2012 Legislature

Jobs and education are two priorities
4:45 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

What Should Idaho Lawmakers Do?

Tom Kelly (FLICKR)

BOISE, ID – Idaho’s lawmakers are back in Boise for this year’s legislative session.  We wanted to find out what people want lawmakers to work on so we sent Scott Ki to talk with people out for lunch near the statehouse.

More than half of the people I talked with had no opinion or didn’t know what state lawmakers were up to just a few blocks away.

“I’m not very informed. . . Ah, I’ve got nothing to say.”

But others, like Boise private school teacher Jess McGinnis, knew exactly what she wants Idaho lawmakers to work on.

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Rusche says the Governor’s address fell short
4:39 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

ID Dems’ Response to Governor Otter

Rep. John Rusche (D) Lewiston/Idaho Legislature

BOISE, ID – Idaho Democratic lawmakers didn’t hold back on their official response Tuesday to Governor Butch Otter’s State of the State address.  They’ll propose an ethics commission and a jobs package this session.

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Education is the state’s economic lifeline
4:34 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Governor Wants Modest Increase To Education Budget

Idaho Governor Butch Otter wants to give public schools 31.69 million dollars more next year.  That’s a 2.6 percent increase. Now it’s up to lawmakers to determine what the actual amount will be. One of those most responsible for that is Dean Cameron. The Republican co-chairs the legislature’s budget writing committee. Cameron says education is his top priority but…

Dean Cameron “We’re not able to do more than the governors asking for. And it will be a dilemma and a push to do what he’s recommending there.”

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Some Idahoans might get a tax break
4:29 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Reactions To Otter’s Tax Cut Proposal

BOISE, ID – Some state employees could get a bonus this year, education could get a financial boost, and some Idahoans might get a tax break.  That’s if Idaho’s Governor has his way.  Butch Otter gave his budget recommendations to the legislature Monday.  It’s different in one fundamental way from years past.  He recommends a 5 percent across the board

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45 million dollars in tax cuts
4:25 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Governor Butch Otter Has a Plan for Jobs

BOISE, ID – 45 million dollars in tax cuts.  60 million tucked away for a rainy day.  41 million for state employee raises.  Idaho Governor Butch Otter has unveiled his state budget for fiscal year 2013.  We break down the jobs portion of the budget.

Including our public school teachers
3:46 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

State Employees Could See A One Time Bonus

BOISE, Id – State of Idaho employees have seen pay cuts, furloughs, even layoffs over the past few years. That’s as the state has cut budgets back during the economic downturn.   Since fiscal year 2008, the state workforce has shrunk by more than 19-hundred employees. Idaho Governor Butch Otter said today that the employees who are left, have had to do more with less.

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Governor Butch Otter unveils his vision
3:40 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Idaho Governor Outlines Priorities

BOISE, ID – Idaho Governor Butch Otter unveils his vision for the future of Idaho in his annual address to the legislature.  He also outlines his budget for Fiscal Year 2013.

Follow along with Governor’s speech here.

Butch Otter is talking about tax cuts
3:36 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Idaho’s Governor Open to Tax Cuts

Governor "Butch" Otter
Aaron Kunz EarthFix

BOISE, Id –For the past few years, Idaho’s Governor has talked about holdbacks, as the economy forced the state to cut funds.  This year, Butch Otter is talking about tax cuts which he outlined in his annual address to the legislature today.  He wants to set aside 45-million dollars, for what he calls “tax relief,” in 2013.

Butch Otter “I have been discussing the form of that tax relief for some time now, with legislative leaders, business groups, tax experts and our citizens. There remains a wide diversity of opinion on how best to target tax relief.”

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60-million dollars in fiscal year 2013
3:34 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Idaho Governor: Tuck Money Away For A Rainy Day

BOISE, Id – Idaho Governor Butch Otter wants to tuck some money away for a rainy day.  In his State of the State speech today, Otter pointed out that over the economic downturn of the past four years, the state has spent 381-million dollars in Rainy Day funds.

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Idaho Legislature
3:24 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Lawmakers Get Ready to Look at an Idaho Health Insurance Exchange

Bill Deal/Department of Insurance

BOISE, Id – Idaho lawmakers will tackle some major issues this session including whether the state should create a health insurance exchange. Under the Affordable Care Act, such an exchange will have to be in place by 2014. The question is whether Idaho would be better off going with a national system or creating a state one. The Idaho Department of Insurance will help craft legislation on a state-based exchange.

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Idaho Legislature
3:20 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Idaho’s Schools Chief Looks To Increase Education Funding in 2012

Boise, ID – Idaho lawmakers return to the statehouse for the 2012 session. They’ll hear Governor Butch Otter’s priorities in his State of the State address Monday afternoon. Already department leaders have made requests for budget increases and priorities, among them Schools Superintendent Tom Luna. Last year Luna pushed through major changes including mandatory online classes and laptops for high school students, limiting collective bargaining for teachers and instituting pay for performance.

New legislative session
3:12 pm
Sat January 7, 2012

Idaho Lawmakers On Legislative Session Priorities

BOISE, ID – A new legislative session begins Monday.  Leaders in the Idaho statehouse shared their thoughts on what their key priorities are this year with reporters at an Associated Press preview last week.  Scott Ki put together this audio postcard of some of the highlights from Senate and House leadership. We begin with Senate President Pro Tem Brent Hill, a Republican from Rexburg.

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