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It’s About That Time

It has been a very interesting election season.  Needless, to say I appreciate the opportunity of representing the good citizens of Legislative District 32 for another two years.  It is always challenging and educational.  I look forward to serving.

There was a North Idaho Legislator Tour the first weekend in November and then the organization session the first week of December.   Legislature leadership elections were held and there is a new leadership team in the senate.  I look forward to working with them and helping them achieve the Republican Caucus agenda.  During the organizational session, seating is determined as well as committee assignments.  I will again have the opportunity to serve on the Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee, the Education Committee, and the Judiciary and Rules Committee.  I have been invited to serve as the Vice Chairman of Education again.

I am working hard to prepare some legislation for the upcoming sessions which will begin on January 10, 2010.  We will actually go over the week before to attend the annual Economic Outlook Committee meetings as well as the inauguration events and the Senate Caucus Fundraiser.

November and December have been filled with meetings with special interest groups, state agencies and departments, all preparatory to the upcoming session.   Add your business interests and trying to prepare to leave for three months and you keep busy.

I think that we are going to really struggle this upcoming session as we try and cut budgets again without any savings or stimulus dollars to help supplement the budget.  It will be a challenge.  The requirement of a balanced state budget is not anything different than our businesses and families have had to work with the last three years.  I can speak from experience as I reflect on the significant cuts we have had to make in our own personal businesses.  I predict that this legislative session will go longer than normal because of these special circumstances.  The budget process will also take longer as we try and involve the different affected parties in the budget cuts.

I continue to wish all of us well as we continue to struggle and work our way out of these trying times.  I am convinced that with the great citizens and leaders in this great state that we can do it.

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