House leaders scrambled Wednesday for a response to the governor’s plan to raise highway moneys by jacking fees and taxes, calling the Ways and Means committee to order almost twice. A rapid hearing on early childhood education brought no opposition, though opponents were purportedly watching from the stands and may be waiting for House hearings to jump into the fray.
Abortion spin is swirling with a hearing today on coerced abortions and the release of gotcha tapes from a California student anti-abortion group. Not clear if a counter bill on coercion in opposition to abortions will be heard. Paleo-wife wants a bill making it a felony to coerce a pregnant woman to do anything at all.
And a bill banning local jurisdictions from making their own gun laws gained initial approval and is headed to the full Senate. In today’s Newsrack…
Three House bills on roads surprise senators. Bill come through emergency committee meeting a day after a joint transportation hearing in which the governor pitched his ideas. Bills limit GARVEE projects, shift $22 million in sales tax revenue from tires, batteries and car accessories to highway funding and call for a $550,000 ITD performance audit. Sen. McGee: If they were able to introduce them in an emergency meeting this morning, they could’ve been introduced yesterday. It’s too bad we can’t all work together and solve Idaho’s transportation issues.” Hopkins exclusive in the Times-News.
No opponents to early childhood ed in the Senate. Even Ghengis Khan testified in favor. May not get a House hearing though. Allen in the Statesman. Vote delayed. AP in the Press Tribune.
State gun laws will trump locals. Bill passes Senate committee, moves to full Senate vote. Boise city opposes the measure. Exceptions carved out for colleges and Fish and Game. Druzin in the Statesman.
Hanging out is lobbying too. Bill clarifies what constitutes lobbying. Includes any conversation riding the back nine. Sen. Brad Little: “Lobbying is developing and maintaining relationships. That’s what lobbying is.” Spouses of officials count too. Miller, AP in the Press Tribune.
Carpenter union demos expand to Nampa. Dogging Commercial Constructors Inc. to demand fair wages. Ron Robbins, Northwest Carpenters: “We’re here for the long haul; we fully expect it to take years. We’ll exercise every right we have under federal labor law to get the message out.” Contractor is seeking legal advice, calls it harassment. Murrant in the Press Tribune.
Idaho First requirement axed for Capitol. Listen to Samantha Wright here and Billie Holiday here. Volkert in the IBR.
Tamarack wants more liquor licenses. Story is a bit old from the Star-News. Bill has cleared the Senate, House hearing this morning. Hoffman in the Star-News, via Discover McCall.
Senate Resources back aquifer study. $20 million requested by Otter for N. Idaho water rights survey. AP in the Press Tribune.
Sorry there, White Bird Hill. You still won’t have to chain up. But Lookout Pass and Fourth of July Pass on Interstate 90 and Lolo Pass on Idaho’s State Highway 12 rigs will under the tire chains bill. Goins in the Shoshone News Press.
Squabbling over smaller state worker raises. Party line votes on shrinking raises for state employees. Ferguson on Otter: “A bone chip “the size of nickel” was stuck in his hip joint, and it took time to recover after the doctors cut it out.
If he can pass that chip off as a real nickel, the state might need it.” Ferguson column in the LMT [subscrip].
What would wolfy do? Sue, apparently. Defenders, 9 other groups file intent to sue to stop de-listing. Not unexpected. Groups claim there are not enough wolves and states are going to crack down on the populations. Friends: “I think managing wildlife to quell the mob is not the right idea. Instead it is to manage for the long-term health of the ecosystem and the population.” Barker in the LMT [subscrip].
Rammell, Risch may have day in court as well. East Idaho vetrinarian has suit against state and then-Gov. Risch for shooting his escaped domestic elk. And he’s running against him for Sen. Larry Craig’s seat. And he has a large fine he hasn’t paid. Druzin in the Statesman. New suit comes on heels of similar $1.3 million suit last year. Emotional damage, etc. Davidson in the Post Register [subscrip].
UCLA anti-abortion paper calls out Idaho Planned Parenthood. Crank caller from paper in July wanted to give money toward aborting black babies. Idaho Planned Parenthood apparently accepted the donation. Listen to the spins. Original article from The Advocate [pdf]. Audio. “We apologize for the manner in which this offensive call was handled… we believe in helping all individuals, regardless of gender, race, or sexual orientation, make informed decisions about their reproductive health care.” Forester in the Satesman.
On the blogs: Sen. Mel Richardson to retire, again. Russell’s Eye.