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Posts published in “Briefings”

Idaho Briefing – Sept 11

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter said on September 6 that the State of Idaho and 63 Idaho schools districts and education providers have agreed to settle all financial claims with the Federal Communications Commission regarding the Idaho Education Network (IEN).

Smoke from several wildfires in Idaho and surrounding states is affecting the air quality for residents in nearly every Idaho community and is expected to continue to do so for the next several days. Public health officials are advising people in the affected areas to limit their time outside as much as possible to reduce their exposure to smoke.

The nomination of Idaho State Senator Bart Davis to serve as Idaho’s next United States Attorney has been sent to the full Senate for consideration.

Although there has been a swarm of earthquakes in Southeast Idaho the likelihood of a strong 7.0 earthquake, although possible, is remote, noted professors in the Idaho State University Department of Geosciences.

The University of Idaho saw its most successful fundraising year in its 128-year history for fiscal year 2017, receiving more than $38.7 million in gifts and commitments.

Idaho Briefing – September 4

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

Much of Idaho’s attention last week went to a passing, of former Governor Cecil Andrus. Services were held last week in Boise.

Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter appointed Fifth District Judge G. Richard Bevan of Twin Falls on August 29 to succeed retiring Justice Daniel Eismann on the five-member Idaho Supreme Court.

Ada County re-opened a section of the Boise River Greenbelt that has been closed since March because of high river flows, pathway damage and flood recovery efforts.

State regulators have denied a request to reverse their decision regarding the contract terms for several proposed PURPA battery storage projects in southern Idaho.

Idaho big game hunters have been on a roll in recent years with a top-10, all-time deer harvest in 2016, an all-time record whitetail harvest in 2015, and a top-five, all-time elk harvest in 2015.

Idaho National Laboratory has released multiple new open-source software projects that are freely available to the public and open to collaboration directly with researchers and engineers outside of the laboratory. Fostering widespread distribution of this software will accelerate the adoption of these technologies within industry, and fuel innovation in other research organizations that may build on them.

PHOTO Senator Crapo delivers remarks before presenting the Specific Manufacturing Capability (SMC) project with the Spirit of Idaho Award. (photo/Senator Crapo)

Idaho Briefing – August 28

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

Cecil Andrus, governor of Idaho for longer than anyone else (from 1971-77 and again from 1987-95) and secretary of the Interior in the Carter Administration, died on August 24 in Boise, of complications from lung cancer.

The Idaho Department of Lands auctioned 59 state-owned lakefront lots on Priest Lake for deeded ownership during public, oral auctions Friday and Saturday in Coeur d’Alene. The land sales generated $29,066,040 for the endowment funds that support public schools.

In an Idaho Falls laboratory, interns Matthew Yim and Michael Crain-Zamora tinker with complicated glass and metal vessels used to grow Gluconobacter oxydans, a bacterium that causes fruit to rot.

Idaho State University researchers are seeking input from farmers, water managers and policy makers about their experiences with efforts to replenish the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer that began in 2016.

Faced with declining revenue as Idahoans increasingly abandon land line phone service, state regulators have raised a monthly surcharge on land lines and questioned the sustainability of the Idaho Universal Service Fund (IUSF).

A public hearing will be held August 31 to take comment on applications allowing trucks weighing up to 129,000 pounds on sections of U.S. 26, the I-86 Business Loop, Idaho 37, Idaho 38, U.S. 91, Idaho 34, U.S. 89, Idaho 61 and U.S. 30.

PHOTO In a photo from 1974, then- Governor Cecil Andrus and Senator Frank Church converse at a political event. Andrus is wearing a tag for lieutenant governor candidate John Evans, who would win that year and succeed Andrus as governor. Andrus died last week.

Idaho Briefing – August 21

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

Idaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July fell to its lowest levels since mid-2008 while businesses led the nation in over-the-month job growth at 0.6 percent.

The Boise National Forest is temporarily closing the South Pioneer Fire Recovery Project area including the Rock Creek drainage on the Lowman Ranger District for public safety. The Rock Creek drainage includes National Forest System road 594.

State Representative Luke Malek, R-Coeur d’Alene, on August 16 sqaid he will run for the 1st District U.S. House seat now held by Republican Raul Labrador.

Attorney General Lawrence Wasden has released his latest Consumer Protection Division report.

