According to the Mountain Express, the Blaine County Commission is seriously considering hiring a lobbyist to forward its causes in Washington, D.C. In October, the commission apparently began considering hiring lobbyist Ken Lee, a part-time resident, and may finalize the deal by Jan. 1.
So what does a small, yet wealthy Central Idaho community need a high-powered lobbyist for? Looks like the county courthouse needs remodeling, in addition to a list of other projects for which the county is eyeing federal funding, including an evaluation of water resources in the upper Big Wood River and Silver Creek basins.
According to the Express, Lee charges $1,500 per month as a retainer fee and then charges an additional fee for successful lobbying efforts. This fee is on a sliding scale based on a percentage of the funds awarded.
The commission is now considering if Lee's lobbying efforts would be worth the expenditure. Lee seems confident of his influence, saying that, if hired, he would work closely with the staffs of Sen. Larry Craig and Rep. Mike Simpson to secure the funding during the next appropriation cycle. The deadline for submitting funding requests to the legislative offices is Feb. 11.