Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 35° Partly Cloudy

Tag search results

Tags let us describe our content with keywords, making it easier to find what you're most interested in. Use the search box to look for tags, or explore our coverage with the lists below.

Otter warns of ‘disasters’ looming with state’s bridges

The day after the Idaho House of Representatives killed Gov. Butch Otter’s proposal to raise the state’s gas tax to fund road work, the governor told a Coeur d’Alene Rotary club that putting off highway maintenance will saddle our children and grandchildren with repairs that will cost more in the future. “We’ve got 4,000 bridges of which, in the next approximately five years, at least half of those are going to reach their designed life,” Otter told the audience of about 125 people at the Coeur d’Alene Resort. “That means, like the bridge you’ve got just north of here, we’re going to have a lot more bridges that are going to be very popular because they too are going to be appearing in Popular Mechanics … talking about them as one of the 10 worst infrastructure disasters that are waiting to happen in the state of Idaho.

Otter warns of pressing highway needs

The day after the Idaho House of Representatives killed Gov. Butch Otter’s proposal to raise the state’s gas tax to fund road work, the governor told a Coeur d’Alene Rotary club that putting off highway maintenance will saddle our children and grandchildren with repairs that will cost more in the future.

Otter plan steers money to roads, not schools

BOISE – Gov. Butch Otter’s plan to boost road spending three different ways but cut education sent Idaho lawmakers reeling Thursday, with some saying the governor’s right and others calling for “middle ground.” “I applaud the governor in his desire to protect the infrastructure of the state – that’s important. But the infrastructure of the state is not just roads – it’s corrections, it’s state police, it’s education,” said state Senate Finance Chairman Dean Cameron, R-Rupert. “We can’t afford to let that infrastructure slide. We only get a chance once to educate a child in the first grade or to teach ’em to read. If we fail in that infrastructure, it’ll be much more painful ... than in roads.”

Lawmakers mull Otter plans to boost roads, cut schools

Gov. Butch Otter's plan to boost road spending three different ways but cut education sent Idaho lawmakers reeling Thursday, with some saying the governor's right and others calling for "middle ground."

Otter will accept $1 billion stimulus

BOISE – Despite national reports that Idaho Gov. Butch Otter was among a few governors who would reject federal stimulus money, Otter said Friday that he’ll take most – if not all – of the cash. “I’m gonna hold my nose, and I’m gonna take it,” he told the Idaho Press Club.

Gray wolves de-listed in Idaho, Montana

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says he is upholding a decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove gray wolves in the Northern Rockies, including in Idaho and Montana, and the Great Lakes from the federal endangered list.

Strapped family seeks stimulus slice

BOISE – Sitting in her wheelchair in her three-bedroom, one-bath 1915 home in south-central Idaho, Melody Russell admits she’s not a bank. She’s not a carmaker or an insurance firm or a wind turbine. Even so, the 48-year-old mother of five with multiple sclerosis and a husband with a transplanted liver and no colon would like a share of the $787 billion federal stimulus. After watching fat cats on Wall Street reap federal largesse in recent months of economic turmoil, Russell said she got to thinking: Why not regular folks like her?

Idaho stimulus requests: They want how much for what?

BOISE - A geothermal outfit wants $225 million for well-drilling. Micron wants $100 million for a project. One Idaho woman wants $34,000 to pay off credit cards. All are among a huge array of request for funding from the federal economic stimulus that Idaho Gov. Butch Otter released today.

In brief: Ethanol exemption bill clears committee

The first two bills in Idaho Gov. Butch Otter’s six-bill transportation funding package came up for hearings in the House Transportation Committee on Tuesday, and while one passed unanimously, the other stalled. House Bill 96, to repeal the ethanol exemption, cleared the panel. The other, HB 150, to add a $20 fee to every specialty license plate, provoked an array of questions from the committee. The panel voted unanimously to hold the bill, though Chairwoman JoAn Wood, R-Rigby, said it could be reconsidered once the administration provides more information.

