Treasure Valley Partnership Meeting Minutes – January 22, 2007
Tammy de Weerd
Bill Larsen – Staff
Mike Martin – Suncor
Bob Taunton – Suncor
Numerous Fire Marshall’s from the Treasure Valley.
Nate Mitchell opened the meeting and welcomed everyone to Star.
Nancy Merrill moved and Tammy de Weerd seconded the approval of the previous meeting’s minutes and the finance/budget report.
Nancy Merrill introduced the final floodplain enhancement proposals that have been developed through cooperation with each jurisdiction’s floodplain management officials and representatives of the Idaho Water Resources and others. She indicated that each of the five bulleted items represent minimum standards that should help cities/counties minimize damage like what occurred during last year’s relatively minor flood event. She stated that three of the items are physical standards and two of the items are more philosophical or administrative in nature.
She stated that to institute the three physical standards some jurisdictions might have to create an overlay district for exceptions on areas where residential construction has already occurred along waterways. Nancy mentioned that the “no adverse impact” portion of the floodplain enhancements represents one of the most important philosophies of floodplain management that will help mitigate future damage due to flood events.
Nancy Merrill requested that each jurisdiction work these floodplain enhancements through their ordinance processes, and be prepared to come to the February meeting of the Treasure Valley Partnership to report on where each jurisdiction is in the process of enacting these enhancements. She indicated she would like to be able to identify a time to hold a press conference on flood mitigation management at the February meeting. Frank McKeever asked if there was a timeline on enacting these ordinance enhancements. Nancy stated that she felt we should try to have these enhancements in place by spring. Nancy also stated that she is working with several legislatures to work on this issue at the State level. There is a law that is being drafted to provide some guidance on floodplain issues at the State level.
Margie Watson commended Nancy for spearheading this effort.
Nate Mitchell introduced Bob Taunton, President of Suncor Idaho, to deliver a presentation on financing public infrastructure.
Bob stated that all jurisdictions are struggling to finance public infrastructure and there isn’t any new money available. He introduced Mike Martin to deliver the power point presentation.
Mike Martin indicated that they have done assessment bonds, general obligation bonds and revenue bonds to finance public infrastructure. They have worked with local jurisdictions to help coordinate the development of these finance tools.
Community Infrastructure Districts are separate political subdivisions or districts within a City that has the power to finance public infrastructure using tax exempt financing. The district has the ability to acquire and maintain public infrastructure. The project has to be a public project and within the boundaries of the impact area of a city or areas that are contiguous to the City. The district is governed by the City Council or County Commission.
Rick Yzaguirre asked if the CID is what is being proposed to the Idaho Legislature. The answer is yes. Matt Beebe asked why we are excluding the unincorporated areas of counties that are rapidly growing? Mike indicated that due to the political experience of last year it was felt the unincorporated part of past proposals would not progress very well with the legislature this year.
A CID is not mandatory. It is just a financing tool that Cities can use to finance public infrastructure. After a CID is formed, it is fully disclosed to potential homeowners of the district. The publicly financed debt of the district is guaranteed by the district and is not an obligation of City/County taxpayers. This type of financing tool for public infrastructure and is good for master plan developments. Additionally, this year’s proposal will include schools.
Benefits of the CID are that it is a tool that developers and Cities use for areas in the district and not all of the jurisdictions citizens are obligated to the tax. Paul Woods asked, if a CID were inside an area of impact, why would those citizens want to be annexed? Mike Martin stated, up front the City would be knowledgeable of CID areas and the plans for annexation of the development. Then when it goes to vote, everyone is knowledgeable of the process.
Tammy de Weerd asked if the CID would lower the price of homes in the district. Mike Martin stated that it will help lower the cost of homes in the district, but it would be impossible to prove. At the district development stage, all improvements are negotiated at the consent stage it places the burden on the jurisdiction up front as to what infrastructure improvements are involved.
The steps in the process: 1) Petition, 2) Form a board, 3) Developer constructs infrastructure, 4) Authorize bonds (these can be general obligation, special assessment, and revenue bonds), 5) District issues bonds, 6) District pays the debt service.
Nate Mitchell introduced Fire Marshall Joe Silva from Meridian to discuss the Fireworks Ordinances that have been developed. The major components of the ordinances include; 1) minimum ages of purchase, 2) maximum sizes of tents, 3) permanent structures for wholesale operations.
They asked for clarification on direction they would take with regards to this issue. Specifically would the Partnership want them to include language at the county level on banning dangerous or illegal fireworks?
Tammy de Weerd indicated that some of the problems we are having are the differences between city and county laws. Joe indicated that they are trying to address the issues at the supply side of fireworks. Tom Dale stated that closing the loophole of banning the sale of illegal fireworks in the county or at the State level is desirable.
