Adam Cotterell

News Reporter

Adam Cotterell returned to his home town of Boise, Idaho in 2007 after three years teaching university English in China. His plan was to teach high school drama and history, but in a move that almost makes him believe in destiny he took a part time job in Boise State Public Radio’s newsroom. He became a full time general assignments reporter in 2010. Adam's main focus is on covering education, but also enjoys doing all types of stories; from interviewing unique people to reporting on Boise's theatre scene.

Adam lives in Boise with his wife, daughter, and dog. He is also considered a pioneer in the art form abstract expressionist origami.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

We don’t know yet if Bogus Basin ski resort will open this weekend. Managers of the nonprofit ski hill above Boise had planned to announce that Tuesday afternoon, but now say they want to wait and see how much snow comes from the storm expected to move in overnight. The announcement may happen Wednesday.

Bogus Basin marketing director John Hart says more than likely the tubing hill will open Friday. He says the best case scenario is that a couple of ski runs will open Friday as well.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

It may be the beginning of the end for the homeless tent city near downtown Boise.

Thursday morning residents of the alley known as Cooper Court were awoken by Boise Police officers handing out warnings. The notices listed several laws people were breaking by sleeping in the alley and notified them that they could be fined or jailed.

The tents are located by the Connector in downtown, in an alley off Americana Boulevard and River Street. It's behind the Interfaith Sanctuary homeless shelter.

Courtesy Boise Alternative Shelter Co-op

There are two ideas being talked about in Boise to house chronically homeless people. You can think of them as the Eugene model and the Salt Lake City model.

For the last decades of the 20th century, death rates were declining for most Americans. But so far in 21st century Idaho, that's not happening.

learning elementary student teacher
Alvin Trusty / Flickr Creative Commons

Nearly 10 percent of Idaho children go to school just four days a week. That’s almost 27,000 students. Dozens of districts across the state have switched to four day weeks since the Great Recession in hopes of saving money. But as Idaho Education News reports, nobody knows how that impacts students.


The mining company American CuMo Mining Corporation and its subsidiary Idaho CuMo Mining Corporation have finalized an agreement with Boise County that will allow CuMo to begin exploring for valuable minerals in the Boise National Forest near Idaho City.

The Forest Service gave the company the go-ahead to begin road building and drilling more than a month ago. But project manager Joe Puccinelli says it took a little longer than expected to finish the legal agreement with the county for things like maintenance of roads the company will use extensively.

Credit data: Idaho Department of Health and Welfare / Graph: Lacey Daley

A study by a Nobel Prize-winning economist made national headlines last week for saying middle-aged white Americans are dying at increasing rates while all other age and race groups have declining death rates. KBSX asked Idaho’s Department of Health and Welfare to analyze the numbers for Idaho.

Data: MSAC and NARPM / / Graph: Lacey Daley

One of the emerging issues in the Treasure Valley over the last few years is the shrinking number of affordable housing units. As the housing market has improved and people continue to move to the area, rents have gone up and the number of available units has also declined. Our Adam Cotterell has been following the issue and he briefed All Things Considered host Samantha Wright on what many who deal with housing issues in the public, nonprofit and business sectors are calling a low-income housing crisis.


Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Boise’s Glenbrook Apartments made headlines two months ago when its tenants received eviction notices. Owners wanted to renovate and raise rents and they wanted everyone out in order to do that. This was the most dramatic instance, but people all over the Treasure Valley are being forced out of their homes due to rent hikes.

Phil Sedgwick / Courtesy Concordia School of Law

Warning: This is the most "Public Radio" Halloween story possible.

Andrew Kim, a professor at Concordia University School of Law in Boise wrote a paper that will be published in an upcoming edition of the Savannah Law Review. What does that have to do with Halloween? Well, the paper is about law on the TV show The Walking Dead.

The Walking Dead is about survivors of a zombie apocalypse who battle the undead as well as fight other people over scarce resources. It’s both popular and gruesome but Kim thinks it reveals a lot about the rule of law versus the rule of nature.

Perhaps the biggest decision facing Boise voters in Tuesday’s election is not city council or mayoral candidates, but a two-year, $10 million property tax levy for open space protection and water conservation. Unlike a similar levy Boise voters approved in 2001, the latest would not limit purchases to the foothills.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Read more about the homeless camp near downtown Boise here.

Find Adam Cotterell on Twitter @cotterelladam

Copyright 2015 Boise State Public Radio

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

The issue of homelessness in Boise has been in the news a lot lately. The city recently won a court victory in defense of its anti-camping ordinance.  At the same time, a large homeless encampment in an alley called Cooper Court has grown not far from the heart of town.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Homeless people sleeping outside has been a big issue for the city of Boise for a long time. The city has passed laws against it and fought in court for years to keep those laws on the books. But over the summer homeless people began doing something new. From hidden camp sites scattered throughout Boise, they’ve gathered together in one place and pitched dozens of tents. And for now, the city is letting them stay.

Courtesy Zions Bank

Former First Lady Laura Bush was in Boise Friday as the headline speaker at of the Governor’s Trade and Business Conference hosted by Zions Bank. If you watch the local TV news Friday night you’ll no doubt see Bush speaking, but you won’t hear her. Bush would not allow audio recording of her speech.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

 Thursday marks one year since same-sex marriage became legal in Idaho. That means it’s also the one year wedding anniversary for Rachael and Amber Beierle. The Beierlies are one of four couples who sued to overturn Idaho’s ban on gay marriage. We heard from them several times over the course of their lawsuit.

This week, our Adam Cotterell checked in with the couple to see how their lives have changed. The biggest difference, Amber says, is a third member in their family...who was also there for our interview. Hear all three Beierlies by clicking play.

Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

The smoke blanketing Boise from the Walker Fire near Idaho City eased up Wednesday but was still bad enough for the Boise School District to cancel outdoor activities like football games and tennis matches.

Someone flying into Boise Tuesday shared the pictures above with KBSX. Much of the valley floor is invisible under a gray/brown haze. 

Boise's Table Rock was a dim outline at about 9:00 Tuesday morning. It was a little clearer around the same time Wednesday morning from outside our studios.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Drivers in downtown Boise Wednesday may find their commute a bit different. Two streets, 13th and 14th, went from one-way to two-way overnight. The Ada County Highway District (ACHD) did this with four other downtown streets last year; 3rd, 4th, 11th and 12th. It plans to convert Jefferson Street next year.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

The U.S. Forest Service this week gave American CuMo Mining Corporation the go-ahead to explore for molybdenum, copper and silver between Idaho City and Garden Valley. If CuMo finds enough of the metals, it will seek permission to build a large open pit mine.

Environmental groups have been challenging the project for years. They say the exploration process alone endangers the headwaters of the Boise River, let alone the proposed mine.

screen grab / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Wednesday released a new recovery plan for the bull trout. The agency listed it as a threatened species in the late 1990s. Bull trout live in Idaho and four other western states. The new plan divides the fish’s territory into six sections. Mike Carrier, head of Fish and Wildlife’s Idaho office says in some sections, like in Oregon and Washington, bull trout are struggling.