Based on demand, both United and Delta Airlines have added additional flights at Idaho Falls Regional Airport (IDA) on the days before and after the eclipse. Allegiant Airlines has not added any additional flights.

Northwest federal agencies that work to protect the environment, fish and wildlife are pledging to partner more closely on understanding water temperature modeling needs for Columbia and Snake river salmon, steelhead and bull trout. These fish need cool water, and part of the regional effort to recover these species includes studying the conditions and actions that will help protect and improve cold-water habitat.

PHOTO Capt. Nick Caraballo, 391st Fighter Squadron pilot, fills out flight logs before flight August 8, 2017, at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. Airmen from the 391st from Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho demonstrate their tactical prowess during RED FLAG-Alaska 17-3. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Malissa Armstrong)

Idaho Briefing – August 14

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

Idaho State University President Arthur C. Vailas on August 9 announced his plans for retirement. The announcement was made to the Idaho State Board of Education during its monthly meeting.

Construction of a non-motorized trail between the Redfish Lake recreation complex and the City of Stanley will soon become a reality, according to the Sawtooth National Forest.

The Bureau of Land Management on August 9 said livestock grazing will continue on BLM-managed portions of the Craters of the Moon National Monument in Idaho.

Major General Gary L. Sayler (pictured) announced on August 10 that he will retire October 31 after more than seven years as Adjutant General of the Idaho National Guard, capping a 45-year military career.

The Department of Finance announced on August 10 that financial regulators from five states, including Idaho, have reached a joint settlement agreement with two subsidiaries of IQor Holdings Inc. for failure to comply with federal and state consumer protection laws related to debt collection practices.

PHOTO Six thousand tons of alfalfa containing elevated levels of bromide could soon be bioenergy thanks to a collaboration between the state of Idaho and Idaho National Laboratory. (photo/Idaho National Laboratory)

Idaho Briefing – August 7

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

Beginning August 5 Idahoans needed to dial the area code along with the seven-digit telephone number in order to make a local call. The Idaho Public Utilities Commission approved a new area code for the state in December 2015 to address the need for additional phone numbers. To implement the new area code, the Commission also approved mandatory 10-digit dialing for all of Idaho.

Two of Idaho’s largest and best-known business law firms said on August 1 that, they will join forces and unite as 75 attorneys strong under the Hawley Troxell banner.
Moffatt Thomas is joining Hawley Troxell.

The first sockeye of the year recently arrived in the Stanley Basin, including a naturally produced fish on July 27 and a hatchery fish on Aug. 2. The fish completed a 900-mile journey that included passing through eight dams and swimming 6,500 vertical feet in elevation from the Pacific to Stanley.

The Idaho Department of Insurance has posted proposed health insurance premium rates and the requested increases for plan year 2018 on its website.

The biggest solar event to pass through the area in years is just a few weeks away and the city of Pocatello is helping residents, businesses, and visitors to the Gate City get prepared.

SEAL COATING Seal coat work coming to many Magic Valley highways, impacting I-84, US 93, ID 75 and many others. (photo/Idaho Transportation Department)

Idaho Briefing – July 31

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

The Idaho Republican Party gathered in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho on July 22 and elected Jonathan Parker as the Idaho Republican Party Chairman. Parker was elected to fill the chairman's seat that was left open when past Chairman Stephen Yates stepped down in April.

The Kootenai County Republican organization on July 25 passed a resolution de4nouncing Republican Senators Mike Crapo and Jim Risch for backing a bill setting substantial sanctions on Russia.

The Bonneville Power Administration on July 26 set rates for fiscal years 2018 and 2019 that will help support long-term rate stability and maximize the value of the regional federal power and transmission systems.

Ada County Parks & Waterways is finally able to announce the official opening of the 2017 Boise River Float Season in Barber Park this Saturday, July 29th! All Barber Park services including the Boise River Raft & Tube equipment rental and shuttle service will be fully operational.

Rocky Mountain Power has asked the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to approve its plans to build or acquire four wind farms in Wyoming, upgrade 13 existing wind facilities and improve its transmission system.

Idaho Briefing – July 24

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

The Idaho Supreme Court on July 18 sustained, in a 4-1 ruling, a veto by Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter of a proposal to repeal the sales tax on many grocery items in the state.

The Idaho State Department of Agriculture, the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources and the Bear Lake Regional Commission on July 21 announced a landmark cooperative agreement today that enhances aquatic invasive species prevention efforts in the Bear Lake area.

