Meeting Minutes
January 25, 2017


  • Alicia Almazan
  • Chad Bell
  • Dave Bieter
  • Tammy de Weerd
  • John Evans
  • Craig Hanson
  • Bob Henry
  • Brad Holton
  • Nathan Leigh
  • Garret Nancolas
  • Stan Ridgeway
  • Joe Stear
  • Darin Taylor
  • Rick Yzaguirre

Staff and Guests

  • Ryan Armbruster – Elam & Burke
  • Seth Grigg – Executive Director, Association of Idaho Cities
  • Shae Taylor – Human and Social Capital Institute (HSCI)
  • Bill Larsen – Treasure Valley Partnership

Open Discussion

Darin welcomed everyone to the Nampa Civic Center. He said we were meeting in the Nampa Civic Center because the public facility they could use for the meeting is under construction for the 2nd year in a row.

He welcomed the new members and asked them to tell a little about themselves and why they chose to run for office. He explained the Partnership consists of a group of Mayors and County Commissioners from around the valley.

Joe Stear said he had been on the City Council for four years and had been a Fire Commissioner in Kuna for a long time. He got into city government when there were things going on with local improvement districts and he wanted to help with that. As things progressed, Mayor Nelson indicated he was going to retire. He didn’t know what was wrong with him but he had some interest in running for Mayor. He is excited about the good things that are going on in in Kuna and looks forward to a good time as Mayor.

Alicia Almazan, the new Mayor of Wilder said she has lived in Wilder all of her life. She has worked for the City for almost three years, and as a result she has learned how things are done. She got started going to Council meetings as there was a need for someone to provide interpreter services. She is a part-time Mayor and has a job working at a bank. Alicia said she tries to make her schedule so that everyone has a chance to talk to her, while maintaining a job and a family.

Dave asked her if she worked for the city council before. Alicia said she had not. Dave added that she and he are the only ones across the valley that were not council members before they ran for Mayor.

As an aside, Dave said he believes he is the only Mayor in Idaho that goes to the Conference of Mayors. He asked people to consider it. They normally hold two meetings a year, one in winter and one in summer. He added you can attend the meetings without joining. They did that for about five years and joined because Boise State qualified for a grant. Bill said he would look up the information and have it for the members at the next meeting.

Tammy asked if it is worth the time. Dave said it definitely was as there are always two or three good things that come out of each conference.

Chad Bell, the newly elected Mayor of Star said he was on Council for 13 ½ years and was the Council President for the last 10 years. He has a vision for Star and feels, with what they are going to start doing, Star is going to be set to really grow and do significant things. He is a sprinkler irrigation and landscape contractor, by trade, in a family business they have had for 42 years.

Stan Ridgeway, the newly elected Mayor of Eagle said he has lived in Idaho for 10 years. He was a long time resident of Alabama and decided to move to Alaska and spent three years there. He has two adult children that live in the Treasure Valley and one that still lives in Juneau. In Juneau, he was elected twice to the Board of Education and also served on the Assembly (which is like a City Council.

Two years ago he ran for Eagle City Council and was elected and ran for Mayor this last term. He looks forward to working with and learning from the members. He is busier than he thought he would be. Bob asked he was going to a State of the City, which Stan said he was going to.

Darin said, by way of orientation, if you have not been involved in City government before, there are a lot of meetings. He started four years ago and was unaware of the number of meetings. He stated there was some talk about consolidating the meetings as there are pretty much the same people around the table. The crux is meetings with all these organizations are needed as they each have a different focus.

Bob said when he got elected; his attitude was he didn’t care about the regional meetings as he cares about Nampa. After about five days, he realized he was wrong. For the new people, these are really important things. You can’t just think about your community you have to think valley-wide.

Tammy said that was her opinion going in as well. She said as Mayor Bechtel would have told you, in the Treasure Valley Partnership we talk about issues that are important to all of our jurisdictions. We share experiences and resources. He would have told you of the many ways that Wilder benefited from the conversations we have had in this group.

Tammy said she would like to note our Youth Councils. She appreciates Nampa and Middleton youth council members for stepping up to pledge support for the primary seatbelt law. The youth council will be giving a presentation at a legislative briefing. It is exciting to see the teens engaging in the legislative process and finding their voice.

Nathan said that Parma is in the process of setting up a Mayor’s Youth Advisory Council.

Human Resources – Saving Money and Increasing Productivity

Darin introduced his Brother Shae Taylor, the Managing Partner and founder of Human and Social Capital Institute. Darin said he was debating whether or not to invite him. He is a revolutionary in the subject of human resources.

