ACHD

Topics For Discussion, Let’s Talk

Sorry for the lack of content lately. Other priorities and lack of motivation are prime excuses.

Here are some topics for discussion and we freely admit they are not all new.

–Boise officials and the USAF staged a demonstration of their close air support (CAS) urban warfare training over our fair city at the end of August, but we don’t recall seeing any press releases before or after. Seems odd the flyboys suck up to the mayor, but every time someone complains about military air traffic, they get a letter from Team Dave saying, “we have no control over the military.”

–Lots of talk about that armored ambulance costing $300K. We shared that with some out-of-town paramedics who replied with, “Wow. I hope we get one too.” Logically it is like the MRAP truck from the military…do they need one in Pocatello and Cascade as well? Same is true for those “mobile command” buses. We think it has a lot to do with how much citizen cash is available. Think fire truck. Those are needed EVERYWHERE.

–Bus system still sucks.

–Why not put up freeway ramps during the Cloverdale overpass rebuild?

–Are the greenbikes dead with the advent of the scooters? Are the scooters working out?

–Should citizens get a VOTE on the library funding rather than manipulated “input” meetings?

–ACHD sure ate it when they told us “the citizens want the vehicle fee hike.” When it came to the ballot box it was another story. Legislature will likely allow ACHD to tax the heavy trucks as well as the small cars under 8,000 lbs.

Comments & Discussion

29 comments for “Topics For Discussion, Let’s Talk”

  1. Tom Lorentz
    Dec 19, 2018, 7:36 am

    I think the city of Boise may have larger issues than building a new downtown library.

    Citizens should vote on the library funding. I imagine that the issue would be voted down which is why that probably won’t happen.

    First is was the stadium, now it’s the library. Wonder what’s next.

  2. Dave:
    Agree that there definitely needs to be another ramp between the Eagle and connector. No doubt about it. But Cloverdale is just too close to the existing Eagle ramp. A better choice would be at 5-mile crossing. Overland has already become a traffic disaster at the Eagle intersection due to Boise and Meridian blanket rubber stamp approval of any type of development along Overland that will increase tax revenue without any concern about traffic impact. And of course ACHD engineers????stating traffic impact at Eagle – Overland is minimal

  3. “a lot to do with how much citizen cash is available.”

    It is easy to spend tax dollars.

    The City has about $178 million in unrestricted cash to use as it chooses. Their recent, combined budgets have been just over $300 million.
    For year 2017, the city “profited” $54 Million!
    (Source: 2017 Annual Report)

    And yet the city gets an almost guaranteed amount of revenue to meet whatever budget they can get approved– to continue to spend and build their coffers.

  4. Tis the Season.

    With the temptation of holiday parties and fun, let’s all be mindful of not driving impaired:
    Alcohol.
    Drugs.
    Phones.
    Distractions.

    Please drive safely, or don’t drive at all— for your family and others.

    DUI stats for BPD
    Year – # of dui arrests
    2017-895
    2016-1,025
    2015-1,079
    2014-1,007
    2013-1,065

    Anyone notice that # does not change much?
    Why is that?

  5. How about the City of Boise’s director of Development Services departure from the city and now developing land in a new urban renewal district. He formed his new company and bought the land in July, but did not leave the city until October. It would be interesting to see how much work O’Neill did on the creation of the Shoreline URD prior to his departure.

  6. Re: E-scooters

    I have it from a very reliable source, that the 3-month “trial period” for the E-scooters was cut short… they have been deemed an unqualified success by our Overlords. So, plan on dodging ’em until their popularity fades, or they all end up in the river or under the wheels of F350s.

    ON ANOTHER TOPIC – HOMELESSNESS

    I saw an announcement about the new taxpayer-sponsored homeless shelter is open for business (on Fairview, where Twin Dragon used to be). Which makes this taxpayer wonder…

    Back in the day, when hobos roamed from town to town (some in search of casual labor, some just searching for the best handouts), the word would get out on the most desirable locations. As our community’s homeless resources continue to improve, is there any reason to think we wouldn’t be getting an influx of homeless people, coming from places that are less-accommodating? (I’ve asked that before to various officials and service providers, and they seem to not like the question.)

