Tuesday, February 28, 2012
THE GUARDIAN went to the Local Government Committee meeting today in order to testify in behalf of HB 560 and HB 580 in the hope these two bills would pass a committee vote and go to the Idaho House for a full debate and vote on the House floor. Both measures failed to get out of committee with votes against these two bills by Canyon County Representatives Collins and Perry of Nampa.
HB 560 was a bill sponsored by Representative Bob Schaefer of Nampa and would have been the first step to terminating Urban Renewal Agencies statewide in Idaho. It has been reported to THE GUARDIAN this is an election year and word came down from House Leadership to kill this bill in committee. The vote was 5 to 4 to "hold the bill in committee". Reps. Collins, Perry, Higgins, Luker and Marriott voting to kill the bill. It will take a motion and 50% plus one member to bring the bill out of committee.
HB 580 is a bill to hold URA's to the Idaho Constitutional requirement of a 2/3rds majority if URA's want to issue bonding debt. The Idaho Farm Bureau supported a do pass on this bill and a full floor debate and vote. The bill was held in Committee with a unanimous vote of the Local Government Committee (pending revision).
Urban Renewal is taxation without representation and we have a plethora of monuments to the waste, fraud and abuses by URA's all over Idaho. California has come to appreciate URA's were costing taxpayers Billions in California and had the good sense to shut down all 425 of these taxpayer abuse agencies effective February 1, 2012 and has been upheld by the Ca. Supreme Court.
Those in favor of the status quo with URA's testified that the voters recourse is the ballot box. If they don't like the actions of URA's they need to react at the ballot box and leave the current laws alone. Well folks, this is an election year and if you are tired of URA's consider making a change in our elected officials at the state and local levels.
Instructions were given from on high by House Leadership and it was like watching a tragedy in slow motion when these two bills went down in flames at the Local Government Committee today.
We also learned today URA's have a statewide association headed up by the former Director of CCDC, Phil Kushlan. He now heads up the Redevelopment Association of Idaho another arm of the pro URA lobby efforts in Idaho.
Posted by Paul Alldredge at 9:39 PM