Idaho officials approve land transfer for veterans cemetery

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter and other statewide elected officeholders have approved a land transfer necessary to begin construction on an Idaho veterans cemetery in Blackfoot.

Four members on the Idaho Land Board unanimously agreed transferring 40 acres from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare to the Idaho Division of Veterans Services on Tuesday.

State and federal officials have spent several years examining various sites throughout eastern Idaho trying to find a location for a second state veterans cemetery.

However, the Division of Veterans Services announced in December it had found a location in Blackfoot adjacent to a state mental hospital, known as State Hospital South. The vacant lot was being leased by the Department of Health and Welfare for agricultural production.

The cemetery project is expected to cost $8.3 million.