Connecting the dots with Idaho's D- score | News
A long list of grades was released yesterday, sorting states in order of their level of accountability. The Center of Public Integrity reported a D- rating for Idaho citing the state's lack of financial disclosure and even legislature votes that conflict with personal interests.
Two stories are coming off the AP wires that tie together with the above characteristics that earned the state its rating.
An ethics panel is exploring allegations that a Idaho senator broke their rules during a vote last week. A complaint filed by Democrats says state Sen. Monty Pearce did not disclose industry ties during committee and floor votes regarding the energy industry.
Last November, Pearce signed a lease with a company that would restrict county and city control over gas drilling projects.
Pearce's attorney, Charles Peterson, says the Senator did what he needed to do to disclose the leases that date back to the 1980s.
While that continues to be investigated, the Idaho Senate did pass a bill on Monday that would close a loophole in the state's campaign reporting laws.
The bill changes an existing law that doesn't require campaigns in recall elections to report fundraising. According to the AP's report, Rep. Julie Ellsworth, R-Boise, supported the bill. Without it, Ellsworth feared it would allow recall campaigns to raise and spend money unchecked.
She learned the lack of laws regarding disclosure when facing recall attempts in 2011 after declaring her support for Tom Luna's education reform.
The bill heads to Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's desk next.
- Idaho Scores D- On Accountability [March 19th, 2011]