Governors across Western U.S. meet in Coeur d’Alene

COEUR D’ALENE, ID. — Governors from across the West are in Coeur d’Alene looking at important issues affecting their communities.

They met at the Coeur d’Alene Resort, looking at different issues, from climate change to cybersecurity, trying to find solutions in the next three days.

Eight governors across different states are coming together with the similar goal of serving their community.

“Whether it’s environmental issues, health issues, whether it’s infrastructure, whether it’s education — those are all issues that impact the everyday lives of westerners,” Idaho Governor Brad Little said.

One of the major topics of discussion was fighting off wildfires in the West. It was announced that $1 billion in federal funding will go toward defending against wildfires, which includes restoring and maintaining fire-proof landscapes, investing in resilient infrastructure and making sure there’s enough manpower to fight fires.

It is a joint effort that needs to cross state lines.

“It’s really important that our firefighters, our state firefighters and federal firefighters that they’re mobile and the chain of command of where do you put those critical resources to save life and property and critical natural resources and property,” Little said.

Mental health is also a top priority for the governors.

“The numbers of kids who are attempting suicide have gone up dramatically,” Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra said. “The number of families who are feeling very stressed continues to go up.”

Becerra says his department will help states increase awareness and the use of the new 988 Mental Health Hotline across the country.

“We hope that 988 will be that 3-digit call number will be something that someone who’s in critical mental distress feel comfortable calling,” Becerra said.

The meetings are not open to the public or the media. President Joe Biden’s Administration will come to CDA and also present during the three-day event.

During the conference, you can expect to see an increased security presence in the area. Everything around the resort is expected to run as normal.