March 23, 2020 •

Idaho House Adjourns, Ending Legislative Session

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

The second session of the 65th Idaho Legislature has ended. The House adjourned sine die on Friday after balancing fears of spreading the coronavirus with potential vetoes of several bills representatives will now be powerless to override. If the House […]

The second session of the 65th Idaho Legislature has ended.

The House adjourned sine die on Friday after balancing fears of spreading the coronavirus with potential vetoes of several bills representatives will now be powerless to override.

If the House stayed in session, it would have given them the option of holding an override vote.

The override would be necessary if Gov. Brad Little vetoed any of the bills sent to him in the last days of the session.

The House voted 32-28 to end the legislative session a day after the Senate adjourned sine die.

During the session, lawmakers passed a bill relating to the filing of campaign finance reports and a bill relating to codifier’s corrections.

Senate Bill 1233 amends who can file reports of contributions and expenditures to include the political committee and the candidate.

The bill was an emergency and became effective January 1, 2020.

Senate Bill 1334 makes non-substantive changes to definitions relating to lobbying and contributions.

The bill becomes effective May 19, 2020.

This does affect lobbyist reporting.

The statutory requirement to file monthly reports when the Legislature is in session will end with the report due April 15.

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March 20, 2020 •

Idaho Senate Adjourns Sine Die

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

The Idaho Senate adjourned sine die Thursday night. However, the House voted to meet again Friday morning despite recommendations to practice social distancing amid COVID-19 concerns. Coronavirus has been looming over the last week of the session, causing Gov. Brad […]

The Idaho Senate adjourned sine die Thursday night.

However, the House voted to meet again Friday morning despite recommendations to practice social distancing amid COVID-19 concerns.

Coronavirus has been looming over the last week of the session, causing Gov. Brad Little to be dealing with the increase in cases.

If the House stays in session for three days, it will force the Senate to return to town.

If the House adjourns on Friday, at 75 days, it will be tied for the fourth shortest session in the past 20 years.

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February 13, 2020 •

Idaho Election Filing Deadlines Extended

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

At the request of Idaho Secretary of State Lawerence Denney, and in consultation with the office of the Governor, the Idaho Office of the Secretary of State is extending the February 10 filing deadline for PACs and candidates under the […]

At the request of Idaho Secretary of State Lawerence Denney, and in consultation with the office of the Governor, the Idaho Office of the Secretary of State is extending the February 10 filing deadline for PACs and candidates under the Idaho Sunshine Laws to February 17, 2020.

Being the first report due under the new revisions of the Sunshine Law, various unanticipated issues have made achieving the deadline by midnight unlikely for some candidates and PACs.

The fines stipulated by the new laws will also be pushed back and not be assessed at this time.

Another contributing factor to the delayed deadline is for many in local and special district offices, this report represents their first time ever filing with the Office of the Secretary of State and many were not aware of the steps required to gain access to the state’s campaign finance filing system.

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January 21, 2020 •

Idaho Lawmaker Unanimously Expelled from House

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

The Idaho House of Representatives voted unanimously to expel Rep. John Green, a day after a Texas federal jury convicted him of a felony. Rep. Green refused to resign from Seat B of House District 2 following a guilty verdict. […]

The Idaho House of Representatives voted unanimously to expel Rep. John Green, a day after a Texas federal jury convicted him of a felony.

Rep. Green refused to resign from Seat B of House District 2 following a guilty verdict.

The Idaho Attorney General’s Office sent House Speaker Scott Bedke a letter stating based on a review of the Idaho Constitution and state law, under the felony conviction, Green has lost his qualifications for office.

It was also noted in the letter the House is the judge of the qualifications of its own members.

Expelling a House member requires a two-thirds vote of the 70-member body.

With no debate, comment, or discussion the House voted 65-0 to expel Green.

It is the first time a lawmaker has been expelled from the Idaho Legislature.

Gov. Brad Little nominated Tim Kastning to serve as acting state representative during Green’s temporary absence for the trial.

The District 2 Republican Party now has 15 days to present three possible candidates to forward to the governor to choose a replacement.

