Maryanne Jordan says this term will be her last on the Boise City Council.
Jordan was appointed to the council in 2003, in the wake of the scandal that took down former Mayor Brent Coles and several members of his administration. She is now the president of the council and probably the second-most powerful person in Boise, next to Mayor David Bieter.
She said Friday she plans to finish out her term, even if she’s appointed to a seat in the Statehouse. Jordan’s council term ends in 2017.
“It’s been just the honor of my life, but at that point, it will also have been almost 15 years,” she said. “I don’t want to be that person that doesn’t know when it’s time to make some changes and try something new in life and give another person the opportunity to do the same.”
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The Democratic Party nominated Jordan, along with Larraine Evans Clayton and Nicholas Warden, to fill a District 17 Senate seat left vacant when Elliot Werk resigned Feb. 7 to join the state Tax Commission. Idaho Gov. Butch Otter is expected to pick one of the three nominees within a week.
Jordan said people in the party — she wouldn’t give names — approached her recently to ask if she was interested in replacing Werk. At first she said no, she wasn’t at all interested.
“A couple people challenged me on why that would be my answer. And so I really had to give it some serious thought,” she said. “I think that with my experience with the city that I can kind of provide a context there that is a little bit unique.”
Jordan said she’s spoken to an attorney and researched Idaho law herself and is convinced she can legally hold both positions. But what about going into a governing body where Democrats are a hamstrung minority?
“I’m ready to face the challenge,” she said. “I know that, from the standpoint of running legislation on a regular basis, it will not be the same experience that it might be in a more diverse statehouse. But I also know that I have a contribution to make there in terms of affording a context to a lot of things that happen at the legislature that can really, unintentionally cause difficulties for cities.”