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Eye On Boise

Millenium Fund budget bill barely passes, 34-32; killing it would’ve delayed session

SB 1205, the Millennium Fund budget, just barely passed the House on a 34-32 vote, with the vote teetering back and forth several times - it settled several times at a tie - before finally reaching the two-vote margin of approval. If that budget bill had been killed, the legislative session would have been extended at least into tomorrow, and likely into next week, as JFAC would have had to convene and write a new budget bill. Opponents said they were concerned that the budget bill overrode recommendations from the special joint Millennium Fund Committee to direct funds to various anti-tobacco and preventative health projects; instead, the money was directed to the Health & Welfare budget. Rep. Dennis Lake, R-Blackfoot, said, "I think that we were gamed into the last day to hear this particular budget. ... I'll be voting no." The budget bill now goes to the governor's desk.

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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