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Eye On Boise archive for March 9, 2011


Rep. Brian Cronin, D-Boise, addresses a teachers' rally in Capitol Park late Wednesday afternoon, protesting the enactment of legislation limiting teacher collective bargaining rights and imposing a merit pay plan. After he spoke, the crowd began chanting, "Cronin for Governor." (Betsy Russell)

Ralliers chant 'Cronin for Governor' 

At the teachers' rally in Capitol Park this evening, Rep. Brian Cronin, D-Boise, talked about "what was marketed as a school reform plan," saying, "We know the plan is nothing more than a fiscal crisis plan and a retribution for teachers plan." Cronin said, "We're…

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Teachers and supporters ring the state Capitol in protest late Wednesday over passage of legislation restricting their collective bargaining rights and more; the event was one of 14 planned across the state after school on Wednesday. (Betsy Russell)

Teachers ring Capitol in protest...

Hundreds of teachers and their supporters are ringing the state Capitol, many with red scarves tied across their mouths to signify their voices being silenced, in protest over the passage yesterday of SB 1108 and today's passage of SB 1110, the first two bills in…

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Luna: 'Another monumental step' 10 

Here's a link to my full story at on today's House passage of SB 1110 on teacher merit pay, the second bill in state schools Supt. Tom Luna's three-bill school reform package. The first bill, SB 1108 on teacher contracts, passed yesterday, while the…

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How they voted...

Here's how House members voted on SB 1110, the teacher merit pay bill, which passed on a 44-26 vote; all 13 House Democrats opposed the measure, as did 13 Republicans: Voting in favor: Reps. Anderson, Barbieri, Barrett, Bateman, Bayer, Bedke, Black, Block, Boyle, Chadderdon, Collins,…

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House passes SB 1110 on 44-26 vote 

The House has voted 44-26 in favor of SB 1110, the teacher pay-for-performance bill; having already passed the Senate, the bill now moves to the desk of Gov. Butch Otter, who cosponsored the measure and has indicated he'll sign it into law. The bill is…

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Sarah Bedkey, filling in for injured Rep. Scott Bedke, her husband, urges support Wednesday for SB 1110, the teacher merit pay bill. She said he husband long has been an advocate for pay for performance. (Betsy Russell)

Sarah Bedke urges support for SB 1110 

Acting Rep. Sarah Bedke, R-Oakley, filling in for injured husband Scott Bedke, told the House, "My husband is and has been a champion for education reform for the past decade. ... He has supported efforts to raise academic standards for students and raise accountability for…

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Debate: 'Hopefully I'll sleep better tonight' 

Rep. Reed DeMordaunt, R-Eagle, told the House he chaired a committee sponsored by the Albertson Foundation that researched pay for performance systems around the United States. Studies showed they helped students improve, he said. DeMordaunt said in his view, SB 1110 would "put something in…

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McGeachin: 'An unfunded mandate' 

Rep. Janice McGeachin, R-Idaho Falls, spoke out against SB 1110. "When you put all of the plan together, all three bills, then this may work," she said. "My concern with this bill is the numbers and the finances just don't shake out." She said, "I've…

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Ringo: 'Commitment to fund it'

Rep. Shirley Ringo, D-Moscow, told the House, "I don't have any particular heartburn with alternative methods of pay." But she said Idaho in the past has promised pay programs like this one - including a career-ladder program in 1980, when she was teaching, and a…

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Dems quiz Nonini on merit-pay bill 

Rep. Elfreda Higgins, D-Garden City, asked whether there is any data showing that the teacher merit pay bill would improve student performance. Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, said no, but said it's "my belief" that rewarding outstanding teachers will attract and retain them and thereby…

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Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, opens debate in the House on Wednesday on SB 1110, the teacher merit pay bill. He's the House sponsor of the bill, which is part of state schools Supt. Tom Luna's "Students Come First" reform plan. (Betsy Russell)

Nonini: 'Reward excellence in the classroom' 

"Pay for the performance will reward excellence in the classroom," Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, told the House, opening debate on SB 1110, the teacher merit pay bill. Noting that the bill's first-year cost is $38 million and no funding source is identified, Nonini bristled…

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JFAC approves GARVEE plan, 17-3

The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee has voted 17-3 in favor of the ITD board's recommendation for GARVEE bonding for next year, which the transportation board says will be its last such request. The bonding plan totals $162 million, and is all for construction - $79.4 million…

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Sarah Bedke named as temporary sub 

Sarah Bedke, wife of injured House Assistant Majority Leader Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, has taken a seat in the House as the temporary substitute for her husband, while he recovers from a farming accident in which he was hit by a 1-ton bale of hay, and…

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Eye On Boise

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