As anyone knows, over the past several years living in Boise became a lot more expensive, forcing many long-time residents to make hard choices. While I always look for ways to make the bigger impact, here are steps I’ve taken as a member of City Council to create opportunity for Boise residents:
- Advocated for affordable housing development on city-owned land.
- Encouraged and incentivized landlords to preserve current affordable housing options when planning redevelopment.
- Dedicated at least 5% of our general fund to Valley Regional Transit to expand our bus system within the city.
- Promoted attainable housing in every neighborhood through the Housing Bonus Ordinance.
- Advocated for compassionate, well-resourced support for families and individuals experiencing homelessness, including long-term solutions. Boise must be a leader in addressing these challenges.
Sustainability and Climate Change
Climate change cannot be avoided or wished away. It is a practical reality that our community will have to deal with in our own lifetimes. With a background in developing some of Idaho’s largest renewable energy projects, making Boise a leader in sustainability is front of mind for me. From climate resilience to water conservation, Boise stands to be a leader in innovation. We must:
- Transition to 100% clean electricity for city operations by 2035 and for the entire community by 2045 in accordance with the 2020 Boise’s Energy Future Strategy.
- Implement the 2020 Water Renewal Utility Plan to ensure treatment capacity, water retention, and a healthy river for future generations.
- Improve irrigation efficiency and minimize pesticide use in Boise city parks.
Let’s face it: the cat’s out of the bag and people have found out that Boise is a great city to live, work, play, and raise a family. And with that discovery we’ve seen a lot of growing pains in the way of rising rents, increased property assessments, and congestion. We have a lot to learn from other cities that have been in the place we are today. To avoid the same pitfalls, we need to take these steps:
- Update our zoning ordinance to mirror Blueprint Boise – encouraging thriving neighborhoods built around community activity hubs.
- Increase and improve access to parks, pathways, and public open space.
- Encourage infill development to do our part in preserving rural farmland while still providing needed housing.
- Invest in public safety, including mental health and social service resources, to keep up with growth and ensure our city stays one of the safest in the country.