Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Hailey BAH goes 'poolside tropical'

The Hailey Chamber of Commerce's June Business After Hours social and networking event will take place Thursday, June 17, from 5-7 p.m. at the "tropically updated" Blaine County Recreation District Aquatic Center. Participants will be able to network poolside, in the pool or under the gazebos or thatched palapas. Food and drinks from KB's Burritos will be offered. The Aquatic Center is adjacent to the Community Campus.

For more information, call Cameron Randolph at 788-2144.

Wolf project denied grant

The South Central Idaho Resource Advisory Committee recently denied a $10,000 request from nonprofit Defenders of Wildlife for use in an ongoing proactive wolf project in the upper Wood River Valley. The committee, chaired by Blaine County Commissioner Tom Bowman, voted 9-to-4 against the funding request for the Wood River Wolf Project. Bowman was among those who voted for the request.

The committee doles out federal funds to approved projects in Blaine, Camas, Cassia and Twin Falls counties. The money comes from the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2008. The law compensates counties for reduced tax revenue because of federal land within their boundaries.

The wolf project uses proactive methods such as night pens and constant monitoring for radio-collared members of the local Phantom Hill wolf pack to prevent them from coming into deadly interaction with the large domestic sheep bands that graze the Sawtooth National Forest during the summer. Officials say the three-year-old project has been largely successful.

Ketchum BAH scheduled at pizzeria

The Sun Valley-Ketchum Chamber & Visitors Bureau is inviting members and guests to attend the June Business After Hours event on Thursday, June 10, from 5-7 p.m. at Smoky Mountain Pizzeria Grill in Ketchum.

Businesses are encouraged to use the monthly event as an opportunity to network with other members, meet new business operators in the area and get better acquainted with the companies hosting the event.

Blaine unemployment drops

Blaine County's unemployment rate decreased 1.2 percent in May—ending at 8.2—as about 1,200 workers were hired. About 1,100 workers entered the county's labor force in a month's time, bringing the total workforce to 14,071.

The workforce is comprised of those either working or looking for work, but not those who are jobless and have given up searching for a job.

Blaine's jobless rate was lower in May 2009 than this May—at 7.3 percent—but only 11,800 people had work, compared to 12,900 this May. The county was able to have more employed workers but still tabulate a higher jobless rate in May than a year ago because the workforce has grown by 1,300 workers in a year, employed or not.

Idaho's forecast unemployment rate for May fell 0.1 percent to a forecast 9 percent as employers across the economy took on 7,000 new workers. But the government alone added 2,000 of these jobs, many of which were temporarily hired for census follow-up.

May was the third month in a row that the state's jobless rate had fallen following 31 straight months of increasing unemployment dating back to August 2007. The peak was 9.5 percent unemployment in February.

Does market warrant zoning change?

The Wood River Economic Partnership will host a forum, open to the public, today, June 9, at 5:30 p.m. at the Roosevelt Grille in Ketchum to discuss the proposed Ketchum Market.

Allowing the proposed supermarket would require changing rules for the Light Industrial zone at the north end of town because retail of the store's size is not allowed there. Several people have argued at Ketchum City Council meetings that if a grocery store is given an exception and allowed to operate in the industrial zone—where land is cheaper—other retailers might move there as well, creating a new retail core and killing downtown, as well as the LI zone.

The Ketchum Market application outlines the footprint of a 31,500-square-foot market and a 3,155-square-foot drugstore, with 98 parking spaces. Plans also include 7,305 square feet of affordable housing, or 10 units, above the store.

Marketron hires new CFO

Hailey-based Marketron, which sells software to more than 7,000 radio and TV stations, has hired a new chief financial officer. According to a news release from the company, Tom Whipple will lead Marketron's finance, administrative and information technology organizations.

Whipple has more than 30 years of experience in finance and general management. Prior to joining Marketron, he served as president of John Crane Production Solutions, a division of Smiths Group and manufacturer of products and services serving the upstream oil and gas industry.

Marketron is an affiliate of the Wicks Group of Companies of New York, which specializes in communications, information and media businesses.

Get the facts about concussions

Matthew Jaksetic, certified athletic trainer from St. Luke's Elk's Rehabilitation, will discuss the latest information on recognition prevention and treatment of concussions today from 12:15-1:15 p.m. at St. Luke's Clinic Carbonate Rooms in Hailey.

All Brown Bag lectures are free and no pre-registration is required. Please call St. Luke's Center for Community Health for information on this or other educational programs at 727-8733.

Republicans elect new officers

Blaine County Republicans have elected new officers, including Ed Terrazas as chair, Curtis Johnson as vice chair and Margaret Caston as treasurer. Long-serving member Suzan Stommel will remain as recording secretary and corresponding secretary.

The organization also re-elected Maurice Charlat as state central committeeman and Darlene Bramon as state central committeewoman in recognition of their long service to the group. Newcomer Jill Nowogroski was elected Young Republican chair, a position that had been vacant.

The organization is helping to organize an event on Friday, June 18, at River Run Lodge featuring National Republican Chair Michael Steele, in conjunction with the state Republican Party. For more information, contact Debbie O'Neill at 450-9687.

Help Hailey bring back Fourth

The Hailey Chamber of Commerce is asking residents to participate in a contest conducted by Liberty Mutual that allows towns from across America to compete for $10,000 "Bring Back the 4th" grants. Liberty Mutual will give away ten $10,000 grants and people can help Hailey earn a grant for the Fourth of July fireworks celebration.

Supporters can go to and take the brief quiz by June 14. At the end of the quiz, enter Hailey, ID 83333. The quiz questions relate to American history. Each quiz taken is counted as an entry and entries are not dependent on correct answers.

"This is one way that we can all contribute to the fireworks fund," said chamber Executive Director Heather LaMonica Deckard.

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