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Idaho Legislature Could Wrap Up This Week

The Idaho Legislature is entering enters its final push in 2012, but the Senate and House still have big-ticket bills to reconcile before heading home, including legislation on tax cuts and teacher salaries.  Several controversial measures may end up on the cutting room floor in lieu of higher priority legislation. Among those in limbo are the hot-button abortion ultrasound bill, a ban on industrial wind farms and a state health-insurance exchange.  House Speaker Lawrence Denney says the decks have been mostly cleared to tackle a Senate-passed, five-year plan for teacher salaries, tax cuts and possible steps toward limiting a hated tax on business equipment.  Rep. Stephen Hartgen of Twin Falls says the controversial “ultrasound” bill is almost certainly a dead issue this session as there’s not enough time to revisit it.  House and Senate lawmakers haven’t come to a consensus on their priorities.  Denney says major issues remain, but they’re hoping to be out by midweek.

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