Joe Biden

Given short notice, Treasure Valley cities to remain open for new Juneteenth holiday

BY: - June 17, 2021

With short notice mere hours after President Joe Biden signed a law making June 19 a national holiday, the mayors of Boise, Nampa and Meridian announced city operations would be open as normal on Friday, while the state’s executive branch agencies will be closed. June 19 is celebrated as the end of slavery in the […]

State Street in Boise

State Street, Boise rail upgrades have stalled for years. Can Biden’s plan move projects forward?

BY: - June 7, 2021

The Treasure Valley is pinning hopes of upgrading its modest public transit system on an initial pot of federal money that may also jumpstart major investment in a reimagined transportation network and offer expanded service to the region’s exploding population. A long-envisioned passenger rail line linking Boise with expanding employment hubs west in Caldwell and […]

Yellowstone Bison on Blacktail Deer Plateau

National parks struggling with maintenance would get boost under Biden budget request

BY: - June 4, 2021

Basic needs at the largest U.S. national parks top the Biden administration’s first proposed lists of projects to receive funding through public lands trust funds, showing how much maintenance is needed even as parks brace for record numbers of visitors this summer. The projects likely wouldn’t be visible to the usual tourist, but they are […]

U.S. map of drought conditions

Congress warned of a ‘real and urgent’ drought crisis throughout the West

BY: - May 26, 2021

WASHINGTON — A drought crisis unfolding across the West will require short-term relief and massive, long-term federal funding to help states weather the effects of climate change, state water managers and lawmakers said at a U.S. House hearing on Tuesday. Nearly 90 percent of the West is now experiencing drought conditions, according to the federal […]

Philonise Floyd, brother of George Floyd testifies before Congress

Biden urges Congress to act on policing reform after meeting with George Floyd’s family

BY: - May 25, 2021

WASHINGTON — A year after George Floyd’s killing by a Minneapolis police officer, his family returned Tuesday to Washington, D.C., where lawmakers have been attempting to craft a bipartisan bill to overhaul the nation’s policing laws.  Congress failed to act by the anniversary of Floyd’s death — the deadline that President Joe Biden had urged lawmakers […]

A C-130J Hercules assigned to the 146th Airlift Wing based at Channel Islands Air National Guard Base in Port Hueneme, California, drops fire retardant chemicals onto a ridge line above Santa Barbara, Dec. 13, 2017, as part of the effort to contain the Thomas Fire. (U.S. Air Force photo by J.M. Eddins Jr.)

Biden allocates $1B to prepare for wildfire, hurricane season

BY: - May 24, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is doubling the amount of federal funding to help states prepare for natural disasters like hurricanes and wildfires, he announced Monday. His administration is directing $1 billion to the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities program, which sends resources to communities, states, and tribal governments to prepare for extreme weather events. […]

Pocatello's Center Street Bridge

Electric buses, asphalt and bridges: Politicians jostle for federal transportation cash

BY: - May 21, 2021

WASHINGTON — The nearly $1 billion that U.S. Rep. Garret Graves is seeking through Congress’ revamped earmarks process isn’t a typo. The Louisiana Republican says Baton Rouge desperately needs a new bridge to alleviate a crush of roadway congestion — at a cost of $955.2 million for several projects. That far exceeds the $20 million that […]

Angel Cushing, a north-central Kansas resident who opposes the proposed National Heritage Area designation in Kansas and Nebraska, speaks at a May 13 meeting in Marshall County, Kansas, as Norman Kincaide, a Colorado activist who opposes National Heritage Areas, looks on. (Screen capture from Facebook live video)

How a plan to boost Kansas-Nebraska tourism got wrapped up in fears of a 30×30 ‘land-grab’

BY: - May 17, 2021

It started as a research project. University of Nebraska landscape architecture professor Kim Wilson asked her students in 2016 to brainstorm a way to increase tourism in Red Cloud, Neb., the childhood home of renowned writer Willa Cather, just north of the Kansas border. The class found that more than 255 historic sites dot the […]

A man watches a flock of migrating starlings.

Migratory bird protections to be permanently restored by Biden administration

BY: - May 7, 2021

The Interior Department plans to officially revoke a Trump-era rule that loosened enforcement of a longstanding law to protect migratory birds, the department said Thursday. The rule put in place by former Interior Secretary David Bernhardt barred government authorities from holding companies liable for environmental violations leading to the deaths of birds protected under the […]

USDA Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) field planted for pollinators

Biden’s ‘30 by 30’ conservation plan urges collaboration with private landowners

BY: - May 6, 2021

The Biden administration plans to broadly define conservation and encourage private landowners to adopt sustainable practices to meet a goal of protecting 30% of the land and water in the U.S. by 2030, according to a multi-agency report published Thursday. The recommendations are short of the most aggressive federal directives congressional Republicans feared would be […]

COVID-19 vaccine

States with higher vaccine demand will be able to request more from the feds

BY: - May 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — With demand for COVID-19 vaccines dropping in many states, the federal government is changing how those doses are allocated. Under the new policy, any doses that a state doesn’t request from its weekly, population-based allotment will be held in a general pool, and states with higher demand can request additional shots from that surplus.  […]

The Bitterroot Mountains of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness.

Republicans lay out possible objections to Biden’s 30 by 30 conservation plan

BY: - May 4, 2021

Republicans on the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday previewed their objections to the Biden administration’s still-unreleased plan to conserve 30% of U.S. land and water by 2030. President Joe Biden created what is commonly called the “30 by 30 plan” in a Jan. 27 executive order, but the administration hasn’t released details about […]