The loophole in the State law has to do with inter-state commerce for legitimate wholesalers who are merchandising illegal fireworks for sale outside of the State. Rick Yzaguirre indicated that they would have their legal department to address this issue and hopefully have something for the next meeting. Matt Beebe asked what the reluctance is of the legislators for closing the State loophole. Joe indicated that legislators do not see the aerial fireworks as a problem as it seems as though everyone is purchasing and utilizing illegal fireworks and a belief that people will purchase and use them regardless if they were available in the State. Specifically, they could be purchased on Indian reservations. Additionally, there are no real statistics statewide on the property damage or injury/death due to illegal fireworks.
Nancy Merrill made a motion to support the ordinances as presented to the Partnership. Tammy de Weerd stated that we have to have the Counties on board with these ordinance proposals. She asked them to have their legal departments address this issue and come back to the Partnership with their recommendations. Matt Beebe indicated that when the State closes the loophole with respect to illegal fireworks, then Canyon County would follow suit. Motion carried.
Rick Yzaguirre indicated that Paul Woods would be the liaison from Ada County.
Tammy de Weerd asked each of the members to report back to the February meeting as to what each jurisdiction is doing for the March Against Meth activities. They would like to hand out a listing of what each jurisdiction is doing to battle substance abuse on March 21st.
Treasure Valley Partnership
Meeting MinutesFebruary 28, 2007
Lori Fisher – Albertson’s Foundation
Mike Reynoldson – Micron
Bill Larsen – Staff
Tammy de Weerd opened the meeting and welcomed everyone to Meridian. She described the Meadowlake Village development and indicated that the Grand Lodge and other buildings in the center of the development were designed as an independent living/assistant care center for the elderly. In addition, the homes being built in the development serve as a retirement/independent living location for the residents.
Tammy discussed the March against Meth activities that were scheduled for the 21st of March. She mentioned that several different school districts, chambers of commerce and other organizations were participating in the activity. She mentioned that the youth councils of Nampa, Eagle, Caldwell, Meridian, Parma, and Wilder are offering a rally and march, starting at BSU. They also have a poster contest for the March Against Meth activity.
Tom Dale mentioned that Mercy Hospital is hosting a community sale that raises funds for youth activities throughout the valley.
Tammy welcomed Hal Tolmie from Owyhee County who was attending as they are intending on joining the Partnership.
Tammy introduced Lori Fisher from the Albertson’s Foundation and Mike Reynoldson from Micron who were there to discuss the petition drive to establish a Community College district in the Treasure Valley. Lori gave a brief history of the Community College Yes campaign and the Albertson’s foundation involvement on this issue over the past two years. Last year they began talking with the Treasure Valley Community College from Ontario. She indicated that they were pretty limited in what they could do in Idaho and couldn’t do the professional/technical and workforce development component because of the expense and long-term sustainability of these components. She indicated that Mayor Nancolas and TVCC have been working on this.
She indicated that BSU has been charged with the development of a Community College in the valley, but it really is up to the voters to create a district. BSU wants to transition the Selland College off of their campus in downtown Boise to the BSU West campus. In addition, she indicated that BSU is willing to step in to get it started and would pull back in two to three years as the college got up an running and accredited as a new college. The BSU business plan proposal called for 2,500 students in the first year with up to 6,000 students in year three.
Lori mentioned that in August, Micron had conducted a survey, which revealed that 71% of those surveyed, support the need for a community college and 61% of those surveyed would support a tax for establishing a community college.
Tom Dale asked if the TVCC model has been adequately studied to bring student populations up to the scale of need just mentioned. Lori Fisher indicated that it has been thoroughly studied and that because they are an Oregon College operating in Idaho, the long-range sustainability of the TVCC model comes into question because of the continued funding required to raise the student levels as they are projected.
Mike Reynoldson stated that one of the benefits of setting up a community college district is there would be a locally elected board that would be in control. That board could then work with TVCC to avoid duplication of services and to partner on new programs. He indicated that BSU has about 5500 students being educated in their Canyon County facilities. These are community college type courses, but the students get the privilege of paying full university tuition for this service that is double what they would pay for community college tuition.
Tom Dale asked if the May election is rock solid? Is their enough time to get the education generated to get this vote passed? Mike indicated that he felt May is the right day to hold an election. He stated that the community college issue was raised in the campaign for governor as well as numerous candidates for State legislative offices. He indicated that there appears to be all kinds of momentum on this issue. In addition, in the State of the State address there was a pledge for $5,000,000 for creation of a community college.
Mike stated that when it comes to credibility on this issue, elected officials were not seen as credible on the issue of community colleges. He also indicated that they are attempting to raise about $1,000,000 for the educational campaign on this issue.
Mike mentioned that they are projecting a need for $4,000,000 per year funding for a community college. This equates to a property tax of $17.42 per year on the average priced home in Ada and Canyon County.
