The Eighth Annual Idaho Public Policy Survey was released by the researchers at Boise State University’s Idaho Policy Institute. The survey shows that Idahoans are growing more pessimistic about the direction the state and local economy are heading. The survey was conducted November 10-17 2022 and covered a variety of topics including the economy, state budgeting, taxes, education, growth, housing, the environment, and crime, and surveyed 1,000 adults who currently live in Idaho representing the geographic and demographic population, with a margin of error of +/- 3.1%.
44% of Idahoans believe that the state is heading in the right direction with 41% being more pessimistic and believing that the state is heading in the wrong direction. This gap fell within the margin of error for the first time since the survey started. Idahoans are also pessimistic about Idaho’s economy with 37% expecting the state’s economy to worsen over the next two years, and 36% expect it will remain the same. In addition, it shows that 43% of Idahoans “frequently” or “always” worry about paying their bills.
Idahoans’ are still keeping education as their top legislative priority with an emphasis on critical thinking skills and core classes (math, English, history, and science) as well as on teacher support with an increase in pay and attracting and retaining quality educators. Followed by the economy and jobs as the second priority, but for the first time in eight years, housing has moved to the third spot over healthcare. 56% of Idahoans expressed that property taxes are too high. Property taxes jumped over income tax as the top priority for tax relief over the past two years. 82% are in favor of eliminating the sales tax on groceries, and 67% feel that the state is growing too fast.
“Whether it’s due to economic expectations or the state’s overall direction, the results of this year’s statewide survey show Idahoans are increasingly concerned about the future,” said Dr. Matthew May, report co-author and Survey Research Director for the School of Public Service. “Recognizing this rising concern and how Idahoans’ opinions on some issues have changed over time is useful as Idaho’s leaders and decision-makers evaluate policy options.”
For more information about the Idaho Public Policy Survey visit Boise State University’s website.