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Ultimate Guide on the Economy for Idaho's 2012 Legislative Session

Background

Kevin Rank / Flickr

Idaho State Capitol building in Boise

On January 9th, Idaho’s Legislature will convene in Boise for its annual session.  StateImpact Idaho will be focusing our coverage on how proposals and policy decisions impact Idahoans and the area economy.  We’ve been interviewing leading lawmakers in the run-up to session and have compiled various resources to help you get involved or stay informed.

The Basics

What Lawmakers are Saying

These posts are a series of Q & A’s we did during the weeks leading up to the 2012 Legislative session.  Each conversation focused around job creation, tax policy and the state budget.

The Issues We’re Following

Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter’s View

We interviewed Governor Otter in December 2011, a few weeks in advance of the 2012 session.  We asked him about some of the major issues we’ll be following and posted a series of videos and Q & A’s.  Here are all of those segments in one place:

Lobbyists Influencing Decision Makers

The list of lobbyists and the organizations they represent shift from year to year.  Lobbyists are required to register with the Secretary of State before each session (and pay a $10 registration fee).  Lobbyists are also required to submit monthly reports detailing how much money they’ve spent on things like food, entertainment and travel for lawmakers and advertizing for their cause.

Latest Posts

Introduction Of IACI Personal Property Tax Bill Sets Stage For A Fight

The Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry's Alex LaBeau introduced a bill to phase out Idaho's personal property tax over a seven-year period.

The House Revenue and Taxation Committee voted this morning to introduce a second personal property tax bill, this one supported by the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry (IACI), which represents business interests in the state. In doing so, the committee has set itself up for big decisions about whether and how to address the [...]

A Twist In The Legislature’s Nascent Personal Property Tax Discussion

Former state representative Dennis Lake is a past-chairman of the House Revenue and Taxation Committee.

In absence of a bill, the Idaho Legislature’s personal property tax discussion has played out behind closed doors so far this session. But former Representative Dennis Lake introduced a twist today when he went before his old committee to suggest a simple change to the definition of real and personal property. Lake’s bill would narrow [...]

Why Idahoans Rejected Proposition 3

An informal poll of voters at Boise's Longfellow Elementary showed strong opposition to the package of education laws known as Students Come First.

Idaho voters delivered a ringing defeat of Propositions 1, 2 and 3 Tuesday, rejecting the three-part education overhaul backed by Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna and Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter, and approved by the Legislature in 2011. The most resounding “No” came on Proposition 3, which addressed online education and technology in schools.  Voters [...]

Gov. Otter To Weigh Conflicting Messages In Health Insurance Exchange Decision

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter gave his address from the floor of the Idaho Senate.

It’s been a significant policy question for a year now: Will Idaho create a state-based health insurance exchange?  With hours remaining until Election Day, it’s a safe bet that Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter will not make his call before the presidential vote tally is in. When the governor does sit down to make his decision, [...]

Fear Of Rising Health Insurance Costs Drives Health Exchange Recommendation

Stethoscope and Chart Doctor Shortage

When Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry President Alex LaBeau made his ultimately successful motion that the Health Insurance Exchange Working Group should call for Idaho to implement a state-based exchange by 2014, he spoke in dramatic terms. “What is in the best interest of the employers in the state of Idaho?” he asked.  “How [...]

High Cost Of Republican Caucus Means Thousands Less For State And Local Candidates

Ada County Republicans arrived hours early to attend the March caucus.

The Ada County GOP has been stingy with contributions to local candidates in the run-up to the Nov. 6 election.  When asked how much the Ada County Republicans have been able to spend on races so far, treasurer Darrel McRoberts gives a dejected response. “Not one penny this year,” he says.  “We haven’t been able [...]

Idaho Misses Out On Millions Without Online Sales Tax

Click on the image above to see the interactive map.

Republican governors are getting on-board with the online sales tax, according to a Wall Street Journal piece out today. In Idaho, a so-called “streamlined sales tax bill” failed last legislative session, and not for the first time.  The bill was intended to create a more reliable way of collecting the state’s 6 percent sales tax [...]

Idaho Boosts Rainy Day Account Thanks To Improved Revenue

Click to enlarge.

Idaho’s fiscal year-end tax revenue report, which came out today, shows collections exceeded forecasts by $35 million or 1.4 percent. The Division of Financial Management says sales tax and corporate income tax collections were 7.2 percent higher than expected.  Miscellaneous receipts exceeded its forecast by 24.2 percent. The piece of Idaho’s revenue stream that didn’t [...]

House Republican Leader Ken Roberts Appointed To Tax Commission

House leader Ken Roberts (R-Donnelly) has been appointed to be the fourth member of the state Tax Commission.  The commission oversees state revenue collections and tax laws. Here’s the press release from the governor’s office: Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter announced the appointment today of Ken Roberts, Republican Caucus chairman in the Idaho House of Representatives, [...]

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