Three donors behind PAC targeting Casper

An electronic billboard stating “Anybody but Casper for Idaho Falls Mayor” is seen along Pancheri Drive in Idaho Falls on Oct. 24. The sign was paid for by Businesses for Growth, a political action committee almost entirely funded by companies tied to three individuals: Former Bonneville County Republican Central Committee Chairman Doyle Beck, attorney Bryan Smith and Melaleuca CEO Frank VanderSloot. John Roark / jroark@postregister.com

Campaign finance documents filed by the Businesses for Growth PAC, which has targeted Mayor Rebecca Casper by taking out advertising encouraging voters to support “anybody but Casper,” show that the entity was almost entirely funded by companies tied to three individuals: Former Bonneville County Republican Central Committee Chairman Doyle Beck, attorney Bryan Smith and Melaleuca CEO Frank VanderSloot, the state’s wealthiest man.

Busy summer made for tricky scheduling

Spectators prepare for the total solar eclipse Aug. 21 at an event held at Melaleuca Field in Idaho Falls. The celestial event brought thousands of people to the region, which public safety agencies spent months preparing for.

A crowded slate of summer activities — including a total solar eclipse that was unprecedented in the region — resulted in budgeting and scheduling challenges that the city of Idaho Falls handled well, city spokeswoman Kerry Hammon said.

Agents: Bergdahl debriefs were intel ‘gold mine’

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl arrives at the Fort Bragg courtroom facility for a sentencing hearing on Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017, on Fort Bragg, N.C. Bergdahl, who walked off his base in Afghanistan in 2009 and was held by the Taliban for five years, pleaded guilty to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. (Andrew Craft/The Fayetteville Observer via AP)

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) — Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was a “gold mine” of intelligence, helping the military better understand insurgents and how they imprison hostages, two agents testified Tuesday as defense attorneys sought to show the soldier’s contributions since he was returned in a prisoner swap.

First guilty plea, indictment of Trump aides in Russia probe

A court artist drawing shows President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, center standing and Manafort's business associate, Rick Gates, in federal court in Washington, Monday, Oct. 30, 2017, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah A. Robinson. Seated at front left is Manafort's attorney Kevin Downing. Manafort and Gates have pleaded not guilty following their arrest on charges related to conspiracy against the United States and other felonies. The charges are the first from the special counsel investigating possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. (Dana Verkouteren via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — On a black Monday for Donald Trump’s White House, the special counsel investigating possible coordination between the Kremlin and the Trump presidential campaign announced the first charges, indicting Trump’s former campaign chairman and revealing how an adviser lied to the FBI about meetings with Russian intermediaries.

Compass seniors organize IF mayoral debate

Holly Dasher, government facilitator, center, works Monday with Parker Call, left, Olivia Owen, right, and other students as they write questions for mayoral candidates at Compass Academy. John Roark/ jroark@postregister.com

Compass Academy seniors are learning about local government in a unique way — by organizing a debate between the five candidates for Idaho Falls mayor.

Monument to a lost industry

The former sugar factory near Shelley stands as reminder of a time when sugar beet production in eastern Idaho rivaled that of the potato. The historic former sugar factory in Shelley is seen on Friday. John Roark/ jroark@postregister.com

On the edge of Shelley, surrounded on one side by suburban residences, on the other by potato fields, stands an aging factory. Its towering smokestack hasn’t seen use since World War II.

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