The Boise Weekly van got more street this week. Our resident drawer, Adam Rosenlund, who also designed the citydesk logo that now graces the top of this blog, went and painted the truck.
This week's news section continues our itinerant series on the economy.
Weedman's new comedy is a gut-clutchingly frank, partially autobiographical journey that winds through a gynecologist's office, a gay gym and a funeral parlour in the eight days before Mother's Day, as Weedman comes to terms with those two, ofeten inseperable F-words: Failure and family.And Deanna Darr forecasts an inconclusive winter season: "If [the forecast] is good, we brag on it. If it's bad, we don't pay attention to it," says Bogus Basin spokesperson Gretchen Anderson.
It's not a ring, but Boise Police suspect that a few thieves are out there stealing expensive bikes and then pawning them.
Idaho is the beneficiary of millions of dollars in federal block grants to help low-income people pay to heat their homes this winter. The Congress passed $5.1 billion in funding to the states for winter heating assistance, most of which goes as direct payments to utility companies to offset heating bills.
This may not be the Golden State, though a majority of Idahoans may have voted for a Constitutional ban on gay marriage in 2006, but none of that is stopping some members of the state's LGBT community from having their say on the issue.
Pridedepot.com's Jody May-Chang is working long hours to compile Boycott H8, (as in "hate") a list of Idaho businesses and individuals that financially supported the passage of Proposition 8, which bans gay marriage in California. At a gay-rights rally in front of City Hall that coincided with national demonstrations last weekend, May-Chang distributed the list to those in the crowd.
At the top of the list is a name gay rights activists are used to seeing: Vandersloot. According to May-Chang's list, Belinda Vandersloot, the wife of businessman Frank Vandersloot who runs the health care product company Melaleuca in Idaho Falls, contributed $100,000 to the California YES on Proposition 8 campaign.
The bottom of the list dwindles down to contributions of a mere $50, with close to 150 businesses and individuals in total named from Boise to Burley and Rexburg to Rupert.
"It's labor intensive to make sure they're accurate," said May-Chang. "I'm cross referencing between information from California's Secretary of State and Idaho's Secretary of State's records."
In addition to the Idaho list, May-Chang is compiling similar lists for Utah and a nationwide boycott using information available through public records.
A complete list can be found at pridedepot.com, where May-Chang has urged visitors that the list "is NOT to be used in ANY way to harass or otherwise harm anyone in any way or for any form of solicitation."
The U.S. Department of Transportation's transit arm has denied a request from Boston's T to allow two pilot locomotives to be built across the pond.
A Boise company had bid against a German-Spanish firm for the large contract. The foreign firm wanted to assemble the first two locomotives in the 28-car order overseas, in violation of the Federal Transit Administration's "Buy America" requirements.
About 30 people—mostly state workers—took time off this morning to attend a hearing on cuts to their benefit package that went into effect prior to legislative review.
Workers demanded the hearing after the state Division of Human Resources, in late August, implemented temporary rule changes that cut the amount of time allowed for short-term disability leave and eliminated paid time off for doctor visits, among dozens of smaller changes.
Selma Gearhardt, pictured above, a pharmacy specialist at Idaho’s Medicaid program, testified that she counsels people all day to go to their preventative doctor and dental visits in order to catch disease early. But then the state takes away a benefit that encourages state workers to do the same.
“Restore effective health care policy that supports the benefit of prevention. Recognize what we have always known: ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,’” Gearhardt said in her written testimony.
DHR director Judie Wright arranged the hearing after more than 25 workers demanded it.(The state received petitions from at least 200 employees, according to testimony from the state workers' union). Wright said the testimony will be reviewed and any changes will be reported in about a week and a half.
The Idaho Association of Government Employees, the state workers' union, protested the timing of the hearing—10 a.m. on a Monday morning, but Wright said that was the time that the court reporter was available.
“We didn’t have very long to get it done,” Wright said. “We’re supposed to have our comments done by the 14th.”
No one testified in favor of the rule changes at the Monday hearing. The legislature will review the rules starting in January and legislation to authorize paid leave for preventive doctors visits has already been discussed.
We at citydesk were just wondering how to apply for press credentials for the Obama inauguration in the off chance BW wants to send us to that *historic* event, when an e-mail from Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo (R-, uh, Idaho) popped in the inbox, reading:
CRAPO: SWEARING-IN CEREMONY TICKET REQUESTS BEING TAKEN