In a recent release, Ada County Prosecutor Greg Bower announced that Royce Chigbrow couldn’t be prosecuted for his criminal behavior during his tenure as Chairman of the Idaho State Tax Commission. Bower’s office concluded there was evidence that Chigbrow failed to properly deposit taxpayer checks, but that the statute of limitations has expired.
“It is outrageous that Chigbrow won’t be called to account for his wrong doings,” said Idaho Democratic Party State Chair Larry Grant. “If Republican leadership had acted when they first were told of concerns about Chigbrow’s behavior, maybe it wouldn’t have been too late to hold him accountable. This is just another case of the Republican Party turning a blind eye to unethical, and in this case, criminal behavior.”
In recent months Republican leaders appeared regularly in the news for their dubious actions. Representative Phil Hart admitted he took timber off of state lands without permission or payment. He has also recently appealed his income tax protest for the fourth time on thousands of dollars in back taxes claimed by the state. In another case, questions have been raised about Representative Tom Loertscher killing a bill that he requested to have viewed in his legislative committee regarding hearings on vacating roads on private property. The lawsuit he filed shortly afterward to close roads on his property clearly shows he had a conflict of interest in the matter.
“I am calling on Republican leaders to put their money where their mouths are and prove to the public that they can honestly deal with the ethical lapses of their officeholders,” Grant said. “While Republicans claim to be the protectors of public morals, cases of their corruption, cronyism and misconduct are being added to the record at an alarming rate. It’s time the Republican Party holds their leaders accountable. They are servants of the public, not themselves.”