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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April 15, 2016 •

Idaho Overhauls Purchasing Procedures with New Law

Gov. Butch Otter signed a procurement bill into law late last month, overhauling how the state makes purchases. House Bill 538 repeals existing statutes in favor of a completely new chapter, dubbed the State Procurement Act. The Act requires training […]

IdahoGov. Butch Otter signed a procurement bill into law late last month, overhauling how the state makes purchases.

House Bill 538 repeals existing statutes in favor of a completely new chapter, dubbed the State Procurement Act. The Act requires training for state officers and employees, including ethics training, and modernizes purchasing procedures.

The new law takes effect July 1, 2016.

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March 26, 2016 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns Sine Die

The Idaho Legislature adjourned sine die on Friday, March 25, 2016. Lawmakers agreed to a 7.4 percent increase in the education budget, but did not pass a tax cut proposal or Medicaid expansion. Photo of the Idaho State Capitol by […]

Idaho_State_CapitolThe Idaho Legislature adjourned sine die on Friday, March 25, 2016.

Lawmakers agreed to a 7.4 percent increase in the education budget, but did not pass a tax cut proposal or Medicaid expansion.

Photo of the Idaho State Capitol by Maxbatt in Wikimedia Commons.

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February 16, 2016 •

Tuesday Lobbying and Campaign Finance News Update

Lobbying Florida: “Lobbying firms pull in cash as year ends” by Jim Saunders in the Tallahassee Democrat Hawaii: “Lobbying Law Proposed For Kauai” by Chad Blair in the Honolulu Civil Beat Idaho: “Bill would make university, state agency lobbyists report […]

K StreetLobbying

Florida: “Lobbying firms pull in cash as year ends” by Jim Saunders in the Tallahassee Democrat

Hawaii: “Lobbying Law Proposed For Kauai” by Chad Blair in the Honolulu Civil Beat

Idaho: “Bill would make university, state agency lobbyists report their spending” by Betsy Russell in the Spokesman Review

New Hampshire: “Political Wrangling Over ‘People’s Pledge’ in New Hampshire” by Simone Pathé in Roll Call

New Mexico: “Campaign finance fix bill triggered by KOB investigation 1 step away from clearing legislature” by Ryan Luby in KOB 4

Ethics

New Mexico: “Ethics commission proposal faces scrutiny in Senate panel” by Dan Boyd in the Albuquerque Journal

Virginia: “Senators vote to undo parts of ethics reform law” by Jim Nolan in the Richmond Times-Dispatch

Elections

“DCCC Names First 16 Candidates to ‘Red to Blue’ Program” by Simone Pathé in Roll Call

Florida: “With Safe Districts Gone, Two Florida Lawmakers Taking Their Time on 2016 Decision” by Eli Yokley in Roll Call

Ohio: “Bill would ban switching political parties in Ohio primary elections” by Robert Higgs in the Plain Dealer

Procurement

Texas: “Some contractors say new Texas disclosure law confusing” by The Associated Press in KXAN

Legislative Issues

Alaska: “Longtime Alaska Lawmaker Max Gruenberg Dies” by Nathaniel Herz in Governing

Arizona: “Arizona lawmakers seek ability to more easily overturn ballot measures” by Howard Fischer in the Daily Courier

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May 20, 2015 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns One-Day Special Session

The Idaho Legislature adjourned its special session Monday, May 18, 2015, just 12 hours after reconvening. Lawmakers returned to Boise to approve changes to federal child support rules. The bill has been sent to the governor who said he will […]

Idaho Capitol RotundaThe Idaho Legislature adjourned its special session Monday, May 18, 2015, just 12 hours after reconvening.

Lawmakers returned to Boise to approve changes to federal child support rules.

The bill has been sent to the governor who said he will sign it into law.

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May 4, 2015 •

Idaho Governor Calls Special Session

Gov. Butch Otter announced a special legislative session will begin on May 18, 2015. After adjourning in early April, lawmakers will return to resolve amendments to a child support law. The law is a prerequisite for receiving federal funds to […]

Idaho_State_CapitolGov. Butch Otter announced a special legislative session will begin on May 18, 2015. After adjourning in early April, lawmakers will return to resolve amendments to a child support law.

The law is a prerequisite for receiving federal funds to assist in child support enforcement.

Legislators have until June 12 to come to an agreement.

Photo of the Idaho State Capitol by Maxbatt in Wikimedia Commons.

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April 13, 2015 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns

The Idaho Legislature adjourned sine die early Saturday, April 11, 2015. The 90-day session concluded after both houses reached a compromise on a major transportation funding bill. The bill approved $94.1 million for road and bridge repairs, failing to erase […]

Idaho Capitol RotundaThe Idaho Legislature adjourned sine die early Saturday, April 11, 2015.

The 90-day session concluded after both houses reached a compromise on a major transportation funding bill.

The bill approved $94.1 million for road and bridge repairs, failing to erase a $262 million shortfall in annual road maintenance.

Photo of the Idaho State Capitol Rotunda by Kencf0618 on Wikimedia Commons.

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February 25, 2015 •

Idaho House Seeks to Close Loophole in PAC Reporting

A bill, introduced this month, seeks to create greater transparency in campaign finance reporting for PACs. House Bill 112 eliminates a gap in PAC reporting following the seven-day pre-election report and election day, requiring disclosure of contributions of $1,000 or […]

Idaho Capitol RotundaA bill, introduced this month, seeks to create greater transparency in campaign finance reporting for PACs. House Bill 112 eliminates a gap in PAC reporting following the seven-day pre-election report and election day, requiring disclosure of contributions of $1,000 or more during this time.

Introduced by Rep. Greg Chaney, the bill is intended to prevent circumstances where PACs are able to avoid disclosing large expenditures prior to elections.

The bill was reported out of the State Affairs Committee with a do-pass recommendation.

Photo of the Idaho State Capitol Rotunda by Kencf0618 on Wikimedia Commons.

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April 4, 2013 •

Idaho Legislature Adjourns Sine Die

End of 2013 regular session

Flag of IdahoThe Idaho Legislature adjourned its regular session sine die on April 4, 2013.

Before adjourning at 11:30 a.m., the Legislature finalized the $1.3 billion public education budget. It failed to pass by one vote at the end of March, with some lawmakers arguing that it codified the Students Come First laws rejected by voters last November.

The House also debated and passed a bill aimed at allowing school districts flexibility in adjusting teacher pay and contracts.

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