Idaho continues to be the least regulated state in the nation and the best place to do business. I might add, it is also the BEST place to raise a family. His Idaho Works plan lays out a solid plan to deploy “kitchen table economics”, balance our budget, and live within our means while investing in Idaho’s future. We can spend less–$200M fewer dollars out this year compared to last– and invest more in the projects and programs that protect Idaho’s future. He talked about additional tax relief–$150M proposed new tax relief on the heels of already record tax relief–to our struggling Idahoans while capitalizing on our constitutional obligation to support education. In LD26, we have over 350 HS Seniors that have already applied for the Idaho Launch Grant.
$50M bonding for $800M of transportation projects, including priority projects, I hope, like a 3rd bridge crossing in the MV. I heard continued to support for water infrastructure, quality, and quantity projects–water sovereignty. We appreciate the work of ISDA and their quick action to subvert the Quagga Mussels in the Snake River and ongoing efforts to treat them.
I was most excited to hear about the Student Behavioral Health Initiative, adding additional resources into our Youth Crisis and Assessment Centers–which were set up and funded during my time in the Idaho House and while on the Idaho Behavioral Health Council Board. Social media has proven long-term damage to our youngsters and even fewer of them know or what to learn to read. I’d also add that it’s time to consider and additional tax on vape products. They should be taxed on parity with, or close to, other tobacco products to help support these youth initiatives. We must include Fentanyl and human trafficking on our list for mandatory minimums. This includes supporting our law enforcement agencies and the safety they provide to our communities.
We will continue to navigate Idaho’s growing population by responsibly investing in her future.