Boise voters will see a familiar proposal on their ballots this fall. Tuesday night the city council unanimously endorsed increasing taxes in exchange for more open space.
If voters decide to back the levy in November, $10 million will go toward conservation projects around Boise. Taxes will go up by $2.39 per $100,000 of taxable value on residential property for the next two years.
Councilwoman Elaine Clegg says the addition of more land in the foothills is part of the city’s legacy. She says the success of the 2001 foothills levy, which was also worth $10 million, has made Boise a more attractive place to live. Clegg also endorses the idea of conserving non-foothills land as part of the levy.
“Not only will it be able to protect [more of the foothills] but it will be able to protect other sensitive areas such as along the river," Clegg says, "and that will ensure that our water quality and the opportunities for making sure that that water continues to serve us well.”
Just two years ago, a bond package that would have set aside land in the foothills failed to reach the two-thirds supermajority it needed to pass. But a levy only requires a simple majority. In the coming months, a coalition of conservation groups will try to sway voters to back this new ballot initiative.
Find Frankie Barnhill on Twitter @FABarnhill
Copyright 2015 Boise State Public Radio