Idaho's Weekly Journal of Local & National Commentary Week 2815


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by Free Market Duck

If Boise's "Library Blocks" project is unconstitutional, then why isn't the Courthouse project unconstitutional?
(Nov 17, 2006)

Boise, ID Boise Mayor Dave Bieter, the Urban Renewal Agency (CCDC), and various politicians stated that a $130 million re-development plan in which Boise's Main Library would be:

(1) torn down,

(2) rebuilt by BoDo's Mark Rivers for $6 million (after receiving the downtown property for nearly free, which is not legal since the land can only be auctioned, not given to a special interest group),

(3) re-selling the new Library to Boise's Urban Renewal Agency who would, in turn,

(4) LEASE the Library to the city of Boise for $2 million a year for 20-30 years,

is an illegal scheme to pull off an end run around the Idaho Constitution's 2/3 voter approval requirement for multi-year debt.

   But, this illegal scheme is the very same method that the Ada County Commissioners and a clandestine group of lawyers and judges called The Friends of the Ada County Judicial System, Inc. pulled off -- with the Idaho Statesman newspaper cheering them on -- to build the Ada County Courthouse in 2002.  The Courthouse is currently financed with annual leases, renegotiated each year, for 30 years.

   The "Advisory Vote" of Ada County voters who answered "yes" to the question, "Would you approve building a courthouse if your taxes did not go up?" was only advisory and does not constitute a legal mandate to go into multi-year debt.  Not coincidentally, the Advisory Vote was taken AFTER the Courthouse was built and was marketed on the ballot with confusing double negatives. 

   Which begs the question:  if this fake 30-year annual lease method is currently unconstitutional for Boise's "Library Blocks" project, why isn't it unconstitutional for our CURRENT annual lease payments for the new Ada County Courthouse?  And why doesn't Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden do something about it?

   This is called Selective Justice and is the reason why the GOP Culture of Corruption makes Idaho one of the most corrupt states in the nation.  Welcome to Boise, turn your clock back 25 years... -- FM Duck

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