In the last State of the City address of his third term, Nampa Mayor Tom Dale Wednesday said he will approach the current four-member council with the idea in the coming weeks. Caldwell's and Boise's city councils already have six members.
When Nampa was incorporated in 1886 with just about 100 people, they chose to have four people elected to represent the residents, Dale said. We are now approaching 84,000 in population, the second-largest city in the state. Perhaps it's time to move to a six-member council.
Nampa Councilman Bob Henry, who plans to run against Dale in November, said expanding the council could result in more diverse points of view and fewer deadlocks that require the mayor to break a tie.
I've got to think about it, but I think I can get behind it, Henry said.
If the City Council authorizes a special election, the proposal could appear on a city ballot in May. If voters approve it, two new council seats would be on the ballot in November. Also on Wednesday, Dale announced he will seek a fourth term, saying the best is yet to come.
Projects progressing: Construction on Nampas long-sought library is scheduled to begin this summer on a central downtown block, Dale said, and reconstruction of Amity Avenue should begin this fall.
New website: Greater government transparency and citizen engagement will be among the features of a revamped city website set to debut the first week of February, Dale said.
On the rebound: The past year showed positive trends after years of dismal economic news, the mayor said. Permits were issued for 524 new housing units, a 140 percent increase in residential construction over 2011, he said. In all, $93 million in construction permits were issued by the city, an increase of nearly 40 percent from the previous year.
And Nampas unemployment rate last November was 7.6 percent the lowest level since 2007. In 2010, it was 11.3 percent.
Kristin Rodine: 377-6447