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North Dakota company buys Idaho dealership

Dan Wiebold Ford of Nampa has a new owner.

Corwin Auto Group of Fargo, N.D. has purchased the Dan Wiebold dealership, and will change the name to Corwin Ford. Terms of the sale weren’t disclosed. Owner Tanner Corwin said the family operates 10 dealerships. Dan Wiebold is the first Ford Ford dealer to join the fleet, and is Corwin’s first Idaho location. The company was founded in 1914 by Tanner’s great-grandfather.

Dan Wiebold, who has been in the car business since 1964, and has been with Ford in Nampa for nearly 40 years, is retiring. The 110 employees who worked for Dan Wiebold Ford will remain with Corwin Ford.

“We have been looking to expand into Idaho for some time, and have been watching its growth, which has been positive,” Corwin said.

There are no immediate plans for construction or upgrades at the Nampa location, Corwin said.

IBR Staff

Grow Idaho Falls surveys business interest in charter flights

Grow Idaho Falls is surveying the public to gauge interest in regular charter flights between Nampa and Idaho Falls.

Photo of King Air jet courtesy of AvCenter.

Photo of King Air jet courtesy of AvCenter.

The economic development group is trying to establish twice-a-week service that would use an eight-passenger King Air jet operated by AV Air Charters. Regular air service between Idaho’s second-largest airport and the Treasure Valley ended in December 2011 after SeaPort Airlines cancelled its flights after just five months.

Establishing better air service for Idahoans is a major priority for economic development groups and for the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce, whose members recently pledged more than $160,000 to help the Boise Airport with its efforts to land flights to East Coast cities.

Idaho Falls has also applied for a $500,000 federal grant to help establish nonstop service to and from Minneapolis.

The [content-variable]Grow Idaho Falls survey[/content-variable] is sponsored by Nampa and Idaho Falls.

“What we’re doing is we’re trying to make it scheduled service, so you could fill the whole plane,” said Linda Martin, the executive director of Grow Idaho Falls.

Martin acknowledged that there might be more interest in a service that flies in and out of Boise. But landing in Boise costs more, she noted. “It’s only 20 minutes away,” she said of Nampa.

IBR staff

State insurance marketplace to offer 161 plans

Officials overseeing the Idaho’s new health insurance exchange say the online marketplace will offer 161 insurance plans from eight different providers.

The exchange will provide to eligible customers 76 individual health insurance plans and 55 small-group plans geared to small businesses. The Spokesman-Review reports there will also be 13 individual dental plans and 17 small-group dental plans from which to choose.

The exchange will begin enrolling customers Oct. 1 and officially opens for business Jan. 1.

The marketplace enables those without insurance or those meeting income guidelines to shop, compare and buy health insurance coverage as well as getting access to government subsidies.

Idaho Department of Insurance Director Bill Deal says he’s pleased the state’s insurance companies are providing consumers with a variety of options.

The Associated Press

Thousands of acres of forests damaged by the Elk Complex Fire will be harvested. Photo courtesy of Idaho Department of Lands.

Thousands of acres of forests damaged by the Elk Complex Fire will be harvested. Photo courtesy of Idaho Department of Lands.

After fires, more state lands to be harvested

In the wake of the Elk Complex Fire, the Idaho Department of Lands is expanding two existing timber sales contracts and preparing new timber salvage sales on a combined 6,000 acres of endowment trust land in Elmore County that was burned by the fire. The extra timber sales on the burned land are expected to add $5 million to $7 million to the public school endowment fund.

Boise Cascade has the two timber contracts with the state that are being modified, covering 1,600 acres. Idaho Department of Lands spokeswoman Emily Callihan said some of that land has already been harvested. The additional timber sales must be approved by the Idaho Land Board at a Sept. 16 meeting. If approved, those sales will go up for auction the last week of September.

The burned acres will sold because trees killed or affected by the fire will lose their value. The ponderosa pine in the areas will begin to develop blue stain fungus and lose their value by the end of November.

After the trees are harvested, the Department of Lands will plant 1.5 million seedlings on the area in the next two to three years. That’s more than two-thirds the amount of seedlings IDL planted in its last fiscal year. Callihan said the cost of seeding and any needed spraying to keep brush down could cost between $1 million and $1.5 million.

Brad Iverson-Long

Public not happy with its restroom choices

More than three quarters of Americans have one or more complaints about public restrooms.

This news comes from the New Jersey research group The Trending Machine, which conducted a national poll for a week in August.

When it comes to public restrooms, the biggest complaints concern other peoples’ bad behavior. Respondents’ pet peeves were were wet seats and stall floors (44 mentioned these as a top problem) and germy door handles (43 percent).

Nearly two out of five adults complained about a lack of supplies such as toilet paper, soap, and towels. And a quarter reported there were problems with stall doors not closing.

Design complaints focused on a lack of ventilation, no place to hang a purse or jacket, and problems with automatic faucets or hand dryers. Women were much more likely than men to complain about public restrooms (85 percent compared to 67 percent).

According to the American Institute for Architects, the most important design criteria for public restrooms are public health, privacy, safety, and welfare issues.

Dolan Media Newswires

Inland West, including Boise, expected to see fastest growth in the nation

Forbes Magazine says the inland West, including Boise, is the region where the fastest growth is expected over the next decade.

Forbes divided the nation into 10 blocs for its study and for its predictions on  job, population and GDP growth.

It defined the Inland West as an area extending from the foothills of the Rockies to the coastal ranges that shelter the Pacific Coast. This area saw the most rapid population growth in the country from 2003 to 2013, at 21 percent. Job growth was 8 percent over the last 10 years. And Forbes said the region is expected to continue outgrowing the rest of the country over the next decade. The area has the highest percentage of young people under 20 in the U.S.

Boise, Denver and Salt Lake City were singled out for posting stellar employment growth due to the energy boom and growth in technology. The magazine said the western reaches of the region, such as the inland parts of Washington, Oregon and California,  have not done as well. These areas suffer from being “red” resource- and manufacturing-oriented economies within highly regulated, high-tax “blue states.”

IBR Staff


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