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Idaho Briefs April 18, 2010

| April 18, 2010 9:00 PM

3 chickens for every plot, but no roosters

HAILEY - The Hailey City Council has approved an ordinance amendment allowing three hens but no roosters per single family residence.The recent amendment establishes definitions for "urban agriculture" that will allow residents to keep chickens to produce eggs.

Officials say roosters are not allowed because they crow at dawn and other times of the day, creating too much noise in the city.Hailey Planner Mariel Platt says more than 100 municipalities across the country allow citizens to raise chickens for eggs.

Supporter Jill Metcalfe says the amendment will allow city residents to keep with the social trend of local food production.

Otter: State ready to help Port

LEWISTON - Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter says the state will do whatever it can to help the Port of Lewiston reach its potential.

Otter received a tour of the port Friday and was updated on a $2.3 million dock expansion proposal that will be paid for in part by a $500,000 state grant.Funding is still being sought for the remaining $1.8 million.

The project will double the size of the existing crane dock and allow more barges to load and unload at the same time.The expansion will also make Lewiston a destination for oversized industrial cargo.

Otter says having a seaport 400 miles inland helps reduce transportation costs.

Sun Valley Resort hopes to attract a younger crowd

SUN VALLEY - Sun Valley Resort officials say they have hired outside marketing experts to try and give the resort a recognizable brand identity that will attract younger visitors.General Manager Tim Silva says the average skier age at Sun Valley is 53, compared to the national average of 35.

He also says only 9 percent of the resort's visitors are snowboarders, who are typically younger.He says more than 1,000 on-mountain visitors participated in a survey that asked questions with a rating of one to 10.

Silva says 74 percent of them put a nine or 10 on their willingness to recommend the resort to a friend.

Idaho Power Co files plan to lower customer rates

BOISE - Idaho Power Co. is proposing a series of rate cuts to that would reduce customer energy bills by 6.5 percent.

The state's biggest utility filed its annual power cost adjustment this week with the Idaho Public Utilities Commission.Under the proposal, a typical residential customer using 1,050 kilowatt-hours of energy a month would see a decrease of about $2.45 on their monthly bill and $3.25 for non-summer months.

But those cuts could be offset by three other cost adjustments the utility filed last month that would raise residential bills by an average of 1.8 percent. If those are approved by regulators, The Idaho Statesman reports the overall impact on residential bills would be a decrease of 1.4 percent.The utility files a cost adjustment each year to reflect changes in supplying power to customers.

Idaho judge releases ex-prison guard in sex case BOISE - A former Idaho Department of Correction guard convicted of having sexual contact with a female inmate has been released early from prison.District Judge Ronald Wilper placed Timothy R. Gilligan on probation earlier this week, less than six months after sentencing the 28-year-old to serve between one and three years in prison.

Gilligan was a wide receiver for the Boise State football team between 2000 and 2003 and also played in the Canadian Football League.He was originally charged with two counts of having sexual contact with a female inmate in 2007 but pleaded guilty to burglary - a crime technically committed when someone enters a building with the intent to commit a felony.

Gilligan's attorney filed a motion in December seeking a reduced sentenced, citing a positive response to treatment.

- The Associated Press

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