Wednesday, March 6, 2013


Sun Valley Brokers in merger

Sun Valley Brokers, a Wood River Valley real estate firm, has merged with Twin Falls-based Magic Valley Realty under the global Keller Williams Realty umbrella.

The new firm, called Keller Williams Sun Valley-Southern Idaho, confirmed the merger of the two formerly independent Idaho firms as a Keller Williams franchise Monday. A news release states that the Austin, Texas-based parent company is the largest real estate franchise firm in the U.S., with about 700 offices and 80,000 associates around the world.

“We’re in the transition period right now.” said Sheila Liermann, a former Sun Valley Brokers principle and now Keller Williams Sun Valley co-owner. 

According to the release, before the merger, Sun Valley Brokers had six partners and 11 associates and Magic Valley Realty had two owners and 21 associates. The post-merger firm will add one new partner and six new associates to the combined roster. The release also states that the new Keller Williams franchise will have two locations, one in Ketchum and one in Twin Falls. The Sun Valley location will be at 680 Sun Valley Rd., where the former Sun Valley Brokers office was.


Hospital gets ‘Gold Seal’

After a “rigorous” unannounced onsite survey in February, St. Luke’s Wood River has again earned the nonprofit Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for accreditation by complying with the commission’s national standards for health care quality and safety in hospitals.

The Joint Commission is an independent organization that accredits and certifies more than 20,000 health care organizations and programs in the U.S. The commission first awarded accreditation to St. Luke’s Wood River in 2001. The hospital has maintained accreditation since then by passing unannounced surveys every three years,

The latest survey was on Feb. 20-21. A St. Luke’s news release states that the commission’s surveyors evaluated the hospital for compliance with standards of care “specific to the needs of patients,” including infection prevention and control, leadership and medication management.

Commission accreditation is voluntary. However, St. Luke’s Wood River CEO Cody Langbehn stated that it is a “significant” investment in quality for the hospital.


Talk offered on maintaining balance

Age, illness and injury contribute to increased risk of injury from falling. Kristin Bevers, a physical therapist specializing in vestibular (inner ear) rehabilitation, will present information on how to minimize these risks by maintaining strength and balance, treating vertigo and dizziness, and using preventative measures when necessary.

Bevers will speak today, March 6, from 12:15-1:15 p.m. at St. Luke’s Hailey Clinic.

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


Jaquets to host ICL event

Longtime Idaho Conservation League members Wendy and Jim Jaquet will host a gathering of friends of the ICL on Thursday, Mar 7, from 5–7 p.m. at their Ketchum-area home. Drinks and appetizers will be served.

According to a press release from the organization, this is an opportunity to bring ICL’s community partners together and discuss highlights of ICL’s involvement in the Wood River Valley.

RSVP to  HYPERLINK "'m%20RSVPing%20for%20Thursday's%20Meet%20%26%20Greet&body=Hi%20Dani%2C%0A" Dani Mazzotta or call 726-7485 by today, Mar 6. She will provide the address and directions.


Hyperbarics of Sun Valley opens

The Hailey Chamber of Commerce is inviting the public to attend a grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony at Hyperbarics of Sun Valley on Thursday, March 7, from 5-7:30 p.m. at 21 Comet Lane, Suite A, in Hailey, next to Blue Heron in the old 5B Crossfit/ Hunger Coalition building. Food and beverages will be served by Billy Olson and Powerhouse.  

According to a news release from the Hailey Chamber, the hyperbaric oxygen therapy “decompression chamber” is used to treat a multitude of conditions, including autism, Alzheimer’s, carbon monoxide poisoning, cerebral palsy, chronic pain, frostbite, multiple sclerosis, nonhealing wounds, Parkinson’s, plastic surgery healing, traumatic brain injuries and stroke.

Hyperbarics of Sun Valley administers oxygen at greater than atmospheric pressure while the patient relaxes for 60 to 90 minutes listening to music or watching a movie.


Idaho tops in low-paid workers

 The share of Idaho’s hourly workers making the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour—or less—jumped to 7.7 percent in 2012, the highest percentage in the nation.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics estimated that 31,000 of Idaho’s 404,000 hourly workers were paid the minimum wage last year, an increase of 12,000 from 2011, when 5 percent of the state’s hourly workforce made minimum wage or less. That ranked the state 30th in 2011.

At 7.7 percent, it was the highest percentage of minimum wage workers that the state has recorded in the decade that the bureau has been making estimates. 

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