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Tuesday, August 11, 2015
Commission to decide on 2016 budget on August 26th; proposal avoids tax increase

Garden City – ACHD Commissioners will consider a $98 million spending plan on August 26, 2015 that avoids property tax increases but still meets Ada County’s transportation needs with a robust list of new projects.

For the seventh year running, the draft budget keeps the base property tax at the same level. Commissioners also decided to forgo the allowed increase for growth in the overall tax roll (the value of newly improved properties), which means there will be no increase in property taxes for Ada County roads.

By law, the Commission can consider up to a three-percent increase in the property tax rate, plus the annual amount for growth. Avoiding these increases saved taxpayers nearly $2 million.

"It’s true that this budget is tight but we still plan to build some important projects, including roundabouts in Boise and Kuna and much-needed improvements to Cloverdale, Five Mile and Linder roads," said Jim Hansen, ACHD president. "We believe this is a solid proposal but we’d certainly like to hear what the public thinks."

The draft budget is available on ACHD’s web site, www.achdidaho.org. Anyone wishing to submit written comments can send them to 3775 Adams St., Garden City, ID 83714 or to tellus@achdidaho.org. Please get your comments in at least a day or two before the meeting to allow Commissioners time to consider your views. The public is also welcome to testify at the hearing.

The adoption hearing will be in the ACHD Auditorium, 3775 Adams St., in Garden City at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, August 26, 2015.

Property taxes represent the largest revenue source for ACHD ($33.5 million), followed by state gas taxes ($27.3 million), development impact fees ($13 million) and vehicle registration fees ($9.3 million). ACHD anticipates $5.5 million in additional gas taxes for fiscal 2016, which will be dedicated to maintenance work as required by the Idaho Legislature’s recent transportation funding bill.

Some of the notable construction projects in the 2016 budget include:

•    The 36th Street/Hill Road/Catalpa Drive Roundabout in Boise – $2.5 million – will convert the existing, five-legged intersection into a modern, "dog bone" shaped roundabout with curbs, gutters and sidewalks to improve safety near Hillside Junior High School.

•    Cloverdale Road, Franklin Road to Fairview Avenue in Boise – $2.7 million – will improve the road to five lanes with curbs, gutters, sidewalks and bike lanes to relieve congestion and enhance safety for all road users.

•    Executive Drive, Parkdale Avenue to President Drive in Boise and Meridian – $1.6 million – will improve road to five lanes with curbs, gutters, sidewalks and bike lanes. The project will be built with the Cloverdale, Franklin to Fairview, project.

•    Five Mile Road, Fairview Avenue to Ustick Road in Boise – $3.3 million – will improve the road to five lanes with curbs, gutters, sidewalks and bike lanes to relieve congestion and enhance safety for all road users.

•    The Linder Avenue/Main Street/3rd Street Roundabout in Kuna – $1 million – will build a single‐lane roundabout and pedestrian facilities at the intersection to improve vehicular safety, mobility and capacity.

•    Linder Road, one-quarter mile north of Chinden Boulevard in Eagle, Meridian and Ada County – $2.1 million – will improve Linder to four lanes: one northbound, two southbound and a center turn lane. The project includes sidewalk, curb and gutter on the west side of the road; another northbound travel lane and sidewalk will be built on the east side as area development occurs.

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