LCDC antes up for McEuen - Coeur d'Alene Press: Political

LCDC antes up for McEuen

City council must OK contract before getting $11.5 million

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Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:15 am

COEUR d'ALENE - It's official.


Lake City Development Corp. agreed Wednesday to allocate $11.5 million to the city of Coeur d'Alene to pay for Phase 1 of the McEuen Field project.

But before anything can be cashed in, the urban renewal agency said it wants to add contingencies to the financial pledge to ensure LCDC is involved in the process as the park design moves forward.

"I understand this is a concept and I support it," said Brad Jordan, board member, on the downtown park's redevelopment plan moving forward. "But it's LCDC funding so we have to have some control over it."

The board didn't name what those contingencies would be.

Rather, they will be crafted at a future meeting. The goal would be to ensure LCDC stay involved in the process as the park plan moves forward, and allow the agency a say where exactly their tax exempt dollars would be going on the large-scale project.

One contingency that must happen, however, is that the Coeur d'Alene City Council approve the $1.9 architectural and engineering services contract with the park's designers, Team McEuen.

That contract, if approved by council Tuesday, March 6, would turn the conceptual plan into bid documents that would blueprint specifically how to break ground.

Parks Director Doug Eastwood sought the LCDC financial support before going to council to show the city had the financial backing, even as parts of the project still have to be worked out.

"You're either in or you're not," he told the board. "It's a partnership that goes 100 percent."

Nevertheless, Jordan said he was wary of repeating the Midtown renovation project, where LCDC was the main financial supporter, but had little oversight on the city project after the fact.

"Reassurance," board member Dave Patzer said, "instead of 'write us a check and trust us in the end.'"

The pledge still put an official dollar amount from LCDC on the project itself. That figure had been a much-discussed unknown in the community as the redevelopment project was working through the planning process for more than a year. Some in the community felt that LCDC's tax increment financing, accumulated from property taxes, shouldn't be allocated to a large-scale park design. Others said LCDC was created in 1997 specifically to one day fund a McEuen Field project downtown.

"I'm not quite sure what the hurry was," Rita Sims-Snyder, who has opposed the park's planning process at several civic meetings, told the board Wednesday. "To be real honest, (I'm) shocked that you approved $11.5 million."

But Tina Johnson said the agency should follow through on why it was created.

"McEuen Park is tired, worn out and vastly underused," she said.

The pledge is enough to allow Eastwood to present the slimmed down $14 million Phase 1 and contract extension to the City Council March 6, with all but roughly $300,000 in hand. Bids on Phase 1 could come in much lower than estimated, he said, as other bids on recent projects have due to the economic climate.

But it could set up another passionate McEuen Field debate at the City Council, which is divided on the topic. In January, the council decided 4 votes to 3 not to send the project to a public advisory vote, with Mayor Sandi Bloem splitting the tie.

The contract approval is the biggest contingency for which LCDC is waiting.

Without it, "then it wouldn't be a project," Eastwood said, as he left the meeting.

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  • sadiesmile posted at 12:14 am on Thu, Apr 12, 2012.

    sadiesmile Posts: 8

    hi i am looking for the latest PMI exam questions . if someone get study material then please share with me too.70-680//SY0-301//642-813//642-902//70-642//640-822//

  • cgent47 posted at 9:39 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    cgent47 Posts: 192

    I heard a rumor that the voters are going to try and recall the mayor. Has anyone else heard this?

  • Randy Myers posted at 7:30 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    Randy Myers Posts: 1635

    I remain opposed to this plan without a public vote.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 12:28 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    There is NO support for this, and the ONLY tinkg that these local gestapo governmet "officials" did was ENSURE that they will steal government money to do this DEBACLE.
    I get it:
    An agency who has NO elected officials DICTATES to the local government what it will have in terms of cotntracts.
    This is sickening.

  • concernedcitizen posted at 6:53 pm on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    concernedcitizen Posts: 2530

    Bloemnco are gunna STEAL, thats right, I said STEAL as much as they can from all of us before the '13 election.

    They could care less as long as their property values go up.

  • Jeffrey Wherley posted at 11:02 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    Jeffrey Wherley Posts: 3969

    "Are they afraid the 2013 City Council will negate their plans?"

    Exactly correct Jill. Great post

  • Jill Heine posted at 10:09 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    Jill Heine Posts: 408

    Didn't Team McEuen volunteer their services?
    Lakes MS netted these guys $800K for unusable plans.
    Now the guys who steer LCDC want certified control?
    Are they afraid the 2013 City Council will negate their plans?

  • uncle fester posted at 9:45 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    uncle fester Posts: 831

    Ok , everyone knows that The Queen Mayor and her court made a deal with the resort owner , Mr Hagadone , now of Calif. , to do this mess. That nasty boat launch must be moved and we need more parking! So if he wants it , let him pay for it!

  • WilliamWMiller posted at 8:39 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    WilliamWMiller Posts: 106

    To all my friends and family. Do not even consider moving to Coeur d Alene, Idaho in the next 20 years. Your tax burden is going through the roof. Better places to retire, Sandpoint, Kellogg, and Harrison.

  • Billy N posted at 8:28 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    Billy N Posts: 38

    Public schools produce these kind of government officials. People who have no understanding of free market economies or morality in leadership. Get rid of government schools and this problem begins to go away.

  • chouli posted at 8:04 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    chouli Posts: 1283

    LCDC requiring contingencies to ensure the LCDC is in charge...and didn't want to name what those contingencies are, except that team mceuen must be paid 1.9 million for the arch & eng contract. LCDC will let ya know later what those contingencies are...LOL

    1.9 million dollars of tax money with no bids required...

    Tina, McEuen Park isn't the only think 'tired'...the taxpayers are pretty tired of all of this mis-use of our tax dollars being wasted on a park on a massive scale.

  • ProIdaho posted at 7:34 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    ProIdaho Posts: 257

    No Brad Jordan( you unelected LCDC board member), it is not "your" money. It is the property tax money of the people of Coeur d'alene.

    I love how he feels that they(the LCDC) should have some control over how the Mc Euen field project is run, but NOT the public whose money this is anyway. The irony is amazing.

  • DeNiles posted at 7:00 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    DeNiles Posts: 2450

    So the city pays through the nose for the plans and then the unelected LCDC comes along and tells the city what to do? All we need are armed guards and this is post world war 2 East Germany.

  • immortal posted at 5:16 am on Thu, Feb 16, 2012.

    immortal Posts: 258

    The steady, consistent drumbeat of misrepresentation by the Cda Resort Press of LCDC's funding source is disgusting, if not just plain yellow journalism. It's indicative to the nth degree of how local business in downtown Cda callously spends other people's money for their own gain. But then, since the Feds do it so well, why expect any less from those here.

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