California Building Welcome Center In Boise For New Idaho Arrivals

Apr 1, 2019

So many people are moving from California to Idaho the Golden State is putting in a welcome center in downtown Boise. California officials say it will help new arrivals fit in. One of the first things they recommend doing is trading in California license plates and getting Idaho tags.
Credit Matt Guilhem / Boise State Public Radio

As people from around the country continue to flock to Boise thanks to numerous appearances in top ten lists, one state is going to unbelievable lengths to help its new Idaho arrivals.

The cities of the Treasure Valley are growing at breakneck speed, and one particular group is coming in droves: the Californians.

Yes, hordes from the Bay to LA are descending on the Gem State at a shocking pace. So many transplants are relocating that California is set to open a learning center in downtown Boise for Golden State expats.

“You know, we need to educate our people who are coming in that this is Idaho, you know – not California,” says Christy Kelti.

Kelti works for the California Interstate Resettlement Commission. A recent arrival herself, she says the downtown center will both welcome Californians to their new home and teach them some Idaho ground rules.

“Coming to Boise, they need to learn to pronounce the city properly,” Kelti says. “It’s 'Boy-SEE,' not 'Boy-ZEE.' And we need to educate them about the niceties of Idaho. Putting on makeup on their commute, for us girls, is probably a no-no, unlike when you’re stuck in gridlock on the 405 with your tinted windows and driving with your knees. It’s just not done here.”

Something that’s just not done in California is bread or carbs. Among the center's offerings, Kelti says there will be a carbohydrate reintroduction program should new arrivals find their gluten sensitivity dissipating.

The California Interstate Resettlement Commission hopes the downtown center will welcome its first transplants this summer.

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