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Labor Department
3:59 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

Twin Falls Businessman, Board Of Education Member To Head Idaho's Labor Department

Edmunds is a businessman from Twin Falls, Idaho.
Credit State of Idaho

A state Board of Education member is shifting roles, after Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter named him to head the Idaho Department of Labor.

Ken Edmunds of Twin Falls will fill the post starting Nov. 25, replacing Roger Madsen who held the job since 1995.

Edmunds is a Twin Falls businessman whose experience includes working as an accountant and controller as well as an executive for the company that operates Cactus Petes casino in Jackpot, Nev.

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Film
3:38 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

'Craters Of The Moon' Cast On Hand At Boise's Best Of Sun Valley Film Fest

The film Craters of the Moon screens in Boise Saturday.
Credit Courtesy of http://www.cratermovie.com

The best of this year’s Sun Valley Film Festival (SVFF) screens in Boise Saturday night. The Best of SVFFest will feature two award-winning films; STUCK, about a one-night stand, and Craters of the Moon, which is about a couple who gets lost and stranded in the snow.

Here's the trailer from Craters.

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Gateway West
2:02 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

Why The Feds Approval Of A Massive Power Line Excludes Part Of Idaho Route

Jim Fincher is the District Manager for the Boise BLM District Office
Credit Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

The Bureau of Land Management Tuesday approved most of a 990-mile-long power line that's being built on public land. But a section of the line, about 295 miles in Idaho, were deferred. That means the BLM will hold off on the OK for that area until stakeholders along the line’s route can come to a consensus.

The Gateway West project will run from Wyoming across southern Idaho. It's an effort between Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power.

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Health Insurance
1:57 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

Idaho Mulling Whether To Extend Health Insurance Policies

Bill Deal is director of the Idaho Department of Insurance.
Credit Molly Messick / StateImpact Idaho

Idaho Department of Insurance director Bill Deal said he's likely to announce Monday whether his state will adopt President Barack Obama's proposal to extend old health insurance policies that otherwise would be canceled.

Through a spokeswoman on Friday, Deal said he's in discussions with Idaho insurers offering policies to individuals on how such a move would impact the state's health coverage marketplace.

President Obama on Thursday said he'd allow insurance companies to keep selling their old plans to people whose policies were going to be canceled.

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Election Results
8:49 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Watch: Small Town Idaho Mayor Keeps His Job By Coin Toss

City clerk Mary Yeaman did the official coin toss.
Credit Ed Glazar / Times-News

Don Bowden will remain the mayor of tiny Albion, Idaho after winning a tie-breaking coin toss. Bowden and his challenger, John Davis, each received 60 votes in the Nov. 5 election. Fewer than 300 people live in Albion.

Incumbent Bowden won the right to call the coin, and he picked tails.

Video courtesy of KMVT-TV

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Sports
5:01 am
Fri November 15, 2013

6-Man Football Struggles To Gain Footing In Rural Idaho High Schools

Teams from Camas County High School and Lima (MT) High School line up during their six-player game in Fairfield, ID on October 18, 2013.
Credit Scott Graf / Boise State Public Radio

It’s easy to hear the pride in Randy Jewett’s voice when he talks about his school’s football heritage. He stands in Camas County High School in Fairfield, and points to class pictures that line the main hallway. He says in the 1970s, the Mushers were regulars in the state championship. 

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Jobs
3:31 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Heinz To Close Pocatello Facility, Laying Off 410 People

Credit Mat79 / Flickr Creative Commons

H.J. Heinz Co. is closing three plants in North America and cutting 1,350 jobs in an effort to operate more efficiently.

The food maker said Thursday that it will close facilities in South Carolina, Idaho and Canada over the next six to eight months.

KPVI reports 410 people will be laid off from the Pocatello, Idaho facility.

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Transparency
1:00 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Plaintiffs Say Idaho Is Stalling To Keep Juvenile Correction Department Records Secret

A group of Idaho Department of Juvenile Correction employees who filed a whistleblower lawsuit against the state say the agency is violating a judge's order to meet and decide which documents should be made public.

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Elections
10:25 am
Thu November 14, 2013

Heads You're Mayor: Coin Toss To Decide Tiny Idaho Town's Leader

The Albion coin toss is Thursday night at 7:00 p.m.
Credit Budgiejen / Flickr Creative Commons

John Davis says he is not a gambler. In all his 73 years he doesn’t recall having won anything from a coin toss.

“I think I won a bottle of after shave lotion at the carnival one time, throwing horse shoes or something,” Davis says.

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Health Insurance
1:44 pm
Wed November 13, 2013

338 Idahoans Have Signed Up For Coverage Through Insurance Exchange

Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Just 338 people have selected health coverage via Idaho's insurance exchange during its glitch-plagued first month.

Your Health Idaho's enrollee figures were released Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which also gave statistics for the nation's other exchanges.

In total, 106,185 people in the United States have selected plans.

President Obama's administration has predicted about 7 million people will get coverage via exchanges in 2014, with Idaho accounting for 40,000 of that figure.

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Ethics Complaint
10:06 am
Wed November 13, 2013

Idaho Sheriff Files Ethics Complaint Against Lawmaker

Mark Patterson is a first term Republican Representative from District 15.
Credit Idaho Legislature

A state legislator who lost his concealed weapons permit after failing to disclose his withheld judgment in a 1974 rape case is targeted by a related ethics complaint.

