Caldwell GUARDIAN Vindicated Over Nampa Library

Thursday the Gardener Company sent Nampa Development Corporation (Urban Renewal) a letter backing out of the retail/officeportion of the Nampa Library Project. Caldwell GUARDIAN editor Paul Alldredge had filed legal action to allow citizens to weigh in on the indebtedness, but backed out when threatened with being forced to pay legal fees.

In the letter, Gardner told Nampa Development officials, “We have reached this determination after diligent efforts to pre-lease the buildings on the parcels and to finance construction,”

Translation: there were no takers, no matter the price for this grandiose project in downtown Nampa. Mayor Tom Dale and his URA board failed to see and learn what happened at the Ada County Courthouse retail part of that project — it was a huge flop.

The Boise GUARDIAN has warned officials in the Capitol City to proceed with caution in dealing with Gardner — or any developer who depends on public money to fund even portions of their projects.

Alldredge sought to give citizens the right to approve public debt in his lawsuit on this project but had to back off when faced with the possibility of paying NDC legal fees. NDC spent $108,000.00 to fend off THE GUARDIAN whose only issue was to let the people of Nampa vote via a bond election for the library and the police building.

We find the misuse of urban renewal money to build public works projects which would otherwise be subject to voter approval to be shameful. These projects will never be subject to property tax and the use of urban renewal is simply an end run around voters.



Comments & Discussion

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  1. chicago sam
    Apr 5, 2014, 9:17 am

    Gunstream, Madoff and now the Gardner Company. Of course the city slickers in Boise are so much smarter than the rubes in Nampa–Oh wait it was one of Boise’s premier law firms who wrote the contract with Gardner. A pox on unelected officials and their refusal to allow a vote

  2. I asked Phil Rogers one of the NDC board members why there was such opposition to voting on projects like the police building and library and his comment was “they would never approve the projects”.

    Amazing that a URA board considers itself the “supreme authority” in spending other people’s tax dollars.

    The Gardner Company are just another developer looking for a handout of property tax money. They have zero interest in assuming any role in doing much more than fleecing the public and those who serve on URA boards.

  3. This is a great example why urban renewal districts should be eliminated. It is a giving hard earned tax money to a board for their pet projects. Their is no accountability and the taxpayers are the loosers.

  4. Sad really. I just happen to know someone who wished to relocate his business there, but the Gardner Company indicated the following.

    1. Costs of rent and maintenance would be excessively prohibitive.

    2. The idea of having a service industry business in the same complex as the library, etc. seemed to be extremely offensive to the folks at Gardner.

    On another note, the only restaurant I know for a fact was willing to located there pulled out because the terms of the contract were just too vague. Basically it has come down to nobody will “rent” or buy if they cannot make any profit beyond monies to Gardner.

    Finally, the library was needed and has been for some time, the Police Station was not needed. The people I know would have voted for the Library, but not the Police Station. Mayor Dale was wrong and the voters pretty much told him so last November. It is a shame that most of the voters supported Bob Henry. He is almost cut from the same cloth as Dale.

  5. chicago sam
    Apr 7, 2014, 11:03 am

    Library was needed but many mistakes were made including location. An easy way to say there are no willing tenants is to put the price too high. Gardner and Mr. Ahlquist have bigger fish to fry including subdivisions in Eagle, a partnership in a nursing home, building medical facility’s all over the valley and having a very good association with the premier law firm in Boise Hawley and company. Mr. Ahlquist also serves on a board overseeing Idaho State with the wife of Jon Huntsman, former Gov. of Utah and one of the country’s richest men. Mr. Ahlquist’s rise to power is remarkable after his merger with the Gardner Company. Follow the money–if you can

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