Business

Guv: Storage Business Purchase “Was A Mistake”

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter has withdrawn his support for a controversial Land Board decision to own and operate a commercial storage business.

The GUARDIAN revealed the state ownership–which competes directly with the private sector–in an EXCLUSIVE story last November.

Otter told the IDAHO REPORTER his support of the decision to invest in the private retail storage business was a mistake. The state of Idaho purchased Affordable Storage on Maple Grove last August and run it as a commercial enterprise.

“I think that was a mistake. But, I’m the first to admit it. I sat right there and asked a bunch of questions about it. And, it’s not a mistake we’re ever likely to make again.” At the time of the decision the Guv’s office issued a STATEMENT defending the decision, noting it was made at a public meeting. They just forgot to tell us it “slipped by.”

Otter also told the REPORTER that he now prefers the state stay out of “direct competition” with the private sector, such as with the storage unit. “You know, that was just one that slipped by. Because I’ve heard from enough, I’m not going to tell you which board members, but I’ve heard from enough others that just said, ‘You know that was a mistake, we shouldn’t have done that.’”

While the GUARDIAN agrees with the Guv and others who think government should keep out of private business activities, it will be interesting to see how they spin this latest development. Otter says there are others on the Land Board who share his views.

Comments & Discussion

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  1. If he really means this does it say he will sale it?

  2. Glad to see they own up their mistakes, but I missed the part of the story where they are going to sell the property to reverse the mistake they made…..

  3. This is only valid if they SELL IT.

  4. Hindsight is 20/20 clear. Too bad the Guv didn’t stick to his libertarian views when the land board entered into this screwball deal.

  5. Rod in SE Boise
    Jun 28, 2011, 1:31 pm

    Very unusual for one of those ultra-right-wingers admit a mistake. They cling to their visions from God.

  6. Geez, Rod. And he speaks so highly of you!!! Add me to the list that says when it is for sale, we can talk.

  7. Is there any hidden agenda regarding this about face? If the motivation for such an investment was to generate revenue, has this goal been met? Have ongoing costs of maintenance and management cut into projected earnings? If this has become another financial alligator it could explain the change of heart.

  8. I’d be happy if he would just admit he’s a moron.

  9. Kim, I can tell you first hand that I wrote a letter to the governor explaining my displeasure, as I imagine many other Idahoans did. That being said, I will not be satisfied until I hear of a sale. All state government buildings or land not put into direct government use should be sold and put back on the tax rolls. I would ask the same of the city of Boise but I’m afraid that is a lost cause. Cronyism and group think has infected the city of Boise so deeply the chance of them admitting mistake is nil.

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