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Eye On Boise archive for Jan. 21, 2010

THURSDAY, JAN. 21, 2010

'No place else to turn' 

This morning, JFAC wrapped up three days of hearings on Health & Welfare budgets, with more troubling news about soaring caseloads, crimped funds and Idahoans being pushed onto public assistance by the economic downturn. Russ Barron, administrator of the Welfare Division, said, "The number of…

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For the highly-qualified spouse... 

Here's a news item from the AP: The State Board of Education wants to undo a law forbidding spouses of Idaho university presidents from being hired at the schools. Mark Browning, an Ed Board spokesman, told the House Education Committee Thursday university presidents often come…

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Ward adds three more stops to 14-stop tour

Congressional candidate Vaughn Ward said today he's adding three more stops to his planned 14-stop "official announcement tour" next week, in McCall, Fruitland and Weiser, making it a 17-stop tour. Ward and state Rep. Raul Labrador are vying for the GOP nomination in the 1st…

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Guv plans parks announcement 

Gov. Butch Otter has scheduled a press conference for Friday at 11 a.m. with Nancy Merrill, director of the state Department of Parks & Recreation, for "an important announcement about Parks and Recreation management." Otter's budget proposal for next year included a "conceptual" proposal to…

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Roger Christensen, chairman of the state's Catastrophic Health Care Fund board, tells the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee about the fund's soaring bills to cover health crises for Idahoans who have nowhere else to turn, and aren't eligible for Medicaid or other assistance programs. (Betsy Russell)

CAT fund health bills soaring... 

Lawmakers are struggling with runaway costs in the state's Catastrophic Health Care Fund, thanks to the plunging economy that's thrown more Idahoans on the mercy of their county indigent programs when they have a health crisis. Counties pay up to $11,000 per case, and then…

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Rep. Mary Lou Shepherd, D-Prichard, spoke out in the House State Affairs Committee on Thursday morning in favor of legislation to do away with a tax return checkoff that allows taxpayers to direct $1 of their taxes to the political party of their choice. Shepherd said the state needs all the money in its general fund it can get; the bill passed the committee 16-1 and headed to the full House. (Betsy Russell)

Panel votes 16-1 to end party checkoff 

The House State Affairs Committee has voted 16-1 in favor of HB 379, the proposal from Rep. Lynn Luker, R-Boise, to do away with the tax form check-off through which Idaho taxpayers can donate $1 to the political party of their choice, without paying any…

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About the numbers... 

So, just what does the revenue figure set by the Joint Economic Outlook & Revenue Assessment Committee yesterday signify? It's a recommendation to leadership and JFAC, but JFAC isn't bound by it. For many years, after taking testimony from economists, business leaders and more, the…

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Eye On Boise

News, happenings and more from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.