Tammy de Weerd introduced the topic of Floodplain Ordinance enhancements and mentioned that Nancy Merrill was not there to lead the discussion. She mentioned briefly that the City of Meridian had their first public hearing on the proposed fireworks ordinance. A discussion ensued about the need for a common fireworks ordinance in the cities and counties to restrict the sale and use of the illegal fireworks.
Margie asked how the other municipalities were doing with regard to passing the floodplain ordinance components the TVP had agreed on. Tom Dale stated that the City of Nampa faces different issues than those municipalities that are on the Boise and Stake River systems. Nampa doesn’t have a major waterway in the City.
John Evans stated that the philosophy of having consistent floodplain ordinances that have an impact on development is a good one. However, in Garden City, the latest floodplain maps show that there are significant properties that are due for redevelopment that are now encumbered by being in the floodplain. They are faced with the problem of dealing with definitions and how those effect development. The biggest thing they are dealing with is how to treat existing developed areas in the redevelopment side of things. He feels there needs to be exemptions tailoring analysis that restricts redevelopment issues that are specifically crucial in Garden City.
He feels that in this issue, one shoe does not fit all jurisdictions. And these enhancements have a major impact in Garden City. He showed a map that indicated the areas of Garden City that are in the 100-year floodplain. John indicated the he is more interested in channel preservation than any other issue.
Paul Woods stated that from the County perspective they directed their staff to make these ordinance enhancements happen. They support the concept, but need to address some of the details prior to instituting any changes. They don’t think that providing 100-foot access all along the river makes any sense. Also, point number five of the enhancements puts a lot of liability on the permitting jurisdiction.
Margie indicated that Parma has a huge floodplain because of the confluence of the Boise and Stake rivers. She wants to address this issue at the next meeting.
Bill stated that Christian Nafzger had been employed for approximately two weeks. At this point he has two indictments and eight cases in the works with one arrest.
A motion was made by Margie Watson and seconded by John Evans to approve the minutes and financial reports. Motion carried.
Meeting Minutes March 26, 2007
Tammy de Weerd
Bill Larsen – Staff
Matt Beebe opened the meeting and introduced Carrie Blankenship from Canyon County Development Services. She is the individual in Canyon County that coordinates flood plain services.
Brad Holton and John Bechtel representing Greenleaf and Wilder were in attendance as they are anticipating joining the Partnership.
Christian Nafzger was introduced as the employee on the SAUSA Project. He indicated that he had five indictments thus far and 15 individual cases in the works. These are all local gang members with firearm offenses. He mentioned that there is a new State gang act and there are penalties for knowingly selling a firearm to known gang members.
Tom Dale stated that he was please that Christian is up and running right now as there was anticipation of a lag time between his hire and actually prosecuting cases. Dave Bieter asked what kinds of cases he is working on. Christian indicated that they are all firearms offenses related to gang activities. He stated that if any of the Treasure Valley Partnership members had any questions for him, to be sure to contact him at 334–9408.
Tom Dale stated that the Community College petition is in front of the State board of Education on this day. He reminded the members that as they talk to individuals that we need corporate support for the election public campaign. Dave Bieter mentioned that he feels there is a moving target on some of the issues associated with this campaign. Nancy Merrill reiterated a need to have answers to some of the specific questions.
Tom indicated that as far as BSU’s involvement, there have been some changes in the interpretation of their commitment. He suggested that Bill get a meeting with some of the Community College Yes members and gather the latest facts on the issues and distribute it to the members.
Nancy Merrill began discussing the floodplain ordinance enhancements. She mentioned that early on after the flooding last year, a taskforce was put together to create ordinances that would create some continuity up and down the Boise River. The members of the taskforce included representatives from Idaho Water Resources, Corps of Engineers, Flood District 10 and others.
She mentioned the 5-floodplain ordinance enhancements that have been developed as best practices. These are; 100’ setback, Flood mitigation plan, Base flood elevations for residential structures, no adverse impact and a 50’ setback for emergency equipment. She indicated that the City of Eagle is ready to move forward with these ordinance enhancements.
She indicated that in areas that are already developed or in areas that there is not room for the minimum setbacks, the jurisdictions should put in place an overlay district, which would exclude these areas.
John Evans mentioned that the problem they have been having is the definition of the finished floor.
Nancy asked that seeing as we are struggling with the differences of these ordinances among our jurisdictions, we should then see if we can set up resolutions. Dave Bieter indicated he felt that the resolution idea is a good one that each jurisdiction can then see how these enhancements can be instituted.
Nancy moved that we put together a draft resolution and bring it to the next meeting. Seconded by John Evans, motion carried.
Rick Yzaguirre suggested that we draft a letter to the State Land Board supporting the minimum of 25’ easement. Seconded by Tammy de Weerd. Motion carried.
Matt Beebe indicated that a new mosquito abatement law had been passed and was on the Governor’s desk.
Nate Mitchell moved to approve the minutes and the budget. Seconded by Frank McKeever.