Legislative Update: February 7, 2020

Budget presentations this week included the Judicial Branch, Guardian Ad Litem Program, Mental Health Services, Substance Abuse Services, Board of Dentistry, Board of Medicine, Board of Nursing, State Liquor Division, the Idaho Lottery, the Idaho Public Utilities Commission, the State Independent Living Council, the Idaho Historical Society, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Labor, the Department of Finance, the Department of Insurance, the Department of Parks & Recreation, the Public Health Districts and the Catastrophic Health Care Fund and more.

Some of the bits of information that I gathered during the week from these presentations include:

In the Guardian Ad Litem Program 2236 kids were served by 597 volunteers who investigate, monitor and advocate. A system of information on court and other data can be found at

There is a new Juvenile Detention facility being built in Nampa, Idaho to replace the current facility in Blackfoot. Seventy-five percent of the adolescents in the Blackfoot facility are from the Treasure Valley so the move will be more efficient by limiting a great deal of travel. 

The Board of Pharmacy is 115 years old and they conduct 915 inspections annually. The Liquor Division reported that they sold 1,235,900 cases of liquor last year. 

The Idaho Lottery paid $60M to Idaho People last year and 20% of sales were at Utah border locations. The Independent Living Council stated that their main challenge is transportation and affordable housing. 

The Department of Parks & Recreation served over 6 million customers last year in Idaho State Parks, a 60% increase.

Idaho Public Health Districts were established in 1970. They were created by the Legislature to ensure that preventive public health services are available to all citizens of the state— no matter how small or large their county population. It was the intent of the Legislature in creating the Public Health Districts that public health services be locally controlled and governed. There are seven Health Districts in Idaho and they are governed by policy boards appointed by the county commissioners in those Districts.

The Public Health Districts’ mission is to: ∙ Prevent disease, disability, and premature death ∙ Promote healthy lifestyles ∙ Protect the health and quality of the environment

Tuesday, we honored Idaho's significant role in women's suffrage. Representative Caroline Nilsson Troy spoke on behalf of the Idaho State Historical Society and Idaho’s Suffrage Movement, as the House displayed the original Idaho documents that ratified the 19th amendment 100 years ago. On February 11th, 1920, Idaho was the 2nd state to ratify the amendment to give women the right to vote. By August of 1920, 34 other states had ratified the amendment, ensuring that all across the country, the right to vote could not be denied based on sex.

Other groups I met with this week include AARP, Idaho Historical Society, the Nez Perce Tribe, the Idaho Women Lawyer’s Assn., Family Health Services, Twin Falls and Jerome County elected officials.

On Friday evening, I attended the Twin Falls County Fair Foundation Fundraiser and on Saturday, I had the privilege of presenting the Filer Library an American flag that was flown over the U.S. Capitol and the Idaho State Capitol.

It is a pleasure to serve as your Representative.

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