Wednesday, July 8, 2020
State Offers Unemployed Incentives, Releases Nursing Home Information
Snow is in the forecast this weekend in the Stanley Basin—nature’s way of applauding the reopening of campgrounds around Redfish and Stanley lakes.
Saturday, June 6, 2020


If you were laid off during the past 11 weeks, the state of Idaho has a deal for you:

Idaho Gov. Brad Little announced Friday that the state will pay Idaho workers to return to their jobs. Workers on unemployment who return to full-time work will receive a one-time bonus of $1,500; someone who returns to part-time work will get $750.

The incentives are being offered on a first-come, first serve basis. They’re designed to entice Idahoans back to work who may be hesitating because they’re making more money on unemployment than they would working. That’s because the state offered those filing unemployment claims during shut-downs due to coronavirus an extra $600 per week in expanded payments.

Blaine County held steady at 514 cases of coronavirus since the first case was reported in mid-March. But Paul Ries notes that Idaho added another 57 new cases on Friday bringing the total to 3,111. “A definite upward tick,” he said.

The state is using $100 million in federal dollars earmarked for the coronavirus pandemic to finance the program.

The funds could benefit about half of the 145,000 who filed for unemployment during the past 11 weeks.


The Sawtooth National Recreation Area is opening up public campsites this weekend.

Those along the Wood River include the Caribou, Murdock, North Fork, Wood River and Easley campgrounds.

At Alturas Lake it includes the Chemeketan, Alturas, Smokey Bear, North Shore, Alturas Inlet and Pettit Lake campgrounds.

All campgrounds, picnic areas and beaches will be open in the Redfish Lake Recreation Complex. Ditto for the Highway 21 Recreation complex, which includes Elk Creek, and the Salmon Recreation Complex, which includes Casino Creek Campground. The Grandjean Campground is also now open.

For more information, call 208-727-5000.


The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare began publishing information regarding long-term care facilities with COVID-19 cases and deaths on Friday. You can find it at

The first report shows that there have been 25 outbreaks across the state involving 289 total cases. Fifteen facilities have resolved outbreaks. And 10 or 15 resolved outbreaks included only one resident or staff member without further spread.

There have been 52 COVID-19 related deaths associated with nine facilities.

The current outbreaks include 198 people in 10 long-term care facilities.

LifeCare Center of Lewiston had 54 cases and 18 deaths. The Canyons in Twin Falls had 36 cases and 11 deaths; Desert View Care in Buhl, 36 cases with one death, and Bridgeview Estates in Twin Falls, 48 cases with 11 deaths. The Avamere Transitional Care and Rehabilitation Center in Boise had 42 cases with two deaths, and the Communicare in Jerome had 10 cases with one death.

Silver Creek in Hailey confirmed one case of coronavirus but no deaths. Cove of Cascadia in Twin Falls had one case

“We have reexamined the data which, unfortunately, includes an increasing number of cases now, and have developed a process to release the numbers for specific facilities without revealing a diagnosis of COVID-19 or the cause of death for any individual resident,” said Elke Shaw-Tulloch, administrator for the division of Public Health.

Idaho has 400 long-term care facilities, which include skilled nursing homes, assisted living/memory care and intermediate care facilities.


The Idaho State Historical Society has found a unique way to feed the hungry. It’s opening up the Old Pen for a four-day food drive.

Idahoans making donations can drive into the Sally Port, which was built as a station to load and unload products, then drive around part of the historical prison grounds. The event runs through Monday night. The food is being given to the Idaho Food Bank and St. Vincent de Paul food pantries.


The City of Boise has closed 8th Street in downtown Boise to expand patio seating for restaurants.. A 20-foot wide lane will remain for bicycle traffic and for emergency vehicle use.

But the Idaho Statesman reported that the owner of Karma closed down his bar a half-hour early after bar goers waiting to get in did not evidence any semblance of social distancing. Those already inside were allowed to stay.


Eighty-five percent of the parents who responded to a survey by the Boise School District said they would be comfortable sending their child back to school this fall if schools reopen and coronavirus protocols are enforced.

But 67 percent of parents said they were not satisfied with the online education provided during the shutdown.


A Boise woman, upset with a stay-home order to stop the spread of the coronavirus, has started a petition to recall Gov. Brad Little. The petition must be signed by 183,523 people—20 percent of the electros who registered to vote in the election in which Little won his seat by Aug 11.

If successful, a special election could be held to put the issue before voters.


The number of coronavirus cases in Idaho climbed by 57 to 3,111 on Friday. Social gatherings in southeastern Idaho have contributed to the rise in cases in Bannock, Bingham and other counties.


~  Today's Topics ~

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Ketchum Galleries Unveil New Exhibitions

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