The City of Boise has opened a new day shelter for homeless families with kids, making the announcement during the second frigid week of December.
The shelter space, in a city-owned after-school program facility at 500 S. Ash St. in the River Street District, will free up some of the space in the nearby Corpus Christi House day shelter, which serves many of the city's homeless, providing a warm space, food, coffee, showers and phones during the daylight hours when most shelters are closed.
The city will provide educational services for kids, a place for parents to stay warm, and lunch (prepared by the Boise Rescue Mission) at the family day shelter at the Pioneer Neighborhood Community Center.
"The City of Boise is committed to ensuring that no families with children are ever turned out on the street," Mayor Dave Bieter said.
Part of that effort is a beefed-up motel voucher program--the city is tripling the amount of money available to $15,000--that will give families up to a week's stay at an area motel as they seek other shelter.
The city and the state Idaho Housing and Finance Association are also releasing some $1.3 million in stimulus funds soon, aimed at homelessness prevention.
Despite these efforts, the city is also the target of a lawsuit from a group of homeless men and women who have been repeatedly ticketed for sleeping outside. An initial hearing date in that case was to be set as BW went to press.
And now, Deanna Darr updates citydesk readers on a strange wolf kill, and on the regular, state-sanctioned wolf kills ...
It looks like the canine parvo virus may be the culprit in the deaths of six wolves found on U.S. Forest Service land north of Fairfield earlier this year, although results are still considered inconclusive.
The Idaho Department of Fish and Game has closed the investigation into the deaths of the juvenile wolves but stated that there was no evidence of any poison, nor any physical injury, and all six appeared to be in good physical condition.
Necropsies were done on the partially decomposed remains, and tissue samples came back positive for the canine parvo virus, which is highly contagious and usually fatal in all canids, especially young ones. But the results are still considered inconclusive, in part, because no other signs of infection were found.
In other wolf-oriented news, Idaho's first wolf hunt continues, with two more areas nearing their quotas--Palouse-Hells Canyon and the Southern Mountains have one to go, while 14 of 17 have been taken in the Middle Fork zone. As of Thursday, Dec. 17, the total number of wolves taken by hunters stood at 127 of the 220 limit.