Idaho lawmakers: $260 million in education money at stake
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — With $260 million in federal money at stake, lawmakers on a Senate panel voted to create an interim committee to recommend new math, science and English standards for Idaho’s 300,000 students. The Senate Education Committee on Monday voted unanimously to send to the full Senate a concurrent resolution to form the interim committee. The House Education Committee last week rejected the standards. Lawmakers on the Senate committee say Superintendent of Public Instruction Sherri Ybarra told them the state could lose $260 million in federal money annually if the new standards aren’t put in place.
Idaho visitors could see big hike in hunting, fishing fees
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Legislation significantly increasing what it will cost nonresidents to hunt deer and elk in Idaho is heading to the full Senate. The Senate Resources and Environment Committee approved the measure Monday that the Idaho Department of Fish and Game says resident hunters asked for so there will be less overcrowding in the field. Fish and Game is capping how many nonresidents can hunt deer and elk. But that will result in reducing Fish and Game revenue with fewer nonresident hunters. To make up for that, Fish and Game is increasing hunting and fishing costs for non-residents. The legislation has already passed the House.
Idaho governor may seek funds for teacher salary increases
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho Gov. Brad Little may soon introduce a five-year teacher pay plan providing more than $225 million in additional state support for teacher salary increases. The Lewiston Tribune reported a bill could be introduced when the House and Senate education committees complete work on school content standards and other administrative rules. The governor’s education task force has recommended expansion of teacher pay to include a third pay tier for veteran teachers. Little’s education policy adviser says his plan mirrors the task force recommendation to increase funding to establish $40,000 salaries for beginning teachers, $50,000 for mid-level teachers and $60,000 for veteran educators.
PROPERTY TAXES-CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT
Idaho Lawmakers eye plan for taxing exempt properties
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Legislation for a constitutional amendment could end up reducing some property taxes by removing exemptions for others. The House Revenue and Taxation Committee on Monday gave the OK for the resolution that would allow legislation to bring into the property tax pool government properties leased by third parties. Democratic Rep. John Gannon as an example says taxing those properties in Boise could result in a 2% reduction overall for city residents and about 1% for the county. The resolution will have to pass both the House and Senate with a two-thirds majority and then be approved by voters.
FATAL WRECK-ELKO COUNTY
Coroner: Idaho couple, 2 men killed in fatal Nevada wreck
ELKO, Nev. (AP) — A couple from Idaho and two men in a car driven by a man from Las Vegas have been identified as the four people killed in a head-on wreck on a northeast Nevada highway during the weekend. A coroner official in Elko County says Michael and Gwendolyn Crispin, of Meridian, Idaho, died when their Hyundai Sonata was hit by a Subaru Impreza driving north in the southbound lanes of U.S. 93. The Subaru driver, Efrain Madera-Tadeo, of Las Vegas, and passenger Edgar Jovany Morales-Contreras, were killed in the Saturday crash.
CONDORDIA UNIVERSITY CLOSING
Concordia University in Oregon to close this year
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Concordia University in Northeast Portland, Oregon has announced it will close this year. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the private, nonprofit Lutheran university’s Board of Regents voted Friday to cease operations at the end of its spring semester. The university said the closure comes “after years of mounting financial challenges, and a challenging and changing educational landscape.” Its website says nearly 5,900 students attended Concordia in 2018. The university said it’s in talks to provide students the chance to continue their educations elsewhere. Concordia Law school in Boise, Idaho, is affiliated with the university, and is expected to remain open while officials work to find a new university with which to join forces.