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Senate Bill 1246 — Inactive commissions

Senate Bill 1246 — Inactive commissions

Phil Haunschild
January 22, 2020

Bill description: SB 1246 would eliminate one committee and one commission. 

Rating: +2

Does it create, expand, or enlarge any agency, board, program, function, or activity of government? Conversely, does it eliminate or curtail the size or scope of government?

SB 1246 would eliminate the Carbon Sequestration Advisory Committee. This committee was established in 2002 to encourage Idaho agricultural and forestry producers to take advantage of any carbon tax credits the state or national government may create. The committee consists of 19 members, including both state employees and representatives from affected industries. The committee operates in conjunction with the Idaho State Soil and Water Conservation Commission. It is largely an advisory body. It has authority to research and recommend policies for Idaho producers to engage in carbon trading and to produce educational content for them, but the committee has not been active for the past ten years.


Does it transfer a function of the private sector to the government? Examples include government ownership or control of any providers of goods or services such as the Land Board's purchase of a self-storage facility, mandatory emissions testing, or pre-kindergarten. Conversely, does it eliminate a function of government or return a function of government to the private sector? 

The function of the Carbon Sequestration Advisory Committee is largely that of a private industry group. Its stated intent is to “enhance the ability of the state's agricultural and nonindustrial private forest landowners to participate in any system of carbon sequestration marketing or trading.” This is a function that a private industry group should engage in, rather than a public committee.


Analyst’s Note

SB 1246 would also eliminate the statutory language for the Snake River Improvements Commission, which was established in 1935 to oversee the construction of improvements for the Snake River in eastern Idaho. The commission consisted of four members, the director of the Department of Water Resources, and one representative each from Madison, Jefferson, and Bonneville counties. However, once the necessary projects were completed, the statute provided that the commission would sunset. As a result, this section of the bill merely cleans out old language.

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