We’re #4! We’re #4! YEA!

We love Boise. You have to love it to stay here for 41 years with the kind of politicos and CEOs we have.
We have witnessed the rise and fall of MK, Boise Cascade, Ore-Ida, Albertson, and now H-P and Micron. These once great companies were a source of pride before the big guys took the money and ran…the current economic crises had little to do with the decline of these outfits. THEY and others like them created the current state of affairs.

Politicos generally seem to agree the road to economic recovery is to attract more like them to the City of Trees. There are all sorts of “economic development” agencies in Idaho. We don’t need ’em. All they do is attract the weak and greedy.

Comes now U.S. News & World Report with the annual made up list of GREAT CITIES. They give our City of trees a #4 ranking in their LIST. Paul Hiller, the executive director of the Boise Valley Economic Partnership. “It’s one of the most vibrant downtown areas you’ve ever seen.”

He gets paid to say nice things like that as the hired gun who plants stories in the national media. Ada County Commishes saw the light and decided they could make better use of the $70,000 annual payment in tax money to Hiller and the Chamber and cut them off the dole.

Hiller needed to mention Micron dumped a bunch of loyal workers on the state unemployment fund, Boise unemployment is ahead of the national average, our air quality borders on non-compliance, there is no money for roads, and politicos work tirelessly to deny citizens the right to vote on long term debt.

Still, there are a bunch of fine human beings living here working to make the place just a little different (better?) than elsewhere. GROWTHOPHOBES would not see the mention by US NEWS as a positive thing.

Comments & Discussion

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  1. Now that Micron was turned down for a large “contribution” to their LED program, the word from the inside is that within two years the only sound coming from those buildings will be crickets.
    The first move in budget cuts should be all those talking heads that are telling us, and the rest of the country, how great everything is! I have this nagging feeling that Nero is starting to tune up his fiddle!

  2. You forgot to mention our anti-business House of Representatives that voted to decrease public education funding while increasing funding for home schooling via the “virtual academy”. What business would want to move to an area were education is being passed off to a bunch of home schooled idealogical fanatics?

    You did mention “there is no money for roads” but I want to emphasize that lack of foresight is anti business too. The House’s right wing members refusal to fund the infrastructure, from transportation to education, could hardly be considered pro-business.

    Dang it, I can’t wait until the Republican Party in Idaho reigns in the wingnuts and gets back to business.

  3. When I moved here in 2001 MK, Boise Cascade, Ore-Ida, Albertson, H-P and Micron were the major players in Boise. I moved here because my husband’s transfer from American Stores (what a joke that was). Now, I question the future of this city, the businesses and residents of Boise are basically the major tax source of the state. I’m just thankful I old my house in 2007, now renting and not spending money, I don’t want to stay here for 41 years; my timetable is 5 to 7 years, when this recession will be on the downside. Good luck to all.

  4. Bye Cathy! One down 1,000,000 to go.

  5. I am glad everbody here is so positive. If the the world(Boise) were perfect, it would be boring. These problems are not unique to Boise, look at the mess in California.

  6. Eric, please do not pretend our public school system is producing anything other than well paid ‘educators’ an administrators. Junior is still behind the rest of the world. In Education, money means union, not an educated graduate.

  7. JIMV, I totally agree that administrative cost are out of line due to the duplication caused by to many school districts but if your saying teachers are overpaid I’ll challenge that. Make your best case, and I’ll show you wrong. Idaho and the rest of the U.S.A. is facing a shortage of teachers in next decade, now why would that be if it was such a cushy, well paid job?

    My complaint about cutting education spending is that The house has done it with the same arrogance you’ve shown. Just naively saying they spend to much and it’s time to cut the budget with out any facts to justify it is just jingoism.

  8. Bye, Robert! Give me a few years though…Good luck to all.

  9. Paul Hiller needs to get out more.

    Downtown was more vibrant 40 years ago. By far.

  10. Vinnie Golumbo
    Jun 11, 2009, 4:48 pm

    Seems to me we are in the same position with Hiller as are people who pay protection money to the mafia.

    “Well, ya know, $200 large only goes so far. And, I got expenses too. Plus, ah, I’m catching heat from the competition. At the rate you’re paying me about all I can gar-an-tee, is top ten placing. If you want the brass ring, number one, on a regular basis, maybe we need to re-negotiate our fee schedule. Kapish?”

  11. more vibrant 40 years ago.. right before they tore it down

  12. Hey – – remember the trolley will solve all the problems!! (not)

  13. Your photo on this article does not include the REALLY UGLY UGLY UGLY building that was just built to the left of the US Bank building.

    What a gross eye sore as you drive north toward downtown. How do we get such ugly buildings downtown? If you drive into town and head north on Capital Blvd this new building really detracts from our city scape and is just horrible.

  14. Not to nitpick, but isn’t that top ten list just in alphabetical order? Not ranked #1-10?

  15. I dunno….those companies employed a lot of people and really helped Idaho in general. Without business no jobs. Whats wrong with business?

  16. Aw, c’mon.
    If we get lots more big businesses, they’ll hire hundreds of people, who will come in and buy all the deserted houses, and then lots more houses will be built, creating lots of jobs for more construction workers, who also will need houses, etc., etc., etc.
    Then those new big companies will go away, and thousands of houses will be emptied.
    Then those stubborn ones of us who stay here will be able to buy houses for a few dollars apiece, tear them down, and have plenty of firewood for the stoves we’ll have to use for heat after everybody’s too broke to pay for electricity, gas, oil or whatever.
    See? There’s a bright side to everything.
    Yours truly, Pollyanna

  17. AS they include a California town and California is only an accent away from third world status, I have to question the list as well.Sort of an odd list ranging from cities to villages…

  18. Idaho Quick Hits | Adam's Blog
    Jun 14, 2009, 8:01 pm

    […] Guardian sums up why it is that Boise is on U.S. News and World Reports list of great cities despite the folks we […]

  19. Check out some of the great historic photos of downtown Boise before urban removal. Lots of small vibrant independent businesses. It looks like a real downtown. You can see them on the walls at a great restaurant, Chef Lou’s on 8th Street. Oops…sorry, it closed down.

    Expect this town to be nothing but chain shops and restaurants. With the typical Boise triple net rents exacted by building owners, only deep pocket corporate businesses can survive. Can you super-size that tasteless food product for me?

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