Tuesday, December 31, 2013


Resort says super pipe nearing completion
    Sun Valley Co. plans to complete the largest snow super pipe in North America in the coming weeks. Jack Sibbach, Sun Valley public relations director, said the pipe on Dollar Mountain will feature 22-foot-high walls and will be 622 feet long.
    Mountain crews have been making snow in the gulch where the pipe is being constructed. Sibbach said he hopes the pipe will be completed on Jan. 9, but no official date has been determined yet. The resort will make an announcement once it knows when the pipe will be completed.
Federal jobless benefits in final week
    About 2,500 long-term unemployed Idaho workers will earn their final federal extended benefit payments this week. Claimants making their job search reports for this week, typically on Sunday, Dec. 29, or Monday, Dec. 30, will receive their last benefit payments later in the week.
    Claimants receiving extended benefits were notified in mid-December by letter that payments would end with this week’s eligibility. The average weekly benefit is about $262. A total of nearly $700,000 a week has been paid in federal extended benefits in recent weeks.
    Congress did not renew the extended benefit program, which began in mid-2008 to ease escalating unemployment during the recession.
    Since its inception, about 100,000 Idaho workers have collected over $790 million in federal extended benefits after regular state benefits of 10 to 26 weeks were exhausted. Another $68 million in supplemental benefits was provided under a second program that ended last year.
    Almost $1.47 billion has been paid in regular state benefits since the beginning of 2008, a month after the recession began.

Comments sought on hunting seasons
    The Department of Fish and Game is seeking public input on proposals for 2014-15 and 2015-16 upland game, furbearer and turkey seasons. In the Magic Valley Region, proposals being scoped include:

  • Starting upland bird hunting at Niagara Springs Wildlife Management Area, where pheasants are stocked, at 10 a.m. instead of a half hour before sunrise.
  • Eliminating the fall turkey hunt in Unit 54 and consideration of reductions in permits in the spring turkey hunts in Unit 54.
  • Closing Rock Creek in Blaine County and a portion of Clover Creek in Gooding County to beaver trapping.
  • Shortening the bobcat season to prevent overharvest of bobcats.

    The public may also review the proposals and provide comments any time on the Fish and Game website http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ or at the Fish and Game office in Jerome. The deadline for submitting comments is Jan. 3.
    All public comments will be summarized and presented to the Idaho Fish and Game Commission for consideration before seasons are set at the Jan. 16 commission meeting.

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