Representative Caroline Nilsson-Troy is asking voters to return her to the Idaho House this fall.
A fourth generation Idahoan, Ms. Troy is seeking her fourth term representing Idaho House District 5, Seat B. She was first elected in 2014. Her opponent in the general election is Democrat Renee Love.
Ms. Troy said that serving the district is an honor she hopes to continue, and that she is especially fond of Benewah County.
“It’s been a real honor to represent Benewah. I graduated from Orofino High School. And I love coming up there because it feels like home to me. The two communities are very similar,” Ms. Troy said.
Since 2015, Ms. Troy has sponsored 85 bills on behalf of the district. She has served on multiple committees. And is the founder and chair of the Farm, Ranch and Timber Caucus.
While the range of legislation she has worked on varies widely, she is especially proud of the bills that came directly from District 5 citizens.
“We have had constituents come and talk to us that are supposed to be paying child support. But if they get behind, one of the tools the court has is to take their driver’s license away. That might work in Boise but that doesn’t work here…my driveway is a mile long—they just don’t get it.”
The new bill would modify the license revocation to be a restriction so that citizens in that situation are not impeded from going to work.
Another citizen issue Ms. Troy addressed was protecting the First Amendment Rights of homeowners whose political opinions were stifled by their home owner’s association.
“They were limited on being able to put up signs and flags supporting their candidates. You should be able to let people know who your candidates are,” Ms. Troy said.
Now, citizens subject to HOA rules are able to put up their campaign signs and display the Idaho, US, POW and Armed Forces flags on their homes.
She has also taken on broader issues like that of rural representation in state government. She pushed for a pilot program to allow citizens over 100 miles from Boise to participate in committee hearings without having to spend time and money on travel to Boise.
She is working to expand opportunities for timber products.
“I started this last session working on a joint resolution for forestry. We are several years behind in adopting international building code…For example; you can use these wood laminated beams in commercial projects up to five stories tall. You can’t use those in Idaho. The timber industry is such an important industry. So we are working with the Idaho Forest Product Commission to allow those products,” Ms. Troy said.
And she is continuing to work to bring hemp farming, which is limited to reservations, to all of Idaho.
“I was sad that hemp didn’t go through…I have gotten so many calls from growers that are very frustrated and they are stepping up. Here they have been denied this legal commodity for three years now. And that’s very disheartening. They are always looking for alternative crops,” Ms. Troy said.
She wants to see improvements made to education at all levels. Her platform includes increasing K-12 school funding to historically high levels, increasing teacher pay, focusing on K-3 reading programs, increasing the Idaho income tax deduction for the 529 College Savings Program, and protecting the University of Idaho and the Agricultural Research and Extension budgets.
She also wants to direct next year’s surplus funds to improving local schools.
“One of the things I’m trying to sell people on is that a lot of our K-12 buildings are showing their age. I went to Fernwood a couple years ago. They had an open house. I was pretty discouraged by the challenges that school is facing…We are going into this next session with quite a bit of money. I’m concerned it is going to get whittled away into pet projects. I would rather see that money used as a match for schools that want to do improvement projects…I want to take care of aging buildings in Fernwood and St. Maries,” Ms. Troy said.
To learn more about Ms. Troy’s campaign, or to donate, visit her website, troyforidaho.com.