Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Why did the road levy fail?

    The Blaine County commissioners need to examine the political tea leaves in the wake of the failure of a proposed two-year, $10.5 million levy to improve roads.
    Even though county roads are deteriorating, voters refused to tax themselves more, even though most of the taxes would have fallen on properties belonging to out-of-area owners. Just 77 votes made the difference on this measure.
    The commissioners should ask themselves what the vote meant.
    It did not mean that residents don’t want good roads or other infrastructure, or that they are opposed to all new taxes and fees. For example, Hailey voters approved a $6.5 million revenue bond to upgrade a wastewater treatment facility in the same election.
    It may mean that voters are unhappy with the county’s own prohibition on the use of property taxes for road repairs that commissioners approved in a time when state gas taxes and local development fees were rolling in.
    It may mean that voters want commissioners to very publicly comb the county budget to try to find money they could reallocate to fund even part of the road repairs.
    It may mean that the vote, conducted at the commissioners’ behest in a primary election with just 19 percent of registered voters participating, did not accurately reflect taxpayer sentiment.
    It may mean that voters were unhappy that the county commissioners voted themselves substantial pay raises—despite employing a county administrator and a human resources manager to help them—while asking taxpayers to pay more.
    The commissioners need to address these matters before simply plopping the road levy on the ballot again in November.

About Comments

Comments with content that seeks to incite or inflame may be removed.

Comments that are in ALL CAPS may be removed.

Comments that are off-topic or that include profanity or personal attacks, libelous or other inappropriate material may be removed from the site. Entries that are unsigned or contain signatures by someone other than the actual author may be removed. We will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or any other policies governing this site. Use of this system denotes full acceptance of these conditions. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

The comments below are from the readers of and in no way represent the views of Express Publishing, Inc.

You may flag individual comments. You may also report an inappropriate or offensive comment by clicking here.

Flagging Comments: Flagging a comment tells a site administrator that a comment is inappropriate. You can find the flag option by pointing the mouse over the comment and clicking the 'Flag' link.

Flagging a comment is only counted once per person, and you won't need to do it multiple times.

Proper Flagging Guidelines: Every site has a different commenting policy - be sure to review the policy for this site before flagging comments. In general these types of comments should be flagged:

  • Spam
  • Ones violating this site's commenting policy
  • Clearly unrelated
  • Personal attacks on others
Comments should not be flagged for:
  • Disagreeing with the content
  • Being in a dispute with the commenter

Popular Comment Threads

 Local Weather 
Search archives:

Copyright © 2019 Express Publishing Inc.   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.