    Merry Holidays and Happy Christmas, Mr. Guardian and fellow readers!

  7. How much bigger will Boise have to be, before it starts making sense to have ARMORED fire trucks??

  8. Yvonne Schmidt
    Dec 19, 2018, 10:40 am

    Please keep us updated on F35’s. I believe there has been some loud noise this last week. Do they have any parked at the air port?
    I enjoy your post, please keep it coming!

  9. I see the city as so focused on downtown project they miss some of the other items. Like why create an industiral park next to a subdivision witohut a buffer zone,

    Cloverdale over pass- you rebuild, widen but add on/off ramp? that would require forethought and planning.

    Something to stir the mind, if we have the funds to be moving forward with the library without a vote, Did we really need to pass any past bond initiatives? Of course, I see their current plan to dig the hole, so we will be committed with millions spent when they “ask” us to support financing.

    F35 comments have been notified that Boise is the running for the next round of basing decisions… Here we go again, not sure why air force can’t just make the decisions so everyone can move forward.

    The armored ambulance, wow I guess Boise is a war zone? Or Homeland security has grant money they have to spend or lose.

    New item- I think it is time for city council to be voted on by district and maybe add a couple more? Library issue is a good indication of need to get greater Boise represented.

  10. I have not heard a peep about the stadium since St. Lukes agreed to sell to AgriBeef instead of the multi-millionaire owners of the Short-Season A Hawks. Has that train left the station?

  11. Yes, the excuse for a poor bus system used to be because this area does not have a dense enough population for federal funding. I have no idea what the current excuse is – but I am certain that is there.

    According to a local librarian the new library is for storage since there is no where in Idaho for storage of vital information. I have no idea what that is and why we have to be the ones to pay for it. But it’s better than another stadium in the middle of town where there would be no parking and a lot of noise for residents on the Bench as well as the apartments/ condo owners downtown.

    Buy your own scooter – I hate those things on the corners and in the way of people who use wheel chairs, baby strollers and pedestrians who don’t like walking in the road. They should use the bike lanes.

    Ramps? How long did it take to manage “the flying Y” – again same state, same county same old thing

  12. Michael Quinlan
    Dec 20, 2018, 1:54 am

    What is the maintenance cost of the armored ambulance compared to a ‘normal’ ambulance. How often might the armored ambulance get used?

  13. To Clancy…

    Do you not understand that Derrick O’Neill is a pillar of Boise’s establishment… https://www.idahostatesman.com/news/business/article222644855.html

    Just because he was working for the City and Partner of O’Neill enterprises at the same time doesn’t mean that there is a conflict of interest. When the market was bad even a pillar needs a job. Now that things are booming it’s time to get some payback from the other pillars of the establishment.

  14. Michael… when you buy a new hammer you go looking for nails. What a horrible way to spend money. And the image of military style vehicles is not what I want. It’s Boise, not Mosul. I think that the Cloverdale overpass might be too close to the big Eagle Rd. interchange for safe merging. I know there are guidelines for spacing.

  15. MERRY CHRISTMAS, DAVE!

  16. The Cloverdale overpass is being rebuilt with widening in mind. We think ACHD is dumb for not including on/off ramps.

    If ACHD decided to do ramps, houses and part of a park would be lost; we’d call them evil for taking the houses.

    Some of us are starting to sound like the “get off my lawn” neighbor.

  17. Needs to be at Five Mile, but unless the bridge is burned down they somehow overlook the need. With federal money it’s almost a free project. There are some very very stuffy old coots who will leave when Butch does, so hopefully we will join the real world at that time.

  18. BIKEBOY – “…is there any reason to think we wouldn’t be getting an influx of homeless people, coming from places that are less-accommodating?…”

    Homelessness is not some sort of romantic adventure with a stick and a bundle tied to it, it is a life threatening emergency.