Shae Taylor Human Capital Presentation

Shae Taylor Human Capital Trust Handout

Urban Renewal 2016 Legislature

Shae said we will be talking about saving money, increasing productivity and reentry after release from prison. He introduced Rudy Martin to share a brief story about his life, which relates specifically to what he is here to talk about.

Rudy said he was released from the Idaho Dept. of Corrections in July of 2014. Before then he worked as a business analyst for 14 years. When he got out, he did not know what he was going to do with that label and stigma on him.

At that point he started going through the SDI program and started progressing and understanding his strengths as a human being. This helped him tremendously. Since his release, he has become an owner and partner in one of Idaho’s limo service companies.

He has started sending his employees through the SDI program. For everyone that they hire or that works for them, they are able to place them into activities that best suit their strengths.

Shae said one of the inspiring thoughts that has led and directed him, was from Abraham Maslow. ““If you plan on being anything less than you are capable of being, you will probably be unhappy all the days of your life.” He sees lots of unhappy people and it is important that everybody finds happiness.

He went to high school in Caldwell and has a Bachelor’s from BYU and a Masters in Sports Management from the University of San Francisco. He has worked for organizations such as the Golden State Warriors and the Oakland Raiders. He now has worked for four years with Thurl Bailey of the Utah Jazz who has been named Ambassador for the Refugees in the State of Utah. Thurl challenged him to create a solution to help get the 50,000 refugees in the State of Utah a new vision for their future and off of welfare.

This HCISN was the product he created to help the refugees get off of welfare. He realized he had to come up with a new way to define and use Human and Social Capital.

The three major organizational catalysts are financial capital, human capital and social capital. Most people are familiar with financial capital. What people don’t know is simple definitions of human capital. Human capital is the education and experience of an employee. Social capital is the social relations between workers that produce trust. Combining these two produces knowledge capital which is the ability of an organization to innovate and create new value.

The more employees have the opportunity to interact, the greater the social capital and level of trust. If our interactions are like care crashes, we are not creating social capital. If we create quality interactions, social capital, knowledge capital and innovation go through the roof.

He mentioned a listing of various programs utilized to analyze various aspects of human and social capital. Shea said that independently all these programs are of less value than if they are used all together. All these assessments can help us identify what we are good at. His network can take and narrow down the focus for jobs people can look at which is the thousands down to a manageable 25 or so.

This network can be used to help task existing employees into roles more suited to them.

In 2008, the United States had between 12 and 14 million ex-offenders of working age. Because a prison record or felony conviction greatly lowers ex-offenders’ prospects in the labor market, we estimate that this large population lowered the total male employment rate that year by 1.5 to 1.7 percentage points. In GDP terms, these reductions in employment cost the U.S. economy between $57 and $65 billion in lost output… In 2008, about one in 33 working-age adults was an ex-prisoner and about one in 15 working-age adults was an ex-felon. An extensive body of research has established that a felony conviction or time in prison makes individuals significantly less employable. It is not simply that individuals who commit crimes are less likely to work in the first place, but rather, that felony convictions or time in prison act independently to lower the employment prospects of ex-offenders.

Unfortunately, we keep duplicating work over and over again within the private and public sectors in an attempt to get people in the right jobs. Employers are tired of turnover and receiving dozens of applications from unqualified applicants. Applicants are tired of adjusting resumes and cover letters, and taking similar types of assessments, over and over again. The Human and Social Capital Intelligence Network eliminate these frustrations.

The Real Problem keeping our communities from progressing as they should is not undiscovered innovations, its poor implementation(known as strategies, execution, and trust, according to Stephen M.R. Covey. Countless programs exist with evidence-based research status but instead of identifying better ways to implement them across communities in schools, welfare, corrections, etc. we keep pushing for more and more innovation and then to have each new innovation reach evidence-based status.

People like Rudy really had no clue what he was going to do when he came out of prison. There was no system in place. HSCI Network leads individuals through a series of steps that convince them they are respected and where they are needed, gives them a language to share what their abilities/interests are with others, gets them recruited to be/do what they were built to, and teaches them what will interrupt their success once they are employed.

