In light of the current ongoing pandemic, there have been many recent life altering changes that have caused an increase in stress for all of us, including the concept of social distancing.  Day in and day out, we hear ever changing information about COVID-19, and how it is affecting our com…

“You may be hearing a lot of different information about the severity of the coronavirus in different countries. The fact is that the experience has been different. Some countries have done a great job of slowing the spread of coronavirus (such as Singapore) and other countries have not been…

“FOOD Brings Everyone to the Table” is the theme for this year’s Ag Day – March 24th. Our country’s farmers and ranchers work hard to provide food and clothing for our country and the world. The Idaho County Farm Service Agency is proud to honor our local farmers and ranchers and recognize t…

Great news for Idaho parents and students regarding Early Childhood Education. Thanks to the successful collaboration of a bi-partisan committee of stakeholders convened over the summer and the support of Governor Brad Little, Idaho is the recipient of a $3.3 million Federal Preschool Develo…

This time of year, there are a lot of illnesses going around. Your co-workers have probably been coughing. Your kids have probably missed some school. We’ve been seeing all the typical suspects here at the clinic: strep throat, influenza, colds, and pneumonia. This is also the peak season fo…

Two weeks ago, Idaho Education News reported a story on school fund balances throughout the state. Big Country news picked up the story and shared it with our local readers. Many patrons of the district have either ask me directly or in a roundabout way if the information was correct. The an…

I believe that vaccinating children and young adults may be the single most important health-promoting intervention we can perform as parents, caregivers, and healthcare providers. Not everyone agrees with me, and that’s fine. The law in Idaho protects everyone’s freedom to vaccinate or not.…

Government is an over-achiever in collecting taxes on nearly everything we do. It’s hard to imagine anything in our everyday life that is not taxed. We are taxed for our homes, our property, our cars, our purchases, our earnings, our investments, and even after death. 

By Marilyn Giddings, chairman, Idaho County Republican Central Committee

Years ago, I served as a member of the Bannock County Commission, and one of our duties was to appoint citizens to various boards like planning and zoning, fair board, and many others. I remember one appointment where we had asked an individual who had seen a birthday or two if he’d like to …

Nearly two-thirds of Idaho is federally owned, which severely limits the tax base for roads, law enforcement and schools because federal lands contribute no property taxes.  The Secure Rural Schools (SRS) program provides critical funding streams for rural Idahoans. The two-year extension of…

I visit with my District 15 constituents at their door nearly every day to stay current with what concerns them the most. The top two issues almost everyone brings up are education funding and managing growth. Both issues are impacted by a common underlying concern – fiscal management.

We go about our daily lives in the United States of America. We read newspapers in the US and via Internet we have access to myriad newspapers around the world. But how often do we stop and consider press freedom? How often do we count our blessings when we peruse social media news outlets? …

Grangeville Elementary and Middle School Library has been very busy this fall. Thanks to the community it has been a great success. We owe a huge thanks to all of the parents and families of the students here at GEMS. We had many people help out at each event, and I know I will miss some, bu…

Technology touches every part of our lives and, with technology, comes the need for reliable broadband access. Access to the Internet has become nearly as important as access to clean drinking water, power for your home and roads. In fact, access to broadband is so important that a U.S. Cour…

Many in our community are familiar with Animal Ark and Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF), but there may be some confusion as to the mission of each organization. Animal Ark and ARF retain separate 501c3 nonprofit status, donations to both organizations are tax deductible. Both ARF and Animal Ar…

On January 27, 2016, former Kamiah Mayor Dale Schneider signed Resolution 2016-1, turning all authority of the ambulance service over to the chief of the Kamiah Volunteer Fire Department. This dramatically changed the way the ambulance service operated, and the environment in which the EMTs worked.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is proceeding with impeachment charges against President Trump. As a member of Congress and an Idaho Representative, I understand the gravity of the situation. Every future U.S. President will be subject to the precedent Congress sets within the next few days.…

