Legislative Priorities

2021 Legislative Priorities

Education

Proactive solutions for funding Idaho’s educational system and improving workforce readiness.

  • Expand K-12 and higher education opportunities, including Career Technical Education, focused on skills-based training, delivery of industry recognized certifications, and the development of the future workforce and, where necessary, retraining of the existing workforce.
  • Invest in high value careers, including cybersecurity, energy, advanced manufacturing, health professions, computer science, and agricultural technology.

Public Infrastructure

Development and maintenance of Idaho’s infrastructure network.

  • Strengthen broadband infrastructure across Idaho—both rural and urban areas—to facilitate e-commerce, economic development, online learning, and more robust telehealth services. Grant Idaho’s municipal governments authority to build and own their own broadband infrastructure while encouraging public and private partnerships to allow for a competitive process for internet carriers to provide the servicing of such broadband infrastructure.
  • Fully fund transportation infrastructure critical to economic development and commerce in Idaho Falls, including the I-15/Hwy 20 interchange projects and improvement of Hwy 20 between Idaho Falls and the INL site.
  • Promote “Shovel Ready Site Programs”, consisting of pre-approved and pre-permitted municipal economic development sites supported through competitive state funding programs and incentives.

INL

Idaho National Laboratory’s mission as a multi-program laboratory with an emphasis on energy and national security.

  • Promote education, workforce, research, and infrastructure efforts that maintain the growth and vibrancy of the Idaho National Laboratory and safety for its over 5,000 employees and 332 Idaho business partners.

Economic Development

Initiatives that promote business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, and entrepreneurial growth.

  • Improve access to liquor licenses for restaurants and provide greater local control of these licenses.
  • Support policies that strengthen emerging and innovative businesses and industries that have potential to grow high-tech jobs, including policies similar to Utah’s Industrial Assistance Fund.
  • Foster a business-friendly environment for startup companies by supporting new tax incentives and grants to promote growth, such as providing tax credits for Qualified Emerging Technology Companies and funding programs that provide economic development grants to new and expanding businesses.
  • Support incentives to improve rural economic development, such as (i) a “Rural Fast Track” program used to fund grants for small businesses expanding in or relocating to rural Idaho, (ii) a Business Expansion and Retention program used to fund grants for rural community leaders and service providers in targeted business outreach efforts, and (iii) enterprise zone tax credits.

Taxation

Economic Growth through effective tax, fiscal, and monetary policy.

  • Exempt military veterans from paying personal income tax on military retirement.
  • Promote legislative research efforts to evaluate business expansion and recruitment policies and tax codes to improve economic development incentive programs and make Idaho more competitive with adjacent states.

Idaho Coronavirus Limited Immunity Act

Legislation revising and clarifying the provisions of the Idaho Coronavirus Limited Immunity Act.

  • Provide liability protections for health care workers and businesses that provide services and goods in response to a declared state of emergency.
  • Limit liability exposure for businesses for damages arising from COVID-19 only to situations where a claimant proves by clear and convincing evidence that such damages were directly caused by a deliberate act or omission constituting gross negligence or willful misconduct.