Fry Co. reopens with new name

The restaurant formerly known as the Idaho Fry Co. held a grand re-opening celebration on Friday, Oct. 2, under its new name, Boise Fry Co.

The name change is the result of a dust-up with the Idaho Potato Commission, which objected to the original name on the grounds that it was a violation of its federal trademark.

The commission agreed to help pay the costs of the name change for the restaurant on Broadway Avenue.

-- Dave Wilkins

Cheese plant lays off 50

MOUNTAIN HOME (AP) -- A cheese plant that opened in January 2007 in Southern Idaho is laying off more than 50 of its employees, citing an industry slump amid the flagging U.S. economy.

That cuts the work force to fewer than 300.

Marathon Cheese Corp., based in Marathon, Wis., called the move a "short-term development" and hopes to rehire employees as soon as the market for cheese improves.

Marathon serves stores throughout the Western U.S. from its Mountain Home location, which has full-service cut-and-wrap capabilities for slices, shreds, cheese cubes and chunks.

The city had been banking on the facility to help form the economic backbone of Southern Idaho and Elmore County, but not even cheese is immune from the nation's deep recession.

Wolf patrol seeks landing rights

BOISE (AP) -- Idaho again wants permission to land helicopters in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness to dart wolves and outfit them with radio collars.

The U.S. Forest Service didn't grant a similar request in 2006 to allow choppers into the federally protected wilderness outside of established airstrips, which is allowed now.

Environmental groups then argued such landings, other than to save human lives, disrupt the pristine wilderness. They also fear information from tranquilizing and collaring wolves could lead to more-aggressive wolf killing across Idaho.

Idaho Department of Fish and Game wildlife managers insist trapping wilderness wolves on foot has been only marginally successful.

By combining wolf-collaring missions with helicopter big game counts that occur every winter, they hope to more successfully monitor packs that roam some of the nation's most-remote territory.

County rejects ag school bid

MOSCOW (AP) -- The Latah County Commission has denied a Texas-based church's appeal to establish a sustainable agriculture school near the small town of Deary.

The commission voted 2-1 Monday, Oct. 5, to back a zoning commission decision denying a conditional-use permit needed to open the school.

The permit is being sought by The Ploughshare Institute for Sustainable Culture, which would be run by Homestead Heritage, a church based in Waco, Texas. The church runs a similar school in Waco.

The proposal for Deary also includes a bed-and-breakfast, visitor center and campground. The school would be operational from June through September and draw about 70 visitors per week starting in 2011.

County officials say they are concerned about the impact of increased traffic and challenges posed by any future expansion.

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