THE LATEST


Image

Little’s stay-home order is unconstitutional

By Wayne Hoffman | President

As COVID-19 reached the U.S., it was easy to compliment Gov. Brad Little for his measured response. Unlike other governors who halted all economic activity within their borders, Little focused on eliminating the government regulations that were in the way of the diagnosis and treatment of coronavirus. 

Read more
Image

IFF objections to Little's stay-home order

Unfortunately, I write today to express deep disappointment in your three-week statewide stayat-home order, and urge you to make swift changes to the declaration so the COVID-19 pandemic
does not do sustained economic damage to Idaho residents and businesses. We also worry about
the harm the order does to individual rights, which still must receive protection in times of crisis.

Read more
Image

Legislature fails; Now it’s up to Little to lead with conservative solutions

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Idaho’s Legislature, being more than 80 percent Republican, sure did struggle a lot to pass conservative legislation in the just-concluded 2020 legislative session. And don’t blame viruses; the dearth of pro-liberty, limited government legislation was the rule well before Coronavirus got in the way.

Read more
Image

Legislature’s budget panel fails again to contain leftward higher education system

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Legislative budget writers were given another chance Thursday to address their colleagues’ concerns about Idaho’s public college and university political pandering with a socialist twist. But the 20-member Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee opted to do nothing — again. Committee members did nothing despite their colleagues’ pleadings to stop the use of tax money that supports the Left’s stomach-churning campus programs.

Read more
Image

Our moral divide and natural law

By Dr. John M. Livingston | Medical Policy Adviser

In my opinion, our American people are more divided today by moral philosophy and politics than they have been at any other time including the Civil War. Both sides of the political spectrum know what they believe, but care little about what those who differ from them believe. Furthermore, few on either side understand why they believe what they do.

Read more
Image

Legislators plan for Idaho to exit Common Core

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Finally, some good news for Idaho public school kids and their parents: The days of Common Core in our public schools appear to finally be numbered. The House and Senate education committees signaled this week that they’ve had enough of the 10-year old failed experiment in national education standards.

Read more
Image

Idaho city spending $30,000 to market bond rerun amid property tax relief debate

By Dustin Hurst | Communication director

Rachel Lindsey, a longtime Fruitland resident and mother of five, has grown into a government watchdog. As her city heads toward a May 19 bond election, Lindsey is blowing the whistle.

Fruitland city officials, she says, are wasting taxpayer dollars by advertising and marketing the bond, which is a measure identical to a measure that failed at the ballot box just months ago.

Read more
Image

Idaho’s university system moves ahead with social justice initiatives

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Boise State University is at the epicenter of Idaho’s publicly-funded social justice programming. To maintain pole position, BSU will soon hire a “vice provost of equity and inclusion.” The school has ended its advertising for the position, but the university student newspaper quotes campus sources who indicate that plans remain in place to fill the position this year.

Read more
Image

Education, taxes, and medical debt: Selecting legislators at random starts to have merit 

By Wayne Hoffman | President

H.L. Mencken once suggested that legislative seats be filled at random instead of by election. Admittedly, Mencken wrote that doing so might result in the selection of idiots. But, he said, “No matter how stupid they were, they could not be more stupid than the average legislator under the present system. Certainly, they’d be measurably more honest, taking one with another.” Here are some random musings from the last several days of Idaho lawmaking that makes Mencken’s proposal seem brilliant.

Read more
Image

Yes, a property tax freeze would help homeowners

By Fred Birnbaum | Vice President

In recent debates about legislation to freeze property taxes, opponents claimed that a freeze would not reduce the property taxes of most homeowners in Ada County.

Opponents are wrong.

Your property tax bill as a homeowner changes each year because of three things: How much more (or less) your particular taxing district spends from one year to the next, how much your individual home assessment goes up, and how much the total taxable market values grew in your taxing districts.

Read more
Image

Only lawmakers can stop local governments from bleeding us dry

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Contrary to the famous marketing campaign, pork is not white meat. It’s red. I know this because the consumption of even the tiniest amount of red meat causes me to be covered in hives. Pork is no exception. This is the result of a tick that bit me when I was a teenager. (If you’re curious about my condition, Google “alpha-gal syndrome.”)

Read more
Image

Weeds: The horrors of a property tax freeze

By Dustin Hurst | Communication director

If you’re easily frightened, I strongly suggest you close your browsing window — now. This story will get terrifying quickly. As members of the Idaho House of Representatives prepare to vote on legislation to provide property tax relief to Idahoans, local government officials are out in force trying to kill the bill. And the stories they tell are horrifying.

Read more
Image

Bills we’re watching this week: Common Core, property tax freeze, and grocery tax repeal

By Dustin Hurst | Communication director

Things in the Idaho Capitol are about to get crazy.

Well, as crazy as things regulated by “Mason’s Manual of Legislative Procedure” can get.

Still, this week is going to be lit.

Read more
Image

Now’s the time to have your voice heard on property taxes

By Wayne Hoffman | President

I’ve always believed, for every single dollar the government spends, each elected official who voted for the spending should be able to look a taxpayer in the eye, without a shred of embarrassment, and explain why the government needed the money more than the person who earned it. In Idaho, those real life conversations would go something like this: We need the money so that we can build a big message board that is a replica of the main bridge into town. (Twin Falls)

Read more
Image

Every parent knows why the bond election rerun bill is good policy

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Children are usually great, but occasionally they’re horribly annoying. Every parent has been here: You’ve just given your child a sweet treat. He gobbles it down, licks his lips, and sticks out his hand. He wants another. He asks again and again and again. He ends up in his room without a treat.

Read more
Image

Three promising bills could provide property tax relief for Idahoans

By Wayne Hoffman | President

There is, perhaps, a glimmer of hope for people like Boise’s Kari Wardle. Kari, 40, juggles full-time employment and raising a 5-year-old boy, while caring for her terminally-ill mom. But it’s her rising property taxes that have her really rattled. “My wages don’t increase enough every year to offset these costs,” Wardle explained. “With medical expenses and my child, even with working a full time job, we are barely getting by. If property taxes increase again next year, I honestly have no idea what we will do!”

Read more
Image

How to guarantee higher college tuition costs

By Scott Yenor | Special to Idaho Freedom Foundation

College costs continue to rise. Columbia, the nation’s tuition leader this past academic year, has seen its price tag climb yet again, to about $60,000 annually for tuition alone, bringing its total annual cost to over $75,000, when counting room and board. Ivy League schools are not alone. For two generations, tuition-rate hikes have significantly exceeded inflation. Why?

Read more
Image

Credit Little with containing costs after Kustra’s expensive years at BSU

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Former Boise State University President Bob Kustra says he can’t understand why Gov. Brad Little has decided to keep a lid on state spending even as the economy is growing. “Someone has left the control room of state government, and the autopilot is off course,” Kustra groaned in a recent column.

Read more
Image

Lawmakers should nix state government’s new “home visit” program for young parents

By Wayne Hoffman | President

Gov. Brad Little has given lawmakers a budget that is indisputably the most conservative spending blueprint in many years. It’s an excellent starting point.

Read more
Image

Little’s budget serves as an important course correction

By Fred Birnbaum | Vice President

It is no secret that fiscal conservatives felt let down during the final years of Gov. Butch Otter’s administration. Otter abandoned his pledge to hold the growth of state government spending at or below Idahoan’s own personal income growth.

Read more