Simmons Attacks Yzaguirre Tax Problems

The heat got turned up a notch in the Ada Commish primary race Sunday when Candidate Roger Simmons issued an “attack” press release citing past dirty laundry worn by Commish Rick Yzaguirre.

With regard to Yzaguirre’s private use of Idaho sales tax and other state revenues collected at a convenience store he owned, Simmons said: “I find it refreshing given Yzaguirre’s history of being less than forthcoming about his financial situation, that Rick has finally answered at least one question with absolute candor,” said Simmons.

“While many of his answers in the (STATESMAN) Voter Guide may be suspect, Yzaguirre was certainly forthright, when referring to the taxpayers, he said, ‘…I treat their money as my own.’ ”

The Republican primary election is May 25. We welcome any response from Yzaguirre.

The complete text of Simmons release follows.


(Boise)—Ada County Commission Candidate Roger Simmons today complimented his opponent Rick Yzaguirre for being truthful in one of his answers on the Idaho Statesman’s Voter Guide.

“I find it refreshing given Yzaguirre’s history of being less than forthcoming about his financial situation, that Rick has finally answered at least one question with absolute candor,” said Simmons. “While many of his answers in the Voter Guide may be suspect, Yzaguirre was certainly forthright, when referring to the taxpayers, he said, ‘…I treat their money as my own.’ ”

In fact, several times in his career Yzaguirre has chosen to treat taxpayers’ money as his own. He did that to keep his personal businesses afloat. He used $60,000 in sales tax money he collected to pay his commercial vendors then later said, “It’s easy to blow off the tax commission.”

But the law says you’re not supposed to do that. The law says the moment sales tax money is collected that becomes state money…that, “Such money shall not, for any purpose, be considered to be a part of the proceeds of the sale.” In other words, it was never his money and Yzaguirre says he knew that but he added that it was easy to blow off the tax commission.

Yzaguirre also treated the taxpayers’ money as his own when, while Mayor of Eagle, he used Idaho Lottery and Fish & Game license fees for his own benefit, once again in violation of the law.

He also forced the county, the same one he is now making his living off of, to go after him for non-payment of property taxes. “This wasn’t a case of someone forgetting to pay sales tax money, or lottery fees, or Fish & Game license fees, or property taxes like other candidates who have been in the news lately,” said Simmons. “This is far more egregious. This is a case where a politician who makes his living off other peoples’ taxes openly admits to blowing agencies off. Politicians should be held to a higher standard than others because they are seeking the public’s trust.

“Apparently Yzaguirre considers the Tax Commission, the Department of Fish & Game, the Lottery and the County nebulous entities that have no connection to the public and aren’t handling the public’s money,” Simmons continued. “It would be laughable, given Yzaguirre’s answer to the Idaho Statesman Voter Guide, that he has this disconnect regarding taxpayers’ money. However, in reality, this is no laughing matter.”

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. Goes to show you what a low life Roger is.

  2. Rule #17b in the manual of politics:
    Keep your opponent on the defensive so that no one realizes whata really poor candidate you are!
    I am certainly no fan of Rick’s, but YOU Roger are (DELETED.)

    EDITOR NOTE–We will try to delete name calling. If we miss one, it is not intentional. PLEASE refrain from offensive names.

  3. Casual Observer
    May 2, 2010, 10:14 pm

    Simmons has it about right. Yzaguirre DID embezzle state funds and DID use them as his own. Occasioinally, he even used them to make campaign contributions to other members of the “pure” republicans. Perhaps that is why the county prosecutor couldn’t be bothered to press charges.

    Yzaguirre also used about $30,000 in county funds in a failed attempt to avoid paying his $150 fine for violating the open meeting law.

    Maybe you don’t like Simmons, but you gotta hate Yzaguirre.

  4. I don’t quite understand the backlash so far from Mr. Simmons’ press release. I believe he states the facts as they were uncovered at the time, albeit no legal action –no surprise — was taken. I would prefer, however, that the candidates stick to the issues: property taxes, development fees, levies, growth, urban renewal, jobs, horse racing, open spaces, fair management, outstanding lawsuits against the county, etc. The rest is politics as usual, and I assume Mr. Simmons is merely defending himself against recent public character attacks. It’s a natural response. In my opinion, his release is fair game for public consumption in choosing a county public servant who handles county public money. Mr. Simmons’ opponent has every right to address the questions raised or to raise his own questions. This is not an endorsement. Please do not call me names for expressing my opinions!


  5. Blazing Saddle
    May 3, 2010, 11:13 am

    Yzaguirre will have a pithy response as soon as Tilman tells him what to say.

  6. Rod in SE Boise
    May 3, 2010, 12:15 pm

    You want candidates to talk about issues??? Good luck with that.

    One commenter above got it right: “Maybe you don’t like Simmons, but you gotta hate Yzaguirre.” The president of Iran, Amadinijad, would get elected here if he ran as a Republican.

  7. Wow Roger, just when I thought you couldn’t get any stupider you come out with something like this. Doesn’t this go to show you the true character of Roger? Is this who we want running things at the county? I just love to see someone that can’t run on their own merits so they have to do the only thing left in their bag of tricks and that is attack their opponent. I’m glad we have Rick at the wheel and I am very glad he treats the county’s money as his own. This is the problem with that goon Obama, he is spending money left and right because he doesn’t treat it as his own. Roger, if you don’t treat the county’s money as your own, what do you treat it as? That is something a businessman would do, oh that’s right Roger isn’t a businessman. Roger is a bottom feeder and we are again seeing his true colors.

  8. I’m a wondering if Roger really wants to remind everyone why voters rejected him last time. Certainly Sharon was just as guilty when she orchestrated the Republican Central Committee purge. But she ain’t running this time.

    It was a gaffe. I don’t blame Roger for exploiting the gaffe but doing so with a single shot press release, calling Rick a cheat and a liar, will probably backfire. Voters would like to see if Roger’s changed his tune, like they did with Jim Risch. Doesn’t look good.

  9. Seems a bit like the movie Groundhog day. Every election season the same old candidates pop their heads up. Time for a good round of Wack a Mole and some fresh blood in the Republican party.

  10. Hi All,

    If anyone is interested in hearing first-hand from the four Republican candidates for BOCC or asking questions, here’s your chance:

    (From Statesman)

    The four Republican candidates for Ada County commissioner will appear at a Boise City Club lunch forum Thursday, May 13.

    The format will allow the audience to submit written questions for the candidates.

    Vern Bisterfeldt faces incumbent Fred Tilman, and Roger Simmons is challenging Rick Yzaguirre in the May 25 primary. The challengers propose a five-point plan, which includes changing the structure of county government from three full-time commissioners to five part-time commissioners and a county manager.

    The forum begins at 11:45 a.m. at The Grove Hotel. Cost is $16 for members, $23 for non-members, $5 to listen only and $10 for students.

    To register, call 371-2221 or visit Registration deadline is noon Tuesday, May 11

    Read more:


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