Survey solicits Grangeville residents’ opinions on city, community services; preferred funding options
Grangeville residents will get their chance to sound off on civic issues of concern in a citywide survey set to go out with this month’s utility bills that should start hitting mailboxes on March 21.
Updates on State Highway 14 situation
UPDATE, March 4: - ITD brings in additional contractor to clear massive Idaho 14 landslide - Escort travel trips reduced to 6 a.m. only due to bypass condition - Public meeting set Thursday, March 10, to update Elk City residents
Group to pick presidential candidate
Idaho County Democrats will make their presidential candidate choice at their caucus on Tuesday, March 22. Participants will have the opportunity to speak for the candidate of their choice, and up to two voting rounds will be held. Practice caucus set on Monday, March 14
Residents cooperating to maintain route
Elk City traffic has adjusted to twice-daily trips, three days a week, along a bypass route as State Highway 14 remains closed just west of the community due to last month’s rock slide. “It seems to be working well for people needing to come and go,” said Sarah Secrist, dispatcher, Idaho County Sheriff’s Office (ICSO), who is coordinating communications on travel conditions for the escorted trips in and out along Newsome Creek Forest Road 1199.
Use of force, officer discretion in Idaho County in the wake of Adams County Yantis shooting
Four months later, questions continue on the circumstances involved in the fatal officer-related shooting of a long-time rancher in neighboring Adams County. As the public awaits the completion of an Idaho State Police investigation, the Free Press discussed some of the issues involved with Idaho County Sheriff Doug Giddings and Undersheriff Jim Gorges, as they relate to how law enforcement is governed and applied locally.
Five kids participated in Saturday’s snowshoeing event at Snowhaven Ski and Tubing Hill, one in a series of “Extreme Adventure Club” health and wellness events held through Partners Inspiring Community Health (PICH).
Sentencing set May 9 in District Court
It took the jury nearly three hours to find Jason A. Godwin guilty of second-degree murder last Friday evening, Feb. 25, a determination following four days of testimony concerning the 2014 shooting death of Kyle A. Anderson. Following the verdict, bond was revoked for Godwin, 50, of Kooskia, who will be kept in custody in the Idaho County Jail pending his sentencing hearing set for May 9.
You may love living in Idaho, but what do you really know about the Gem State? This Friday, March 4, Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter kicks off commemoration of Idaho Day, recognizing Abraham Lincoln’s signing the congressional act to make Idaho a territory on March 4, 1863.
Democrats will hold a caucus March 22
Republican and Constitution party’s primary elections are next Tuesday, March 8.
Just so you know, next Monday, Feb. 29, filings open for state and county elected offices that Republicans will be filling come the November elections. That is, of course, if no other parties choose to file candidates.
Braving the afternoon cold and a light snow flurry, supporters for constitutional carry of firearms in Idaho rallied at the Idaho County Courthouse in Grangeville on Saturday, Feb. 20.
County, USFS manage alternate access
Elk City area residents have a tenuous weather-dependent connection to the outside – its goods and services, and employment — through an alternate forest route limited to three days a week.
Approximately 135 kids in grades 6-8 from Grangeville Elementary Middle School participated in an all-day activity at Snowhaven Ski and Tubing Hill last Friday, Feb. 19.
Methamphetamine, commercially sold marijuana recovered
Felony drug possession charges resulted for individuals stopped in two recent unrelated traffic stops.
We challenge public entities within Idaho County to follow the lead by the City of Grangeville on proactive efforts to engage citizens.
Winter time to test for radon; 29 percent tested unsafe
What you don’t know could be working to kill you. Radon gas: “You can’t smell it, feel it, taste it. It doesn’t cause headaches, cold, coughs or flu,” said Jim Faust, Radon Program manager at Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (IDHW). “But it’s the number one cause of lung cancer for non-smokers.”
Storage unit burglaries: “It’s a continual problem,” said Detective Jerry Johnson, Idaho County Sheriff’s Office. “There isn’t a month that goes by that we don’t have at least one.”
Dustin L. Stamper, 31, of Grangeville, and Colin G. Sprute, 48, of Orofino, were ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene, nearly six miles up Deer Creek Road, according to the Idaho County Sheriff’s Office (ICSO).
Elections 2016: Confused yet?
With all the dates and deadlines for elections this year, Idaho voters can understandably be confused as to which way to turn or what form to sign. So, here’s a summary to help guide Idaho County voters through to what’s coming up as we head into the May primary.
U.S. Highway 95 traffic was reduced to one lane for two hours Sunday morning when a semitruck caught fire at the north entrance to Riggins. No injuries were reported in the Feb. 14 incident that destroyed the semi; however, two hopper trailers – a 36-foot and 20-foot – and a load of peas were saved.
Could easily be 2045 before such an action – if any -- would be taken
Closure of the Grangeville Armory is a considered possibility, according to a long-term proposal submitted to Congress early last fall by the Idaho Army National Guard, as part of efforts to modernize its facilities across the state. But long-term is the operative phrase here, as it could easily be 2045 before such an action – if any -- would be taken.
Linemen with Avista Utilities and Idaho County Light and Power Cooperative were at Pioneer Park in Grangeville last Friday, Feb. 12.
Hearing set Feb. 19 on multiple charges
A preliminary hearing is set this Friday, Feb. 19, for a Grangeville man charged in connection with a gold nugget collection theft from Hoot’s Café last December. Jacob W. Collier, 24, is charged with grand theft and two counts of burglary, along with misdemeanor petit theft.
Cottonwood City Councilor Shelli Schumacher was sworn in as the city’s new mayor Monday night, replacing Denis Duman who resigned his seat in a letter presented at the Feb. 8 session.