Employees develop a sense of purpose for their lives, believe more in themselves, become more engaged in what they are doing, and learn skills to create relationship tipping points and avoid human capital collisions so they don’t sabotage their own efforts. Employers develop a cost effective, streamlined process for advertising and filling vacant positions with the best candidates that will be most productive for the organization

Tammy said they are going to be taking the book “The Speed of Trust”. They are going through the process and the training and are bringing their council and senior management team in. Because they have a fairly new city council, now is the time to build that foundation of trust. They will be doing that in March and she will let the members know how it worked for them.

They have been using the strength based leadership assessment and how to implement it recognizing your employees strengths. You do get a different outcome when you build on strengths.

Dave said they have been using these types of tools. It works and there is a lot to it.

Legislative Initiatives – Urban Renewal

Ryan Armbruster thanked everyone for the opportunity. He wished he had more news than he has with urban renewal.

In terms of where we are headed, in 2014 a group of legislators, lobbyists, and representatives of Idaho urban renewal agencies traveled to Utah to learn about Utah’s economic development incentives, including urban renewal. They went to look at Utah’s program and to consider whether we should have some changes to the Idaho Urban Renewal law and the Idaho Economic Development Act.

That effort resulted in no legislation coming out of the session last year. But they did authorize a House Concurrent Resolution to make recommendations for necessary changes to those and other related statutes. If we have heard once and we’ve heard a thousand times since last spring, this group will quote “do no harm”. Unfortunately, there is a lot of harm on the horizon.

The urban renewal committee has a wide variety of legislators and they all have different views of where we should be headed. He displayed the agendas of this committee’s meetings since August. He called attention to the Attorney General’s opinion on December 14.

He thinks the committee was headed in a positive direction then they got side tracked, when a question was posed as to whether an amendment or modification to an urban renewal plan resets the base. There is an Attorney General letter that says that it does reset the base but there is a countervailing argument that can be made because the State Tax Commission for this last 25 years has imposed a rule to not reset the base.

Before all the fun began, the Redevelopment Association of Idaho had a list of things we thought were important. They were; separate the traditional deteriorated and deteriorating UR plan areas from economic development plan areas, agency reporting requirements, board composition, transparency and more importantly we need a TIF program that is consistent and easy to administer

There were some things that are paramount that should not be touched. Those include; the ability to borrow money, the exercise of eminent domain and allow for elected officials on the board so long as the elected officials do not exceed a majority.

He showed a graphic that showed what can happen if your base is reset upon a plan modification. They took this from the current Jerome plan. When you amend the plan and the base ups, then you can’t meet your debt service because we are below the line. There is one other impact. Without additional change to 63-802, the other impact of resetting the base is that new construction value would not be available to cities, counties and taxing districts upon termination of the plan. You would lose all the accrued value increases from 2007 to the date of termination.

This is an impact they have tried to have some discussions around. He wished he could say they were making some progress.

There is a big effort on public buildings. This has gone back and forth under a number of different interpretations. Right now it appears they are leaning toward an urban renewal agency could fund no more than 50% of the cost of a public building. What is the definition of a public building? Right now, public buildings that are on the hit list include libraries, city halls, jails, court houses and possibly schools. If you wanted to use more than 50% of tax increment on those projects, you would have to go to a second vote. The details of which are not drafted.

Garret said one of the question’s that comes up is a vote of whom? Is it property owner, is it a business owner, is it the people inside the urban renewal district, etc. Their attorneys have said it probably has constitutional issues. He asked what Ryan is hearing in that regard.

Ryan said they are not hearing much. There are a couple issues out there where they have talked about the concept, and haven’t provided any detail.

Remember this would be a vote of the urban renewal agency however that is defined. If the other sponsoring entity is a city, county or school district and they are borrowing their own money for that other 50%, they have to do what they have to do.

Ryan said there are couple different election things we need to consider. Any city or county sponsored urban renewal agency that was in place before 2011, does not have to go to a vote to continue their project or start a new project. If a city wants to start an urban renewal agency, lets say the City of Star wanted to start one and didn’t have one prior to 2011. They have to put it to a vote. And as he can tell, that vote would just be a vote for the city. The measure would be, should the City of Star sponsor an urban renewal agency, yes or no. To the best of his knowledge, there has only been one election of this sort and it was in Shoshone County.

The vote we are concerned about in a possible new bill is, the vote for the indebtedness beyond the 50% for a public building.

The interim committee had a meeting on January 14th. They had a comprehensive bill and a lot of discussion. They left that meeting directing legislative services to take the information and discussion and come back with something. This is something we have not seen. They do not know when the interim committee will be formally meeting. What they envision is another redraft of the measure they had before them on January 14th. That draft Combined Chapter 20 (Urban Renewal Law) and Chapter 29 (Local Economic Development Act) of Title 50, Idaho Code, into one chapter. On its merits this may be a good thing, but they aren’t so sure. These two chapters have lived separately from one another since 1988. You can merge those together. But if you don’t implement this accurately you’re going to impact some things.

