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Idaho gay rights activists jailed after protest

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Twenty-three gay rights activists have been arrested after blocking the entrance to Gov. Butch Otter's office inside the Idaho Statehouse, the latest in a string of arrests related to protests over attempts to add anti-discrimination protections to Idaho law.

Police say four were charged with trespass, 18 with unlawful assembly and 1 with resisting arrest.

The arrests started Tuesday morning after protesters refused to leave.

The group wants protections based on gender identity and sexual orientation included in the Idaho Human Rights Act, but Republican leaders have declined to hold a hearing on the issue.

Activists have held multiple silent protests in the Capitol this year, leading to more than 140 arrests.


New president to focus on enrollment

(Information in the following story is from: Lewiston Tribune,

MOSCOW, Idaho (AP) — New University of Idaho President Chuck Staben has only been on the job for four days, and his initial focus is on boosting this fall's enrollment.

The Lewiston Tribune reports Tuesday that Staben during his first university address says he expects to see strong efforts put toward recruitment for the Moscow campus, particularly of Idaho students.

The State Board of Education selected Staben as UI's 18th president in November to replace Duane Nellis, who left campus last year to lead Texas Tech University.

The 55-year-old Staben took the reins at Idaho on Saturday.

Staben says he also plans to look at Idaho's research and opportunities the institution has to participate in high-end research as a land-grant university.


Nampa woman pleads guilty to killing boyfriend

NAMPA, Idaho (AP) — A 34-year-old Nampa woman has pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter for the October stabbing death of her boyfriend during an argument.

The Idaho Press-Tribune reports Susana Cordoba Quijano (kee-HAH'-noh) also pleaded guilty to use of a deadly weapon in the Oct. 12 death of Santiago Delgato Pineda. He died of a single stab wound to the heart.

Quijano was arrested the next day. She was initially charged with second-degree murder.

Court records say Quijano told investigators she stabbed Pineda because she suspected he was seeing another woman.

Sentencing is set for April 22 before District Judge Juneal Kerrick.


Farmers trying to figure out Farm Bill

(Information in the following story is from: The Moscow-Pullman Daily News,

PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) — Farmers in the Palouse region of Washington and Idaho are waiting for the U.S. Department of Agriculture to figure out what the recently passed Farm Bill actually means for them.

Tory Bye, director of the Whitman County Farm Service Agency, says there is much to be determined about what the new programs in the bill will actually do.

The Moscow-Pullman Daily News reports the Farm Bill has many growers frustrated as spring planting is fast approaching.

The most significant change in the new bill for farmers is the elimination of direct payments and counter-cyclical payments, a program long criticized for paying farmers not to farm. Bye says those payment made up about two-thirds of the payments in Whitman County.

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