local weather Click for Sun Valley, Idaho Forecast
 front page
 public meetings

 previous edition

 express jobs
 about us
 advertising info
 classifieds info
 internet info
 sun valley central
 sun valley guide
 real estate guide
 sv catalogs
Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
208.726.8060 Voice
208.726.2329 Fax

Copyright © 2003 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

Wednesday, March 10, 2004


Legislature should rethink these bills

The Idaho Legislature is streaking toward the finish line in a flurry of paper.

This is the time every year, if it’s not careful, the Legislature will make the most grievous mistakes, which Idahoans may have to live with for years to come.

A few we hope the Legislature avoids:

Charter Schools:
A bill backed by Gov. Dirk Kempthorne would create a new state commission with the power to approve new charter schools.

Charter schools and their financing are controversial enough without this move by the state to usurp the power of local school boards, which control the schools. Imagine decisions on Blaine County schools being made at the Statehouse—not a pretty sight.

The move is drastic and far-reaching. The Legislature has better options for smoothing relationships with charter schools.

Contractor Registration:
The House Commerce and Resources Committee is sitting on a bill approved by the Senate that would require building contractors to be registered in Idaho. This is a mistake that will leave prospective homebuyers at the mercy of unscrupulous operators who may take their money and leave them with an unfinished house—and all the bills.

Contractors would have to show proof that they have at least $300,000 in liability insurance. That would inspire confidence in homebuyers and be good for the industry. This should have been a no-brainer.

Health insurance for kids:
House Republicans led the charge last month to bar thousands of poor kids from two state health insurance programs. Republicans say the state simply can’t afford to insure more than 1,660 more kids from families who qualify. It currently insures 11,000 kids. The decision will leave uninsured kids and their parents with no place to turn but emergency rooms, which cannot deny treatment.

The decision forces the cost of treating the uninsured onto property taxes and private insurance, which subsidize treatment for the poor.

Uninsured kids with health problems often end up in emergency rooms where treatment is expensive and costs are absorbed by counties and hospitals.

Who do the legislators think they’re fooling? They should rethink this one—fast.


City of Ketchum

Formula Sports


Edmark GM Superstore : Nampa, Idaho

Premier Resorts Sun Valley

High Country Property Rentals

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.