Nampa reviewing its legal services contract

csewell@idahostatesman.comMarch 17, 2014 

— When elected mayor of Nampa, Bob Henry said he was going to reduce spending, which would help lower the city's high property tax rate.

One of the first things the city is doing is reviewing several of its contracts, including the one for legal services.

"We’re doing that because it is one way to evaluate costs and services, making sure we are using your tax dollars effectively and efficiently," Henry said Monday in a statement.

"When I joined the Nampa City Council a couple of years ago, I raised some questions about the city attorney and the fact that the same person with the same firm had provided legal services for nearly 40 years without a contract," Henry said.

Henry said he has no personal concern or complaints about the legal services provided by Terry White with White Peterson.

"But in a day when services are negotiated all the time, it was quite surprising that there was not a regular review of the contract. In fact, there was not even a contract until I asked questions two years ago," he said.

Last year the city paid $505,914 for legal services.

This month the city put out a request for proposals for legal services. Responses are due April 28.

"This is not about the kind of service the city receives. It is about good business sense. Most contracted services are negotiated and reviewed regularly. It makes sense for all parties involved for the following reasons: It keeps costs competitive; it opens up the opportunity to all providers to compete for the job; it allows for creative delivery of services," Henry said. The city also is evaluating the food and beverage services at the Idaho Center and Civic Center. Separate vendors provide those services. Henry said they are doing a "great job," but is has been several years since the contracts were negotiated. The city also decided it wants one vendor for both the Idaho Center and Civic Center. Bidders were asked to include in their proposals capital investment plans to help upgrade the kitchen and concessions equipment at the two facilities.

Henry said the city also would look at other contracts to determine if it might be better for the city to use internal staff or add staff rather than outsource those services.

Idaho Statesman is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service