This morning is the Kootenai County Legislative Town Hall at Candlelight Christian Fellowship and I hope everyone can make it! This is our chance to get all 9 legislators in one room and ask them the hard questions. This will the the LAST time these legislators will be listening to the people *in person* before the end of session so it’s important that we are all there to ask questions, hear what they have to say, and hold their feet to the fire because they are ALL up for election in May.
Here is a map of our current districts; don’t get too cozy with this map because the district lines will change to this in 2022.
As a reminder, here are our current legislators in Kootenai County. If you would like to contact them at any time, go to my website where all legislative contact information is listed.
Vito Barbieri, Rep
Doug Okuniewicz, Rep
Steve Vick, Sen
Ron Mendive, Rep
Tony Wisniewski, Rep
Pete Riggs, Sen
Paul Amador, Rep
Jim Addis, Rep
Mary Souza, Rep
Here are the questions I hope to have answered at the town hall today; please feel free to use these questions as your own or be inspired to write your own. My philosophy is the more people who ask the same sorts of questions, the more our legislators will feel the pressure of their constituents holding their feet to the fire.
I’m focusing on district 4 because these reps have been all over the tax relief drama happening in the Capitol and their fresh in my mind. Although I focus on Amador and Souza, Addis’ bill (HB509) is talked about in some questions below.
If you would like to follow along during the town hall with a list of bills from this session, here you go.
On Tuesday, February 8, you voted against a motion to bring H448 out of the Ways and Means Committee, which you chair, and onto the floor for debate. This bill would have repealed grocery tax and bring tax relief to Idahoans. Instead, you voted to give every taxpaying Idahoan a $20 food credit in 2024 to help cover the cost of inflation (HB509) AND voted on the Governor’s tax bill (HB436) which gives a $75-ish rebate to every taxpayer. Now you tout that you are giving Idahoans tax relief. Why do you think this is relief when you are holding the bill to repeal GROCERY TAX in your Ways and Means Committee?
Based on feedback from your constituents, there is more interest in a repeal of grocery tax than a $20 credit given out in 2024 that will probably not even cover the cost of inflation at that point. Why would YOU vote to keep the best grocery tax repeal bill (HB448) in your Ways and Means Committee so that you could drawer that, not bring it out onto the floor for debate, ultimately doing the EXACT opposite of what your direct constituents want you to do?
Where in the House and Joint Administrative Rulebook does it say that Personal Bills are to be sent to the Ways and Means Committee never to see the light of day again?
On February 1st, Senator Christy Zito stood up to try and get the Governor’s awful $75 tax “rebate” (HB436) back into committee to be amended. The ONLY people who agreed with her were the Democrats, saying that the governor’s bill didn’t do enough to help give Idahoans actual tax relief. You disagreed and voted for the passage of this horrendous bill. Why do you believe this is what your constituents want?
Your voting record gives us a history of how you have stood up, or haven’t stood up, for the people of Idaho. Your Idaho Freedom Foundation Freedom Index score is 53%, your 2021 Idaho Freedom Foundation Spending Index score is 7%, and your lifetime American Conservative Union score is 74%. You keep saying that your past work in the Senate will not matter as Secretary of State however your past gives us an idea of how you will fight for the people in the future. Which, for a conservative, looks bleak. Why should we, as conservatives, believe you will stand up and do the right thing when you have the Governor and federal government breathing down your neck instead of just your constituents in district 4?
After the Town Hall, you have a wide range of fun events to meet your current and future state leaders. Check out idahocommonground.com for all the events today!