City Government

Parking BooBoo At BoDo

Just when we thought they were dead, the daily paper’s Brad Hem enterprises a story about Team Dave cutting behind the scenes deals for preferred parking with the BoDo Boys.
Off Depot Meter.jpg

Seems the largest tenant at Bodo is Office Depot and they wanted special parking spots directly in front of their store on Broad Street for customers. Brass in the Boise City parking department rightfully said “no” because they don’t allow designated parking spots on city streets.

Even the Downtown Boise Association opposed special treatment–after all, THEY have been around forever and get no special parking favors.

Enter Team Dave’s leader, Mayor Dave Bieter, with a “pilot program.” Without consent of the council or a city ordinance authorizing the move, Bieter allowed BoDo Boys to attach signs with the Office Depot Logo to the city’s public parking meters. The signs “welcome” OFFICE DEPOT customers and do nothing but sew confusion for visitors.

It is a confusing set of six signs on city meters which probably do little to enhance the image of either Team Dave or Office Depot. The mayor apparently got pressured by BoDo to make the concession because without the special treatment–not offered to any other business in town–Office Depot wouldn’t move into the new development at Capitol and Front.

We feel it is simply inappropriate for local government to inject itself into agreements which are contingent upon using public assets to seal the deal.

The GUARDIAN checked with several city councilors and got different reactions to the mayor’s action. Vern Bisterfeldt and Jim Tibbs said they first heard about the special treatment when the read the printed news account.

Council President Maryanne Jordan said the pilot program was an “administrative action” and did not require council action. She said the council was notified AFTER Bieter allowed the signs to be posted on the meters.

The last time Team Dave classified something as “administrative” the Supreme Court disagreed and ordered an election over issue of the 10 commandments rock which was removed from Julia Davis Park under an “administrative action.”

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. Seems more and more like Mayor Dave needs a psychiatric exam.

    By the way, are these really city meters? If so, how can the city charge us to park on a street owned by the all-powerful ACHD?

    Bit of a conflict?
    EDITOR NOTE–By ordinance and agreement Boise regulates parking.

  2. I’m TOTALLY confused, Guardian.

    Is it FREE parking for Office Depot customers; all others put ‘cher money in the slot?

    Or is it Office Depot parking ONLY, but you gotta pay?

    I tend to agree with Gordon… does our illustrious leader need some Couch Time?

    EDITOR NOTE–City guys say ANYONE can park there. Push the button and get 20 minutes free time. It appears to us the signs are a bluff and offer six free ads to Office Depot with the “impression” they are offering free parking to the public. Does it make sense now?

  3. Mr. Hem enterprised nothing. Rather, he lifted from coworker J. Estrella who reported on this pilot project in the August 3, 2005 edition of the Idaho Statesman:

    * * *

    The company was asking for four parking spaces on the south side of the Capitol Gateway Building that would be designated for Office Depot customers. All parking in the area is designated as public parking by the city, however.

    Jade Riley, special assistant to Bieter, said the mayor has proposed a pilot program where the four spaces will have signs indicating that the spaces are for Office Depot customers “and the general public.”

    Office Depot signed the lease, but Riley said the parking meter proposal must still go before the city council.

    * * *

    Apparently Tibbs & Bisterfelt (and the Guardian) don’t read the paper, or they don’t remember reading the story.

    I would imagine when the matter came to the Council it it was met with shrugs. Or maybe it was never brought up. Either way, when I read it a year ago I figured it was enough of a head fake to get Office Depot to sign the lease.

    EDITOR NOTE–GUARDIAN pleads guilty to missing the piece a year ago. We are still confused about the head fake or the need for it. Council Prez Jordan claims “administrative action” by Bieter and no council approval required. Your post seems to indicate otherwise.

  4. So let me get this straight – the Mayor just made-up a “parking pilot program” that is a clear violation of the current City Ordinace and the City Council didn’t even vote on it like we were told they would?

    How about he make up a “pilot program” to actually listen to neighborhoods when the row houses and massive condos developers come in?

    I did not realize that pilot programs can override city law! If I had a business downtown I would be at the mayor’s office today asking for the parking places for my business that are included in the pilot program!

  5. How about a pilot program of honest, competent government that serves the needs of average citizens and not just people whose last names are Simplot, Appleton, Rockefeller, Gates, etc?

    How about a pilot program for the ACHD and planning and zoning departments that considers quality of life rather that how to make money for their political contributors?

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