It comes as no surprise that nearly every builder, developer, and engineering firm along with lots of lawyers and realtors have made campaign payments to incumbent Mayor Dave Bieter’s campaign war chest. In the game of politics, you have to pay to play.
A post by Randy Stapilus at Ridenbaugh Press reveals Bieter has been paid $180,000 from supporters compared to Judy Peavey-Derr’s paltry $15,000.
The GUARDIAN took a look through the numerous pages of big spenders to the Bieter campaign and noted that firefighter unions from just about every town in Idaho made combined payments of about $17,000 to Boise’s mayor…that’s more than Peavey-Derr’s entire take so far. We noted smaller individual payments from firefighters and even volunteers as well.
Even with a former union lobbyist now chief of the Boise FD (“chief officers PAC” paid $500) and the current Boise FD union president on the Greater Boise Auditorium District Board, we find it hard to understand why firefighter unions from Washington, Spokane, Blackfoot, Middleton, Chubbuck, Ketchum, Nampa, and Pocatello–to name a few–would pony up $1,000 each to see Dave Bieter re-elected in Boise.
Are there plans afoot for a run at Gov. or Congress for Boise’s about-to-be fourth term mayor?
A story last year in the IDAHO STATESMAN by Sven Berg adds some perspective to the politics of pay and the pay to politicians. It showed Boise firefighters make on average $40,000 a year more than their union brothers in Salt Lake–$85,000 plus about $50,000 in benefits.