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Eye On Boise 2016 Idaho Legislature archive

MONDAY, JAN. 11, 2016

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter takes questions from reporters after his State of the State message on Monday, Jan. 11, 2016 (Betsy Z. Russell)

Otter: 'The right thing to do' 

Taking questions from reporters after his State of the State speech today, Gov. Butch Otter was asked if his education proposals come because he’s concerned about his legacy as governor. “I don’t know if you’re going to believe this, but I haven’t spent five minutes...

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Ybarra: Ed as priority? 'He really proved that today' 

Idaho state schools Superintendent Sherri Ybarra was ebullient after Gov. Butch Otter's State of the State address, in which he backed several of her major proposals, including restoring operational, or discretionary, funds for schools back to 2009 levels. "I think that it's a great time...

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Otter backs raises for state employees

Gov. Butch Otter spoke out on the need for raises for state employees in his State of the State message. "They take great pride in being public servants and in being responsive to the needs of Idaho citizens," he said. "That’s why I’m so pleased...

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Idaho bringing military in on cybersecurity efforts

Idaho “cybersecurity” efforts are bringing in the military, Gov. Butch Otter told lawmakers. “The Idaho Cyber Operations Squadron will include 71 Air Guard personnel, including 15 who will be working full-time on this important new mission. The Squadron also will be a great resource for...

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Lawmakers applaud outgoing commerce chief Sayer

Former state Commerce Director Jeff Sayer received sustained applause after Gov. Butch Otter recognized him in his State of the State message this afternoon, lauding his work. “The team he’s built and the programs he’s launched will continue to have a great impact on Idaho’s...

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Water funds proposed 

On water issues, Gov. Butch Otter is calling for $12 million in funding for aquifer recharge next year - $10 million in a one-time transfer, plus $2 million a year in ongoing funding. “Mr. Speaker, Senator Bair and Chairman Chase of the Idaho Water Resource...

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Otter calls for 5 more WWAMI seats 

“I’m recommending that in the coming year we follow through on our plan for providing more physician training to meet Idaho’s needs,” Gov. Butch Otter told lawmakers today. “Adding five more seats to our medical school partnership with the University of Washington will reach the...

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Idaho Gov. Butch Otter is applauded by legislative leaders during his State of the State message to lawmakers on Monday, Jan. 11, 2016 (AP / Otto Kitsinger)

Governor wants boost in STEM ed programs

Gov. Butch Otter is calling for a $12 million investment in STEM education next year, science, technology, engineering and math. That includes $10 million in one-time funds for starting up new STEM programs, plus a $2 million ongoing appropriation for operating the state’s new STEM...

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Continuing the task force education plan

Among Gov. Butch Otter’s education proposals that he’s highlighting in his State of the State message today: $38.9 million for the next phase in the “career ladder” that lawmakers started on last year, in a move to increase teacher pay; $5 million for college and...

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Otter focuses on education

Gov. Butch Otter is focusing on education, as he gives his State of the State message to a joint session of the Legislature today. “We are entrusted with the singular constitutional responsibility of providing for a ‘general, uniform and thorough system of public, free common...

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House speaker's desk prior to the convening of this year's legislative session, on Monday, Jan. 11, 2016 (Betsy Z. Russell)

State of the State on tap...

Gov. Butch Otter will give his State of the State and budget address to a joint session of the Idaho Legislature starting at 1 p.m. today to lay out his agenda for the legislative session, speaking in the House chambers. I'll be live-blogging; check back...

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SUNDAY, JAN. 10, 2016

View from Bogus Basin on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016 (Betsy Z. Russell)

Of legislative sessions and civility...

During the Idaho legislative session, one thing keeps me sane: Skiing on the weekends up at Bogus Basin. So what better way to prepare for the upcoming State of the State than a weekend on the slopes? There was a Saturday of superb conditions, on-trail...

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FRIDAY, JAN. 8, 2016

THURSDAY, JAN. 7, 2016

Eye On Boise

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