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Updated: 3 hours 12 min ago

HBO Blogosphere -- 8.26.14

August 26, 2014 - 3:19pm

R. Lindsey snapped this photo of two bears mixing it up north of Nordman a couple of weeks ago. Pecky Cox/As the Lake Churns posted it on her Priest Lake Facebook page. Pecky invited her readers to write a caption for the photo.

HucksOnline numbers (for Monday, Aug. 25): 6530 page-views/3957 unique views

Otter Defends Ed Record In Speech

August 26, 2014 - 3:10pm

Gov. Butch Otter defended the state’s direction on K-12 — and its funding commitment — in a speech to some 600 Treasure Valley business leaders Tuesday. “I still think we have to look at the results,” Otter said at a Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce luncheon Tuesday. “It’s not how much money you spend, it’s how you spend the money.” Ten weeks before the Nov. 4 election, Otter did not directly address his re-election campaign — or his Democratic challenger, Boise School Board member A.J. Balukoff. But Otter’s comments on education funding did touch on a point of contention in the governor’s race. In a fundraising email last week, Balukoff took the state to task for its per-pupil spending, which perennially sits near the bottom of national rankings. The rankings, he said, are “downright shameful”/Kevin Richert, IdahoED NEWS. More here.

Question: Do you see something wrong with this statement: "It's not how much money you spend, it's how you spend the money"?

CdA Hotel Faces Suit Over Door Lock

August 26, 2014 - 2:04pm

An Oregon woman is suing Best Western at 506 W. Appleway/Coeur d'Alene for an injury she suffered while trying to get out of her room after her door lock got stuck in August 2012. Dianna Niermann filed suit through her attorney, Monica Flood Brennan, as a result of the incident. After she discovered she was locked in the room, the lawsuit said, Niermann called hotel management, which sent a janitor. The suit said: "The maintenance person attempted to help her open the door and advised her to use her hand to push hard on the door handle." Niermann claims she suffered an injury to her hand and wrist, as a result. She was locked in her room for over three hours. The suit claims Best Western was negligent and is asking for damages in excess of $10,000, as well as cost of her attorney and the lawsuit.

Question: How would you rule if you happened to be on the jury in this case?

Taking The Plunge

August 26, 2014 - 1:46pm

NIC President Joe Dunlap is dunked by NIC Vice President for Business and Finance Chris Martin. Dunlap and the NIC vice presidents participated in the NIC Presidential Plunge this year. The contest measured how much food the departments for each vice president could accumulate for the NIC Food Pantry, which is opening its doors for the first time this fall. Over 1,000 food items were gathered to stock the shelves. Martin earned dunking rights since his department gathered the most food. North Idaho College greeted hundreds of students back with the annual Day of Welcome event today. Students had an opportunity to check out clubs and activities on campus while eating barbecue and playing games. (NIC Press Room Photo: Tom Greene)


A Mother's Lament

August 26, 2014 - 1:41pm

I just got one kid out of braces.. Another is getting them on right now :( -- KXLY's Robin Nance, via Twitter.

Question: Did you wear braces as a kid?

A Beard This Fall? Definite Maybe

August 26, 2014 - 1:33pm
From Facebook, Bashful Dan Young of Sandpoint posts: "I also have to make a decision about growing a beard again this fall-winter ... I'm leaning toward 'maybe.'"

Question (for men of HBO): Do you grow a beard in the fall/winter?

WSU Planner Cover Feats UW Building

August 26, 2014 - 1:21pm

Students at Washington State University did a double-take when they received their free student planners from The Bookie this week. The cover features a picture of a cougar, the iconic Bryan clock tower and a building that was a little harder to identify. Down at the very bottom of the cover, with beautiful brick and elegant cherry trees is Savery Hall, a building located at the heart of the campus of WSU's sworn rival – the University of Washington. A distraught manager Leslie (no last name provided) at WSU's bookstore The Bookie says they are aware of the problem and are working with the unidentified vendor to come to a solution/Anna Izenman, KXLY. More here. (Photo: KXLY)

Question: Can you imagine the commotion in North Idaho, if a UIdaho booklet included a well-known Boise State place on the cover?

County Ready To Vote On Jail Lease

August 26, 2014 - 1:14pm

The Kootenai County Commissioners are currently negotiating with Rocky Mountain Corrections, of Ketchum, Idaho, on an agreement that would have the company build and own a new jail in Kootenai County. Commissioner Dan Green and Todd Tondee voted in favor for judicial confirmation and support the 20 year jail lease with Rocky Mountain Corrections.  Ben Wolfinger is also very much in favor of the jail lease. NOTE: Commissioner Jai Nelson doesn't support this 20 year jail lease or the judicial confirmation. This is what Jai Nelson said about the jail lease and the judicial confirmation:  "I strongly believe that not placing this issue on the ballot is a violation of the will of the people and an attempt to circumvent the constitution," Nelson said. "This is not the right thing to do for our citizens -- bottom line"/Kootenai County Citizens for Property Rights. More here.

