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Eye On Boise archive for July 2010

TUESDAY, JULY 13, 2010

MONDAY, JULY 12, 2010

Parents sue over 8-year-old's arrest at school 

The parents of an 8-year-old autistic girl who was arrested at her North Idaho elementary school are suing the school district and the sheriff's department in federal court, the Associated Press reports, contending the agencies violated the Americans With Disabilities Act. Spring Towry and Charles…

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The politics of the day 

It's apparently becoming fashionable in Idaho politics these days to call on elected GOP nominees who've won primary elections to drop out of the general-election race because they're not deemed Republican enough. First, the Idaho Republican Party at its state convention made such a call…

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PERSI fund shows $1 billion gain

Idaho's public employee retirement fund gained a billion dollars on its investments in the past year, and fund officials say it's healthy, despite a $2.8 billion unfunded liability over the long term. "We've just made a good rebound," said Patrice Perow, Public Employee Retirement System…

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FRIDAY, JULY 9, 2010

State: Ringo can't sue over secret tax deals 

Idaho's initial response to Moscow Rep. Shirley Ringo's lawsuit over secret tax deals: She can't do that. The state has filed a motion to dismiss the case, saying Ringo lacks standing to sue as a lawmaker, something she and her lawyer dispute. Meanwhile, Ringo's filed…

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Is it or isn't it?

Idaho GOP activist and former state Sen. Rod Beck is peeved about everyone calling the GOP platform plank he successfully sponsored this year a "loyalty oath." "It's just a candidate disclosure, that's all it is, it's not a loyalty oath," Beck declared. "It just asks…

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Idaho ranks low in school spending 

Idaho long has ranked low compared to other states in per-pupil education spending. The latest U.S. Census report shines additional light on that: Idaho ranks 50th (out of 51 states plus the District of Columbia) in per-pupil spending (Utah is last), and when state spending…

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Simpson spurns GOP loyalty oath

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson is the latest Idaho Republican who won't sign a so-called "loyalty oath" that was included in the party's platform at its convention two weeks ago. Simpson joins state Rep.…

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Tax commissioners to donate furlough pay

The AP reports that tax commissioners will donate the pay they're being forced to accept for what they had anticipated would be unpaid furloughs: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho's top tax collectors are donating vacation time to an employees' leave fund after they were barred…

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UI settles with retirees

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: MOSCOW, Idaho (AP) — The University of Idaho and more than 250 retired employees have settled a lawsuit over changes to the retirees' insurance benefits. The settlement was approved by the Latah County District Court on Thursday,…

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International Basque seminar coming to BSU

An international academic seminar on Basque immigration will be held at Boise State University July 28-30, at the height of the once-every-five-years "Jaialdi" celebration of Basque culture. The seminar, held in a different European or U.S. location each year, will include scholars from the U.S.,…

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Minnick's fundraising called 'impressive' 

The national political media is making much of preliminary fundraising numbers released by Idaho Congressman Walt Minnick for the upcoming campaign finance report, which isn't due until July 15; CQ Politics reported today that Minnick's campaign raised $410,000 from April through June 30, putting his…

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The fair fiesta fracas...

Here's a link to the letter sent by the Bonner County Republican Central Committee to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, about the committee's plans to "make a statement at the Bonner County fair" by departing from the fair's "Fiesta at the Fair" theme, and instead decorating…

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Idaho cutting service at local tax offices

Idaho plans to shut down face-to-face customer service at its five Tax Commission field offices outside Boise on Aug. 2, to free workers in those offices to focus on audits and collections. That means customer service that's been offered for more than 35 years in…

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Hemmer out, Hardy in

The Idaho Republican Party has named Phil Hardy as its "2010 Victory Director," a position that will oversee a parallel campaign in favor of Raul Labrador's challenge to 1st District Congressman Walt Minnick's re-election. Just a month earlier, the party had named Lindsay Hemmer to…

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Hart: 'I do plan on responding'

Rep. Phil Hart, R-Athol, had this response today to the convening of the newly appointed House Ethics Committee: "I guess I would say I'm anxious to get through the process, and I'm confident everything's going to work out OK for me." Hart said he's received…

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Ethics panel wants to be 'completely fair'

The newly convened House Ethics Committee promised a "by the book" investigation into the conduct of Rep. Phil Hart, R-Athol, during its first meeting today; you can read my full story here at Click here to read the committee documents - the order appointing…

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Reps. Tom Loertscher, Bert Stevenson and Bill Killen sit on the House Ethics Committee on Tuesday. (Betsy Russell)

Hart won't be excluded from hearings

House Ethics Committee Chairman Tom Loertscher said Rep. Phil Hart asked Speaker Lawerence Denney if he should attend today's meeting, and Denney checked with Loertscher. "I said we won't have questions for him today," Loertscher said. "We will not exclude him from any of the…

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Hart doesn't have to respond...

Rep. Phil Hart doesn't have to respond to the Ethics Committee, Chairman Tom Loertscher noted. "We may not receive a response - he doesn't have to respond if he chooses not to." Loertscher cautioned committee members about talking with Hart. "Just so that you know,…

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Ethics panel's four options...

The ethics committee has four possible recommendations it can make to the House regarding Rep. Phil Hart, R-Athol: Dismissal of the charges; reprimand, which requires a majority vote of House members; censure, which also requires a majority vote of the House; and expulsion, which requires…

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