The Idaho Statesman reports Ada County Sheriff Gary Raney says Republican Rep. Mark Patterson of Boise, along with GOP Rep. Judy Boyle of Midvale, inappropriately obtained legal advice from the Idaho attorney general.

Raney has revoked Patterson's concealed weapons permit because Patterson didn't disclose his judgment in the 39-year-old Florida rape case.

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Gateway West
5:12 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Feds Green Light Route For 1,000 Mile Gateway West Transmission Line

Credit Bureau of Land Management

The Bureau of Land Management signed off Tuesday on the route for a 990 mile long power line. But it's left two sections of the Gateway West Project, which will stretch from Wyoming across Southern Idaho, undecided.

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Health
3:05 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Idaho Health Exchange Will Keep Taxpayer Funded Contract Review Secret

Board members of the Idaho health insurance exchange said Tuesday that they will keep secret the findings of a $15,000 taxpayer-funded investigation into how one of its own members won a lucrative no-bid contract.

Your Health Idaho board chairman Stephen Weeg said the two-week-long review by a private lawyer uncovered "lapses in judgment," though nothing illegal. Exchange executive director Amy Dowd last month awarded a technology contract worth up to $375,000 to board member Frank Chan, who quit the same day the contract was announced.

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Gun Laws
10:49 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Some Idaho Lawmakers Question Concealed Weapons Exemption For Elected Officials

Credit Robert Nelson / Flickr Creative Commons

A state lawmaker who lost his concealed weapons permit for lying about a decades-old felony has raised questions about a 1990 law that exempts elected officials from needing a concealed weapons permit.

Last month, the Ada County Sheriff revoked the concealed weapons permit of Boise Republican Rep. Mark Patterson. The permit was pulled because Patterson failed to disclose in 2012 a guilty plea and withheld judgment from a 1974 Florida rape case.

Patterson contends now he was innocent but pleaded guilty 39 years ago on his attorney's advice.

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Healthcare
10:15 am
Tue November 12, 2013

St. Luke's Trial Highlights Mixed Healthcare Messages From Federal Government

St. Luke's defended its 2012 buyout of a Nampa doctors group during a recent four-week trial. The outcome of the merger is now up to a judge.
Credit St. Luke's

A judge in Boise is now considering weeks worth of testimony in a case that could have significant effects on healthcare in Idaho and beyond. Attorneys representing several groups last week made their closing arguments against Saint Luke’s acquisition of the Nampa company Saltzer Medical Group. 

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Election 2014
9:17 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Another Republican May Enter Idaho's Secretary Of State Race

Credit State of Idaho

Next May's Republican primary for Idaho secretary of state could get a little more crowded, now that Ben Ysursa has opted against seeking a fourth term in 2014.

Former state Sen. Mitch Toryanski of Boise said Monday he's filing official paperwork, to allow him to begin fundraising and tour Idaho.

Already, Rep. Lawerence Denney, a former House speaker from Midvale, says he wants to be the state's top election official.

Toryanski said his listening tour, to gauge sentiment among GOP voters, will start Nov. 18, but the itinerary is still being worked out.

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Trade
8:37 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Idaho Gov. Otter Preps For Trade Mission To Russia

Idaho's largest export sector is semiconductors and industrial, worth more than $3.17 billion in 2012.
Credit Micron Technology

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter is getting ready for a nine-day trade mission in Russia.

The Republican governor, his staff and Idaho business leaders will leave Boise Friday.

The trip caps a busy year of international travel for Otter, who has already made official visits to Vietnam, Taiwan and Korea.

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Airport
8:16 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Boise Airport Opens New $30 Million Air Traffic Control Tower

Credit iflyboise.com

City officials will cut the ribbon this week on the new control tower at the Boise airport. The tower is 268 feet tall, right in between the height of Idaho’s two tallest buildings in downtown Boise. The $30 million facility actually started full operations last month, about five years after construction began.

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Transmitter Status
8:08 am
Mon November 11, 2013

Update: Scheduled Power Outage Doesn't Impact Programming

Credit Flickr Creative Commons

Update 11:15 a.m.:  Idaho Power was able to maintain power at CSI during its maintenance work which kept Boise State Public Radio programming on the air.

Original Post: Due to a scheduled power outage at CSI, listeners in the Wood River Valley, Magic Valley, and in Jackpot, Nevada may experience disruptions in regular programming.

The power outage is scheduled to begin at 8:00 a.m. today. Idaho Power crews will be working to replace the main power lines and hope to have power restored by noon today.

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Idaho News
6:00 am
Mon November 11, 2013

Boise Police Department Begins Handing Out Bike Lights After Time Change

Credit phoenixar / Flickr Creative Commons

After two Boise cyclists were killed by cars this fall, bike safety is getting renewed attention. Cyclists without lights are even less visible to motorists during their evening commutes with the time change.

The Boise Police Department has noticed, and has started a new initiative to make cyclists safer in the dark.

“Ada County Highway District has a supply of bike lights," says Deputy Chief Pete Ritter. "We have given them out to officers to when they contact cyclists or if they see cyclists who appear to need a light so they can hand them out.”

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