No “Cutting Remarks” For ACHD From Boise Forestry Crew

We don’t know the players, but here is a potential candidate for public office in the form of a Boise City tree trimmer named Steve Markel. We doubt he cleared his comments with the mayor’s office, but Team Dave could sure use his talents in the P.R. department–not just as a tree trimmer.

ACHD and Boise Parks Forestry Dept. crews joined forces last week to clear trees from the Capitol Blvd. bridge in preparation for a major bridge painting project to celebrate the 150 birthday this summer. Here’s what Markel had to say to ACHD:

“I just wanted to say thank you for all the cooperation and assistance received to complete the Capitol Blvd Bridge tree pruning and removals. For a project that could have taken several days to be completed and was completed in one day, it was outstanding example of interagency cooperation with ACHD and Boise City Parks and Rec. Community Forestry. Thanks to Pierson Dewit,PE ACHD Design Supervisor and Rich Shaw ACHD Vegetation Crew Chief and his crew for taking care of all of the traffic control measures and assisting with pruning and removal of trees adjacent to the Capitol Blvd. Bridge.”

Steve Markel
Crew Chief
Boise City Parks and Recreation
Community Forestry Unit

Comments & Discussion

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  1. What is this March self-promotion month?

    So how did this get to you Guardian? Seems like ACHD commissioners got a hold of it and then forwarded it to just for the “advertisement”. Is that about right?

    But let’s look at it with a criticial eye.

    So they’re paiting the bridge for the birthday. Does the bridge really need painting? Just a coincidence that it happens to fall on the anniversary year, I suppose.

    And they’re painting it.
    Why is Mr Dewit, a Professional Engineer of the ACHD Design team (Supervisor) involved? To paint an existing bridge? Painter wages or engineer wages?

    ACHD Vegetation Crew- who would have thought the road department has a “vegetation crew”?

  2. Another example of Mr. Markel going above and beyond. Instead of throwing away a geocache, Mr. Markel shot off a quick email to find the owner.

  3. Kudos to Mr Markel for not letting politics get in the way of working with staff of other agencies. Job well done! . Let’s just hope he doesn’t incur the wrath of Bieter.
    Bieter doesn’t like it when people are cooperative with ACHD.
    Kudos to ACHD for granting Boise’s request to paint the bridge even though Bieter is still attacking at every chance.

  4. Nan e mouse
    Mar 21, 2013, 8:13 am

    Sounds like Eastern has to carry Bieter’s water. I guess stories about cooperation don’t fulfill the destroy ACHD so Boise can have all the money for it’s silly trolley to nowhere idea.

  5. Eastern: ACHD Vegetation Crew- who would have thought the road department has a “vegetation crew”?

    Any observer of nature will observe that trees, weeds, bushes, etc., seem to have a mind of their own! They just grow wherever they want to, without taking the needs and feelings of others into consideration.

    Sometimes they grow limbs that overhang roads, interfere with sidewalks and bike lanes, etc. Users of the infrastructure would quickly notice, if somebody didn’t take care of such obstacles.

    Boise has a “forestry department” for much the same reason.

    Could ACHD contract it out to private companies, like Idaho Power does? Perhaps. I’m in favor of the cheapest way. Personally, I’d like to see the “vegetation crew” supplemented every summer with a “goathead patrol,” made up of Ada County jail inmates.

  6. Goathead patrol- sounds good, for the Park Department.
    Meanwhile, ACHD could at least dedicate one sweeper to clear the bike lanes in the county- goats, debris, sand and anything else in the bike lane.

    ACHD should ahve someone that goes around and tells property owners to trim back their trees, shrubs and “vegetation” away from roads, signs and ACHD sidewalks. I can tell you lots of places where that doesn’t happen.

    It doesn’t make sense for a govt agency to be paying a crew and supervisor year around for the occasional need of trimming shrubs. Does the supervisor’s title change to Ice Melt Supervisor in the winter? I’m pretty sure the ‘cheapest way’ does not align with the ACHD way.

  7. The word “goathead” got my attention. I like to ride my bicycle but I don’t leave home without a spare tube or two and all the tools I need to effect a tire repair. About half the time I get to replace a tube before I get home again.

    Isn’t there anything that can be done to eradicate these pesky little thorns that destroy bicycle tubes, Nike Air shoes, bare feet, and anything else they can attach themselves. They are beyond a public nuisance and I am ready to declare war on them but am at a loss on a good strategy to actually do anything that would work long term.

  8. [straying off the original topic]

    The only way puncture vine – aka “goatheads” – can be eradicated is to pull the entire plant up by the root while it’s still green, and remove it with seeds/goatheads still intact. And then repeat the process for a couple years until old seeds quit germinating.

    It’s on the Idaho Weed Awareness list.

  9. Eastern, why don’t you try sitting down with the ACHD director and finding out what ACHD actually does instead of showing your ignorance?

  10. From their news release:

    Boise Community Forestry is responsible for the management of 41,000 trees in public parks and rights-of-way throughout the city.
    For information, see

    Cynic, notice the “and rights-of-way” in that statement. So why does ACHD have vegetation control within the city?

    EDITOR NOTE–Eastern, time to stop whipping the dead horse. Boise Parks takes care “rights of way” like Capitol Blvd., Harrison, Federal Way, places like that. There are many areas which are not designated “park ways” such as along the river, Cartwright Rd. and just next to some streets where trees block drains, cause sight obstructions or actually get into the lane of travel–that’s why ACHD has crews. Those areas are NOT part of Boise Parks responsibility.

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