Frankie Barnhill

News Reporter

Frankie Barnhill is a general assignment reporter for Boise State Public Radio. Her work has appeared on NPR's Morning Edition and Weekend Edition.

She earned her production chops at American Public Media, where she interned for Marketplace Tech Report and American RadioWorks. Frankie was also a researcher in Minnesota Public Radio's newsroom for an investigative report on bullying.

As a freelance reporter in 2014, Frankie won a grant to profile five emerging artists for Boise State Public Radio's audience. The project, entitled "Artist Statement," was an exploration of Boise's burgeoning artistic scene.

Frankie was a fellow with the Institute for Journalism & Natural Resources in 2013 and again in 2015, where she began to hone her environmental reporting skills.

Frankie graduated from the College of St. Catherine with a degree in English literature. The Missoula native spends most of her free time quoting "30 Rock" and going to concerts.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

The Ada County Commission announced it intends to end a deal with Eagle-based Dynamis Energy.

Nearly three years ago, the County contracted with Dynamis to build a waste-to-energy processing plant. The company received a $2 million loan from Ada County to create site specific plans.

But the project quickly turned controversial when citizens started raising environmental concerns. Karen Danley was among them.

Michael Caroe Anderson / Flickr Creative Commons

Less than three months after its launch, the Idaho Suicide Prevention Hotline is expanding its hours. Starting today volunteers will take calls Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

So far, the suicide hotline has taken about 160 calls since November. Executive Director John Reusser says there’s no question the hotline has helped many Idahoans in crisis.

Reusser says the hotline’s next goal is to launch a marketing campaign to connect with people around the state. That campaign will likely begin next week.  

Treefort Music Fest

The final round of Treefort Music Fest acts were announced today. Indie rock band The Walkmen tops the list, joining Animal Collective and Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings as mainstage headliners. The eclectic final group of artists include enigmatic rapper Brother Ali, the orchestral band Typhoon, and emerging local acts like Grandma Kelsey. These groups will perform with about 250 others during the March 21-24 festival. 

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Catholics in Idaho celebrate Ash Wednesday today. It marks the beginning of the six-week Lenten season, and this year, it comes two days after the pope's surprise announcement that he's retiring.

Pope Benedict XVI will renounce his duties on February 28, at the age of 85.

The Papal Visit / Flickr Creative Commons

Catholics around the world have been talking about the upcoming resignation of Pope Benedict XVI. The papal resignation will be the first since the Middle Ages.

Students at Boise's Catholic high school, Bishop Kelly, have been talking about it during theology class. Deacon Rick Bonney says his juniors have lots of questions.

“ ‘Well what happens when he resigns? Does he get security? Where will he live? What will he do?' I had to basically answer, ‘I don’t know any of that since we haven’t had a pope resign in 598 years,’ ” says Bonney.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Boise indie rock band Built to Spill is back in Idaho’s Capitol for a series of shows after a tour through the Northwest. Tonight, the 20-year-old band will do something they’ve never done before – play a concert geared toward the under 21 crowd. The band asked that their younger fans get first dibs for tickets to tonight's show.

Brion Rushton has seen Built to Spill more times than he can count.

“They’re hometown favorites – local boys that made it – that made it big time," says Rushton. "Signed to a major label but didn’t ‘sell out.’ ”

New York Stock Exchange

Boise Cascade LLC is again trading publicly on the New York Stock Exchange.

CEO Tom Carlile rang the opening bell at the exchange this morning, and then watched his company’s stock jump throughout the day.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Kids everywhere will rejoice at this news: broccoli, cauliflower and most leafy greens like spinach and arugula are in short supply these days. Produce managers are struggling to keep their section stocked, and customers are seeing higher-than-normal prices.  A cold snap in Arizona's  Yuma desert is the culprit.

Sammy Duda is with Duda Farm Fresh Foods. He says a warm December meant crops grew too fast, flooding the market ahead of schedule. This created a void when January’s cold temperatures damaged leafy greens.

“This is  not just a West Coast issue,” Duda says.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Supporters of an effort to add the words "sexual orientation and gender identity" to the Idaho Human Rights Act will try again this year to get lawmakers on board. Draft legislation surfaced Friday that would protect against discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations.

A similar effort to "Add the Words," failed in a Senate committee last year. Now advocates are focused on education and collaboration before they formally introduce the bill.

Ben Molyneux

Organizers of Boise’s Treefort Music Fest released the names of more bands today. Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings and Animal Collective are the first headliners to be announced for the March 21-24 event. Festival planners are introducing the bands using quirky online videos.

Thomas Hawk / Flickr

Close to 6,000 American Indians in Idaho will get a check this week for $1,000. It’s part of a landmark settlement with the federal government over the mismanagement of American Indian land.

Just in time for the holidays, about 300,000 American Indians nationally will receive checks from the $3.4 billion settlement. The settlement is the result of a lawsuit started by Montana Blackfeet woman Elouise Cobell in 1996. Cobell died of cancer during the appeals process in 2011.  

Jason Karsh 2012 / Flickr

The first payouts from a historic class-action suit against the federal government will be sent to American Indians within the week. The settlement will be split by 500,000 American Indians, including many in the Northwest.

Lead plaintiff Elouise Cobell sued the federal government 16 years ago. As treasurer of the Blackfoot Tribe in Montana, she discovered the government had mismanaged individual Indian land held in trust. A settlement was reached in 2009, but a two-year appeals process held up disbursements. Cobell died during that time.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho’s capitol city became the second community in the state to pass a nondiscrimination ordinance. Boise’s City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The ordinance takes effect on January first.

More than 150 people gave Boise’s City Council  a standing ovation after they approved the ordinance.  

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

For the first time, Ada County residents Thursday night had the opportunity to speak at a public hearing on the controversial waste-to-energy plant proposed by Dynamis Energy for the county landfill. More than 200 people attended the hearing at the county courthouse.

The county’s planning and zoning commission heard testimony from more than 20 people.  All were against the project.  Karen Knudsen questioned the process county commissioners have used to this point.  She called for the resignation of commissioners Sharon Ullman and Rick Yzaguirre.

caseforcommissioner.com

Voters in Idaho’s largest county tomorrow will pick two Ada County Commissioners. Republican Dave Case, who was appointed to fill a vacancy on the board this spring, is running against Democrat Tom Howell in District Three.  Jon Howard is the third candidate running in District 3. 

Democrat Larry Rincover and Republican Jim Tibbs are running for the District One seat.

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