At a hearing Monday, April 12, Idaho state legislators reacted to a proposal to move the Oregon/Idaho border to bring rural Oregon counties under Idaho’s jurisdiction. Chair of the House committee Rep. Barbara Ehardt (R – Idaho Falls) welcomed the idea, saying “With everybody moving to Idaho, it isn’t lost on me the addition of landmass, water, resources, agriculture, timber; there are some appealing things to Idahoans, at least in my estimation, to even consider this.”
Rep. Laurie Lickley (R-Jerome) said “I think this is a broader conversation we need to have throughout the United States from our rural areas to our urban areas who… forget where their food comes from.”
The hearing on this topic was a joint meeting of the Idaho Senate Resources and Environment committee and the Idaho House Environment, Energy, and Technology committee. Approximately a third of the membership of the Idaho legislature are members of these two committees.
Former Speaker of the Oregon House, Mark Simmons of Elgin, Oregon testified in favor of moving the border, describing how it would strengthen Idaho by adding the deep-water port at Coos Bay to Idaho, making it less dependent on Oregon’s decisions regarding ports and the federal government’s upcoming decisions to perhaps eliminate locks on the Snake river.
Mike McCarter, president of Citizens for Greater Idaho, told the committees that rural Oregon’s economy would boom under Idaho’s low-tax regulatory environment, making the area a benefit to Idaho’s state budget.
The full video of the hearing is available here: https://localnews8.com/news/idaho/2021/04/12/idaho-lawmakers-hear-pitch-to-absorb-three-fourths-of-oregon/
A stirring video excerpt from McCarter’s testimony is here: https://youtu.be/Q_Qrgy3-IKQ
A great video excerpt from Simmons’ testimony is here: https://youtu.be/LxH5dp5Ld2E
Harney County will vote on moving the Oregon/Idaho border
Also on Monday, Move Oregon’s Border announced that they had collected enough signatures to earn a position for their ballot initiative on the Harney County, Oregon ballot. It is expected to be on the May 2022 ballot, or perhaps a November 2021 ballot, as will their ballot initiative in Douglas County. Move Oregon’s Border has 263 signatures in Harney County, where only 213 are required. Move Oregon’s Border is still collecting signatures in six other counties.
Greater Idaho Rallies Scheduled for Eastern Oregon
Move Oregon’s Border invited the general public to organizational meet & greet rallies in eastern Crook and Malheur counties. Lawn signs, banners, and merchandise will be available. The organization’s president will answer questions and give an opportunity to form teams of volunteers. Five counties will have border relocation on their May 18 ballots: Baker, Grant, Lake, Malheur, and Sherman. The movement expects that voters will appreciate Idaho’s overall lower taxes and American values.
Friday, April 16, 6pm, Crooked Roots Brewing (formerly Crooked River Brewing) The Theater Room 420 N Main St, Prineville
County captain Shawn Cross is hosting a Q & A meeting due to popular demand. Mike McCarter is planning to be there.
Wednesday, April 21st, 9am. New venue: County 4H Clover Building, 502 SE Lynn Boulevard, Prineville.
Crook County Court (Commissioners) Meeting. The Crook County Court notified Move Oregon’s Border that the Court will meet to consider the border relocation issue. Contact Shawn Cross, 541-213-0383, Move Oregon’s Border county captain
Saturday, April 24th, noon. Lions Park, 790 SW 3rd Ave, Ontario, Oregon
Contact: Bob Wheatley 208-949-0559