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C.L. “Butch” Otter has been a fixture of Idaho politics since 1973 when he was elected to his first term in the state House of Representatives.Otter was elected to his third-consecutive term as governor on Nov. 4, 2014. He was elected to his second term as Idaho governor on Nov. 2, 2010. Otter first became Idaho's governor on Nov. 7, 2006.Gov. Otter was at the helm during the peak of the Great Recession and it was his administration that oversaw the cutting of the state budget, record unemployment, and a boom in the number of people using government assistance.Otter spoke with StateImpact Idaho back in 2012 about that recession and its lasting impact on Idaho's workforce.Governor Otter: Every Generation Deals with Joblessness and We Live Through ItA Brief BiographyOtter, a Republican, is the longest serving lieutenant governor of Idaho, his tenure spanned from 1987-2000. In 2000 he was then elected to the United States Congress and served until 2006.According to the Washington Post, Otter voted with his party most of the time, 86 percent, but has been known to have an independent streak on some issues.“He was among three Republicans in the House to vote against the USA Patriot Act in 2001 and he later sponsored a bill to repeal parts of it. But independent streaks are sometimes tolerated in a state that would rather not be told what to do by the federal government.” - William Yardley, New York TimesOtter was born on May 3, 1942 in Caldwell, Idaho. He attended St. Teresa’s Academy in Boise and graduated from Boise Junior College (now Boise State University) with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in 1967.After college, Otter joined the Idaho National Guard and served in the 116th Armored Calvary until 1973.Butch Otter is married to his second wife, Lori. He has four children and several grandchildren.

University Presidents Compete For Money At Idaho Legislature

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Boise State University/Andrus Center

At the Idaho Legislature they call this Education week. The state’s education leaders go before budget writers to make the case for why they should get the money they’ve asked for. For the first few days it’s higher education. Monday morning presidents from Boise State and Idaho State are in the hot seat. So forget cross state sports rivalries, this is true high stakes competition.

David Adler has rooted for the presidents of all three of Idaho’s state universities in the budgeting process. He taught political science at Idaho State for years. Then he went to the U of I, and now he wears blue and orange as the head of Boise State’s Andrus Center for Public Policy.

“It’s a pretty intense time, and there’s a lot on the line for these university presidents,” he says. 

Adler explains all the college and university presidents have to present a united front to lawmakers to convince them that higher education is important to the state’s economy. But even though people often talk about the higher ed budget, there really isn’t one. There’s an allocation for Boise State, an allocation for the U of I an allocation for College of Western Idaho, etc.

“They very much are in competition and sometimes that competition can be intense,” Adler says. “It’s often viewed as a zero sum game. Dollars allocated to one university are dollars that another university won’t receive.”

Adler says the presidents have to appear civil, even complimentary to each other. All the while they’re trying to convince lawmakers to use a funding formula that favors their school and that their programs are most important.

Copyright 2013 Boise State Public Radio