We have heard advertising on Boise State Public Radio touting the CCDC (Capital City Development Corp.).
One script says “support comes from listeners like you and Capital City Development Corp., Boise’s urban renewal agency, partnering with businesses and residents in Old Boise to preserve and enhance the area’s unique character.”
Why the heck does Boise’s urban renewal agency need to air “character advertising” and spend public funds doing it? Turns out they trade about four grand in parking spaces for the radio spots, but it sure got us curious.
The GUARDIAN turned up more than $100,000 in itemized advertising and “sponsorships” the urban renewal agency has passed out over the past three years. Not big bucks by today’s local government standards, but to us it demonstrates a lack of concern with how tax money is spent.
The arts, parades, football games, music are all nice, but they are not the purview of an urban renewal agency. If public money is to be spent for these things it should be done by elected officials. Boise City Councilors and Team Dave have been woefully inept overseeing their urban renewal agency.
The most distasteful part of this mess is that tax revenues on downtown improvements and appreciation is diverted away from Boise City to CCDC while hardworking citizens have to pay for police and fire services for the most valuable real estate in the state. To have that diverted tax money go to promotions like the following is a slap in the face:
–We question using $7,500 in public money to sponsor “Alive After Five” with the Downtown Boise Association.
–Boise City Councilors approve a budget for the Arts Commission, but the CCDC spent $13,627 to sponsor “city arts events promotion.”
–This urban renewal agency whose job is to fight urban blight and fund infrastructure kicked in $6,000 for a “holiday parade contribution.”
–They sponsored a “housing forum” with $900 to the Urban Land Institute.
–Last year your city urban renewal agency kicked in $500 to the Chamber of Commerce breakfast “state of the city sponsorship” so people could pay $30 a plate to hear Mayor Dave Bieter crow about his accomplishments.
–This public agency paid $5,000 to the BSU Foundation to sponsor the Gene Harris Jazz Festival.
–The City Arts Commission got $19,469 for “Saturday Market Performing Arts.”
–How can an urban renewal agency funded with taxes justify paying $500 for an MPC Bowl Promotion Ad?
Let’s hope the City Councilors and the auditor take a read on these expenditures. The CCDC board with two city councilors approved the expenses. Both are up for election in November if they choose to run.
You can see the complete report obtained by the GUARDIAN in PDF form. Download file
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