Follow Us:

twitter facebook

"The future belongs to those who prepare for it today."
Malcolm X

House Committee Vote on Science Education Standards
After hearing a great deal of public testimony, the House Education Committee voted to strip several sections from the state's science education standards. The sections referred to human-driven climate change and renewable energy from the state's science education standards. I have received emails from many, many Idahoans expressing concern about this act of political interference in the classroom. I share those concerns. Idaho students deserve to receive an uncensored education, especially about crucial issues related to our impact on the environment.

The vote in the House this week was just one part of the process for approving the new curriculum. The next step will be a vote by the entire House, after which the proposal will come to the Senate Education Committee, on which I serve. I will oppose efforts to remove the sections related to climate change in the Senate.

Students at the Capitol
This week we have had some special visitors in the Capitol from Boise High School. The American Government classes of Ms. Monica Church and Mr. Kyle McMorrow have been familiarizing themselves with state government with a scavenger hunt, meeting legislators, and other activities around the building. I've enjoyed seeing them around!

Idaho Health Care Plan
On Tuesday, the House Health and Welfare committee held a hearing on the Idaho Health Care Plan. People from around the state came to testify on this important issue. The bill has several components. First, it allows the Department of Insurance to apply for a federal waiver that would provide advanced tax credits allowing Idahoans between 0 and 100% of the federal poverty level to purchase health insurance on the exchange. Second, it allows the department of Health and Welfare to apply for a waiver that could move between 1,500 and 3,500 Idahoans with complicated medical conditions from private insurance to Medicaid, thus lowering insurance costs. The bill also includes work requirements for Medicaid and penalties for "inappropriate use of Medicaid-reimbursed services" (for example, an unnecessary visit to the emergency room). After 3+ hours of testimony, the committee voted 7-5 to move the bill to the full house. It should be heard there next week and, if it passes, will move to the Senate.

Tax Cuts
This week, the House approved the tax bill brought forward by Rep. Mike Moyle, R-14, in a straight party-line vote. Rep. Mat Erpelding, D-19, noted that the House Majority passed this bill "despite the fact that this bill will raise taxes on families with children." Indeed, analysis by both the Idaho Center for Fiscal Policy and the nonpartisan Legislative Services Office indicates that this legislation would result in higher taxes for families with children while cutting taxes for those at the top of the economic ladder. Additionally, this tax plan ignores a deteriorating infrastructure, overlooks the needs of education on all levels, suicide prevention and healthcare services. "Tax relief" should not be achieved on the backs of families with children or at the expense of students and Idahoans in need of government services. I will oppose this legislation in the Senate.

12 Months of Birth Control Print Hearing
I successfully introduced a bill in the Senate Health and Welfare committee on Wednesday which requires health providers to make available a 12-month supply of contraceptives under certain health care benefit plans. 11 states, plus the District of Columbia, have passed some version of this legislation and it is right for Idaho as well. Consistent use of birth control is the best way to help women avoid unintended pregnancies; enabling women to access a 12-month supply will better serve the needs of women serving in the military, professional women on long-term assignments, and those away from home for extended stays. Additionally, this legislation will make birth control more accessible to women in rural areas who must travel considerable distances to the nearest pharmacy. It's the right thing to do for Idaho women.

Idaho Women in Leadership (I-WIL) Day at the Capitol
Another great day for women leaders! I-WIL board members Rep. Wendy Horman, R-30, and I were pleased to join House Speaker Scott Bedke, R-27, and Governor Otter for an Executive/Legislative Update and Panel Discussion moderated by First Lady Lori Otter. The lunch panel included community leaders, Deborah Herron, Govt. Affairs for Walmart, Susan Buxton, Administrator, Idaho Division of Human Resources, Boise City Council Member Holli Woodings, Mayor Tammy de Weerd, Rep. Maxine Bell, and Sen. Michelle Stennett. Other activities included in the I-WIL Day at the Capitol included visits to committee hearings, floor chamber sessions, and opportunities for group photos.

Constitutional Convention
For two days this week the House State Affairs Committee held public hearings on HCR32, the resolution calling for Idaho to participate in a constitutional convention. After a great deal of testimony from people of varied opinions on the matter, the committee voted not to send the resolution to the full House. For now, it appears that the measure is dead.

Historical Society Artifact Presentation

The Idaho State Historical Society presented artifacts during floor sessions this week. Beautiful historical treasures representing each of Idaho's five tribes (Coeur d' Alene, Kootenai, Nez Perce, Shoshone-Bannock, and Shoshone-Paiute) were presented during the ceremony. The presentation was an important reminder of the richness that the tribes bring to Idaho's history and culture, and it was a pleasure to view these artifacts in anticipation of the re-opening of the Idaho State Historical Museum this summer.

District 19 Town Halls
Thank you to those who joined us at our Town Hall on Wednesday, February 7! It was wonderful to hear from our constituents.

Join me and Representatives Mat Erpelding and Melissa Wintrow our upcoming Town Hall meeting!

  • February 15th: Roosevelt Elementary 7:30 pm

Here to Serve You
My goal is to address the immediate needs of District 19 while working strategically toward long term solutions. It is my honor to serve you in the Idaho State Senate. Know that your letters, emails, texts, and calls are invaluable. I appreciate hearing what is most important to you and your family.

You can reach me at (208) 332-1339 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Have a Question? Contact Us

Latest Tweet

Like Us On Facebook

Contact Us

Find us on this address

Cherie Buckner-Webb
Senate D-19 Campaign
P.O. Box 9813
Boise, ID 83707

Or you can call us

Phone: 208-861-5482