    Imagine getting tossed out of your house, bank accounts frozen, friends/family who don’t want anything to do with your personal crisis, and your only hope for survival is to go from place to place looking for food and hoping to not get killed when night falls.

    Homelessness means getting beat up and all your stuff stolen once or twice a week.
    Homelessness means having cops kick you awake and tell you to go somewhere else every time you try to sleep.
    Homelessness means becoming a sub-human, where few will even acknowledge you exist.
    Homelessness happens to every sort of person, from every type of background, for reasons that are often totally out of the persons control.

    Most all homeless people are living in the exact area that they were in before they fell into crisis, because they know the environment, and that knowledge is their best chance at survival.

    Homeless folks don’t look at travel brochures for places that might be more accommodating. That’s a myth people tell themselves to justify the continuing avoidance of dealing with this issue.

    Go spend some time (volunteer) with those who are providing aid to the homeless, it will forever change your mind about the situation. You’ll realize that it could easily be you trying to survive freezing nights by laying on a stack of cardboard, covered in rags, hoping you don’t get attacked when you finally fall asleep.

  19. Homeless is not resolved with free housing. If given a free place to stay it is destroyed within a few weeks. Homeless is a mental health related addiction forever problem person who has been rejected by their family and friends because of their mental health related addiction forever problems. They are a pain in the ass or dangerous to be in the same house or building with. This has always been but became visible on the streets when Nancy Reagan correctly shutdown the very abusive government mental health hospital system.

    The big beneficiaries of the free housing for the homeless scam are the middlemen and support people making a living off the government support money. Homeless people are the gift that keeps on giving to all kinds of professional people with lots of letters next to their name. They bill and government pays. This is an attempt to expand the forever cash flow franchise in Boise since living and working on the left coast really sucks. Oddly, the same people want to ease up on pot and drugs in Idaho. The homeless lobby is part of the bigger lefty agenda to liberalize Idaho. The real solution is bigger and more controlled than free housing in nice neighborhoods for them to wreck. If you don’t agree, gee, how’s their big idea working out for the homeless on the left coast? Careful where you step in SFO!

    Bikeboy is correct. It is absolutely true they will migrate to the best free stuff. They all got a smart phone which you pay for and word spreads fast. Build it and they will come.

  20. Google homeless and mental illness.

    Read older articles before the PC police started to impact the professional findings.

    Mental illness and addiction numbers are huge for homeless. It is why they are homeless not the other way around.

    Yes, it is absolutely a government problem. One that goes way beyond renting or building an unsupervised home for them. That’s a just a shortsighted scam.

  21. I mean No disrespect!
    We are preaching to the choir. Where’s Norma Rae?

  22. E.B. Schofield
    Dec 21, 2018, 10:21 am

    Spending $80-100 million or more of public monies on any project, without a vote by the citizens, simply does not represent the people – which is what the Council Members and Mayor are elected to do.

    Private Message To Editor Dave:
    Thank you Dave for being a thought driver and providing a forum for discussion. You are appreciated!

  23. Mr. Editor, I think Homelessness in Boise is a great topic for discussion. Surely Boise Mayor Bieter can give a personal example of being “Boise kind” to the homeless. Oh wait, the city’s lawyers are actually appealing the court ruling that sided with the homeless.

  24. E.B. Schofield
    Dec 21, 2018, 11:14 am

    I completely agree with Dave Kangas regarding it is time the system is revised to include City Council Member representation by district. Since the current elected officials continue to push for Boise to be a “Big City”, should they not also consider doing what other big cities do, such as:
    1. Council elections by district so all areas of the City are equally and fairly represented.
    2. Make the position full-time so they can be more fully informed and directly involved with the decisions that are being made at the staff level.
    3. Term limits?
    4. Adopt a requirement that City Council Agendas be posted in full a minimum of one week in advance of the scheduled meeting, versus the Friday prior which has been the case lately, which does not provide sufficient time for the citizens to be aware of and respond to issues that impact everyone.
    5. Ensure that the various volunteer boards and committees, such as the Parks Dept., DIFAC, etc. have equal representation across all sections of the city using the Planning Areas of the Comprehensive Plan or by the Service Areas used for impact fee collection.

