Writings and observations

First take

Those were some startling pictures, of Idaho Governor Butch Otter happily sharing the podium with Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell – announcing a partnership on improving sagebrush landscapes for reasons including protecting the sage grouse. Jewell remared that “We now have a fully integrated Strategy among federal, state, tribal and community partners that provides a set of actions to take now and in the future to fight rangeland fires across the West,” and Otter’s assent put a significant exclamation point to that. Otter ordinarily is happiest when fed-bashing, but he seems to be fully on board this one. Could this lead to more cooperation? Better not press the point too far.

Varied results in the local levy and school elections around the Northwest yesterday. Maybe the most significant was one not school-related: Measure 8-81 in Curry County, where voters rejected (57.2% no) a law enforcement bond issue, aimed essentially at retoring the almost wholly eviscerated law enforcement operations in that eviscerated county. Sheriff John Ward was quoted as saying, “It would be an understatement to say we’re disappointed with the results.” So too must be the other residents of the county contemplating the drain this sad county is circling.

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