Trust me I have been in your shoes. My son was attending U of M and I did not have access to any of his records even though I paid the bill. He seemed to like that set up. He also signed up for a few on-line classes that I paid for at NIC and he never bothered attending or dropping them. I responded by dropping him from my college banking account. If he wants to finish his degree he will have to pay for it. Love him dearly but I am insisting he take responsibility. I will let you know some day how it all turns out!

Question: Tell us a time that you stepped back and let your kid learn a valuable but tough lesson.

JohnA: Ed Corridor Brings Healing

Coeur d'Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem addresses small crowd on hand for the dedication of Phase 1B (infrastructure) of future Education Corridor Wednesday afternoon at Military & River, north of North Idaho College. The project was a cooperative effort between NIC and the Lake City Development Corporation. Ribbon-cutting photograph here.

Item: The road to opportunity: Second phase of Education Corridor opens/Tom Hasslinger, Press

JohnA: What a difference a week makes. From the division of the recall we have the unity of the city and NIC completing this great project. None of it could have happened without visionaries at each entity finding a way to make this happen. And, the best part is they make it look so easy, when in reality it is far from that, as I’m sure Christie can attest. I’m also pleased that DanG attended, giving action to his words that it is time to heal the rifts and get back to making Coeur d’Alene the greatest city in Idaho.

Question: I agree with JohnA. That was a good gesture by Councilman Dan Gookin to be present at the ribbon cutting for Phase 1B of the Education Corridor. Such steps are needed to bring healing to this community. Thoughts?

NIC offers summer outdoor clinics at ‘the beach’

OUTDOOR SPORTS — Learn the basics of great outdoor activities this summer — sailing, kayaking, climbing, and stand-up paddleboarding—  in reasonably priced skills clinics organized by Outdoor Pursuits of North Idaho College.

The clinics are being offered all summer at the NIC Beach on Lake Coeur d'Alene. Cool!

For a list of all the clinics, dates and registration info:  Outdoor Pursuits registration: (208) 769-7809

Spokane College Prez To Head NIC

Joe Dunlap, president of Spokane Community College, will be the new president of North Idaho College. The NIC Board of Trustees announced today that it picked Dunlap to succeed Priscilla Bell, who will retire in June. Dunlap has been SCC president since 2008. Before that he was vice president of instruction at SCC (2004-08) and at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood, Wash. (2002-04). He also spent four years as dean of science and industrial technology at Mt. Hood Community College in Oregon; served as founding director of the School of Aviation Sciences; and was a professor of military science at Western Michigan University/Spokesman-Review. More here.