Otter names stimulus panel

Gov. Butch Otter named eight people, including three former governors and five current lobbyists, to a panel that will review proposals from Idaho agencies and companies wanting a share of the federal stimulus package. They are former Republican Gov. Phil Batt, former Democrat Govs. Cecil Andrus and John Evans, former Republican budget chiefs Mike Brassey, Brian Whitlock and Jeff Malmen, and former Democrat budget chiefs Marty Peterson and Darrell Manning.

Otter seeks tax increases for roads

BOISE – Gov. Butch Otter, arm bound in a sling after shoulder surgery but vigorously greeting supporters, shaking hands (with his left hand) and touting his top priority – fixing Idaho roads – spoke out on the steps of the Capitol Annex Tuesday, urging lawmakers to pass his transportation plan. The plan – five bills that would increase Idaho’s gas tax, car registration fees and more – had just been introduced on unanimous votes in the House Transportation Committee, though some lawmakers said they had concerns about it.

Idaho governor proposes transportation plan

Gov. Butch Otter, arm bound in a sling after shoulder surgery but vigorously greeting supporters, shaking hands (with his left hand) and touting his top priority - fixing Idaho roads - spoke out on the steps of the Capitol Annex today, urging lawmakers to pass his transportation plan.

Otter back right on schedule

BOISE – Lt. Gov. Brad Little, at the close of his budget hearing before state lawmakers this week, was asked by Rep. George Eskridge, R-Dover, “Do you and Gov. (Butch) Otter plan on rodeoing at the same time?” Little responded with a chuckle, “He keeps telling me it was the bit on the horse, so I might have to get him a new bridle. … It was pretty good surgery, but he’s back in business. I don’t know how much he trusts me to be governor.”

Idaho agency’s efficiency alters budget plans

BOISE - Idaho Gov. Butch Otter’s plan to trim the duties of the state Board of Education by moving a slew of agencies out from under its oversight has hit one snag — the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.

Surgery puts Otter out of office for a week

BOISE – Idaho Gov. Butch Otter, who missed a crucial month of last year’s legislative session because of hip surgery – during which state lawmakers rejected much of his agenda – was back on the operating table Monday, this time for unexpected shoulder surgery after a recent team roping accident. “The governor zigged and his horse zagged; he caught the steer, but his shoulder didn’t fare well,” first lady Lori Otter wrote in a letter to lawmakers and state agency heads. She said the injury occurred about three weeks ago, but an MRI on Friday found serious enough damage that surgery was ordered for Monday.

Idaho governor out for surgery – again

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter, who missed a crucial month of last year's legislative session due to hip surgery, leaving his agenda stalled with state lawmakers, today unexpectedly went in for shoulder surgery after a team roping accident.

Idaho schools chief proposes cuts

BOISE – Idaho’s top education official Thursday proposed $62 million in funding cuts for public schools next year, slicing into everything from teacher pay to administration to building maintenance.

Lobbyists helping Idaho lieutenant governor

BOISE – A week after new Idaho Lt. Gov. Brad Little said it was the “best practice” for elected officials not to accept campaign contributions from lobbyists during the legislative session, dozens of lobbyists with issues pending before the 2009 Legislature are chipping in more than $6,000 to sponsor a campaign event that benefits him. This comes as minority Democrats promote a bill to forbid lobbyists from giving contributions during the session to elected officials like Little, as part of good government reforms. At least 16 states ban or restrict such giving from all contributors during legislative sessions; another 12 restrict giving by lobbyists, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

NIC crimped by state budget crunch

North Idaho College, which had its budget hearing before JFAC this morning, had been hoping for $605,100 next year to start up a much-needed dental hygienist program in partnership with a local free clinic, and $334,500 for the first year of a two-year campus technology upgrade to get its classrooms up to minimum technology standards.