Officials at Idaho’s state Bureau of Homeland Security were downright tired of folks confusing them with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. So the state agency’s name has officially changed to the Idaho Office of Emergency Management.
It actually took a new law to change the name. HB 355 passed both houses of the Idaho Legislature unanimously and was signed into law by Gov. Butch Otter on March 22. Like most new state laws, it took effect July 1.
The agency was created as the Bureau of Disaster Services in 1975. In 2004, it was combined with the Bureau of Hazardous Materials into the Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security, which also was assigned responsibility to respond to terrorist threats, along with natural disasters, fires, explosions, riots and the like.
The bureau, which falls under Idaho’s Military Division, announced that its website has changed from bhs.idaho.gov to IOEM.idaho.gov.