Want to know what lands are accessible to the public in Idaho? Too bad.

In the morning they voted yes and in the afternoon they voted no. What did they have for lunch?

Republicans in the House flip-flopped Monday on HCR 20, an important pro-transparency resolution that would have asked the Idaho Department of Lands to publish annual maps that would help hunters, anglers, and other outdoor recreationists know which state lands are accessible to the public. It’s not the least bit controversial unless transparency isn’t your thing and you don’t care about being helpful to taxpayers.

The House initially voted to pass HCR 20 on a 43-26 vote, but later that very same day, Rep. Caroline Troy, R-Genesee, moved to reconsider. The bill failed after 21 Republicans inexplicably changed their vote. We’re just as curious as you are about who got to them. It appears they either left their backbones in the lunchroom or ate something that weakens the spine. Or, maybe they’re just allergic to and suspicious of any legislation put forth by a Democrat. Why wouldn’t they want to be transparent about accessible state lands?

In a statement released to the media, the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Mat Erpelding, D-Boise, said that the bill’s bizarre failure was “the latest example of Republicans basing their votes on false information and conspiracy theories. There is nothing conspiratorial about posting accurate maps of Idaho’s endowment lands for citizens to see. This is a blow to all Idahoans who have every right to enjoy access to the lands they own and control.”

Too many politicians are voting against Idaho taxpayers who love to hunt, fish, hike and play outdoors. Why are they afraid to have resources publicly available so folks can know what state lands are accessible?

Here’s all the anti-access and transparency legislators in the House:

Reps. Armstrong, Barbieri, Bedke, Bell, Boyle, Burtenshaw, Chaney, Cheatham, Clow, Collins, Crane, Dayley, DeMordaunt, Dixon, Gestrin, Giddings, Hanks, Harris, Hartgen, Hixon, Holtzclaw, Horman, Kingsley, Loertscher, Luker, Manwaring, McDonald, Mendive, Miller, Monks, Moon, Moyle, Nate, Packer, Palmer, Redman, Scott, Shepherd, Stevenson, Syme, Thompson, Troy, Trujillo, Vander Woude, Zito, Zollinger, 

Is your representative on the list? Feel free to call them and tell them they are voting against taxpayers and against a major industry in our state. Outdoor recreation is the lifeline for many Idaho towns.

While you’re on the phone, ask if they need some calcium, their back bones could use the support.

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