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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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MONDAY, APRIL 11, 2016

Wild Card/Monday -- 4.11.16 40 

A buddy just told me that he swung by the DMV this morning to get a new license because his is expired. He discovered the problem while trying to get a hunting license last week. He figured that the DMV might be busy this morning. He was right. The place was packed, not a parking spot to be found in the administration building parking lot.

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Newspaper worker may change plea

A Coeur d’Alene sex offender accused of assaulting and trying to kidnap a woman he worked with last fall may plead guilty next week. Jason A. Edwards, 45, who worked at the Coeur d’Alene Press, had pleaded not guilty to attempted first-degree kidnapping, battery with intent to commit a serious felony and aggravated assault in the Nov. 1 incident.

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Insurance fraud brings sentence

Attorney General Lawrence Wasden says a Coeur d’Alene man has been sentenced for one count of insurance fraud. First District Judge Benjamin Simpson gave Zachary L. Ozuna-Wilbur a one year fixed and a one year indeterminate prison sentence, ordered him to pay $1,151 in restitution to Geico Insurance and the Idaho Department of Insurance.

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5 stages of dandelions 

In his Slice column, Paul Turner lists the 5 stages of dandelions, beginning with Stage 1 -- Denial (If you ignore them, maybe they'll go away.) Question: When it comes to dandelions, are you tolerant of them? Intolerant? Don't care?

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Blogos -- 4.11.16

The daily roundup of posts from the Huckleberries Online blogosphere includes: Your weekly planner/On Tap, Better water/Randy Stapilus, Week in Review/Better Idaho, Political chaos/Dogwalk Musings, Wildlife cams bring nature home/Outdoors, Catch authors Vestal & Ligon Tuesday/7 Blog, The heat goes on & the voting, too/Slight Detour ...

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Hoffman explains Freedom Index 26 

Wayne Hoffman, of Idaho Freedom Foundation, is circulating a video to media and legislators explaining his organization's controversial "Freedom Index." Hoffman writes: "We've found there seems to be some misconceptions about what the Index is and what the Index does and why we put so much effort into rating legislation each year." (Video below)

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Dale Smith, of Post Falls, rides the Citylink C Route from the Hayden Public Library to Riverstone on August 20, 2015. A cashless fare system is being proposed for Citylink commuters. (Coeur d'Alene Press file photo)

Free rides to end at CityLink

For the two years Lindsey Smith has been riding Citylink for free, she has found the bus transit system reliable as well as economical for her to get around. So the Coeur d'Alene woman did a double-take when she heard about a planned cashless fare system to ride the bus. "All good things must come to an end," Smith said while waiting for the bus.

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Quotable Quote 

"Thankfully, many lawmakers have begun to see the Freedom Foundation for what it really is: a lobbying group seeking influence, not a think tank or a media outlet deserving of much attention" -- Twin Falls Times-News.

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Intolerance falls short in Twin Falls 

In a recent editorial, the Twin Falls Times News comments on the dismal failure of opponents to gather enough signatures to close the College of Southern Idaho Refugee Center in Twin Falls: "The measure wasn't just squashed, it was obliterated. Overwhelmingly rejected, vanquished and snuffed, resoundingly."

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Edit: Freedom Index meaningless 11 

In a recent editorial, the Twin Falls Times-News called the "Freedom Index" of the Idaho Freedom Foundation meaningless. "Legislators shouldn’t be beholden to any special interest, but especially not the Idaho Freedom Foundation," writes the Times-News editorialist. "The group takes a hardline position on every issue."

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SR: Traffic safety should come first 10 

SR editorial: "Bad news for unsafe drivers. It’s National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and Idaho and Washington law enforcement agencies are in the midst of emphasis patrols. Legislators in both states could assist this effort by updating laws on cellphone use. Idaho badly needs to update its seat belt law."

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Idaho's Constitutional Carry Bill allows Idaho residents 21 or older statewide, who are not otherwise disqualified, to carry a concealed weapon without a permit. (Jake Parrish/Coeur d'Alene Press)

Permitless carry raises questions 

It is illegal to have six shots while carrying a 6-shooter in Idaho drinking establishments. But when a patron does it anyway, what’s a bar or restaurant owner to do? Law enforcement officials and alcohol beverage industry groups alike are using the passage of Idaho's "Constitutional Carry Bill” as an avenue to educate individuals on the law.

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Labrador begins re-election effort 10 

First District GOP Congressman Raul Labrador kicked off his re-election campaign with two $50-a-plate fundraisers, one in Coeur d’Alene at the Idaho Wildlife Museum in Riverstone that drew 90 people. ... He had harsh words for Washingtonm, D.C., colleagues: "Today’s political climate in Washington is the result of poor leadership."

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AM Headlines -- 4.11.16

The daily roundup of AM Headlines includes: Otter signs AG budget bill/EOBoise, Free rides to end on CityLink/Press, Man dies in rollover near Rathdrum/Press, County mulls Post Falls DMV office/Press, Labrador kicks off re-election campaign/EOBoise, Passage of permitless care bill creates questions/Press + more ...

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Poll: Hucks Nation favors Stewart

By a lopsided margin, Hucks Nation favors incumbent Kootenai County Commissioner David Stewart in his re-election race against challenger Chris Fillios. 228 of 354 respondents (64.41%) favor Stewart. Today's Poll: Should the county sheriff decide on the constitutionality of laws as well as enforce them?

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Brockett: Court oversteps boundaries 11 

Don Brockett, former Spokane County prosecutor, responds to the lead item in my Sunday Huckleberries column. In the item, John Green, the constitutional sheriff candidate running as a Republican, embraces the endorsement of controversial "Sheriff Richard Mack." I said I prefer sheriffs who enforce the law rather than interpret it.

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Trib: Idaho foxes circle AG hen house 

In a weekend editorial, Opinion Editor Marty Trillhaase of the Lewiston Tribune applauds AG Lawrence Wasden for not being the yes man that Gov. Butch Otter and GOP legislative leaders want. Wasden's independence has been a bright light in Idaho's single-party politics that tend to play follow-the-leader even when the leader is wrong.

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Oliver OK w/KCRCC name ploy 

Chairman Neil Oliver of the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee seems to be OK with shadowy PAC group that shares same acronym, the Kootenai County Republican Concerns Citizens. "It is a fine line. It is a similar acronym," he told the Press. Oliver is OK with the ploy because the group used its full name on a endorsement flier.

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Press: Otter takes gutsy stands 

In its Sunday edit, the Coeur d'Alene Press applauds Idaho Gov. Butch Otter for standing against the Patriot Act in its formative years and the Idaho "Freedom" Foundation now. Also for vetoing an unconstitutional bill involving the Bible. Now, the Press says, Otter needs to make nice w/another good public servant, AG Lawrence Wasden.

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Huckleberries Online

D.F. Oliveria started Huckleberries Online on Feb. 16, 2004. Oliveria's Sunday print Huckleberries is a past winner of the national Herb Caen Memorial Column contest.