Idaho Legislature May Create Ethics Commission
One of the main issues being considered this legislative session by Idaho lawmakers is the creation an independent ethics commission. Legislators on both sides of the Statehouse aisle are talking about joining 41 other states in the Union and creating an independent ethics commission for legislators. The legislature can convene ethics panels of their own, like they did in 2010 to handle complaints against northern Idaho Representative Phil Hart, who continues to fight over unpaid taxes. But the key is that this commission would be independent and impartial. Lawmakers say that’s the main reason for the commission. Not to bust a corrupt group, but to show the people of Idaho that the group is (according to lawmakers) already ethical. Along with the commission, there’s also a call for financial disclosure for lawmakers. That idea has passed the Senate before, but not the House. However, some believe this may be the year when it will.