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January 3, 2020 •

Idaho Governor Appoints Boise Woman to Vacant House Seat

Lauren Necochea - MARSHALL CLARKE

Gov. Brad Little appointed Lauren Necochea to fill the vacant House of Representatives District 19 seat. Necochea was one of three possible candidates and the top choice the Democratic Legislative Committee for District 19 submitted to the governor. The seat […]

Gov. Brad Little appointed Lauren Necochea to fill the vacant House of Representatives District 19 seat.

Necochea was one of three possible candidates and the top choice the Democratic Legislative Committee for District 19 submitted to the governor.

The seat became vacant when former Rep. Mat Erpelding resigned to take a job with the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce.

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April 12, 2019 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns Sine Die

The Idaho Legislature adjourned sine die April 11. During the 95-day legislative session, lawmakers passed bills amending state lobbying and campaign finance laws and passed a Medicaid budget bill to fund an expansion of the program. The session was longer […]

The Idaho Legislature adjourned sine die April 11.

During the 95-day legislative session, lawmakers passed bills amending state lobbying and campaign finance laws and passed a Medicaid budget bill to fund an expansion of the program.

The session was longer than expected as lawmakers failed to pass a bill to extend administrative rules set to expire July 1.

The governor may reinstate temporary administrative rules, or a special session may be called to resolve the issue at a later date.

The statutory requirement to file monthly reports when the Legislature is in session will end with the report due May 15.

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April 5, 2019 •

Idaho Governor Signs Campaign Finance Law

Gov. Brad Little signed Senate Bill 1113 on April 3, amending state campaign finance law, effective January 1, 2020. The bill revises the definitions of candidate, election, electioneering communication, political committee, and public office. Senate Bill 1113 raises the registration […]

Gov. Brad Little signed Senate Bill 1113 on April 3, amending state campaign finance law, effective January 1, 2020.

The bill revises the definitions of candidate, election, electioneering communication, political committee, and public office.

Senate Bill 1113 raises the registration threshold for political committees from $500 to $1000 while providing for a special provision for local elections and measures.

The bill requires candidates and political committees to file statements on a monthly basis during election years and annually during non-election years.

Senate Bill 1113 also amends late filing fees to accrue 48 hours after the deadline and requires the secretary of state or county clerk to notify the person within 24 hours of the missed filing deadline.

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April 5, 2019 •

Idaho Governor Signs Bill Amending Lobbying Law

On April 3, Gov. Brad Little signed a bill amending state lobbying laws. Effective July 1, Senate Bill 1153 removes the lobbyist’s employer signature requirement from reports filed by lobbyists. A designated contact is required upon registration for electronic notification. […]

On April 3, Gov. Brad Little signed a bill amending state lobbying laws.

Effective July 1, Senate Bill 1153 removes the lobbyist’s employer signature requirement from reports filed by lobbyists.

A designated contact is required upon registration for electronic notification.

Senate Bill 1153 also provides a definition for lobbyist’s client.

The client is the person on whose behalf the lobbyist is acting, directly or indirectly, as a contractor.

Additionally, the client is further defined as someone who compensates the lobbyist or lobbyist’s employer for acting as a lobbyist.

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November 7, 2018 •

Lt. Governor Brad Little Takes Idaho’s Governor’s Race

Longtime Republican lawmaker and Idaho Lieutenant Governor Brad Little has defeated Democratic challenger Paulette Jordan by a margin of 59.5 percent to 38.4 percent to become Idaho’s next governor. Jordan, a former state lawmaker and member of the Coeur d’Alene […]

Longtime Republican lawmaker and Idaho Lieutenant Governor Brad Little has defeated Democratic challenger Paulette Jordan by a margin of 59.5 percent to 38.4 percent to become Idaho’s next governor.

Jordan, a former state lawmaker and member of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, was the first woman to earn her party’s nomination in Idaho. Even though there was significant national media attention given to Jordan, Little’s win was predictable in this intensely conservative state.

Little has been lieutenant governor since 2009 and ran on a platform to carry on retiring Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter’s policies that lead to the state’s recent growth.

