Our Towns

Following mayor, Boise Council makes big changes to BieterBond

Boise Mayor David Bieter suggested the City Council remove $1.95 million for a Central District police station from his proposed bond initiative and split the remaining items into two separate ballot measures.

At a special meeting Wednesday, the City Council followed Bieter’s lead and directed Boise staff to draw up laws reflecting the mayor’s recommendation. That would put the bonds on the Nov. 5 ballot. The council is scheduled to review the laws Tuesday and hold a final vote on them.

One of the bond measures would raise money for parks and open space. The other would dedicate money to upgrades for Fire Department facilities.

Bieter said he chose to forego the hoped-for police station for two reasons: First, because the city has yet to identify a specific location for it. Second, because Boise’s police impact fee fund has yet to accumulate enough money to cover half the station’s total cost of $3.9 million.

“I stress that this project must and will be built,” Bieter said in an interoffice memo. “My recommendation simply calls for it to be funded at a later date using existing city revenues.”

Bieter also recommended adding $547,000 to the fire bond to prepare for construction cost increases that he expects.

“As Boise’s economy continues to rebound, construction costs will likely increase to levels that exceed earlier estimates,” Bieter said in the memo. “While this is certainly a good indicator for our local economy, it also would increase project costs.”

Taken together, the construction cost increase and removal of the police station would reduce the total bond package from almost $34 million to $32.43 million, according to the mayor’s numbers.

Posted in Our Towns