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First Lady Lori Otter and I participate in the second annual Governor's Trade and Business Conference presented by Zions Bank, featuring former First Lady Laura Bush, 8 a.m., Boise Centre, Boise.

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Visiting with the Coeur d'Alene Business Community 

On Tuesday October 6th I traveled to Coeur d'Alene to meet with business and community leaders. I spoke at the Coeur d'Alene Chamber of Commerce luncheon about what economic and business issues are facing Idaho - including tax policy, the economy, improving education, funding transportation, and providing better government services. Kootenai County is growing rapidly. People are voting with their feet, confirming what we already knew - northern Idaho is a great place to live and work! I had an opportunity to applaud the work that North Idaho College is doing to develop student transition and advising programs that support student success and ensure that they have the best chance to start or advance or change their careers. Finally I was able to applaud the community for the great steps it's taking toward opening a regional behavioral health crisis center. Thank you to everyone who came out to see me while I visited Coeur d'Alene!  
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Vote for Paula Brockman!

The online polls are open and you can vote now - and once a day, every day - for Paula Brockman to be the $100,000 grant recipient for Farmers Insurance's "Thank America Teachers" program. Paula's dream is to use the money from the grant to build an outdoor learning center to help spark her student's imagination and creativity at Lowell Scott Middle School in Meridian. Time is running out and voting closes at the end of the month. Make sure to vote every day for Paula here.
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Results from the Governor's Cup Fundraiser

Every year the First Lady and I invite donors from across Idaho to join us for a weekend of outdoor competitions and fun to raise money for the Governor's Cup Scholarship program. These are four-year scholarships given to graduating high school seniors who plan to pursue higher education from an Idaho educational institution. This year 95 sponsors joined us and a grand total of 650 participants came out for the event, which ran September 9th - 12th in Sun Valley. All in all we raised $1.1 million for Governor's Cup scholarships. This year we selected 38 students to receive financial help with their post-secondary education plans. Miss Lori and I couldn't have attended college without the support of others. So it's important to us and our the Governor's Cup Board of Directors to find those Idaho students who have the motivation to go on and do great things but just need that extra support to take that next step. Thank you to everyone who helped make this year's Governor's Cup a huge success!
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Internship Applications due October 30th
My office is now accepting internship applications for the 2016 legislative session. The Office of the Governor provides internship opportunities for undergraduate and graduate college students who are interested in learning more about our State government. More specifically, interns will assist administratively, aid in media relations and, where appropriate, help respond to correspondence from constituents. Interns will be given as much substantive work as possible and will interact directly with staff and assist in State government operations. Any students interested in learning about our State government should consider applying for our internship opportunities during the 2016 legislative session.

Apply here today!
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First Lady's Focus:

Boise Make-A-Wish
I was honored to attend and meet three Boise Make-A-Wish kids as they got their wishes granted by Treasure Valley Hospital and Spinal Elements. Make A-Wish kids Aiden (3), Aaliyah (10), and Grace (16) were honored at this event by friends, family and hospital staff. Treasure Valley Hospital is the first in Idaho to team up with Spinal Elements' "Pledge to Be a Hero" program. Treasure Valley Hospital granted two of the wishes and Spinal Elements granted the third wish. A $19,500 donation check was presented to the Make-A-Wish Idaho Chapter in the special Hero-honoring ceremony.
Spinal Elements launched its national Hero Allograft program in 2012. The company named its organ tissue transplant product "Hero" to honor those whose tissue donations make the gift of life possible. Spinal Elements donates all profits from the sale of its Hero Allograft to charities benefiting children who have life-threatening medical issues. The company has donated over $650,000 to charities such as the Make-A-Wish Foundation and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

Click here to see more about this story!

West Ada School District Verizon Grant
I was thrilled to receive an invitation from the West Ada School District to speak at the launch of its $3 million Verizon grant program. Three West Ada schools have joined a groundbreaking national program granting 24/7 Internet access and digital tablets to every student. Pathways Middle School, Crossroads Middle School and Meridian Middle School were introduced to this pioneering group by The Verizon Innovative Learning Schools program directed by Digital Promise. Digital Promise is a nonprofit program that uses mobile technology to extend learning beyond classroom walls.

This two-year program not only provides students with digital tablets; it also provides them with Verizon 4G LTE connectivity that gives each student Internet access for learning at school and at home. Teachers will receive professional development training to integrate mobile technology into their instruction. The students will have "blended learning coaches" to introduce new science, technology, engineering and math or STEM initiatives.

Resources for teachers outside the West Ada School District are available online at no cost. These resources include teacher insights, best practices, and stories from participating schools across the country.

My thanks to Verizon for selecting three Idaho schools to be among 13 middle schools across the country chosen to participate in this tremendous program.
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Spotlight Agency: Idaho State Police - K-9 Program
The value of a detection dog, or K-9, with an Idaho State trooper cannot be overlooked when searching for illegal drugs that are continuously being trafficked across our state. The vast number of high-value drug seizures that have been detected by partnerships with city and county K-9 officers in the past few years was the impetus for expanding the Idaho State Police K-9 program in 2012.
With grant funds from the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) Program through the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), ISP first added "Bingo," a Labrador and golden retriever mix, to its force in 2012. Bingo joined Corporal Steve Otto in the District 4 office in Jerome as a drug detection dog and part of the criminal interdiction team.
In 2014 ISP added three more K-9s and sent them with their handlers for the eight-week training required for certification as passive alert detection dogs. Passive alert dogs are solely used for the detection of drugs and are not used to apprehend suspects. Certification includes standards for detection dogs to obey basic control commands that most well-behaved dogs should obey such as "sit" and "stay," but they also must be able to find drugs in residential and commercial buildings, vehicles, containers and exterior open areas. The controlled substances that K-9s must detect to be certified include marijuana, cocaine, heroin and opiate derivatives, and methamphetamine.
ISP K-9 Troopers who are assigned as handlers live and care for their four-legged partners 24 hours a day, seven days a week. K-9 Ace is partnered with Corporal Kevin Kessler from District 1 in Coeur d'Alene. K-9 Dax works with Corporal Chris Cottrell from District 3 in Meridian and K-9 Apollo works with Corporal Ken Peeples from District 6 in Idaho Falls.
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Council for Deaf & Hard of Hearing
Joelynn Ball - Nampa
Aging Commission           
Lorraine Elfering - Parma

Behavioral Health Council          
Carol Dixon - Boise

Counselors, Marriage/Family Therapists       
Dennis Baughman - Fruitland

Criminal Justice Commission    
Darrell Bolz - Caldwell

Early Childhood Coordinating Council           
Judge Mick Hodges - Burley

Petroleum Storage Tank Fund  
John Jackson - Boise
Mark Grannis - Coeur d'Alene
Kirk Clarich - Nampa

Potato Commission
Dan Nakamura - Idaho Falls

Rangeland Resources     
Chris Black - Bruneau

SERVE Idaho         
Ben Quintana - Boise
Don Heuer - Caldwell

Suicide Prevention Council       
Jeff Kirkman - Nampa
Catherine Perusse - Sandpoint

Veterinary Medicine
Bill Maupin - Nampa