February 27, 2020

Budget Freezes Don’t Guarantee Tax Cuts

Budget Freezes Don't Guarantee Tax Cuts

No one likes property taxes. I don’t like them. I’m betting you don’t like them, too. They’re an imperfect way to pay for services a community needs, like roads, schools, and snow removal. The fact that they’re unpopular is exactly why the Idaho House moved yesterday to implement a one-year budget freeze on all taxing districts except for schools. It …

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January 21, 2020

Budget Decisions Don’t Happen in a Vacuum

Idaho Capitol 2020

The first two weeks of the 2020 session have flown by. From Day 1, we’ve been busy, and few places have been busier than the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee (JFAC). I love serving on JFAC. We listen carefully to Governor Little’s recommendations and the different agencies’ requests. We then ask questions and assess each submission carefully to measure needs and wants to …

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November 27, 2019

How Idaho Looks from Japan

ACYPL Japanese Exchange

As you’re reading, the odds are pretty good I’m flying somewhere off the west coast of the United States. For the last 11 days, I’ve been in Japan with a group called the American Council of Young Political Leaders (ACYPL). Each year, ACYPL puts together bi-partisan delegations to participate in exchanges with countries around the world. I had the good …

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October 1, 2019

Eastern Idaho Legislators Working Together

In September, I joined Reps. Ricks, Raymond, and Furniss for a joint, District 34-35 town hall with House leadership. The questions ranged from wildlife overpasses and road construction to education standards and water management. As I sat and listened when the others spoke, I was struck by how many issues we’ve already worked together on even as we represent different …

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September 10, 2019

Building Idaho’s Rural Future

Potato Harvest 2019

For the last few weeks, we’ve been digging potatoes. It’s not glamorous, and it’s far from straightforward when you consider everything that goes into growing a crop. But I love it, and it’s something I’ve been a part of for 40 years. I want similar, long-term opportunities for our rural communities throughout Idaho. It’s no secret that a lot of …

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August 6, 2019

States Are Laboratories for Democracy

Daylight Saving Time

Last month, I saw firsthand the wisdom of Justice Louis Brandeis when he described the states as laboratories of democracy. Joining with other Western legislators at the annual meeting for CSG West, the ideas for better public policy took center stage. Over four days, we explored a wide range of issues. Everything from education to economic development received a deep-dive …

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