Boise City Council has signed off on turning one of the city’s few gay bars into a new police substation.
Council members voted unanimously Tuesday to purchase the Lucky Dog Tavern for nearly $1.2 million. The Lucky Dog is one of only two gay bars in Boise.
The owners of the bar plan to relocate in the next nine to 12 months before it becomes city property.
According to the Idaho Press, some council members at the meeting said they have met with the bar’s owners and want to support LGBTQ spaces in Boise.
Percilla Moore is on the board of directors for the Imperial Sovereign Gem Court of Idaho, an LGBTQ charity organization which often hosts drag shows and other events at the Lucky Dog.
“I think it’s great that the Lucky Dog is selling because I think the community has overgrown that space and the shows have become a lot bigger, so going to a new venue and a new space is great for the Lucky Dog and for the community.”
Some in the LGBTQ community members have differing opinions about the city's decision. "While the Lucky Dog said they will find a new location, it is still another stumbling block our community has to overcome again," Karen Vintar wrote on Facebook.
Others wrote on the social media platform that the decision makes sense.
"From the perspective of effective policing, it makes sense. I do not believe the intent is malicious or targeted, just unfortunate," says Javier Smith.
Idaho State Representative John McCrostie (D-16), who is openly gay, says the tavern owners will be better off.
"At the end of the day, the Lucky Dog owners are looking to buy instead of lease. For the future, that puts them in a stronger position than they are in now," says McCrostie.
In a Facebook post, the Lucky Dog said "We want to be very clear that the City and BPD are not the villains in this, there are no villains, just a fact of life, our landlords own a piece a property and wanted to sell it. Change is inevitable."
Copyright 2018 Boise State Public Radio