“Twenty-four years ago Phil Batt broke a 24-year cycle of Democrats having control of the governor’s office,” Little said during his victory speech Tuesday night before a packed room of cheering supporters.

“This is the 24th anniversary of that and Idaho is still a very red state. I look forward to working with President Trump as we continue to allow Idahoans to be the masters of their own destiny,” he said.

“Idaho has been fairly successful, but we have more work to do in taking back the authority that the federal government over the years has taken, whether it is in the areas of education, transportation, health care, public lands management and all of the areas of regulation.”

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July 19, 2018 •

Idaho Legislative Committee Considering Campaign Finance Reforms

A bipartisan panel of state lawmakers are considering campaign finance reform proposals to introduce at the next legislative session. The panel is considering extending campaign finance reporting requirements to local elections, increasing the frequency of reporting, and posting collected information […]

A bipartisan panel of state lawmakers are considering campaign finance reform proposals to introduce at the next legislative session.

The panel is considering extending campaign finance reporting requirements to local elections, increasing the frequency of reporting, and posting collected information on a single database for public access.

The panel will meet again in the fall to finalize the legislative proposals and decide which bills to introduce in January.

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March 29, 2018 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns 2018 Legislative Session

On March 28, the Idaho Legislature adjourned its 2018 legislative session. The adjournment process was revised following a lawsuit over a veto last year. Lawmakers stayed in the capital an additional five days to preserve the right to override any […]

On March 28, the Idaho Legislature adjourned its 2018 legislative session.

The adjournment process was revised following a lawsuit over a veto last year.

Lawmakers stayed in the capital an additional five days to preserve the right to override any vetoes from the governor.

Bills passed include reductions to personal and corporate income tax rates, new K-12 public school science standards, and the codifying of existing stand your ground case laws.

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November 29, 2017 •

Idaho Working Group Approves Potential Changes to Campaign Finance Laws

A bipartisan working group of lawmakers unanimously approved a proposed bill amending the state’s campaign finance laws. Among the changes, the proposal would require year-round, monthly campaign finance reporting, prohibit PACs from accepting more than $1,000 from groups not registered […]

A bipartisan working group of lawmakers unanimously approved a proposed bill amending the state’s campaign finance laws.

Among the changes, the proposal would require year-round, monthly campaign finance reporting, prohibit PACs from accepting more than $1,000 from groups not registered and disclose the source of their funds, and increase potential fines from $250 to up to $25,000. Additionally, use of the internet and social media would be included in the definition of electioneering communications.

The bill will be introduced during the 2018 legislative session.

The group declined to take up the issue of raising the lobbyist registration fee, not wanting to jeopardize the bill’s success. Member’s stated raising the fee is a legitimate concern and should be examined during the session.

The current $10 per client fee has not increased since 1974, when the lobbying statute first became law.

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March 30, 2017 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns 2017 Session

The Idaho Legislature adjourned the 2017 regular session sine die on March 29, 2017. Major issues of this year’s session included proposed income tax cuts and funding for public schools. A handful of legislators will work through the interim on […]

Idaho_State_CapitolThe Idaho Legislature adjourned the 2017 regular session sine die on March 29, 2017.

Major issues of this year’s session included proposed income tax cuts and funding for public schools.

A handful of legislators will work through the interim on updating the state’s public school funding formula. Many argue it is outdated and does not meet the needs of a modern education.

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July 7, 2016 •

Idaho Ballot Initiative Group Fails to Collect Enough Signatures

An attempt to place an initiative on the November ballot to overhaul state campaign finance and ethics regulations has failed. The Keep Idaho Elections Accountable campaign, chaired by Democrat Holli Woodings, failed to collect the 48,000 signatures needed, coming up […]

IdahoAn attempt to place an initiative on the November ballot to overhaul state campaign finance and ethics regulations has failed.

The Keep Idaho Elections Accountable campaign, chaired by Democrat Holli Woodings, failed to collect the 48,000 signatures needed, coming up roughly 6,000 short. The initiative would have changed contribution limits, created stricter penalties for violations, and prohibited lobbyists from giving gifts valued at more than $50.

The group collected 79,000 signatures, but many were disqualified due to a lack of a current address.

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