City Government

Old Commishes Seek Encore Performance

Apparently to former Ada Commishes Roger Simmons and Vern Bisterfeldt a day without Sharon Ullman is like a day without sunshine.

Both announced Friday their candidacy for seats on the Ada County Commission–which means they will serve with Ullman if elected. Simmons is after Rick Yzaguirre’s seat and Vern Bisterfeldt is challenging Commish chair Fred Tilman.

It’s an open secret that both Simmons and Bisterfeldt don’t particularly care for Ullman. They didn’t like former Commissioner Gary Glenn either. At one open meeting years ago Bisterfeldt called his fellow commsih, “butt breath.”

Bisterfeldt just got reelected to the Boise City Council and had previously served on the county commission until health problems caused him to resign. He was supposed to die and Simmons was instrumental in naming the Law Enforcement building on Barrister in Bisterfeldt’s honor. Bisterfeldt cheated death and when Boise annexed his home into the city he was so mad he ran for council and has been reelected twice.

Meanwhile, Ullman is making a token run at Butch Otter’s chair in the Governor’s office. She is realistic about her chances for victory, but plans to use the bully pulpit of candidacy to fight for county issues at the state level.

Now for the “whatifs.” If Bisterfeldt wins the commish race, that means Boise Mayor Dave Bieter will pick a replacement, thus eliminating even a semblance of opposition from the council. Then if Ullman pulls off a miracle and becomes Guv, SHE gets to name her own replacement and it would no doubt be a woman in the mold of Gary Glenn.

Look for a Boise-based political TV reality show to rival the juiciest soap opera.

Comments & Discussion

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  1. SUSHHH ! Guardian! They sure as hell don’t need ideas!

  2. crap…all we need is Roger back. He was a joke the last time.

  3. I think there needs to be a lifetime limit on public office holders. Maybe 10 years in any elected office of any kind per person per lifetime. They should also be over 40 and under 65, not collecting anykind of government money, and be in the top 10% of credit scores.

  4. I would rather have seen stronger opponents for these two important posts instead of recycled commishes of yesteryear. However, I cannot in good conscience vote for either tilman or yzaguirre for very concrete KTA-only reasons. Darned if you do, darned if you don’t. Oh the humanity!


  5. Rod in SE Boise
    Mar 20, 2010, 6:26 am

    It’s almost kind of green, recycling the same old politicians all the time.

    And nothing will change for the better.

  6. Has elected office become so distasteful nobody wants to run?

    I would like to see some fresh new faces with new ideas running for office.

    The same old retreads are not bad people, they just don’t bring anything new to the job.

  7. Paul, would you really be willing to tolerate the depth to which your personal and family background could be dredged up and used against you by someone like me if I worked for your opposition!

    ALL politics is dirty! It is very rare to have an honest candidate. In fact, I can name only one in the last 20 plus years that I am aware of. Most good people who would make a genuine addition to the arena won’t go through that. I believe that answers your question.

  8. Nicely put, Cyclops. The skeleton in the closet factor does play into politics, rightfully so in some cases. The economy and apathy are also major factors in the dearth of new faces on the campaign trail. Politics, power and greed can drive even “good people” to self service instead of public service.

    As a DAILY blogger wrote yesterday about the County Courthouse and its elected officials: “What an egotistical palace to self importance.”

    Just a note to all that there is a Democratic candidate for the BOCC: Larry Rincover of Garden City. Don’t know anything about him at this point. I will probably vote for him, unless he is an ogre or something worse, and leave the other BOCC boxes blank.

  9. Bet no one running for Ada Com or Boise Con will have a “FIX THE DOWNTOWN HOLE” platform.

    Hey Mayor, you need a new cause. Jump on it! You will have one loyal hero worshipper if you do.

  10. Cyclops, I hate to admit it but you may have the answer to why nobody will run for public office.

    This brings me to my next issue. City/County Manager form of government. Still have the elected board to oversee the Manager but you can hire competent people who will run your city government based on sound business and financial decisions who also has years of training and experience.

    How many elected officials would make it past the interview process if they actually had to apply for their jobs?

    It is something people in Idaho should consider if they truly want to see a change in the status quo.

    Nearly 60% of cities and counties with more than 3,000 people have made the move to this form of government.

  11. Dog, maybe you have forgotten that the last time a potential developer for the “hole” went TU,the mayor stated at a news conference that” it didn’t matter long term because there were two or three other developers that wanted to be all over the development process. I suppose the fact that he was running for re-election at the time should be considered. Therefore, please refer to my last post! See what I mean? Politics is a “blood sport” that is not always hindered by the truth.
    Paul, we already have a city manager. His name is Jade Reilly. Seriously, I agree with your concept completely, just not the one we have.

  12. I agree, Paul. It would be a good idea at the County level, too. But until we quit electing the same old politicians, we won’t get any new ideas implemented.

  13. Taxed To The Limit In Boise
    Mar 22, 2010, 2:07 am

    Same’ol tired retreads, draining the taxpayer money teet with an impaired & stagnant municipal vision. More of the same bureaucratic bullying of citizens and small business.

    We need to get rid of them all!

  14. … if Ullman pulls off a miracle and becomes Guv, SHE gets to name her own replacement and it would no doubt be a woman in the mold of Gary Glenn.

    I’ll have to disagree with that. Ms. Ullman can correct me if I’m wrong, but in many years of observing her, I’ve never gotten the impression that she’s a “feminist.” (She wouldn’t hesitate to appoint a qualified woman, but gender wouldn’t be a litmus test.) And I’ve never considered her a political ideologue in the vein of Gary Glenn, although she’s fiscally conservative.

  15. Bisterfeldt, to Gary Glenn: “Butt breath.”

    Hahaha! That is SUCH a fond memory!

    As one who enjoys the hijinks of local politics, I continue to dream of Mr. Bisterfeldt serving on the same governing body as perennial candidate Harley Brown. (At one point, they were both running for City Council.) Every few months, I imagine they’d get into a disagreement, and take it out into the alley “to settle it like men.” After the 10-minute recess, brushing themselves off and sporting shiners and skinned knuckles, they’d return to the room and announce what they’d decided on.

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