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Eye On Boise archive for Jan. 1, 2006


Kempthorne nomination clears committee

Gov. Dirk Kempthorne’s nomination to be the next Secretary of the Interior cleared the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee this morning on a voice vote, with no opposition. However, according to the Associated Press, Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., voted “present” instead of “yes” to…

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MONDAY, MAY 8, 2006

The name may have been a giveaway

Operators of a Garden City outfit called “Big Bucks Bingo” have been charged with tax fraud and conspiracy for allegedly claiming more of their take went to charity than really did. It matters because charitable bingo is only legal in Idaho if at least 20…

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Apparently that was a good sign

It turns out that there was no protocol reason for Sen. Pete Domenici, chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, to be addressing Idaho Gov. Dirk Kempthorne repeatedly as "Mr. Secretary" at the end of his confirmation hearing today, as the committee considered…

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Kempthorne picks Ponderosa

Various senators have questioned Idaho Gov. Dirk Kempthorne about Interior Department issues in their own states, from Hawaii to South Carolina, some of which he had to delay comment on until he learned more. So when Idaho Sen. Larry Craig got his turn to ask…

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TUESDAY, MAY 2, 2006

State tax revenues way up in April

Idaho’s state tax revenues for April, at least according to preliminary numbers, are up – way up – to the tune of $112 million more than expected. A whopping $92 million of that came from the individual income tax. Corporate income tax was up $12…

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MONDAY, MAY 1, 2006

Ah, what's in a name?

A newly formed political party, the United Party, may appear on Idaho’s November ballot – even though the group hasn’t gathered the nearly 12,000 signatures it takes to get a new party on the Idaho ballot. That’s because the United Party is merging with the…

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MONDAY, APRIL 24, 2006

So who was governor on Friday?

Now that Gov. Dirk Kempthorne is spending most of his time – including all of last week and part of this week – back in D.C. preparing for his confirmation hearings as the nominee for Secretary of the Interior, Lt. Gov. Jim Risch is serving…

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Greg's tie worked

Greg Hahn, Statehouse reporter for Boise’s Idaho Statesman newspaper, has been on an ugly tie vigil for the past two weeks, trying to convince lawmakers to wrap up their session and head out of town. (Idaho Statehouse tradition, started by former AP correspondent Bob Fick,…

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Senate is done, too

The Senate has passed its final bills – the Idaho Transportation Department budget, which passed 34-0, and HJM 26, a non-binding memorial encouraging the peace process in the Basque country that passed on a voice vote – and completed its business for the session.

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GARVEE bill passes Senate on 34-1 vote

The highway bonding bill just passed the Senate 34-1, with lots of praise for all those who worked on the $200 million compromise plan between lawmakers, the governor, and the Idaho Transportation Department. The bill, which now goes to the governor, includes major upgrades for…

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They're waiting...

House members have sent a delegation to the Senate and the governor informing them that they’re done with their business and ready to adjourn sine die, but the Senate is still debating House amendments to SB 1501, and that debate is stretching on…

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New bill passes Senate on unanimous vote

The Senate has voted unanimously, 35-0, in favor of a new bill, SB 1502, that sponsor Sen. Brad Little, R-Emmett, described as “déjà vu all over again.” It’s the advisory vote measure that the Senate passed earlier, to ask voters if they want to remove…

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Senators just milling around

Senate Republicans finished up their closed-door caucus more than an hour ago, but they’re not back in session yet – they’re just milling around. “We’re waiting – we don’t have anything on our calendar except for one bill,” said Senate GOP Caucus Chair Brad Little,…

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The debate is on

The Senate is back in, and is debating a motion from Sen. Brad Little, R-Emmett, to not concur in the House amendments to SB 1404. Meanwhile, the House is just now convening for the day.

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MONDAY, APRIL 10, 2006

Deals in the works?

The House has recessed until 3 p.m., at which time both the Republicans and Democrats are planning short caucuses before they return to the floor. No committee meetings were announced before the House recessed – not even Rev & Tax – so it doesn’t look…

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Meeting law amendment passes 64-1

SB 1492a, the amended bill to preserve the Idaho Open Meeting law but add a provision that legislative committee meetings can be closed in certain “extraordinary” circumstances specifically laid out in House or Senate rules, passed the House on a 64-1 vote, with just Rep.…

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Senate on recess until 2:15 p.m

Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis just told the Senate that, contrary to what some of them appear to believe, no agreement has been reached on aquifer recharge. “It would be less than fair for me to characterize to the Senate that a resolution has been…

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