House Commerce and Human Resources Committee Chairman Steve Hartgen, R-Twin Falls, is recovering from triple bypass heart surgery at St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center in Boise.
The Twin Falls Times-News, where Hartgen is a former publisher, reported on the surgery Wednesday. House Speaker Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, told the paper, “The surgery was a success and he is recovering.”
Bedke visited Hartgen and his wife, Linda, at the hospital Tuesday. Hartgen, 68, was elected in 2008.
Hartgen is one of 10 members of the Legislature’s Federal Lands Interim Committee, which is exploring efforts to convince the federal government to turn over its lands to the state. The committee’s first meeting begins Friday at 9 a.m. at the Capitol and the Times-News says it is unlikely Hartgetn will attend.
The committee is co-chaired by former House Speaker Lawerence Denney, R-Midvale, who Bedke defeated in December. Bedke, however, is a strong backer of the committee’s work and argues that the state could more efficiently manage federal lands without sacrificing environmental quality and recreation.