Nearly 15,000 Idahoans will be losing their insurance because of the passage of Medicaid expansion. While this may come as a surprise to some, the House Republican Caucus worked hard to warn Idahoans and on Nov. 1, Idaho’s Medicaid expansion open enrollment started. One of largest consequenc…

Each year, I honor Idaho veterans and volunteers who support veterans with the Spirit of Freedom: Idaho Veterans Service Award. The lives of the award recipients are fascinating and inspiring and represent the core of what makes our communities and state so special. A common characteristic a…

In response to the letter from Norma Staaf [Nov. 13 issue] regarding a voter being turned away at the Grangeville Armory during the Nov. 5 election, that error is confirmed and acknowledged.

Idaho is flourishing; let’s keep it that way by keeping state government small and cutting the fat from our budget.

If you ask any Idaho state politician about the number one issue affecting their constituents, they will tell you “education.” It’s on their web sites, their social media channels, and on every piece of paper they hand out at the door. The answer has become almost automatic. No matter what p…

Once upon a time, having a job at a newspaper meant working in one of the most imposing buildings in town, inhaling the acrid aroma of fresh ink and the dusty breath of cheap newsprint and feeling mini-earthquakes under our feet every time the presses started to roll. For those of us old eno…

When it comes to finding skilled workers to fill the estimated 7.5 million job openings in the U.S., small businesses are feeling the crunch. In today’s unprecedented booming economy, our region’s small employers are searching for qualified workers to fill the increasing amount of positions …

Doctors may prescribe opioids, a class of drugs used to treat pain, after surgery or an injury. Although opioids can be an important part of treatment, they can also pose a serious risk of addiction, abuse, and overdose, especially if used continuously. This is true even for seniors and othe…

Your Idaho legislature has worked very hard developing the most sensible Medicaid expansion possible. We will not let the federal government take that away. We support the will of the people and the integrity of Idaho’s government. I can promise you that we will find the “Idaho Way” forward …

It will be Nov. 5 before we know it. With a number of elections happening in Idaho County, it’s important that voters understand just how to make their votes count.

Tax policy may seem like an abstract exercise to some people, but decisions made by Idaho lawmakers have real world consequences. Take, for instance, a couple now in their mid to late sixties living in Kootenai, Cassia, Gooding, Shoshone or Ada County. They’ve lived and worked for decades in…

The sacrifices families make when their loved ones serve in our nation’s Armed Forces are incredibly understated. Military families raise children and hold together households while their loved ones are far from home. They endure sleepless nights worrying about their loved ones serving in ha…

Some would say we live in an age of technological enlightenment because we have instant access to volumes of information at the tips of our fingers. I remember not too long ago that it would take days to read through stacks of books and Encyclopedia Britannica, the grandfather Wikipedia, to …

National Crime Victims Week is recognized each April to raise public awareness about the rights and concerns of victims and survivors of crime in the United States. This national recognition provides opportunities to honor crime victims, survivors and those who provide help in the aftermath …

As you know, Healthcare is constantly changing. But did you know that it is currently transferring from volume to value and what that may mean to you? Syringa Hospital District Board of Trustees members think it’s critical that their local communities understand the changes and how they may …

NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (www.nami.org), is deeply saddened by the mass shootings that are far too common and impact every corner of our nation. Every time we experience a tragedy like this, people with mental illness are drawn into the conversation. The truth is most vi…

Nearly two-thirds of Idahoans voted for a clean Medicaid expansion program. The reasons are easy to understand: We bring $400 million in federal dollars back to Idaho, provide healthcare for tens of thousands of working Idahoans, create thousands of jobs in the process, and shore up our rura…

Among outdoor enthusiasts, the Pacific Northwest is known for its iconic salmon and steelhead that once thrived in the waters of the Columbia River Basin. At the turn of the 19th century approximately 10 to 16 million wild salmon and steelhead would return to the streams, rivers and tributar…

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