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Bingham County ropes in Idaho High School Rodeo Championships

Bingham County ropes in Idaho High School Rodeo Championships

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - The battle of two counties over who will host the state’s high school rodeo championship is over.

Bingham county roped in the event after it was contracted out to Bannock county. This comes after two proposals accommodating social distancing guidelines were given out to both counties by the high school rodeo association.

Due to COVID-19 concerns, Bannock County commissioners denied the state's High School Rodeo Association's proposal to change the event to accommodate social distancing guidelines.

"Just before our meeting to make a final decision, we got this paper that has 17 bullet points. That was the plan submitted to us," commissioner for Bannock County, Ernie Moser said.

Their first proposal was denied by both the county and the health district.

"If the health doesn't approve it, it doesn't meet the requirements of rebound Idaho. It doesn't hold water,” Moser said. “We're not going against the health department. We're not going against the rules.

However, that was before an updated proposal was approved by the health district. The association then brought the new proposal to Bingham county where the event later received an approval. Now, Bannock County commissioners are asking why the High School Rodeo Association didn't come back to them with an updated proposal, rather than going 20 miles up the road.

"The association didn't present it to us and then they went somewhere else and presented a plan,” Moser said.

But that was before the association already reached out to managers at the Eastern Idaho State Fairgrounds according to board member, Kelly Duffin.

"We think you can come up with a healthcare plan in time for us that is sufficient to take care of your people," Duffin said.

Duffin continued to say the lack of communication between the board and Bannock County prompted organizers to seek a location outside of Bannock County.

However, "if they would have come back to bannock county with this plan, with maggie's approval and sure we would have had the rodeo," Moser said.

Additionally, the junior rodeo with updated guidelines will be held in Bannock County next weekend. The state’s championship rodeo is contracted to Bannock County for three years. This year would have been its second.

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