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When the Governor’s Housing Committee, an obscure legislative panel that oversees the state’s apportioning of a $54,610 a year housing stipend for the governor, met last week, Gov. Brad Little had just outlined plans for big budget cuts, including slashing $99 million from the state’s public schools next year. Yet, the panel voted unanimously, with no discussion, to approve the same $54,610 full housing stipend for the governor again next year, the same budget year in which he’s looking to impose 5% holdbacks across the state budget.

Idaho governors have received the stipend on and off since 1999, to make up for the lack of an official governor’s mansion; Idaho is one of just five states without one.

Also in my column this week, more poll results from that IACI-commissioned statewide poll, conducted May 5-6, that found overwhelming support for Little's handling of the coronavirus pandemic and his four-stage plan for reopening Idaho's economy.  You can read my full column here at idahopress.com (subscription required), or pick up today's Sunday/Monday edition of the Idaho Press.

Betsy Z. Russell is the Boise bureau chief and state capitol reporter for the Idaho Press and Adams Publishing Group. Follow her on Twitter at @BetsyZRussell.

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