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Idaho Briefs April 26, 2010

| April 26, 2010 9:00 PM

Parking sign saboteurs snared

REXBURG - Police in eastern Idaho said four men admitted to uprooting about 60 parking control signs around the Brigham Young University-Idaho campus last week.Rexburg Police Capt. Randy Lewis said three of the men are BYU-Idaho students. He did not release their names and they have not been charged. He said information is being turned over to the prosecutor's office.

Lewis said the four men were brought in for questioning on Thursday and admitted to pulling up the signs.The city recently changed parking regulations requiring permits and reverse-angle parking in some areas, resulting in more tickets.

The signs were pulled up after dark, and a three-page note written in quasi-religious language and with letters cut from magazines and posters opposing the changes was left on the door at city hall.

Decomposed human remains foundIDAHO FALLS - Police in eastern Idaho said they have started an investigation following the finding of badly decomposed human remains in a remote area 12 miles east of Idaho Falls.

Sgt. Phil Grimes of the Idaho Falls Police Department said the remains were found Friday afternoon by a motorist who had walked uphill in search of a better cellphone signal after his truck became stuck in mud.Grimes said the Idaho State Police Crime Lab will try to make an identification of the remains in a process that will take at least two weeks and possibly two months.

Grimes said police are fairly sure the remains are of a female, but not certain. He said suspicious evidence at the scene prompted the investigation, but suicide can't be ruled out.Bonneville County has two notable cases involving missing women. Stephanie Eldredge, a mother of three, hasn't been seen since August 2007. And 20-year-old Amber Hoopes has been missing since September 2001.

Hatchery needs expensive repairs

AHSAHKA - A manager of a North Idaho hatchery that produces millions of steelhead and spring chinook salmon said the facility is wearing out and needs extensive repairs that could cost tens of millions of dollars.Dworshak National Fish Hatchery Manager Larry Peltz said he's putting together a rescue plan for the 40-year-old facility that produces fish central to recreational and tribal fisheries from the mouth of the Columbia River to the South Fork of the Clearwater River.

He said the fish produced by the hatchery play an important role in the region's economy.Peltz said problems at the hatchery include antiquated fish-rearing technology, concrete rearing ponds that are eroding, and valves that are stuck open.

Moscow may change ordinance to keep WalmartMOSCOW - A Walmart official said a store in Moscow slated for closure this fall might stay open now that city leaders are looking at amending a zoning ordinance that would allow the store to expand.

Michael Bender is senior vice president of Walmart's mountain division.In a letter to the editor submitted to The Lewiston Tribune late last week, he wrote that the company will consider changing its plans if the city allows the store to expand.The company earlier this month announced plans to close the Moscow location once a super center opens in Pullman, Wash., just across the state border.

Walmart initially planed for super centers in both Moscow and Pullman, but an ordinance several years ago prevented the Moscow store from expanding into a super center.The hatchery was built in the late 1960s to mitigate the steelhead run that was eliminated from the North Fork of the Clearwater River with the construction of Dworshak Dam.

Sheep station won't graze grizzly areaIDAHO FALLS - The U.S. Sheep Experiment Station north of Dubois in eastern Idaho won't turnout sheep in one of its grazing plots due to concerns over grizzly bear habitat.

Sandy Miller Hays is a spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees the sheep station.Hays told the Post Register that the East Summer plot wouldn't have a direct affect on grizzly habitat, but to reach it sheep would have to cross U.S. Forest Service land designated as a sensitive habitat area for grizzlies.

The plot is located in the Centennial Mountains on the Idaho-Montana border.Katie Strong of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition said the station should shut down all its grazing plots in the Centennial Mountains.

Dad's prize taken to prom NAMPA - The raffle winner of a 1967 restored Camaro had yet to get behind the wheel before his daughter asked to borrow it for the prom.

Bo Hilliard picked up the restored vehicle Friday and handed the keys over to his daughter for the prom.Hilliard won the car in the raffle to benefit the Boys and Girls Club of Nampa.

The car was restored by Ruben's Body Shop in Nampa, and a photo of Ruben Gaona polishing the car appeared earlier this month in the Idaho Press-Tribune.Hilliard said he saw the photo of his old friend and called to say hello, and then ended up buying multiple raffle tickets.

- The Associated Press

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