Sep 29, 2022
. . . . But still can’t afford to pay for Law Enforcement
There are several reasons to oppose the Hayden's Law Enforcement levy. But the first and foremost is that residents should not reward an administration that so obviously prioritizes growth and development over the well-being of its existing citizens with more money to spend. Against the express will of almost all residents, city administers are barreling ahead with a plan for a massive increase in population that threatens to destroy our city and ruin our quality of life. The increased need for law enforcement is only one of many detrimental effects of irresponsible growth.
Make the Law Enforcement Levy a Referendum on Growth
Hayden has been growing at a moderate rate for decades, but in the last two years, there has been a mad rush, led by city administrators and well-connected developers, to “re-envision” Hayden from a suburban-rural community to a densely populated, apartment-ridden urban-center all in accord with a 2040 globalist agenda for “smart growth” that does not in any way fit the needs or desires of the existing citizens.
Hayden residents never got a chance to vote on the abhorrent 2040 Comprehensive Plan or the new Zoning Regulations that introduced Mixed Use zoning and removed all consideration of resident concerns from P & Z Public hearings. And we never got to vote on whether we wanted a $17 Million “regulatory upgrade” to our sewer system that has more than doubled our sewer rates.
But now Hayden residents finally have something to vote on. We get to vote on whether to hand over more of our money to city administrators that show no regard for the well-being of the city’s residents. Let’s turn this Law Enforcement Levy into the Referendum that we were denied, and vote NO. NO on the 2040 Comp Plan and new Zoning Regulations. NO on the Densification of Hayden, and NO on out-of-control growth. The proposed levy isn't really about law enforcement. It's about the misplaced priorities of Hayden's city government.
We believe that Hayden should make a greater contribution than it currently does to the sheriff’s department, but contend that law enforcement is a basic service of government and should be funded first; before Parks and Recreation, and certainly before non-essential “Public Works”. Hayden is a low-crime community and does not need an enormous law enforcement presence. But its current contribution to the Sheriff's department is too low, and the city should commit to a more appropriate level of funding.
Hayden is spending $20 Million in Capital Improvements in 2023.
The proponents of the Levy claim there is “no money in the budget” to expand support for law enforcement. Is this true? When a city chooses to fund popular programs over basic services, it may be painful to reset priorities. But it isn’t even clear that that is what is going on. Let’s take look at what the Hayden City Administration is actually spending money on. The following chart show Hayden’s 2023 budget for something that the city seems to have plenty of money for: Capital Improvements to facilitate massive new growth.
Just in 2023, Hayden is planning to spend over $20 Million on infrastructure; mostly roads and sewers to facilitate future growth. That is more than $1000 per resident of Hayden or almost $3000 per household. And this is just for 2023; the Capital Improvement plan shown is part of a five-year plan to spend nearly $50 Million dollars on infrastructure upgrades. The complete plan can be seen here.
The reason that Hayden administrators can make a straight-faced claim that the city "has no money for law enforcement"—after budgeting millions for an enormous expansion of infrastructure,—is that its budget is very complicated. So complicated that many plausible claims can be made about the budget that have some element of truth, and so convoluted that it is difficult for an outsider to understand exactly how money is being spent.
It is true, for example, that three different agencies manage parts of the city’s capital spending budget, and of the parts managed by Hayden city, many are financed with “restricted” funds. But the type of spending that is ALWAYS allowed, by every "restricted" fund, are activities that benefit developers and stakeholders: e.g., "redevelopment", "infrastructure", "regulatory upgrades", and "capital improvements".
But at the end of the day, Hayden city still has over 7 Million dollars in general funds, and there is sufficient money In that fund to pay for additional deputies. In the "Capital Improvements" chart, $900K of the infrastructure spending comes directly from the city's "General Fund" which is more than enough for a significant boost to Law Enforcement. How is remodeling City Hall more important than Public Safety?
Draw on the "Public Works" Budget for Law Enforcement
As the "Capital Improvements" plan clearly shows, Hayden City has access to millions of dollars to upgrade sewer systems and build new roads. Since Hayden seems to have plenty of money for growth, it follows that drawing on the "Public Works" budget in the City's General Fund to provide for additional law enforcement would be prudent. Only about half of the City's $4 Million "Public Works" budget is used for routine maintenance, so snow-plowing and road maintenance should not be affected.
What would be most affected by a reduction in the city's "public works" budget, would be the city's ability to build new or widen existing roads. But if the city simply SLOWED the rate of GROWTH and stopped approving every large scale development that comes down the pike, sufficient resources for moderate growth could easily be found.
The following chart shows revenues and draws on Hayden's "General Funds" for the last decades, and shows that in most years, revenues have exceeded expenses. We could not find a chart that shows 2020-22 activity, but the city's Audited financial report shows that the General Fund balance as of 2021 was at $9.1M, and in the 2023 budget, the anticipated revenues would be about $7.5M. The truth is, the city of Hayden is not broke. It has ample funds for a moderate increase in the public safety budget, and the fact that it has refused to fund law enforcement adequately in recent years, appears to be strategic.
It can almost be said that as of 2020,—before a colossal shift of priorities to promote the insanely ambitious 2040 Growth Plan,—the city of Hayden was on sound financial footing and reasonably well managed. What happened?
Stop the Insanity. Reign in Growth. Pay the Sheriff.
