Our Hearts with Rigby
The hearts of every member of the Idaho House Republican Caucus are with the communities of Rigby and Jefferson County after Thursday’s tragic events. We are eternally grateful for the quick and heroic response of school staff, law enforcement, EMTs, and others. We will continue to pray for those injured and for the safety of everyone going forward.
Reducing Your Property Taxes
In the face of skyrocketing property taxes, Caucus members are working to reduce what you have to pay. House Bill 389, sponsored by Major Leader Mike Moyle, passed the House 48-20 on Tuesday, and passed the Senate the very next day. The legislation would raise the homeowner’s exemption from $100,000 to $125,000. It would also reduce property taxes for low-income senior homeowners who qualify for the circuit breaker program. Businesses would also get a property tax exemption boost from $100,000 to $250,000.
“This bill has just one good thing after another,” said Rep. Steven Harris, who supported the proposal.
The measure also limits local and county government budget growth. It is now headed to the Governor for approval.
Fixing Our Roads and Bridges
A critical transportation plan is now waiting for the Governor’s approval. Representative Joe Palmer’s House Bill 362 passed the Senate on Monday. It does not increase your taxes but does increase the sales tax distribution to transportation from 1% to 4.5%. It dedicates $80 million of those funds annually to the Idaho Transportation Department for large infrastructure projects on the state highway system.
Your House Republican Caucus is responsibly funding education. Budgets for K-12 and higher education passed the House of Representatives this week. Among them, House Bill 385 provides pay for this state’s great teachers. Meanwhile, House Bill 387 is the budget for colleges and universities and features cuts to remove state support for social justice programming. That legislation also passed the Senate this week and is waiting for the Governor’s signature.
Limiting Emergency Powers
The Republican Caucus is limiting the Governor’s powers in an emergency. The House of Representatives passed House Bill 391, House Bill 392 and House Bill 393 on Tuesday. This legislation clarifies that constitutional rights cannot be suspended because of a declared emergency, that the power and authority to create and amend laws is reserved to the legislature, that during a declared emergency that the executive branch cannot change laws, and that all jobs are essential. The House passed Senate Bill 1217 on Wednesday, which would also protect the rights to peaceable assembly, free exercise of religion, Idahoans’ right to bear arms during emergencies and prohibits a governor from unilaterally altering or suspending Idaho Code.
“The best part about this is this is something that was negotiated upon,” Assistant Majority Leader Jason Monks said. “The language should be good.”
All bills passed both the House and Senate and are now under consideration by the Governor.
Ensuring Election Integrity
Caucus members are working to ensure the integrity of Idaho elections. Representative Brent Crane co-sponsored Senate Bill 1150, which would require that those who circulate petitions and gather signatures for ballot initiatives and referendums must collect those signatures in the State of Idaho. The person who collects the signatures must certify that they were physically located in the State of Idaho at the time of signing. The bill passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday and is headed to the Governor for possible approval.
You can learn more about all the legislation being debated by our Caucus members. Just check the House Reading Calendar found at the link below: