Political Pandemic Plagues Boise

In March we questioned the functionality of local government, noting all levels viewed citizens as an adversary. Turns out the politicos don’t like each other either!

Monday saw the political poop hitting the proverbial fan at a record rate.

–Reacting to a citizen petition drive and a new law, Boise’s CCDC urban renewal agency pulled $2.6 million in funds earmarked for a proposed megastructure library from the City of Boise.

–The Planning and Zoning Commission voted against a rezone of the library and surrounding area near Capital and the Boise River.

–Former Mayor Brent Coles testified against that rezone, noting a warehouse adjoining the library was purchased for the expressed purpose of expanding the library. Current council and mayor tied it up with a private business for 45 years.

–We also note the Ada County Highway District (ACHD) has asked the City of Boise to stop expanding urban renewal areas and diverting tax money away from highways.

City hall must feel like it is under siege: Boise City vs Legislature; P&Z vs Library Foundation, Mayor and Council; CCDC vs Boise City; ACHD vs Boise.

It would be a safe bet to say the proposed library project is on shaky ground at this point. Mayor Dave Bieter and “Team Dave” have signed contracts, spent millions for an architect and tens of thousands on public relations people and consultants trying to justify their ill conceived plans and sell the public on something they may not want. Citizens stand to suffer major losses at the hands of current politicos.

Team Dave has worked hard to avoid an election on the library issue. The good news in all this is the city election is looming. There is time for some viable candidates to step up, get elected and take charge.

We are constantly amazed that otherwise well-intentioned and decent people can make such inept decisions when it comes to spending someone else’s money.

Comments & Discussion

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  1. Nice summary. Is there a doctor in the house? We sorely need that viable candidate to step up now!

  2. “There is time for some viable candidates to step up, get elected and take charge.”

    Oh, I hope and pray that happens!

    Mayor Bieter has announced he’s running for an unprecedented fifth term (that’s 20 years, folks!). Surely he has become a career politician, and there’s plenty of evidence that he’s lost touch with common ordinary Boise citizens.

    His colleague, Councilman TJ Thomson, says there’s nobody better to run the city.

    How would we know??

    You people who were here in 2003 (probably less than half the citizens nowadays)… ask yourself if Boise is a better place now, than it was in 2003. That’s when Bieter took the reins.

    (The largest slice of Bieter’s campaign-funding pie is from developers. Duh!)

  3. Tom Lorentz
    May 14, 2019, 8:26 am

    Time for a new mayor in Boise.

  4. We need less Vision and more Mangement.

  5. Boiseansinceforever
    May 14, 2019, 11:32 am

    I think it impossible that the leaders of Bieterville did not know of the property ownership and library expansion plans from the Coles years. It’s much more likely that the north end leaders didn’t want anyone else to know.
    Where is a viable non-insider candidate for whom we can vote? Show yourself!!
    If you want to be sure the Taj Malibrary is off the table, be sure to close all the secret back doors for moving ahead without a vote. The camel’s nose is in the tent and he wants to stay and get cozy.

  6. A decent leader, with empathy and concern for the citizen, would spend their money with the care that he has for his own. The fact this doesn’t happen, indicates a detachment from the voter he serves, or an acquired arrogance of power. Or both. Regardless, it’s time for a new mayor.

  7. You may be misreading the tea leaves:

    Hizzoner runs the CCDC. In one week, the $2.6 million in CCDC funds for the civic center/library were returned and the $37 million in “lease-financing” has been rebudgeted as city funds that “will not require an increase in city taxes.” This amount now totals $52 million.

    The upshot: The only CCDC funds still budgeted for the civic center/library are for parking infrastructure, which do not trigger a vote under the Local Economic Development Act amendments, which go into effect in July.

    Look for the $52 million to be obligated prior to the November election, thus avoiding a vote under the citizen initiative on that ballot.

    Hizzoner has proclaimed that there will be no vote on the civic center/library project. Noblesse oblige!

    EDITOR NOTE–No doubt you are correct. I am still not clear on the issue of a vote. It appears the new law refers to funding rather than financing. Did Team Dave figure an end run once again?

  8. “well-intentioned and decent people can make such inept decisions when it comes to spending someone else’s money.”

    No surprise. We ALL are often inept at spending our own money.

    Excess credit cards debt
    Excess student loan debt
    Retirement crisis
    The 2008 housing crash
    $80,000 for a vehicle?
    bars & restaurants strive on our “ineptness” about money. 🙂

    It is just magnified when it’s other people’s money-OPM.

  9. The $32 million to $37 million lease-financing item in previous civic center budgets would likely have been accomplished by DDCD issuing bonds to be repaid in annual payments from Boise City, which would have triggered a vote under the LEDA amendments effective July 1. The $2.6 million from CCDC would still have triggered the vote even if the $37 million were rebudgeted to city funds.

  10. The people of the Treasure Valley has a problem if a mayor can get re-elected to any unprecedented term.

    Things are not all rosy in Boise, or even Nampa, Caldwell, Meridian, or even Eagle, Star, and Middleton. Too much growth way too much. Suddenly an affordable home has become nothing of the sort. The low-crime is giving away to moderate. We know how the traffic is being dealt with.

    Healthcare is rated a strong D, which is slightly better than a D-.

    It doesn’t seem to much better on the state level.

    Sleezy deals, Check
    Low Priority on Education, Check
    Circumvent the Voters, Check
    Favor the Developer, Check
    Ignore the Citizens, Check
    Distract the Citizens with Sports teams, check

    The dirty list goes on and on. Want change VOTE THEM OUT!

  11. western guy
    May 14, 2019, 4:43 pm

    eric49 is spot on: more management of city and other governments, less political vision by the elected’s.

  12. I agree with you Dave, it takes no talent to spend other people’s money. I wonder if it would take a “Fiduciary Pledge” to make appointed and elected officials to do a better job.

  13. These power seekers want a Portland in Boise. A total freak show of disaster. A dystopian playground of elitist politics. Sheep are focused on shiny objects. Where are the protectors of simple and free?

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