  25. Do low speed off ramp only, require less ROW. Do U turn lights at Emerson and Camas. Over the next two years the ACHD plan has Cloverdale at 5 lanes from Overland to Chinden. Start planning for a Joplin/Cloverdale extension to Hwy 44 at Edgewood. Way in the future, Cloverdale could be extended South all the way to the Snake R., making it the longest North/South route without a jog in the valley. Now think about a jogless, river to river, East/West route, Ustick.

  26. “Homelessness is not some sort of romantic adventure with a stick and a bundle tied to it, it is a life threatening emergency.”

    For some poor unfortunates, I’m sure it is indeed a “life threatening [and ideally temporary] emergency.”

    For those people, especially FAMILY people(!), I’m totally on board with taxpayer assistance. To coin an overused cliché, “Let’s give them a HAND UP – not a handout!”

    However, nobody will convince me that among the chronic homeless (victims of mental illness, addicts and substance abusers, etc.) there aren’t also some “homeless by choice” citizens, who have grown accustomed to a life with no responsibilities. And they are not only fleecing the taxpayers and well-meaning kind-hearted strangers who hand ’em some cash thru the car window, but are also diluting the resources that SHOULD be going to those who are not homeless-by-choice.

    How do we distinguish between the sheep and the goats? Especially the goats from out of town? (“Homeless” has not persuaded me that we don’t have some in our midst.)

  27. Old Coots – It would take forever to refute your rediculous and totally inaccurate statements, so i find it safe and expedient to say that everything you said in your comments is incorrect.

    Bike Boy – There is NO ONE homeless by choice. Another silly myth. People will avoid the shelters because they are stuffed in like sardines, and sleeping is near impossible with 100 people coughing, sneezing and snoring in one room. They also have frequent violence since too many people who have developed PTSD because of being homeless can’t take being in crowded situations. The mayor of Salt Lake City UT went out and lived as a homeless person for a few days to find out what it was really like. Quite interesting reading…

    BTW… Leaving people homeless is approximately 6 times more expensive than just giving them food, shelter and basic preventative health care. (Studies done in other countries) When you add up the costs of cops, emergency room visits, aid programs, crime, etc.

    Some argue that homelessness is being strategically created by an increasingly authoritarian government. Here’s what the government (police state) gets by leaving lots of scary, desperate people on the streets.

    – Keeps activists who might otherwise be fully occupied with a massive and terrible humanitarian crisis.

    – Scary people on the streets and their crimes of desperation makes the residents clamor for more police. (We could easily cut the police force in half if we housed the homeless)

    – Scares the corporate slaves (workers) by showing them what happens to people who leave their McJobs.

  28. Readers, see for yourself. Google homeless and mental illness and addiction. Read older articles before the PC police started to skew the professional findings.

    Lots of new arrival professional social services people in Boise trying very hard to startup the same gig they had going on the left coast before it got too expensive and too dangerous for them to live there. They bill and you pay.

  29. Correction…

    Some argue that homelessness is being strategically created by an increasingly authoritarian government. Here’s what the government (police state) gets by leaving lots of scary, desperate people on the streets.
    – Keeps activists who might otherwise be WATCHING THEIR GOVERNMENT fully occupied with a massive and terrible humanitarian crisis.
    – Scary people on the streets and their crimes of desperation makes the residents clamor for more police. (We could easily cut the police force in half if we housed the homeless)
    – Scares the corporate slaves (workers) by showing them what happens to people who leave their McJobs.

    EDITOR NOTE–Let’s end this thread re homeless. I want to leave open the other topics. THANKS

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