  • Hearing: Judicial confirmation hearing is set for Aug 29, 1 PM, at the District Court Building.

Question: Should the county commission use judicial confirmation (having judge rule if project is a necessary expense) rather than a public vote to lease a new jail?

On The Waterfront: Urinetown Sequel

August 26, 2014 - 1:08pm

Walking partner Greg Lee and I inspected the underground parking garage at McEuen Park for signs of party/potty use during our noon walk today -- and didn't come up with much. We saw some evidence of graffiti painted over in one area and chalk graffiti in another. A Spokane newscaster appeared to be filming the chalk graffiti. Elsewhere, the parking garage appeared to be well-maintained. No poop. No evidence of Urinetown usage. Then, Greg and I began our sweep at 5th Street and headed west. P'haps there was some evidence of graffiti or bathroom usage in the block to the east. Also, it's possible that the city scrubbed the garage in preparation for the front-page story in the Coeur d'Alene Press today. As we all know, from the visit of WSU's Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority May 3, that it doesn't take much for individuals with full bladders to drop trou and relieve themselves, even in City Park. Kappa Kappa Gamma plans to return to Coeur d'Alene sometime this year for a cleanup day. Sorority sisters are going to pick up trash on Tubbs Hill as penance for the indecent exposure by a half dozen of them this spring. It might be nice if they bring along their pails, mops & sponges to clean the parking garage, too/DFO. (Courtesy photo: WSU Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority sisters using back of North Idaho Museum as a peeing wall)

Question: Have you used the underground McEuen parking garage yet ... um ... to park?

DFO's Critters: 2-Headed Turtle

August 26, 2014 - 11:56am

A recently-hatched two-headed turtle is held at NEA Turtle Farm in Amagon, Ark. A state biologist says turtle mutations are rare, but are becoming more common. (AP Photo/Sarah Morris)

AM Scanner Traffic -- 8.26.14

August 26, 2014 - 11:40am
  • 11:52 a.m. Male w/walker is trying to strangle female caregiver @ NW Blvd/Hubbard, CdA.
  • 11:51 a.m. Resident @ 600 block of Buckles/Hayden reporting possible fraud.
  • 11:46 a.m. 44YO female is threatening suicide w/gun @ 8000 block of W. 5th Street/Rathdrum.
  • 11:39 a.m. 25YO male is suffering chest pain @ Flying J restaurant/Post Falls.
  • 11:22 a.m. Mother has located 6YO girl after she was missing for a short time on Starr Loop/Hayden.
  • 11:18 a.m. Driver of Mercury Capri, registered in Spokane, trying to get other drivers to race on I-90/Post Falls area.
  • 11:06 a.m. Officer is checking on disabled red pickup @ 4th/Kathleen Avenue, CdA.
  • 11:05 a.m. CdA resident reports boy w/rifle is walking back and forth on her street.
  • 11:04 a.m. Undisclosed medical emergency @ 3900 block of Player Drive/CdA.
  • 10:59 a.m. Rathdrum officer has found an empty wallet in a field @ 14900 block of Nixon Loop.
  • 10:54 a.m. Juvenile who jumped out of vehicle on Maple Street/Hayden may be hiding in nearby trees.
  • 10:13 p.m. CPD officer wanted to take a phone call from someone who wants to report missing person.
  • 10:02 a.m. Someone is suffering uncontrollable bleeding @ 2200 block of Ironwood Place/CdA.
  • 9:53 a.m. Officer transporting prisoner from ISP HQ to Kootenai County Jail.
  • 8:42 a.m. ISP officer stops 2002 VW Pissat for no license plates @ H95/MP 432 (Dalton Avenue/CdA).
  • 8:35 a.m. CPD officer en route to pick up abandoned bike found @ 1100 block of Homestead/CdA.
  • 8:26 a.m. Male staggering along fog line @ e/b I-90/MP 13 (4th Street/CdA), almost hit by semi.

Local Hospitals Post ER Wait Times

August 26, 2014 - 11:34am

Billboards around town displaying emergency room wait times – three for Valley Hospital and three for Deaconess – are part of a promotion for a pledge to have people in front of a health care provider within 30 minutes of checking in. (SR photo: Dan Pelle)

Deaconess and Valley hospitals have launched a visible new ad campaign to tout their emergency room wait times. Billboards – three in Spokane and three in Spokane Valley – post electronic wait times averaged over the last two hours and updated every 15 minutes. “It’s pretty real-time reporting,” said Adam Richards, director of emergency services at Deaconess Hospital. The hospitals are promoting their pledge to get patients from “door-to-provider within 30 minutes.” ER wait times are taking on more importance under health care reform, according to the American Hospital Association. Wait times are a key driver in patient satisfaction, said a November report in the association’s Hospitals & Health Networks publication/Jody Lawrence-Turner, SR. More here.

Question: Should Kootenai Health do this, too?

