Letters to the editor - 11-03-2013

November 2, 2013 

Boise bonds

Boise could really use a boost to the economy through an investment in our infrastructure. The public safety bond and open space bond will provide the boost and yield new jobs. All the while we will improve our Fire Department, build new parks, and secure open space for generations to come.

It is a huge payoff for a relatively low investment. We can’t follow the state’s lead and ignore our aging infrastructure. Boise has an opportunity to stand out as a community which refuses to stand by and watch as our public buildings crumble and our open space is lost to development. Keep Boise on track to be the most livable city in America. Vote yes on both bonds.

JIM WALKER, Boise

The $137,000 campaign for the bond issues has produced materials that speak to the idea that the average homeowner will pay “$12 per year” for both bonds. Yet this figure doesn’t break out the debt loading for the parks alone.

I’m still not convinced that instead of taking on debt, we have found the best idea. The mayor stated this week at the City Club luncheon that there have been discussions about land gifts from private individuals that could support these additional open spaces, without the burden of debt to acquire property.

I believe in an efficient government and not a government that wants to do more with more of my (and other citizens’) money. This issue should not be about emotion or the subsidization argument that some areas in our community are currently underserved. Instead, after careful review, open public debate and understanding the specific purchasing and agreement terms, let’s then build the new parks sequentially, according to market demand, at the least cost possible.

We are not children. We should demand more from our leaders. Sometimes to get to the best idea you have to say no to the first idea.

KRISTINA GILLESPIE, Boise

I urge the citizens of Boise to vote no on the proposed bonds.

While a new fire training facility seems like a good idea, why not create a shared facility for all the cities in Ada County to share? Better yet, why not save for it? Boise currently has no debt. Why take on $51 million in debt to be paid off over 20 years during a fragile economic recovery? Now is not the time to take on debt to pay for improving parks in areas of Boise that are not yet developed. That is akin to telling your 10-year-old child that the good news is you are going to build a play structure in the back yard. The bad news is you will still be paying for it 20 years later, so he better bring the grandkids over to enjoy it.

That is not fiscally smart. When voters turned down the library bonds a few years ago, the city found a way to save and redirect tax revenue to build several libraries. Take the same approach or come back with a levy, like we did the last time to buy Foothills land. Vote no.

DAVE LITSTER, Boise

I love Boise, and I’m fairly certain that the feeling will be shared with most who read this.

Coming here to finish my schooling, I was delighted and, admittedly, surprised that Boiseans shared a similar love and regard for nature as my hometown of Missoula, Mont. I quickly fell in love with our town after many long days spent lost in the Foothills or floating the river. The interactions shared with strangers enjoying some of the things that make our community so great were always positive, which was certainly encouraging for a recent transplant. These days gave things a familiar feel and made it easy to feel at home in my new destination.

As my time at Boise State comes to an end, I’m facing the prospect of leaving the town I’ve grown to know and, dare I say, love. However, I know for a fact that similar college graduates with great things to offer Boise will feel more inclined to join us here knowing how seriously we take the protection of our river, open spaces, and natural areas. Invest in our future, vote yes on Nov. 5.

MAX SHOWERS, Boise

The Statesman’s Oct. 6 Our View, which endorsed the two Boise public safety and livability bond proposals, exposed its view that growth at any cost is good for Boise businesses — including its own business.

I share the viewpoint of the late writer and environmentalist Edward Abbey, who wrote in his book “A Voice Crying in the Wilderness”: “Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of a cancer cell.” Therefore, I wrote a rebuttal in the form of a Reader’s View that conformed to all the requirements listed in the Insight section.

The new editorial page editor rejected it because “we receive more long opinion submissions than can possibly be accepted for publication.” The real reasons why my essay was rejected are: It exposed the Statesman’s pro-growth, pro-business bias. The paper is not interested in publishing readers’ opinions, especially ones opposing its own viewpoints.

All I can say in a 200-word letter is that I hope you will agree with me that we should not vote for half-baked park improvement plans that don’t really solve Boise’s shortage of parks and that we should ignore the Statesman’s “endorsements” of plans that continue runaway growth in Boise.

ROBERT BOESTER, Boise

Bill Jarocki

Bill Jarocki offers Boise voters a fresh perspective on providing necessary city services in a streamlined, fiscally effective manner. Bill has worked with many cities across Idaho and the nation, and understands city council members have a fiduciary responsibility to taxpayers. It is incumbent upon those who run for public office to review all departments and programs to be certain they are relevant and are operated in a fiscally responsible manner. Bill would bring innovative thinking to this process.

While Bill supports parks and open spaces, and understands the necessity of a strong and effective Fire Department, he rightly questions the council’s approach of taking on a 20-year debt obligation to finance upgrades. Bill believes that bringing greater efficiencies to current city operations may well be sufficient to allow the upgrades to be made within existing budgets.