What they are concerned about is, if they do nothing on that particular provision, we will have a fight on our hands on the details and what combining these two chapters will do to us.

There appears to be agreement that the combination of city council members and mayor or county commissioners should not exceed 50% of the board. They don’t know if they are going to tinker with the provision that allows the full city council to serve as the board.

Dave said strategically what concerns him is if we have to give anything to keep the reset from happening. The easiest one to give would be electeds being the entire board.

Ryan said this is a fluid situation and will depend on what the interim committee does.

Garret said that no matter happens this year, the attacks on urban renewal will continue because there are people around the State that hate urban renewal, and they are loud and noisy.

Legislative Initiatives

Seth said as a follow up to Ryan’s comments, prior to this AG’s letter, he would have said let’s kill this thing and be done with it. But the challenge we have now is what do we do with plan amendments that reset the base and whether we can explore introducing that as a stand-alone bill or find a bill and try to get support in the house or find a bill we can attach it to for amendment in the Senate.

His primary focus in negotiation with the Urban Renewal Interim Committee has been focused on plan amendments and resetting the base because it is the most critical to what we do at the city level. Also it resonates with other taxing districts because it impacts everybody.

He is meeting with the co-chairs that afternoon. He has been assured by the co-chairs that they are not going to do anything tomorrow. It is something that is going to sit and percolate for most of the session.

Seth said there was a recent article in the Statesman on new construction. He had a conversation with Representative Moyle the previous week about what he’s planning in concept and expects something to be introduced.

It has been a tough slog for legislators to try to do something with foregone legislation. Because, if you have legislation that prohibits you from taking foregone in the future it really provides a disincentive to not take it on an annual basis. That is why the legislature really hasn’t done anything with it.

Essentially, what Mike is contemplating is two things. One it would require an emergency resolution of some sort by the governing board before you could actually take foregone revenues. The other component would allow the governing boards to enact an ordinance which would then essentially dictate to future governing bodies whether or not you could even take foregone. The problem with that is you can’t bind future governing bodies. Yeah, you could enact an ordinance, but the next council or board of county commissioners could repeal the ordinance and the foregone could still be there.

Something else that has been floated is potentially setting a certain time, saying for example in ten years if you don’t use the foregone, you lose it. But that gets back to the same argument. He is not concerned about this surfacing because in years past it was discussed but nothing materialized.

Dave said his concern about the new construction issue is the West Ada Superintendent at the time signed on to it. Seth said, last year he worked with their association behind the scenes to try to scuttle this. He doesn’t foresee anything happening with new construction this year.

Seth there was a bill introduced that would prohibit cities and counties from enacting an ordinance to regulate plastic grocery bags.

Another one that may affect some of the jurisdictions in Canyon County is, back in 2012 the cities and counties worked with oil and gas industry with regard to some reasonable legislation on the siting of well pads. They are not happy with the negotiated terms back then. They are looking to bring back legislation that would further preempt zoning authority as it relates to oil and gas infrastructure. He will be meeting their lobbyists and believes they are backtracking from their word a few years ago.

The one they have talked about at the board level at AIC is alcohol catering permits. We circulated some drafts with license holders and they have made some recommendations that appear reasonable. He met with Representative Loertscher about what it will take to get that introduced and he said he is willing to hear that in his committee.

Will Harden who lobbies on behalf of consumer utility interests, has a bill relates to public works infrastructure that would provide some additional public records protections.

The District Judge threw out the ACLU lawsuit on public defense. This was the hammer that was over the legislature on public defense. It will be interesting to see what the legislature does as a result of that.

Craig added the reason it got thrown out is they didn’t have standing. So they will go find clients just like they did with the jails and it will be back.

Director’s Report

Bob moved, Garret seconded to approve the minutes and financial statement. Motion approved.

As a SAUSA Update, Eastern Idaho hired their SAUSA and that person started on January 18th.

The Department of Corrections did not ask for any money in the budgets for Eastern Idaho or Northern Idaho. So at JFAC they are trying to figure out how to fund Eastern Idaho. As a result Bill has been talking to Rick Youngblood and Rick recently asked him to provide updated data on State savings. He is producing this report and will make sure everybody gets a copy.