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Gearing Up Again

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  • ivalleyid
    Given the Idaho Transportation Department s annual budget shortfall of more than $200 million, more important highway needs, the cost of gas, and environmental
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 12, 2008
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      Given the Idaho Transportation Department's annual budget shortfall
      of more than $200 million, more important highway needs, the cost of
      gas, and environmental and cultural concerns, you would think that
      the South Emmett to Mesa Highway would be off the table, once and
      for all. Unfortunately, thanks to the 2008 Legislature, the highway
      that will not die is still breathing. Here is text of House Bill
      657 that resuscitated the Indian Valley Highway:

      Pursuant to Section 40-315, Idaho Code, the bonding authorized in
      Section 1 of this act may be used to finance from the following list
      of projects and the Idaho Transportation Board shall allocate bond
      revenue to the projects listed below:
      29 ROUTE PROJECT DESCRIPTION
      30 US-95 SH-1 to Canadian Border
      31 US-95 Garwood to Sagle
      32 US-95 Worley to Setters
      33 US-95 Thorn Creek to Moscow
      34 US-95 Smoky Boulder to Hazard Creek
      35 SH-16 Ext. South Emmett to Mesa with Connection to SH-
      55
      36 SH-16 Ext. I-84 to South Emmett
      37 I-84 Caldwell to Meridian
      38 I-84 Orchard to Isaacs Canyon
      39 US-93 Twin Falls alternate route and new
      Snake River crossing
      40 SH-75 Timmerman to Ketchum
      41 US-20 St. Anthony to Ashton
      42 US-30 McCammon to Soda Springs

      Notice that key phrase, "shall allocate bond revenue to the projects
      listed." We have work to do to get the 2009 Legislature to finally
      remove the South Emmett to Mesa Highway with Connection to SH-55.
      That is the Indian Valley Highway, folks. And it is an abysmal idea
      in terms of what it would cost, both in dollars and in ecological
      and cultural losses.

      The Indian Valley Alliance spent a little over $400 in advertising
      prior to the May primary to call attention to the fact that Rep.
      Diana Thomas of District 9 voted in favor of HB657. When asked why
      she voted for a highway she had previously opposed, Thomas insisted
      that the Indian Valley Highway was not included in the legislation.
      But you can see otherwise, as can anyone who cares to read the full
      text of the bill on the Idaho Legislature's website. Our efforts
      paid off, as voters chose Judy Boyle, a staunch opponent of the
      Indian Valley Highway, in the Republican primary for Thomas's seat.

      Many thanks to Sen. Monty Pearce and House Speaker Lawerence Denny,
      along with Rep. Leon Smith and JoAn Wood and Sen. Gary Schroeder,
      for standing their ground and opposing this bill.

      Now it's your turn. The Indian Valley Alliance is a small
      grassroots organization. We don't have deep pockets. We need to
      replenish our meager bank account in order to be prepared to spend a
      little money on advertising and PR during the upcoming legislative
      session to inform the public and persuade the legislature to
      eliminate this wasteful project from consideration for GARVEE
      funding and the Idaho Statewide Transportation Improvement Plan
      (STIP).

      Whether you can afford a little or a lot, we appreciate any
      contribution you can make. Please send your donation to the Indian
      Valley Alliance, P.O. Box 95, Indian Valley, ID, 83632. We promise
      to use your money frugally and strategically to kill the Indian
      Valley Highway. In the process, we'll be sending a clear message to
      the Idaho Legislature that you want them to spend your highway
      dollars more sensibly.

      Thank you.
      Wendy Green
      Director
      Indian Valley Alliance
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