Bill also understands that communication and collaboration with other governmental agencies at all levels is vital. He has the skillset necessary to begin rebuilding relationships with other agencies that have been compromised in recent years.

Please join me in supporting Bill Jarocki with your vote in this important election.

MARCIA WING, Boise

Stan Ridgeway

I recommend Stan Ridgeway for Eagle City Council. I have known and worked with Stan for nearly 40 years. Stan has previous experience as a council member, administrator, businessman and school board member. As an individual, Stan stands out as a tireless worker, completing projects in a professional and timely fashion. He is a friendly individual who is easy to meet and talk to. I feel he will be great for the Eagle City Council and for the city of Eagle.

RICHARD STONE, Boise

Mark Pyper

Why do three out of four Eagle City Council members endorse just one candidate?

As council president, I am happy to endorse Mark Pyper; fellow council members, Mark Butler and Jason Pierce also endorse Mark Pyper and we are not alone. The Building Contractors of Idaho and Ada County Association of Realtors agree Mark Pyper is the right man for the job.

Mark is a team player with great passion for Eagle and the lifestyle that Eagle uniquely offers. He shares our vision for Eagle as a recreational draw for new businesses.

Mark has more than 25 years of business experience and leadership. Together we’ll highlight the recreational opportunities and the low, low taxes that Eagle has to offer to bring new business to Eagle. We can position Eagle as the best choice for new business growth in the Valley.

Eagle hasn’t seen a tax increase in more than five years and together we will continue to wisely grow our city and keep our taxes the lowest in the Treasure Valley.

Please join the Eagle City Council in supporting Mark Pyper.

MARY DEFAYETTE, Eagle City Council president

On Nov. 5, join me in voting for Mark Pyper for Eagle City Council. He has a strong vision for a city of Eagle in which diverse recreational activities draw and support a thriving business community. Mark holds a master’s degree in public administration and has 25 years of business experience and leadership in the high tech industry. His business training, fiscal conservatism, family values, passion for recreation, and wonderful sense of humor make him a perfect choice for Eagle.

JOHN ZARIAN, Eagle

Mark Pyper is running for a seat on the Eagle City Council.

I have worked with Mark at both Micron and HP and find him to be a very business-minded person. His experience marketing products/services would fit well with his plan for the city of Eagle. I have seen first hand as he has negotiated partnerships in the past. His novel ideas around the recreational program he calls “Eagle 50 Passport” are just the type of joint efforts that will help with economic development in the area. A program like this will give a great outdoor experience to locals and visitors while creating real value for local businesses.

He has the endorsements of several of the City Council members along with the Building Contractors Association and others.

I know Mark personally and respect his business and community accomplishments, but more than anything else, he is a great person. His dedication to his family and the community show the kind of priorities that I want to vote for.

Please see his vision for yourself at: www.markpyper4eaglecitycouncil.com

We need Mark’s talent and vision on the Eagle City Council. Please elect him on November 5.

MIKE THOMPSON, Eagle

Tom Dale

One year has turned into eight as I've decided to stay in Nampa. Under Tom Dale’s plans, the roads are maintained, the drive-by shootings have gone way down, the library, which has heavy use, is getting new digs, and national stores and restaurants continue to make this a delightful place to live. Downtown Nampa is getting more interesting and fresher every year. Thank you, Nampa City Council and Mayor Tom.

Nampa is a great place to live.

KATHRENA MOUNTJOY, Nampa

Fire commissioners

Tuesday Nov. 5 please vote to return Robert Flaner and Kevin Kjar to the Eagle Fire Commission. Both men show integrity, common sense and are not afraid to ask questions.

Monthly board meetings have increased in duration from five minutes to exceeding one or two hours due to the depth of information they ask in order to make educated decisions. The makeup of this board is the most transparent that has existed in the past 30 years.

Commissioners Flaner and Kjar maintain a professional and effective working relationship with the department employees. They have increased the level of service provided to the community while maintaining the second lowest fire tax levy rate in Ada County.

In Star. I ask for your to vote for Steve Martin for fire commissioner. Martin is a quality person with common sense. His 30 years experience as a volunteer and career fire officer would be an asset to the Star Fire Commission in its task of guiding the fire department from current challenges into the future.

Please support Robert Flaner and Kevin Kjar for Eagle Fire Commission and Steve Martin for Star Fire Commission.

CAPT. BRIAN FENDLEY, Eagle Fire Dept., (resident Star Fire District), Middleton

Dan Friend

Dan Friend is running for commissioner for the Eagle Fire Protection District. He retired two years ago after serving 28 years as the Eagle fire chief.

Because of his experience he knows the difference between the necessities and the desires for this department. He will manage the taxpayer dollars with accountability and integrity. We owe a debt of gratitude to Dan for the reputation of our Fire Department.

Please join me and elect him on Nov. 5.

SHARI SHARP, Eagle

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