Politics & Government

Stories about politics, policy, and how government works.

James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

State senators passed a bill that would make Idaho’s citizen initiative process among the most restrictive in the country by one vote. The proposal comes just months after a successful initiative that expanded Medicaid eligibility to low-income residents.

Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

It doesn't look like lawmakers at the legislature will be going home when they planned to on Monday, March 25. Known as the Sine Die date, Monday was supposed to be their last day.

James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho House Republicans pushed through a bill Thursday that would tack on work requirements, among several other restrictions for those enrolling under the state’s voter-approved Medicaid expansion program.

Scott Ki / BSPR

 A federal appeals panel has granted the state of Idaho’s request to postpone sex reassignment surgery for a transgender inmate. The inmate’s case now awaits a decision from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.  

James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho House lawmakers will soon debate adding several restrictions to its voter-approved Medicaid expansion program.

James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

A bill that would add significant new restrictions to Idaho’s initiative process is headed to the full Senate for amendments.

Idaho State Police / Facebook

A bill that would change funding streams for the Idaho State Police is bound for a vote on the Senate floor.

As it stands, Idaho State Police gets a sizable portion of its $75 million budget – about $17 million – from the state’s Highway Distribution Account. That’s where money earmarked for bridge repair, roadway upgrades and other improvements comes from.

Steve Bertel / Local News 6

Idaho’s top health official says he wants to construct new buildings for an embattled mental health facility near Nampa.

European authorities are looking into whether the suspect in last week’s terror attack on two mosques in New Zealand was inspired by an emerging, European-based breed of white nationalism.

Les Bois, historic horse racing
James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

The face of a failed voter initiative to reinstate historic horse racing in Idaho is now lobbying in favor of a bill that would make it harder for citizens to propose laws and put them on the ballot.

James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

The Idaho Legislature is one week closer to going home, but the specific date is still uncertain. Many of the budget bills have passed out of the Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee, known as J-FAC, and through the House and Senate. But some policy bills are slowing down the session.

Boise State Political Science Professor Gary Moncrief tells Samantha Wright lawmakers are a little cranky.

Otto Kitsinger / AP Photo

This week we head back to the Statehouse to chat with freshman Rep. Brooke Green (D-Boise). We talked to her in the first podcast this season about being brand new to the job. Now we find out how it's going several months into the session, and what she learned along the way.

Heath Druzin / Boise State Public Radio

The travails of a bill to restrict sex offender gun rights, which narrowly passed the House Thursday, highlights how reluctant Idaho lawmakers are to vote for any type of firearm restriction.

Matt Guilhem / Boise State Public Radio

This week is Sunshine Week. While spring is nearly here, it has nothing to do with the weather. Every year, reporters and government watchdogs mark the week highlighting the importance of transparency and open government.

Nate Hegyi with the Mountain West News Bureau sat down for an interview exploring the history of the event. What started in Florida in 2002 as “Sunshine Sunday” has grown to an entire week featuring panel discussions nationwide about open government and transparency hearings in Congress.

via Katie Fite

Dozens of people attended this week’s Boise City Council hearing about a proposed trucking terminal. It would be right next to the 200-unit Blue Valley mobile home park. Neighbors like Betty Davidson expressed concerns about air quality and noise.


"I feel this will be a safety issue that will not be good for the kids of our community," Davidson says. "In addition with all these diesel fumes and other pollutants, it won’t be very safe to spend time outdoors."