Boise Mayor's Plans Sometimes Get Derailed

Boise Mayor Dave Bieter gives his ninth State of the City speech Tuesday morning.  He’ll highlight developments over the past year and reveal new plans for the coming year.  A review of his past speeches, though, show some initiatives are still pending. 

During his State of the City speech two years ago, Bieter announced lease negotiations with Sunergy World.   The $45 million solar electricity project was supposed to create 40 jobs on city-owned property west of the Airport but that site is still empty. 

" Old timers might recognize this site as the former city dump," said Bieter.  "Now, it will produce green energy, jobs for our local economy, and, most importantly, put Boise in the game for alternative energy production." 

Jim Weatherby, Professor Emeritus of Public Policy at Boise State University, says local projects can get derailed by forces outside city control.  In this case, a volatile market for the solar industry

"I think it illustrates an issue that cities have, and that is they’re not often masters of their own destiny," says Weatherby.  "There are national and international economic forces that decide the successes and failures of a number of their projects."

Meanwhile, three neighborhood libraries have opened since Mayor Bieter first announced plans in his 2005 speech.  But a branch in Southeast Boise and a new main library are still up in the air because of funding issues. 

On Tuesday morning expect Bieter to talk about a renewed sense of confidence in the local economy and to reveal another initiative or two.

Copyright 2012 Boise State Public Radio