Butch Otter

School Funding
4:25 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

Idaho Voters Tax Themselves $1 Billion To Fill School Budget Holes

Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Since July 1, 2007 — and during Butch Otter’s two terms as governor — school districts have backfilled their budgets with more than $1 billion in supplemental property tax levies.

The amount of the levies has steadily grown during Otter’s first eight years in office. So too has districts’ reliance on these short-term voter-approved levies.

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Tourism
10:34 am
Wed September 17, 2014

Ketchum Says Idaho's Wolf Management Policies Hurting Tourism

Credit visitsunvalley.com

The resort town of Ketchum, Idaho, is asking the state to back off on killing wolves. They say it’s bad for business.

The Ketchum City Council passed a resolution Monday night urging wildlife managers to use non-lethal tactics to control the wolf population.

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Gambling
3:08 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Judge Tells Coeur d’Alene Tribe To Stop Offering Poker

Credit Images Money / Flickr

A judge told the Coeur d’Alene Tribe Friday to stop playing Texas Hold ‘em poker at its casino.

The Spokesman Review reports U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill issued the injunction, saying tournaments violate Idaho’s state ban on poker.

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Law
3:13 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Judge Denies Idaho's Request To Toss 'Ag-Gag' Lawsuit

A federal judge in Idaho Thursday refused to toss out a challenge to the state's “ag-gag” law that was passed by Idaho legislators earlier this year at the urging of the state’s $2.5 billion dairy industry. The law spells out stiff punishments for people who secretly tape agricultural operations.

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Election 2014
9:51 am
Thu September 4, 2014

Idaho Governor Latest Target Of Political Attack Website

This is a homepage screengrab from the attack website.

Idaho's third-party gubernatorial candidate is following the lead of the state's largest business lobbyist group and has launched an attack website criticizing incumbent Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's political stances.

Former Canyon County prosecutor and Libertarian candidate John Bujak says he put up the site after seeing the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry use the same tactic to attack Democratic candidate A.J. as a liberal.

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Election 2014
12:13 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Otter Commits To 4 Gubernatorial Debates

Gov. Otter at the KBSX studios in spring 2014.
Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter will participate in four debates against his general election opponents.

Otter says he accepted debate invitations that could be viewed via a statewide broadcast.

The first debate will be in Coeur d'Alene on Oct. 3, then in Idaho Falls on Oct. 9. He'll travel to Nampa Oct. 14 to participate in KTVB-TV's debate and finish on Oct. 30 by participating in the Idaho Public Television debate.

Debate moderators and other participants have not yet been released.

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Election 2014
12:12 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

Idaho Business Group Launches Political Attack Website Against Democrat Balukoff

This is a screengrab from the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry's political action group's website.

A recently launched website is targeting Idaho's Democratic gubernatorial candidate A.J. Balukoff's and criticizing his political stances, but Balukoff says the site is using lies to undermine his campaign against Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter.

The Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry's political action committee posted the site Tuesday.

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Policy
4:16 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Gov. Otter Didn't Know 8 Immigrant Children Have Been Sent To Idaho In Border Surge

Gov. Otter with First Lady Lori Otter at a recent Republican event at the Capitol.
Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

This post was updated at 10:00 a.m. July 25, 2014.

This week, Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter sent a letter to federal officials telling them not to send any of the unaccompanied young migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border to Idaho.

However, federal officials say they've already sent children from the border to Idaho.

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Policy
10:20 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Gov. Otter Tells Federal Officials Not To Send Migrant Kids To Idaho

Credit Idaho Statesman

Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter has sent a letter to federal officials telling them not to send any of the unaccompanied young migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border to Idaho.

Otter on Wednesday sent the letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director Leon Rodriguez.

Idaho has not been contacted by federal officials about bringing any of the children to Idaho.

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Bowe Bergdahl
1:46 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Idaho’s Politicians Walk A Careful Line In Debate Over Bergdahl Release

Bergdahl, now 28, spent nearly five years as POW.
Credit Courtesy of the Bergdahl family

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl arrived at a military hospital in Texas Friday to continue his recovery process. There has been no shortage of strong opinions about the release of the former POW, except among Idaho's Congressional delegation. The two senators and two congressmen from Bergdahl's home state have largely avoided the national fray.

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Gay Marriage
12:37 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Gay Marriage Plaintiffs Ask Idaho To Pay Their Court Costs

Deborah Ferguson is the lead attorney for the four Idaho couples.
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Four couples who successfully sued Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter over the state's gay marriage ban are now asking to be reimbursed for nearly half a million dollars of attorney fees and other court costs.

The group filed a motion in Boise's U.S. District Court on Tuesday asking that the state be ordered to pay more than $467,000 for the expenses associated with bringing the lawsuit.

