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Eye On Boise archive for Jan. 2007

TUESDAY, JAN. 23, 2007

NIC Prez Burke praised by lawmakers

North Idaho Reps. Bob Nonini and Marge Chadderdon, both Coeur d’Alene Republicans, heaped praise on outgoing North Idaho College President Michael Burke today, as he addressed the House Education Committee to tell the members about NIC and what it’s up to. Burke leaves in March…

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Seven miles away, 20 percent more pay...

Idaho’s higher education leaders talk a lot about how their faculty salaries lag behind comparable institutions in the region. The University of Idaho has a particular problem competing with Washington State University, UI President Tim White said, because it’s just 7 miles away, but has…

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UI attracting first-generation students

University of Idaho President Tim White told legislative budget writers this morning that 37 percent of new freshmen who enroll at the U of I are the first generation in their families to go to college. “That’s a proud statistic for me,” he said, noting…

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MONDAY, JAN. 22, 2007

They agree - Gould is tough, smart

Former state Rep. Celia Gould, R-Buhl, won unanimous confirmation from the Senate this morning as the new state director of agriculture. Senators noted her qualifications, including an extensive background in agriculture and service in the Legislature from 1986 to 2002. Sen. Dean Cameron, R-Rupert, recalled…

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The one thing

If there were just one thing he could ask for, BSU President Bob Kustra told legislative budget writers this morning, it would be to preserve the proportion of state general fund support in the university’s budget. “Please keep that 28 percent where it is today,”…

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He can do it all

JFAC Co-Chair Rep. Maxine Bell, R-Jerome, marveled over the distinguished background of Idaho State University President Arthur Vailas, which she noted includes kinesiology, orthopedic surgery and poultry science. “So if you have a chicken with a bad foot…” she said to laughter. Vailas was in…

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FRIDAY, JAN. 19, 2007

No resolution yet on Statehouse wings standoff

Gov. Butch Otter met with legislative leaders from both parties and both houses this afternoon for an hour and a half, but there’s still no resolution to the standoff between the governor and the Legislature over expansion of the Statehouse. The meeting included experts involved…

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Seeing evil

One Boise attorney who sat in on the arraignment of convicted killer Joseph Duncan this morning in a Boise courtroom said he came because he wanted to “see evil.” Joseph Edward Duncan is accused of the most heinous and horrifying of crimes, the kidnapping and…

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THURSDAY, JAN. 18, 2007

Luna unveils budget proposal

New state schools Superintendent Tom Luna unveiled a $1.38 billion budget request for public schools today that calls for funding 3 percent in raises for teachers next year and making new state investments into classroom supplies and textbooks. “This budget supports our teachers in a…

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Annual BSU public policy survey released

The annual BSU Public Policy Survey was released this morning, and among its findings was this: 70 percent of Idahoans in the survey said they agree that the state should adopt an “English only policy.” The number was even higher in North Idaho – 75.4…

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Idaho tribal leaders weigh in on courthouse murals

After viewing controversial murals in the Ada County Courthouse, slated to temporarily house the Idaho Legislature next year, members of the state's tribes seemed to agree the paintings should be preserved – just not necessarily where they are now, reports S-R reporter Parker Howell.North Idaho…

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WEDNESDAY, JAN. 17, 2007

Idaho House honors BSU Broncos

The Idaho House just voted unanimously for a resolution honoring the Boise State Broncos on their Fiesta Bowl win. HCR 7 passed on a unanimous, 68-0 vote. During the debate on the resolution, Rep. Pete Nielsen, R-Mountain Home, sang a line from the state song,…

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Battle brewing over substance abuse funding

A battle is brewing between legislators and Gov. Butch Otter, after Otter recommended no funding at all in his budget for substance abuse services now being covered by a soon-to-expire federal grant. Lawmakers from throughout the state have been working on the substance abuse issue…

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TUESDAY, JAN. 16, 2007

Whoops, not THAT Steve Kren

The governor’s office is making a correction – it turns out the Steve Kren that Gov. Otter appointed to the Legislature is NOT a Nampa city councilman – he’s the son of the Nampa city councilman who shares his name. “It happens all the time,…

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Capitol renovation talks are on

Gov. Butch Otter is meeting with at least some legislative leaders this morning to discuss their standoff over the addition of underground “wings” to the state capitol, but Otter’s communications director, Mark Warbis, said Otter will be talking with many legislators informally about the issue.…

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He took 'road less traveled'

State Health & Welfare Director Dick Armstrong opened his JFAC presentation this morning by noting that he retired in June after 36 years with Blue Cross of Idaho, but his retirement only lasted as week – as he was then appointed director of the state’s…

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MONDAY, JAN. 15, 2007

Celebrating Martin Luther King's legacy

Here’s a dispatch from S-R reporter Parker Howell on the festivities today in the state Capitol for Martin Luther King Jr.-Idaho Human Rights Day: Instructed to tell one truth and one lie about himself to a small group of Idahoans this afternoon, Gov. Butch Otter…

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Nonini offers tribute to Burke

Today was Dr. Michael Burke’s ninth, and last, time hosting lawmakers at an annual pizza lunch sponsored by the state’s two community colleges. Burke, president of North Idaho College, didn’t mention his upcoming departure – he’ll start a new job at a California college in…

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More out-of-pocket costs for state employees

Gov. Butch Otter’s budget director, Brad Foltman, is briefing the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee this morning on Otter’s proposed budget. Among the details he’s revealed: Otter’s plan to give merit-based raises averaging 5 percent to state employees but hold benefit costs neutral could mean state workers…

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FRIDAY, JAN. 12, 2007

Governor issues stop-work order

Gov. Butch Otter has issued a stop-work order on the the capitol renovation project, including the construction of underground "wings." His office confirmed this afternoon that the construction contract includes a five-day notice provision to stop work, and Otter issued that five-day notice today. “The…

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THURSDAY, JAN. 11, 2007

Otter appoints Hagedorn to House

Marv Hagedorn of Meridian, who lost to Rep. Mark Snodgrass, R-Meridian, in the GOP primary in District 20 last spring, has been appointed to the House by Gov. Butch Otter to replace Rep. Shirley McKague, who was appointed to the Senate. Hagedorn, who is vice…

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Otter says he'd like to shoot a wolf

“I’m prepared to bid for the first ticket to shoot a wolf myself,” Gov. Butch Otter declared to cheers at a snowy sportsmen’s rally on the state Capitol steps just now. Sportsmen for Fish & Wildlife-Idaho organized the event to rally for immediate wolf delisting…

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