In an effort to reduce costs and provide more efficient service to the public, the Idaho Panhandle National Forest is constructing an Interagency Natural Resource Center that will house the IPNF Supervisor’s Office, Bureau of Land Management’s Coeur d’Alene field office and local US Fish and Wildlife Service offices.

The Canadian firm Hydro One Limited on July 19 said that it planned to acquire the Northwest utility Avista for C$67 (US$53) per share in a C$6.7 billion (US$5.3 billion) all-cash transaction.

The Pocatello City Council has put its seal of approval on the effort to raise a new and official flag for the city.

PHOTO The Idaho booth at the Paris Air Show, which Idaho officials and business owners visited. Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter remarked, “I joined 11 Idaho-based aerospace companies last month in traveling to France for the International Paris Air Show. Idaho Department of Commerce officials and I helped showcase our Idaho companies' products and innovative concepts at the Idaho Pavilion in Paris. With manufacturers, vendors and buyers from all over the world participating, the Paris Air Show was an invaluable sales and marketing opportunity for our Idaho businesses.” (photo/Governor Otter)

Idaho Briefing – July 17

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 17. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

The United States Senate on July 12 unanimously confirmed Judge David C. Nye to serve as U.S. District Judge for the District of Idaho. Idaho Senators Mike Crapo and Jim Risch welcomed the Senate’s timely action in confirming the first of President Donald Trump’s U.S. District Judge nominees.

Representative Mike Simpson on July 12 said the Fiscal Year 2018 Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill protects funding for the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), the Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy, and cleanup activities in Idaho.

Idaho’s surging economy produced $29 million more than projected in State tax revenue in June and almost $94 million more than economists expected for the fiscal year that ended June 30, enabling the State to meet the constitutional requirement for a balanced budget while beefing up its rainy day fund.

The Idaho Public Utilities Commission has determined that five proposed battery storage facilities qualify for contracts under PURPA based on their primary energy source, making them eligible for two-year, negotiated contracts with Idaho Power.

Representative Mike Simpson on July 143 praised U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke for his announcement that Craters of the Moon National Monument is no longer under review. Further, the Secretary will recommend that no modifications should be made to the monuments.

The Idaho Public Utilities Commission has scheduled a public hearing regarding Idaho Power Company’s proposal to construct a new transmission line in the Wood River Valley.

Idaho Briefing – July 10

This is a summary of a few items in the Idaho Weekly Briefing for July 10. Interested in subscribing? Send us a note at stapilus@ridenbaugh.com.

The 4th of July holiday led to a short week of formal activity, and members of Congress were relatively quiet during their visits back to the state. Things are likely to gear up a little this week.

The Idaho State Board of Education on July 5 made two major decisions to enable the College of Eastern Idaho to offer academic programs starting with the Fall 2017 semester.

The Idaho State Police Bureau of Criminal Identification released their annual "Crime In Idaho" report for 2016 today, July 3, 2017. The report is a synopsis of statewide crime statistics gathered from law enforcement agencies across Idaho and includes such things as the Statewide Crime Profile, Crimes against Persons, Property, Society, the Arrest Profile, Hate Crime in Idaho, Law Enforcement Officers Killed or Assaulted, crimes categorized by jurisdiction and many other statistics.

Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter announced the appointments of Boise resident James Classen, Emmett resident Kevin Dickey, and Moscow resident Dr. Renee Breedlovestrout to the Idaho Oil and Gas Conservation Commission on July 5.

Secretary of State Lawerence Denney received a request by email on Friday for specific information pertaining to Idaho state voter registrations from the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.

The city of Nampa and Nampa Parks & Recreation Department invites the public to join the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Orah Brandt Park on 2 p.m. Thursday, July 13. A short presentation will take place near Franklin Boulevard at the entrance of the Franklin Village subdivision.

PHOTO What was once a wind-blown wheat field near the small Idaho town of Genesee is now an environmental success 12 years after the Idaho Transportation Department created a thriving, marshy wetlands area where one never existed. Genesee is a quiet community in the rolling hills of the Palouse between Moscow and Lewiston. When road construction on U.S. 95 in the spring of 2005 from the top of Lewiston Hill to Genesee required using land designated as wetlands, ITD launched a mitigation project to construct wetlands as compensation. Known as “Cow Creek Wetland,” along a half-mile of Cow Creek in Latah County. (photo/Idaho Department of Transportation)