The $20M budget for infrastructure upgrades in Hayden's 2023 budget plan is totally out-of-line with past capital improvement plans. Much of the HARSB portion of the spending plan can be blamed on "regulatory upgrades", but almost all of the city's portion (over $13M) is intented to provide for preposterous levels of growth imposed on Hayden by the 2040 Comprehensive Plan. For comparison, in the five years prior to 2021, the city's portion of the capital improvement budget was always less than $5M.
Let's send the Hayden City Council an unmistakeable message.
This November, VOTE NO on NEW TAXES TO FUND GROWTH.
NO on the 2040 Comp Plan and new Zoning Regulations.
NO on the Globalist Plan to Urbanize Hayden.
NO on Heedless, Needless, and Irresponsible Growth.
If you would like a yardsign, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Ed DePriest says (Sep 29, 2022):
Please answer the question that I have asked several times before, but you ignore and don't attempt to answer. Please don't go off on some tangent, spin, deflections, obfuscations, etc..., just a direct answer to the following question. Why, as of Sept. 1 have there only been 41 building permits issued in Hayden. 40 single family and 1 ADU. Why have there been zero duplex, zero triplex, zero 4-plex, and zero mixed use/apartments? Why zero in Hayden, yet Post Falls, CDA, and surrounding cities are building all kinds of multi-family/higher density residential? I know the answer, because I have first hand research, but you either haven't figured it out, or are ignoring it because you are so fixated on your conspiracy theories or your own agenda. You are claiming that nothing is being done to deal with the future growth and density, yet other cities are pouring in the density and Hayden is not. So please, just answer the direct question of: Why have there been zero multi-family building permits issued in Hayden between January 1 and August 31?
Ed DePriest says (Sep 29, 2022):
As far as the "remodeling of city hall?" Do you even know what that is about? Are you aware of the requirements of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) and what the consequences of being out of compliance can cost the city? Why don't you do some research on the cost of being out of compliance and write an article about that? I'll humor you. That $500K would be one year for the Sheriff. Are you aware of the current facilities for public works? Please tell us what you know of the Public Works facility and what the purchase of the facility entails? I'll humor you again. That $400K wouldn't even fund one year of the Sheriff. The Sheriff issue is perpetual money. Meaning, every year. As far as your other assertions: That Hayden is awash in millions of discretionary dollars. Do you have a reserve/savings/ rainy day account for your family? How much do you think Hayden should have in reserve in case the economy turns down and revenues significantly drop,,, as happened around 2008 and those years? Most of the funding of the infrastructure that you seem to think is not needed, is from impact fees, federal funding, Cap fees, and other restricted sources. Are you suggesting cutting Parks and Rec? Try selling that to the parents and people who use those programs. As Councilmember Saterfiel said at the last meeting: Much of the need for increased and wider roads is the result of traffic passing through and coming from Post Falls and CDA, using the roads. Should we just ignore it and let it get worse as those cities continue to pour the people in? If you think that we have traffic issues now, what will it look like when Post Falls doubles and those people are looking for ways to get around? Maybe, if you, who are the leader of North Idaho Slow Growth, and have basically taken over as the key contributor of Responsible North Idaho Growth, would direct some attention to Post Falls and CDA and the density that they are approving, something could actually be accomplished towards better managing the density and affects of the density from those cities on Hayden???
Lynda Putz says (Sep 30, 2022):
Maybe no new permits because so many have already been issued? Also, your question does not address the issue of future permits, which will likely come about as a result of rezoning and Agenda 2040. In regards to other cities and what they are doing, this is a Save Hayden group, not a save Post Falls, et al group.
Ed DePriest says (Sep 30, 2022):
You need to check your facts! What do you mean "so many have already been issued?" Only 41 have been issued this year. Why aren't developers building at the same pace as other cities? What was issued before is not affected by what has occurred in the last year regarding changes to Mixed Use and Mixed Residential. Maybe because the MU dwellings per acre was reduced from 20 down to 12, or because MR only allows a max of eight dwellings per acre instead of up to 14+ with a conditional use permit has something to do with it? You don't want to consider the big picture. My comment was directed to Teresa Roth, who also has her North Idaho Slow Growth group and is the primary contributor to Responsible North Idaho Growth and her concern about density. Where is that concern and activity in those cities? You are putting on blinders and cherry picking what you want to spin your agenda if you don't look at what the other cities are doing. How about saving Hayden from what other cities are doing that affects Hayden? There is a reason that the density is being built in the other cities and not Hayden. Can you tell us what that reason is? I know! There is a reason that Hayden streets are being packed with traffic passing through from the neighboring cities. Maybe,,, because we can't put up barriers to traffic from other cities using Hayden roads, it is necessary to widen, improve, etc... the streets to, hopefully, alleviate the growing congestion and traffic from those cars. Or,,, do you enjoy more bumper-to-bumper and congested streets? Will there be future permits? Sure. Especially permits for the recent approval of the large Residential Multi-Family with CUP's that the people involved with this page were so adamant about keeping. 56 units on a little more than 4 acres??? The recent zone amendment reduced the future potential density, whether you want to believe it or not. The reduction from 20 to 12 and the MU1 zone prevention of residential Mixed Use on the land contiguous to the proposed Huetter Bypass will have a significant impact towards better managing density. Are you suggesting that single family and duplex/trihome should also be prevented,,,, now that you are here?? But again, as related to this post, totally misleading claims about money and sources of funding, and how much discretionary perpetual money is available. Keep working to fool people who don't have time or knowledge to understand how to access all of the facts. Keep depending on people just taking your word for what you claim. Everything is not a conspiracy just because you, and your group, say so.