Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Eye On Boise

JFAC rebuffs Hagedorn move to slash Hispanic Commission funding

JFAC has voted 14-5 to set a budget for the Commission on Hispanic Affairs that cuts the tiny agency's budget by 5.5 percent next year, heading off a move by Rep. Marv Hagedorn, R-Meridian, to cut it by 47.3 percent in state funds and 18.4 percent in total funds. Gov. Butch Otter had recommended a general-fund reduction of just 3.5 percent. "Every dollar we take out of here would be in furloughs and personnel and it truly would cripple the organization," said Sen. Nicole LeFavour, D-Boise. Even the governor's recommendation, she said, "is pretty harsh. We probably shouldn't cut them more."

Hagedorn said, "While ensuring equal rights and equal opportunity for all Idaho citizens is a top priority for the Legislature, the current budgetary situation does not allow the state to provide ongoing general fund support for the commission at historic levels." Hagedorn said, "This is an effort to help us get back on track in balancing our budgets."

Sen. Bert Brackett, R-Rogerson, said further cuts in the tiny budget go beyond that issue; the agency has only three employees. "It becomes a question of whether we're even going to have a viable Hispanic Commission," he said.

Eye On Boise

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