Tracking code caldwell guardian

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Franchise Fees to Increase to $1.5%, Caldwell Trash Fees up 2.42%

It has been reported to THE GUARDIAN utility franchise fees will be increased from 1.25% to 1.5% with the pending approval of the IPUC.  This is a whopping 20% increase for Nampa and Boise residents.  Caldwell and the rest of the valley cities won't be far behind with this new round of stealth fees. 

Caldwell collects a whopping 18% of the total fees for trash pick up in our fair city.  The City Council agenda calls for another increase of 2.42% to be added to the total per the City Council Agenda for 10/1/2012.

There is another item that will be slid in under the radar for Caldwell Building code.  Any new building in excess of 5,000 sq/ft. will be required to have fire supression sprinklers. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Salvation Army Gets King's Building in Caldwell

It has been reported to THE GUARDIAN the old King's building in downtown Caldwell has been donated to the Caldwell Salvation Army.  No defined use for the building has been defined by the Salvation Army.

The back story on this is the Caldwell East Urban Renewal agency made a verbal agreement with the King family, (aka Sun Valley Properties) to purchase and convert the property to a parking lot for TVCC.  The reality of parking needs for TVCC did not materialize into a need for more parking and the City/URA backed out of the deal with the King family. 

Meanwhile, the King family had started unwinding their business in Caldwell and out of frustration, high property taxes and profits not paying the bills the King family finally closed the doors.  Property taxes on this building amount to over $8,000/year.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

There Is No Cure For Old Age, Medicare Mills Sell False Hope

There is no cure for old age and most of us are in denial about our looming demise.  Medicare costs are going to force decisions a lot of people will not agree with as more and more people move onto Medicare rolls. 

I watched with a lot of disdain for how my own father made really bad end of life decisions and vowed to not do the same as I move closer to the end my of life.  For example, my father called me when he was 91 years old about his scheduled surgery to have both knees replaced.  Mind you he was taking no pain meds for his knee issues.  I asked him why he had opted for surgery over taking a few pills to control his knee pain.  I was not ready for his answer:  He was worried about the "long term" consequences of taking pills to control pain!  I countered his objection to taking meds and asked what his view of "long term" meant in his mind.  I won't go into the details of this discussion but it is a very good example of why we need some serious oversight of Medicare.  (Note: My father died two weeks after he turned 92 from congestive heart failure.)

The Republican Congress wants to raise the age for Medicare eligibility and ditto for Social Security.  I would offer the real opportunity lies on the back end and all of the bad decisions that may extend life but at what cost and quality of life.  Medicare and his Part B coverage stood ready to pay the bills for my father for his knee surgery and never mind that he was suffering from Congestive Heart Failure and only had about 20% of he heart capacity. 

At age 66, I am well into what I call the last quarter of my life.  I want Social Security and Medicare to be there for younger people so they can retire and enjoy a few years of what life they have left to live.  However, we have to get a system in place to address the fact we all get old and we all get to die at some point in time.  The options offered to my father as well as others when they are near the end of their lives have to undergo some cost benefit analysis.  Many health care options made by people today make no sense and cost Medicare billions of dollars.

There is no cure for old age and we owe it to our survivors to make a graceful exit.  Good decisions about our health care and when to recognize our time is up will be necessary to keep Social Security and Medicare solvent for future generations.  Life is short no matter how long we live.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Sen. Bernie Sanders May Have It Right We Need More Independents

Sen. Bernie Sanders from Vermont is one of those politicos most people can't recall ever hearing anything about. Turns out he delivered the last filibuster in the Senate lasting over eight hours over trying to get the Democrats and Republicans to agree to a deal on the budget.  He is also the sole Independent in the Senate.

Sen. Sanders gave an interesting analysis of party politics on Bill Moyers and Company this past weekend and it is worth listening to if you can muster up the 20 minutes or so that he spoke to Mr. Moyers.  The problem with politics today is the parties have become so extreme in their thinking and have devolved from center left or right along with all the litmus tests of parties nothing gets done. 

Sen. Mitch McConnell says his goal is not to get anything done in the Senate but to make President Obama a one term president.  He could care less about what is good for the country.  Pretty extreme stuff when poll after poll indicate most Americans are concerned about the economy, cost of health care, social security , medicare and ending the war in Afghanistan. Congress can't seem to do anything but argue and they get nothing done with respect to the business of the people.

Both Congress and the Senate are bought and controlled by PAC's, goofy pledges, six banking firms and a few rich families and individuals.  Sen. Sanders is an advocate of publicly financed elections in order to get people elected who actually represent the people of this country v. those will the money and PAC's and banks.  The system is fraught with waste and  fraud as it currently exists.  We are moving to an Oligarchy given the current state of election financing.

Maybe we need to scrap party politicos and elect more independents like Mr. Sanders. We need people in Congress who will address the pressing issues of this great nation ahead of party politics.

You have to ask yourself what NAFTA and the lopsided "Free Trade Agreements" done for the Middle and Working class people of this country.  Why haven't we seen legal prosecutions of the corrupt and fradulent actions of Bankers and Wall Street thugs who nearly put this country into a full blown economic depression.

Here's a link to the show if you missed it on PBS

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Mayor Nancolas and Pioneer Irrigation District Eminent Domain Threat

The real issue here is about polluted run off, street waste water, along with all manner of pollutants flowing into irrigation ditches used for food crops.

The city is claiming past practice and the right to dump this waste water into Pioneer's canals.  The problem is this simple... once these canals received water from farms and adjacent fields.  Now, there are thousands of homes on what was once farmland.  The city mis-managed the storm water issue and is stretching the parameters of the Clean Water Act of 1972. 

Mayor Nancolas and city officials failed to follow the example of other cities that have been in compliance with controlling polluted runoff from residential and commercial property for years and years.  In their zeal to be more than accommodating they never bothered to concern themselves with the aspects of subdivision pollutants flowing into waterways used for irrigating food crops.

Now Mayor Nancolas is headed down the path of even more costs for litigation after spending $2million on all the current legal bills in this goofy battle with Pioneer Irrigation.  They screwed up and now citizens of Caldwell are looking at another battle via the eminent domain scheme proposed by our Mayor.

Keeping pollutants out of storm drains is the topic of public service spots on TV all the time.  Keeping pollutants out of irrigation waterways should be a no-brainer.  The problem is how does the city of Caldwell fix the poor decisions made in the past.  THE GUARDIAN does not see litigtion as the answer anymore than the pending threat of eminent domain takeover of PID's city of Caldwell  irrigation water users.

Here's a link to the sequence of actions and reactions posted on the Pioneer Irrigation website

Here's another link in the IPT Sunday edition: