- Associated Press - Friday, January 31, 2014

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Yet again, a Les Bois Junior High student took to the Capitol to extol the virtues of the Idaho Giant Salamander, a creature she hopes will be adopted as the state’s designated amphibian.

Seventh-grader Ilah Hickman’s quest to get recognition for the “unique, if somewhat shy amphibian” started three years ago, after a school assignment to suggest a new state symbol.

When she realized Idaho lacked a state reptile or amphibian, she began petitioning her legislator, helping draft a bill in 2012, and testifying before the House in 2013.

Hickman made her case before the Senate State Affairs Committee Friday, arguing that the Idaho Giant Salamander is the best fit because it lives almost exclusively in the Gem State.

The committee voted to send the proposal to a full hearing.

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