City Government

City Budget News

Boise City Councilors will hear Team Dave and department heads present shopping lists for three days next week.

We are concerned about plans to spend more than $113,300 to refurbish the “railroad to nowhere.” The city acquired 18 miles of track that runs roughly from Gowen Field to a lonely junction in the desert. The previous council made the purchase and the GUARDIAN feels it is simply wrong for the city to be in the rail business. If the Union Pacific couldn’t make it work, Boise can’t either. We also doubt the amount quoted will do anything substantive on the right of way.

Our main fear is the city is in the development business and will continue to sprawl to the south and east using the abandoned rail line as an excuse for both residential and industrial development. The city holds several hundred acres of land near the Outlet Mall acquired for an “industrial park.” The mentality of, “We have some tracks, let’s create a need for them” is offensive to us.

The three day City Council Budget workshop scheduled for next week will be aired LIVE on TVTV cable channel 98. The workshops will also be webcast on the City of Boise website. The budget workshops will run from 8:30 A.M. through 5:00 P.M. Monday June 25th through Wednesday June 27th.

The workshop is the formal presentation of Mayor Bieter’s budget recommendations for the next two years. The budget calls for five additional front-line police officers and two new paramedic units, initial funding to develop the River Recreation and Esther Simplot park complex, federal grant funding to study relocation of the Curtis Road petroleum “tank farm,” and more than two dozen other initiatives.

With the exception of one staffer, Team Dave denies reading the GUARDIAN, but your comments will reach them…especially if you agree with City spending plans.

Mayor and City Councilors are “seeking comment” on the proposed budget. Citizens can e-mail the mayor and councilors; call the mayor’s hotline at 384-4404; or write to Mayor’s Office, City of Boise, P.O. Box 500, Boise, ID, 83701. The workshops will take place in the Council Chambers at City Hall. Citizens may quietly attend. Citizen testimony on the budget will be accepted only during a formal public hearing Aug. 14. There is rarely any testimony and seldom any changes as a aresult of the hearing testimony.

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. Sam the sham
    Jun 23, 2007, 12:15 am

    “If we build it, they will pay” mentality of the City of Trees.

  2. “If I buy it, they will pay for it” appears to be the motto of Team Dave. They buy, the taxpayers pay.

  3. How do we know that thatis the use they intend? Has there been any statements to that effect? Just curious because an area where I once lived purchased a defunct rail system in their county, and turned it into a wonderful trail system (Think our greebelt but much more scenic) for hiking and mountain bikes, and such, from in town to the local recreation area. When you mentioned the purchase that was the first thing I thought of.

    Also, If they were thinking of converting it to light rail from one part of the city/county into town, is that a bad thing?

    Just saying we shouldnt jump to conclusions. Everyone knows I am not a fan of TEAM DAVE.

    EDITOR NOTE–Team Dave lists it in their budget proposal as “initial steps to enhance freight service to industrial customers.” There are NO CUSTOMERS on the city owned stretch and the”railroad to nowhere” goes exactly there–nowhere. No homes until one reaches Mt. Home.
    Cole’s people made the purchase. It was wrong then and is still wrong.

  4. Regarding the tank farm: The facility was once located well out in the country — its nearest neighbors were farms and the Ada County Fairgrounds. It was the school district that chose to put a school opposite the tank farm.

    The city was happy enough to comply with the hospital when it wanted to move from downtown to be a tank farm neighbor — ditto The Idaho Statesman, the current office buildings and nursing home. There was no hesitation by either the parties wanting to locate on land surrounding the tank farm, or the city when granting the zoning requests.

    The ground beneath it has had several oil blooms and would in all likelyhood be prohibitatively expensive to rehabilitate.

    Since everyone appeared happy to fill in the countryside surrounding the tank farm, it would seem inappropriate to break up the neighborhood now.

  5. Inside City Hall
    Jun 25, 2007, 4:28 am

    The issue of the tank farm goes into a “hidden agenda” from the city. You should be asking “who will end up with the property and what would it be used for if the tank farm goes” and “why is the City SOOOOO excited to see it move?”

    Do some homework on this and post your results and we’ll see if you get it.

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