Tax Relief

Your House Republican Caucus is working to cut your taxes. House Bill 332 was introduced Friday morning and would provide $400 million in tax relief for Idaho families. Not only would the bill cut income tax, but it would also provide a rebate for people who paid income tax last year. Idahoans are encouraged to use those savings and that rebate however they see fit, including at the local level, where property tax is assessed and collected. The bill is expected to get a full committee hearing this coming week.

Looking Out for Students

House Republican Caucus Members are looking out for Idaho students. Representative Codi Galloway’s House Bill 293 supports full-time, in-person instruction for K-12 students on school premises. If a school is unable to provide full-time, in-person instruction, a parent has the option to withdraw their student to seek an alternative education solution. The parent or guardian will be provided with a pro-rated reimbursement payment for use on eligible education expenses to conduct the education of their student.

“We just want to make sure we’re addressing the needs of the student,” said Rep. Galloway. “We’ve done a lot of talking about the needs of the school boards and the systems, but we’ve forgotten the whole reason we’re talking in the first place is because of our students. That’s our most important responsibility.”

The legislation passed the House of Representatives on Thursday and will now be under consideration by the Senate.

Ensuring Balance of Powers

Two bills just became law that help balance government powers. House Bill 67 and House Bill 68 clarify who has the authority to close schools or limit school activities or programs for the purpose of stopping the spread of infectious diseases. Only the State Board of Education, Governor, boards of trustees, or duly elected school boards representing the parents in a community are authorized to close K-12 schools, colleges, or universities. The Department of Health and Welfare, district boards of health, and cities shall not have this authority. These laws go into effect immediately.

Fairness in Women’s Sports

Representative Barbara Ehardt is working to spread ideals of fairness in women’s sports across the country. Ehardt led the charge to pass House Bill 500 in Idaho last year. Since then, she’s testified in other states to help pass similar legislation.

“I benefited from both Title IX and those women who paved a path forward for me to have the opportunities that I have had.  It has been important for me to do my part to continue to make sure that the girls and women who follow will have those same opportunities,” said Rep. Ehardt, who played Division I Women’s basketball and then spent 15 years coaching Division I Women’s Basketball at four different institutions. “The simple fact is that we cannot compete against the inherent physiological advantages that biological boys and men have over girls and women.  That is why it has been gratifying to be involved in helping so many states as they work to protect their female athletes.  The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act ensures that our female athletes always step on to a level playing field, and that should be the case in every state in the Union.”

Idaho’s Fairness in Women’s Sports Act is currently awaiting a hearing in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Better Roads and Bridges

A new bill was introduced that would improve Idaho’s roads and bridges. House Transportation Committee Chairman Rep. Joe Palmer’s House Bill 314, is a comprehensive solution to the needs of the state and local highway districts. This legislation would not raise your taxes. It would divert much more of the sales tax already being collected to critical transportation projects across Idaho and allow for more local control.

“It’s the time to do it, while we’re having huge growth in our sales tax,” said Chairman Palmer. “It’s the proper role of government, and I think it’s time that we get started down the road.”

Keep Updated

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: