The Idaho Policy Institute at Boise State University wants lawmakers and other connected politicos to know it’s available to assist in finding solutions to political problems.
The Institute, founded last fall to boost the university’s public policy profile, recently spent $5,000 to sponsor Idaho Public Television’s “Idaho In Session,” a stream of video programs that will capture the events and activities in the Capitol building.
BSU Associate Vice President Greg Hahn confirmed the deal Tuesday. Hahn stated, the Idaho Policy Institute staff:
believe (pretty accurately from my experience) that the audience of the service is heavily state agencies, local agencies, interested groups and individuals and more — all the exact kind of folks who should know about this emerging practical research wing of the university, since these are the groups that are most likely to seek the help and benefit from the expertise amassed.
The public relations push may also be crafted to sway lawmakers to support the Institute during the budget-setting process. The university’s Fiscal Year 2018 budget request includes $2 million to expand and enhance its School of Public Service, which includes the new institute.
About $1.87 million of the $2.03 million sought would fund 11 positions. The rest of the money would cover operating expenses.
Gov. Butch Otter recommended against funding the policy institute in his 2018 budget plan.
To date, the Institute has been operating off $250,000 in grant money from the Idaho National Laboratory, the Public Defense Commission, the cities of Boise and Ketchum, and others.
Hahn said the money to sponsor Idaho Public Television came from the grant dollars or donations.
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