To the state treasurer

I’d like to hear your perspective on why you’re spending money fighting over office space. The position of treasurer is part of the executive branch of government, not the legislative. The people of Idaho built and paid for the Capitol

building so that the legislative branch can meet and work.

When I first read that you were spending this money, I was mostly upset at Governor Little. I thought, how could the Governor allow his staff to squabble over office space? But looking on the state org chart, I see that you are not supervised by the Governor,

you are an elected official and are basically your own boss. Which means that us voters are really the only oversight on your behavior.

You, more than most, should know that money is tight for the state. You may be wasting money by continuing to battle. I know it’s painful; maybe deep in some arcane cabinet there is paperwork that gives you the right to the Capitol building basement. It doesn’t

matter. If Congress wants you out, you should go rather than waste our money fighting it.

Think positive: you can probably find cheaper digs somewhere else. It’s a pain to move, but think of it as an opportunity to clean up and reorganize.

You oversee the Ideal (college savings) program; I’ve invested quite a bit in that, hoping to send the kids to college. You’re doing a good job with that program and I applaud your work.

How much do you pay in rent at the Capitol? How much would it cost to move? I’d like to hear your perspective on why you are fighting this. It would make a difference to me if staying at the Capitol is actually saving us taxpayers money.

Ben Taylor, Boise

Good of the country

I telephoned both Sen. Risch and Sen. Crapo the week of 1-6-2020, to ask them to allow testimony from any and all witnesses to the telephone call President Trump made to the president of the Ukraine as we hear from Republicans is there has been no direct evidence of any wrongdoing on the president’s part. We have not been able to hear direct eyewitness testimony as it has not been allowed .

For the good of all the citizens of the U.S., we should demand all the witnesses to testify, thereby putting to bed any concerns anyone of us may have in this regard.

I received a response from Sen. Risch (nothing from Sen. Crapo yet) stating the impeachment of a president would be allowed for “high crimes and misdemeanors.” He also stated “political policy disagreements do not reach those standards.” I think Sen. Risch should follow his own advice and forgo the political disagreements. He further stated “I will comment when the impeachment proceedings move to the Senate and I have cast my official vote as a juror in those proceedings.” He seems to say no evidence is necessary in the Senate trial for impeachment.

Please contact your Senators and request they hear all the evidence and testimonies, then carry on the trial on the merits of the evidence. This alone should satisfy all parties in regard to the impeachment proceedings. To disallow any further evidence in the trial is to not follow the rule of law or jurisprudence.

It is time to put this to bed for the good of the country.

Hugh Massie, Boise

Impact fees

Thank you for bringing attention to the use of impact fees. This is concerning, as decisions using public money need to strictly follow the law. If a wholly new project, which moves money allocated from one area of the City to another, is not considered a “major” or “material” change needing an amendment, then what is?

Idaho Code specifies impact fees are to be used only on capital improvements as identified in the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). The impact fee committee minutes document the members being reminded of the statutory requirements, which ensure transparency:

-Legal Framework . . .The CIP must go through a public hearing process, even if there are just updates or amendments (06/11/2014).

-State statute required that the CIP be updated once every five years and each time the City proposed an amendment or modification after the plan was adopted (10/14/2015).

Just as concerning has been the merging of Natural Open Space, Special Use Park, and Recreational Trails fee categories into a Regional category “for spending to be more flexible.” This merging, along with spending on projects not on the CIP, has resulted in areas of Boise paying fees, while not benefiting from the fees.

Plus the City accepts donated land with “conditions” allowing the land to be bumped ahead of other projects. This pulls impact fees from benefiting other areas, thus widening the disparity in amenities and disinvesting in the quality of life for other neighborhoods. Boise’s east end has had at least $4 million in impact fees allocated to Marianne Williams Park, with three more donated parcels waiting. Since many areas of the City have not had generous land donations, these parcels should have to fall in line behind all projects waiting in the wings for their fair share of impact fees.

Erika Schofield, Boise

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