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Business
4:27 am
Wed May 28, 2014

'Little Bitch Otter' Beer Maker To Give Some Proceeds To Gay Rights Groups

Crooked Fence Brewing's Kelly Knopp created this image for its beer label.
Credit Courtesy Crooked Fence Brewery

The brewery we told you about two weeks ago that's fermenting a batch of political commentary plans to give a portion of its proceeds from "Little Bitch Otter" beer to gay rights groups.

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Prison
3:57 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Idaho Opting Out Of Federal Prison Rape Law

Eric Holder
Credit roberthuffstutter / Flickr

Several states, including Idaho, are refusing to comply with a federal law designed to reduce sexual assaults in prison, with governors criticizing the Prison Rape Elimination Act as an unfunded mandate that replaces good intentions with red tape.

The governors of Idaho, Texas, Indiana, Utah and Arizona have informed U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder that they won't try to meet the federal prison rape standards. Governors were required to certify by May 15 that their states either met the standards, or to promise that they were actively working toward that goal.

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Election 2014
1:49 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

After Winning Urban Areas, Fulcher Says He Lost Idaho's Governor Primary With Rural Voters

Russ Fulcher, left, and Gov. Otter talked quietly before Wednesday's GOP rally at the state Capitol.
Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho Gov. C.L. 'Butch' Otter won his Republican primary Tuesday night, making him the first GOP governor since 1962 to win his party’s nomination three times in a row. Otter's victory wasn't a landslide, his main primary opponent, state Sen. Russ Fulcher, gave the longtime Republican politician a run for his money.

With all but three of Idaho's precincts reporting, Otter won just over 51 percent of the vote, and lost major counties like Ada and Kootenai to Fulcher.

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Election 2014
8:38 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter Wins GOP Nomination For Third Term Bid

Gov. Otter will face Democrat A.J. Balukoff in November's general election.
Credit Idaho Statesman

Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter barely cinched the GOP gubernatorial nomination, winning about 52 percent of the vote in Tuesday's primary.

Otter will face Democrat A.J. Balukoff in November as he bids for a third term in office.

The GOP gubernatorial race was tight, with tea party favorite Sen. Russ Fulcher lagging by only about 13,000 votes with 92 percent of precincts reporting very early Wednesday morning. But the governor left the GOP celebration in Boise early, without making a statement and before the race had been called.

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Gay Marriage
6:16 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Gay Marriage Must Remain On Hold In Idaho

Credit SalFalko / Flickr Creative Commons

A federal appeals court says no same-sex marriages will be allowed in Idaho until an appeal is decided.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday granted a request for a stay from Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden.

The decision means that despite a recent ruling overturning Idaho's gay marriage ban, same-sex couples can't get married or have their marriages recognized until the 9th Circuit or U.S. Supreme Court decides whether to let the ruling stand.

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Election 2014
1:51 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

5 Things To Watch In The Idaho Primary Election

Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

WHAT'S AT STAKE? In Idaho, the primary election is often the most fiercely fought contest between candidates. The winners of the GOP primary almost always go on to win in November as they usually don't face serious opposition from Democrats.

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Government Transparency
9:30 am
Mon May 19, 2014

Idaho Governor Ombudsman Order Changed At The Last Minute

Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Public records from Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's office show that an executive order creating a new public records ombudsman had to be scaled back at the last minute over concerns it could step on existing law.

Otter issued the executive order late last month, naming Cally Younger the new ombudsman and calling on her to create an annual report detailing public record requests and denials. The move was in response to a request from the Newspaper Association of Idaho, which wanted an option to appeal denied requests without going to court.

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Business
5:54 pm
Fri May 16, 2014

Idaho Brewery Gets Political With 'Little Bitch Otter' Beer

Credit Courtesy Crooked Fence Brewery

An Idaho brewery is wading into political commentary with a new beer dubbed "Little Bitch Otter," which appears to take a shot at Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter.

The logo, made by Crooked Fence Brewing co-owner and marketing director Kelly Knopp, features an otter wearing a tie and cowboy hat.

"Anyone that is going to try to take away freedoms or not let someone be equal, Crooked Fence is against," says Knopp.

Knopp wouldn't be more specific on why their political cartoon appears to put Gov. Otter in the cross hairs, although the timing seems deliberate.

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Election 2014
1:45 pm
Fri May 16, 2014

As America Laughs, Host Of Wacky Idaho Debate Has No Regrets

Melissa Davlin is co-host of Idaho Public Television's "Idaho Reports."
Credit Courtesy Aaron Kunz

Idaho Public Television host Melissa Davlin says she doesn’t blame Idaho’s governor for insisting that long-shot candidates Harley Brown and Walt Bayes be invited to participate in this week’s GOP gubernatorial debate.

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