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.

Indiana Stan / Flickr

Gas prices in Idaho are falling fast, compared to the rest of the country. Idaho’s prices have dropped 30 cents in the last 30 days, while the U.S. average price has dropped just a nickel over the last month.

Triple A Idaho’s Dave Carlson says Idaho’s gas prices were well above where they should have been. A month ago, they were 46 cents higher than the national average.

Carlson says there are five refineries that serve the southwestern part of the state and they may not have been able to keep up with the need in this part of the country.

thinkpanama / Flickr

A two-day conference that starts Tuesday in Boise will address everything from housing trends to homelessness. The Idaho Housing and Finance Association’s Conference on Housing and Economic Development is the largest of its kind in Idaho.


If you're a woman in agriculture, you're more likely to farm in Oregon than in Idaho.

Flickr Creative Commons

  Downtown Boise is going through a hotel boom. Six have been proposed in the last six months and five have the city’s go-ahead for construction. At the same time, Meridian is trying to recruit someone to build a hotel in its downtown. But that effort has been unsuccessful so far.

Meridian officials actually want three things built in their city's downtown – a performing arts center, a conference center and a hotel. The city recently requested proposals for those but got zero response.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

In June of 2014, we first told you about a new place that was under construction in Boise where refugees and others would soon be able to own small businesses. Last April we introduced you to some of them as the Boise International Market celebrated its grand opening. But over the weekend the market burned.

snake river, canyon
ChadH / Flickr Creative Commons

The Bureau of Land Management is considering what to do about reports of overcrowding on the South Fork of the Snake River.

The Post Register reports the Upper Snake Field Office of the BLM will be holding a series of focus group and gathering input in other ways during a 30-day public comment period.

Proposed solutions include limiting the number of people who float the river, limiting boat access, limiting outfitter use and requiring campsite reservations.

Ken Edmunds, Idaho Department of Labor
State of Idaho

Idaho officials say fewer businesses are vying for a top economic development incentive because of tighter reforms implemented nearly a year ago.

Known as the workforce development training fund, the state program reimburses companies for training employees.

The Idaho Department of Labor approved more than $6 million to help train employees at 11 different businesses and universities in fiscal year 2015, which just ended at the end of June.

Micron Technologies

Boise-based Micron is the rumored focus of a takeover offer from a Chinese company.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the possible interest from Tsinghua Unigroup, a Shangai company with ties to the Chinese government.

Dan Gallagher is a writer with the Journal, and has been following the story. He says Micron’s median share price is $29 a share, but the Chinese company is interested in buying it for $21 a share.

I-5 Design and Manufacture / Flickr Creative Commons

I shop at Albertsons a few times a week. I live near one and there are two close to our radio studio. I’ll pop over in the evening or on weekends to pick up a few things. Granted, my market research is light-years from being scientific, but on those trips I’ve noticed a couple of things that have made me less than optimistic for the future of this hometown company. 

One, it’s never crowded compared to the store where I go for my big, once-a-week shopping trips. And two, like me, everyone there seems to be buying just a few things.  

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Boise-based Albertsons filed this week to offer stock for public sale. Albertsons became one of the largest food retailers in the country early this year when it closed on its acquisition of Safeway. 

Scott Graf / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho Power officials say a key part of the company's plan for supplying a growing number of customers in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon over the next two decades is maintaining 17 hydroelectric projects.

The company last week submitted its updated Integrated Resource Plan to the public utility commissions in both states, predicting an increase from 516,000 customers to 711,000 in 20 years.

RoadsidePictures / Flickr Creative Commons

Supermarket operator Albertsons Companies Inc., the No. 2 U.S. supermarket company whose brands also include Safeway, has filed for an initial public offering of stock, according to a filing Wednesday.

The Boise-based company did not say how many shares it would offer, what they would cost or where those shares would trade. It said it expects to raise $100 million from the offering, though that figure is only an estimate used to calculate a filing fee. Proceeds from the offering will be used to repay debt and for general expenses.

Construction Worker
Molly Messick / StateImpact Idaho

Idaho workers saw the largest per capita income increase in the country in 2013, according to data recently released by the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis. The 2.4 percent increase was substantially higher than 0.1 percent increase seen nationally.

John Penny / Flickr Creative Commons

If you’re in Boise, take a look around. There’s a very good chance some of the people you see are out-of-towners. June and July are Boise’s busiest months for tourism.

The Boise Convention and Visitors Bureau keeps track of how many hotel rooms get rented and when. Visitors bureau director Carrie Westergard says both in June and July the city could have as many visitors as residents.

UnShuttered Soul~ Good to be busy! / Flickr

Starting July 1, Idahoans will see new laws that range from how much they pay at the gas station to giving teachers a pay bump.

Next week marks the start of a new fiscal year in Idaho. This means a $95 million transportation plan designed to help repair Idaho's crumbling bridges and roads will go into effect. For Idaho residents, vehicle registration fees are going up $21 and gas will cost 7 cents more because of higher taxes.

Kyle Green / Idaho Statesman

Partnerships between public universities and private companies – called technology transfers – have the potential to solve some of the world's most difficult problems. The idea is to have researchers at universities do their work, and then the institution will help them obtain a patent. At that point, the product can be sold to a private company for distribution. Think of the iconic Gatorade story at the University of Florida. 

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

The neighborhood known as the Waterfront District is a game changer for Garden City. It was the first high-end housing built in the historically poor, southeast section of town. It’s the development that kicked off, what many people believe is inevitable gentrification.

USDA/NRCS / Flickr Creative Commons

Last week, the United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a 21st century upgrade to a system that’s been stuck in the analog world. The Conservation Client Gateway is a new website that lets farmers and ranchers apply for programs under things like the Farm Bill. Before, a farmer would have to drive to their nearest USDA office – which, in rural Idaho – could be a time and fuel-consuming task.