With one arrest under their belts, area law enforcement continue investigation into a recent series of Grangeville-area burglaries.
“If you’re getting loud, eventually they’re not going to hear you,” said State Representative John Rusche, Minority Leader, (Dist. 6),” and you’ve probably stopped listening, too.”
Slick conditions over the weekend contributed to several slideoff and rollover crashes, reported to the Idaho County Sheriff’s Office (ICSO).
Felony charges against two Arizona woman involved in an apparent child custody dispute at Kamiah were resolved in district court last week. In a plea agreement reached with the prosecution last Tuesday, Jan. 26, Rita L. Lewis 49, pleaded guilty to the charge, amended to a misdemeanor; and the custodial interference case against Veronica M. Lewis, 26, was dismissed.
Did activist Robert LaVoy Finicum have to die? Opinions are heated on last week’s shooting of the spokesman for activists who have staged a month-long occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Ore. Was it justified, or was it an ambush and murder? That’s a conclusion we’re not ready to jump at, because more importantly we’re asking whether this whole situation justified actions that resulted in a man losing his life. And with this also brings to mind the role of law enforcement as public servants and protectors of the peace.
Threat of arrest, being shot keep Andersons from leaving refuge
“None of them want anything more to do with this. They want to go home,” said Idaho County Sheriff Doug Giddings of four individuals – two of whom are Riggins residents – who remain at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon, site of a month-long standoff by protestors.
Incident alleged to involve shotgun, knife
A preliminary hearing is set for next Tuesday, Feb. 9, for a Kamiah man charged with two counts of felony aggravated assault resulting from an incident with his son last month.
Main Street establishments hit
Main Street businesses are advised to take precautions following an attempted break-in early this week that may be related to two separate burglaries last month.
If you know all about the trending illegal drug scene, then you can stop reading here. But, if you are like us, you likely have no clue as to the extent of what is really going on … and so perhaps, you should be paying better attention.
Months of discussion and meeting on a proposed ordinance regulating helicopter activity within the municipal limits ended last week with a unanimous vote by the Grangeville City Council to drop the matter entirely.
Investigators are seeking information on two suspects involved in an early Sunday morning burglary of Oscar’s Restaurant.
Ivie case: 10 years later
Ten years ago this month, David D. Ivie, 45, was shot to death as he lay asleep in his Harpster home. His wife, Rockie Sue Ivie, reportedly admitted to the crime and was charged with first-degree murder. But less than a month into the court process, Rockie was determined to be mentally incompetent to stand trial. Now 60, Rockie is under care at a southern Idaho assisted living facility. Her mental condition has somewhat improved since 2006, but the likelihood is she will never stand within an Idaho County courtroom to face her felony charge.
A Grangeville couple received minor injuries following an early Monday morning rollover accident on Lukes Gulch Road. Cara L. Smith and David L. Smith, both 32, were transported to Syringa Hospital for evaluation.
Felony charges against Veronica and Rita Lewis resulted from Jan. 11 Kamiah incident
Preliminary hearings are next Tuesday, Jan. 26, for two Arizona women charged with felony child custodial interference in last week’s alleged abduction of a 2-year-old relative. Veronica M. Lewis, 26, and Rita L. Lewis, 49, both of Phoenix, are currently incarcerated in the Idaho County jail; bond for both is set at $20,000.
Military service is a family value for the Reilly clan, members of which were honored with Quilts of Valor in a small home ceremony last weekend.
Affected Avista, ICLP customers in Cottonwood area Jan. 15
Several hundred customers were without power service for three hours last Thursday after an owl came into contact with a three-phase line just north of Cottonwood.
A scam was quickly thwarted, and a resident is looking to warn others to be vigilant. “I just want people to be aware not to send them any money,” said Wendell Thomas, Grangeville-area resident, as no one can afford to be scammed: “It hurts too much.”
Saturday weather causes multiple accidents on US 95 south of Grangeville
UPDATE, Saturday, Jan. 16 - Multiple accidents, some with minor injuries, were reported in and around the White Bird grade south of Grangeville this morning.
Owner escaped without injury
A woodstove mishap resulted in a fire last week that destroyed a Suttler Creek Road home north of Syringa. Owner James Brawner, 84, escaped without injury. His mobile home was destroyed. It is believed he was uninsured.
Will they be good neighbors? That’s the question we ask ourselves when someone pulls up with the moving van into the vacant house next to us. Can we get along? Will they maintain their property to both its benefit and that of the neighborhood? Will they not be disruptive? Overall, will they reflect our values?
Political affiliation problem:
Elections are still a few months off, but voters looking to declare political affiliations should do so early. A conflict with the election calendar and Idaho State code will have legislators scrambling at the start of the legislative session to quickly plug a loophole that, as it stands, could potentially allow a person to change affiliations twice before the May primary elections.
Four elected positions open this year in Idaho County
2016 will be a year full of elections, and Idaho County will have four positions up for public decision.
Arizona women charged with felony child custodial interference
Two Arizona women are in custody, awaiting arraignment, following an attempted kidnapping Monday afternoon of their 2-year-old relative from Kamiah.
Unmarked police cars patrolling for driving violations has the appearance of a game of “gotcha” where officers are looking for an excuse to drop the hammer on drivers. It feels sneaky and deceptive; an enforcement tactic way we don’t feel is commensurate with the infractions – not misdemeanors or felonies, mind you – that highway enforcement officers largely deal with.
Economically, 2014 was a lean year for Idaho County residents who saw a marginal increase in income coupled with an increase in those living in poverty.
GPD investigating "coins exchange" lead at local business
A determined thief or thieves scored more than a handful of change in a Christmas holiday pop machine break-in.