The Idaho Freedom Foundation filed a lawsuit against the city of Boise asserting that Boise is violating Idaho’s Constitution through urban renewal.
The Idaho Constitution requires that local government entities receive a two-thirds endorsement from voters before taking on debt, IFF claimed Boise Mayor Dave Bieter and the city council ignored this process on urban renewal mechanisms.
IFF said the violation occurred in December when city councilors approved the formation of two urban renewal districts that will collectively take on $120 million in debt.
“Boise, through its abuse of urban renewal, is shutting out taxpayers to fund expensive pet projects,” IFF President Wayne Hoffman said. “The people who pay the bills, hardworking Idahoans, should have the opportunity to vote on debt-funded projects, as laid out in the Idaho Constitution.”
While Boise Mayor Dave Bieter responded to The Idaho Freedom Foundation's lawsuit on his Twitter account as follow:
Surprised @idahofreedom has time to sue over urban renewal while working to deny 62,000 low-income Idahoans voter-approved health care through Medicaid expansion. Any irony in using a great public space, partially funded by urban renewal, to announce opposition to urban renewal?
— Mayor Dave Bieter (@MayorBieter) January 18, 2019
IFF filed the suit on behalf of six Ada County property owners: Hoffman, Bob Tikker, Andrea Lanning, IFF Vice President Fred Birnbaum, Bruce Boyles, and G&G Ventures, a Boise-based small business.