One of two Democrats running for governor of Idaho was in Coeur d’Alene today (Friday) as part of a campaign announcement tour of the state.
A.J. Balukoff [buh-LOO-koff] is a CPA and businessman from Boise who lost to Butch Otter in the 2014 election for governor.
Balukoff is also a long-time member of the Boise school board. He is critical of the governor and legislature for not spending more to improve the state’s educational system, which he says falls near the bottom of the national rankings in many areas. And he says the governor’s pronouncement during Monday’s State of the State address that the economy is strong is misleading.
“The other thing that we would tout is the low unemployment rate, which is true, but what they don’t talk about is a lot of this employment is because we have minimum wage jobs and we have people needing to work more than one of them,” Balukoff said.
Balukoff says he supports the repeal of the state’s grocery tax as part of an overall review of the tax structure. He also opposes efforts to move control of federal land in Idaho into state or private hands.
You can hear some of Doug Nadvornick’s interview with Balukoff during our Inland Journal program next Thursday.
The other Democratic candidate in the governor’s race is Rep. Paulette Jordan (D-Plummer).