Highlights from 04-03-2013
Garage bill rolls through House
Legislation giving the state a trump card in its dispute with the city of Boise over a 580-space Capitol Mall parking garage passed the House on a 42-26 vote Wednesday. The measure allowing the state to override Boise's planning rules now heads to Gov. Butch Otter.
Lawmakers approved construction of the $8 million project last year. But in January, a city planning board rejected part of the building's design.
Republican Rep. Brent Crane of Nampa said the bill is critical because the state must begin repaying bonds for the project next year. He said the bill also provides a fallback plan if negotiations with the city stalemate.
Republican and Democratic opponents argued that it unfairly exempts the state from the same vetting process required of all private developers.
The Associated Press
House passes bill to fund buildings
The facilities funding measure passed the House 40-27, sending it to the governor's desk.
Opposition was bipartisan, with Majority Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, leading the dissenters.
The legislation grants charter schools a per-student allocation from the state budget to cover a portion of their building costs each year.
Unlike regular school districts, they can't ask voters to raise property taxes to fund school buildings, which is the major way Idaho funds school projects.
Betsy Z. Russell, Spokesman-Review