Poll: Arfee Shooting Not 'Murder'

August 26, 2014 - 10:43am
  • Monday Poll: A supermajority of Hucks Nation sez the shooting of 2YO black lab Arfee by a Coeur d'Alene Police Department officer shouldn't be called "murder." 186 of 242 respondents (76.86%) took that position. 51 of 242 respondents (21.07%) said it was murder. 5 (2.07%) were undecided.
  • Today's Poll: House Democrats claim Republicans have declared a war on women. Do you believe that to be true?

National Lentil Festival In Pullman

August 26, 2014 - 10:32am

Robin Leventhal, of Walla Walla, Wash., stirs the giant bowl of lentil chili during the 2014 National Lentil Festival on Friday at Reaney Park in Pullman, Wash. (AP Photo/The Moscow-Pullman Daily News, Dean Hare)

Noble legume, small and classy,
full of protein, although gassy;
a boon for farms from Sprague to Lind –
when I attend I stay upwind.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

Person Field To Get Upgrade

August 26, 2014 - 10:29am

A playground, parking lot, smart irrigation and revamped restrooms are a sampling of the changes proposed in the master plan for Person Field. The Coeur d'Alene City Council will vote Sept. 2 on the plan, which has already gained approval from the council's General Services Committee. City crews are getting ready to prep the site for the first phase of the plan - a new playground, according to interim Parks Director Bill Greenwood. The Coeur d'Alene Association of Realtors donated $30,000 earlier this year to purchase the playground equipment. "It's a really cool thing that they wanted to step up," Greenwood said. "This town blows me away. People just want to pitch in. They donated the money and now we're going to get it done"/Taryn Thompson, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

DFO: I'm still miffed that Coeur d'Alene resident had to pay for a park that it had given to the Coeur d'Alene School District some time back. But I'm delighted that the city is moving ahead with upgrades that will benefit the surrounding neighborhood.

Question: Can you suggest other upgrades that the city should consider for Person Field?

AM Headlines -- 8.26.14

August 26, 2014 - 10:27am

 Cecil and Audrey Schertz dance to the music of the Traveling Keys at the Hayden Paul Bunyan restaurant Monday evening. Donna Montgomery of Hayden won an evening performance by the band in a drawing and decided that she wanted them to perform at the restaurant, which features classic vehicles on Monday evenings. The band consists of Brad Perry, Jack Seaton and Max Daniels. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

Dairymen Told To Deny Media Access

August 26, 2014 - 9:46am

An Idaho dairy industry group has sent a letter to all its members urging them to deny media requests for tours and on-farm interviews. The letter from the United Dairymen of Idaho was sent anonymously to the Associated Press late last week. In it, co-chairs Tom Dorsey and Tony Vanderhulst advise dairy producers that there's been an increase in requests from media groups seeking to film on-farm footage in the wake of an Idaho law that makes it illegal to secretly film animal abuse at agricultural facilities/Associated Press. More here.

Question: If you happened to be an Idaho dairyman, what would you do with a media request for a tour?

Coeur d'Alene Releases Vision Plan

August 26, 2014 - 9:40am

The Coeur d’Alene 2030 Visioning Project released the first version of a plan designed to guide community members in making their shared vision for the future of the Coeur d’Alene area a reality. This “implementation plan” — based on year-long community input through public forums and workshops, surveys, opinion polls and interviews — can be found on the CDA 2030 group’s website,, or it can be downloaded from the Web version of this story at The plan details a broad range of programs and projects slated to take place over the next five years. “What is exciting about this implementation plan is that it was entirely created and will be led by involved citizens and organizations,” said Nicole Kahler, CDA 2030 project manager/Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Do you plan to read through this document to see what the visionaries have in store for Coeur d'Alene?

BearCat Arrives At KCSO HQ

August 26, 2014 - 9:31am

The Kootenai County Sheriff's Department offloaded its new $335,000 BearCat (Ballistic Engineered Armored Response Counter Attack Truck) this morning. Here, in the enclosed KCSD yard (just north of KCSO office), you can see the 8-ton personnel carrier built with steel armor and ballistic glass. More info here. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

Question: Is this an important piece of KCSO equipment? Or overkill?

House D's Track R's 'War ON Women'

August 26, 2014 - 9:02am

House Democrats are launching a new campaign targeting 10 Republican candidates and incumbents they deem the “worst of the worst” offenders on women's issues via a scorecard that highlights their positions on a range of female-friendly legislation. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee scorecard, shared first with The Hill and housed at, outlines candidates’ positions on issues ranging from equal pay to transvaginal ultrasounds to overturning Roe v. Wade. Each Republican listed gets a mark showing he's either taken a position on the issue, or is “backed by Republicans who have supported this dangerous agenda”/The Hill. More here. (Ballotpedia photo: Congresswoman Barbara Comstock is one of the Republicans targeted by House Democrats)

Question (for Republican women out there): Do you think the GOP is at war with women?