Celebrating five years at IdahoReporter.com

Just by the numbers, IdahoReporter.com’s success is impressive. Since we opened the digital doors on December 2009, we’ve published 4,318 stories, covered five legislative sessions and spent thousands of hours doing work other media outlets just won’t. But, to fully understand why IdahoReporter.com is an important voice in the Idaho media landscape, we need only look at a few stories, two from the past week and a third from earlier this year. First, this report about the Department of Commerce deciding to cut a special deal with a luxury 4-star hotel in Ketchum, an arrangement sure to give the private
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No amount of good you can’t do with someone else’s money

At first blush, there’s something intrinsically repulsive about the state’s decision to provide taxpayer handouts to the developers of a luxury hotel complex in Ketchum. Maybe it’s in the words “luxury” and “hotel,” conjuring images of “opulence” and “exclusivity” all funded with special tax breaks out of reach to the rest of us. Odious as it might sound, it’s actually a lot worse. There is only one Ketchum, Idaho. If you want to build a destination resort to capitalize on the unique year-round recreation and tourism opportunities of the Sun Valley area, you pretty much have to build there. And
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Don’t blame right-to-work

Any regular reader of newspapers in Idaho has probably read that average wages in Idaho are among the lowest in the United States and that Idaho’s per capita income ranks near the bottom in state rankings. Idaho’s enactment of a right-to-work law nearly 30 years ago is often cited as having depressed wages. Right-to-work laws ended compulsory unionism and exist in 24 states. Wage rate growth before and after right-to-work was enacted is often cited as proof that right to work has eroded wages. However a more detailed review of Idaho per capita personal income, as a percentage of US
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KTVB’s journalism malpractice on Medicaid

I understand journalism is a fast-paced job, with an ever-hungry audience searching for the latest click-bait. Sometimes, feeding the beast is the sole objective. Still, journalists at least feigning objectivity have a duty to inform the voting public and offer differing views on important issues. That’s where KTVB fell short this week. In a Monday night report about the expansion of government health care, the station offered only glowing reviews of the plan that would add 103,000 more people to the state’s Medicaid program. What spurred the report? The Idaho Center for Fiscal Policy, which is housed at the Mountain
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Where you live need not limit your access to legislators 

When a new state government parking garage opened north of the Statehouse recently, Boise Sen. Chuck Winder declared the project “the last piece of the puzzle in that effort to make the Capitol building more accessible.” I hope that is not really the case. If you live in the Boise area, perhaps the fact that the parking garage makes new parking spaces available to state employees and legislators is helpful because, supposedly, streetside spaces will be freed for public use during the legislative session. We shall see if that really is true. But if you live in Sandpoint, Challis, Rexburg,
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