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The AIC Blog connects the association staff to our membership, provides informative updates on state and federal policy issues, and spotlights upcoming AIC training, conferences and events.


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Top tags: City Officials' Day at the Capitol 

Deadline for City Achievement Award Applications Approaching

Posted By Justin Ruen, Tuesday, April 16, 2019

The deadline for submitting applications for City Achievement Awards is May 29, 2019.  Cities can find more information, including the application form and flyer on the AIC website.  

The City Achievement Awards recognize innovative projects and programs that make a difference in our communities.  This year there are six categories:

Public Safety

Youth Council

Community Engagement

Public Works & Transportation

Economic & Community Development

Parks & Recreation

The awards are announced and presented at the Awards Banquet on Thursday, June 20, 2019 at the AIC Annual Conference in Boise.

If you have any questions, please contact Payton Grover by phone at (208) 344-8594 or email at

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AIC City Budgeting Manual for FY 2020 Completed

Posted By Justin Ruen, Friday, April 12, 2019

The City Budgeting Manual for FY 2020 has been completed and you can download the PDF by clicking the link at the bottom of this post.  The manual includes useful information on the basics of the city budgeting process, city revenues, an FY 2020 budget calendar, and spreadsheets with revenue history and projections.

AIC will mail one paper copy of the manual to each city hopefully next week.  Additional paper copies can be ordered from the AIC office.  The manual is also available to download under the Manuals section of the AIC website, which can be accessed under the link on the home page for “Resources”

For those who would like more training on budgeting, I strongly recommend registering for the regional AIC Spring District Workshops that will be coming up in late April.  These will include training on the basics of the city budgeting process and city revenue sources.  You can register for the Spring District Workshops via the AIC website.

The first deadline in the budgeting process is coming in a few weeks: Tuesday, April 30 is the deadline to notify the county clerk of the date, time and location of the city budget hearing for the upcoming fiscal year.  Don’t miss this deadline!

If you have any questions on budgeting, don’t hesitate to call the AIC office at (208) 344-8594 or email


 Attached Files:

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AIC District Directors to be Selected at Upcoming Spring District Workshops

Posted By Justin Ruen, Thursday, April 4, 2019

District Directors representing regions of the state on the AIC Board of Directors will be selected at the upcoming AIC Spring District Workshops in late April.   You can register for the Spring District Workshops via the AIC website.

Training topics that will be covered at the Spring District Workshops include a review of the 2019 legislative session, the municipal budgeting process, and planning and zoning. 

The Spring District Workshops will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the following locations:

Monday, April 22: District 5—Idaho Central Credit Union, 4400 Central Way, Chubbuck

Tuesday, April 23: District 6—Shilo Inn Convention Center, 780 Lindsay Blvd., Idaho Falls

Wednesday, April 24: District 4—Best Western Burley Inn, 800 North Overland Ave., Burley

Thursday, April 25: District 3—Nampa Civic Center, 311 3rd St. S., Nampa

Monday, April 29: District 2—Best Western Plus University Inn, 1516 Pullman Rd., Moscow

Tuesday, April 30: District 1—Best Western Plus Coeur d’Alene Inn, 506 W. Appleway Ave., Coeur d’Alene

The District Caucuses for selecting the District Directors will be held at 12:45 p.m. during the lunch break.

At the request of the elected officials in District 3A, their caucus will be held in May at a time that will be more convenient.

In 2016, the AIC Bylaws were amended to provide that nomination and election of AIC Board District Directors take place at the Spring District Workshops.  The primary reason for the Bylaw change was to allow more AIC member cities to participate in the nomination and election of AIC Board District Directors.

The AIC Board includes two elected officials from each district, with District Directors serving alternating two-year terms.  Normally, one District Director is elected each year, unless the other District Director position is vacant, in which case board members to fill both positions would be selected at the caucus.  The District Director whose term is not expiring serves as the Presiding District Director at the caucus.  In the event that both director positions are vacant, then an Acting Presider is selected to fill that role.

The process of selecting District Directors begins with the Presiding District Director calling for nominations.  People not present, but eligible, may be nominated.  Self-nominations are also allowed.  After nominations have been made, each nominee may choose to say a few words.

Voting may be either by voice vote or written ballots.  Each elected official present at the caucus is allowed one vote.  For example, if the mayor and four councilmembers from one city are present, they each may cast one vote for a total of five votes from that city.  Only elected officials are allowed to vote.  The candidate receiving the most votes is elected.  If there is a tie, the Presiding District Director shall break the tie.

2019 Presiding District Directors

District 1: Ron Jacobson—Mayor, Post Falls

District 2: Bill Lambert—Mayor, Moscow

District 3: Kenny Everhart—Councilor, Idaho City

District 3A: Genesis Milam—Councilor, Meridian

District 4: Bruce Hossfeld—Mayor, Paul

District 5: Rick Cheatum—Councilor, Pocatello

District 6: Rebecca Casper—Mayor, Idaho Falls

2019 Positions Up for Election

District 1: Shelby Rognstad—Mayor, Sandpoint

District 2: Bob Blakey—Councilor, Lewiston

District 3: Darin Taylor—Mayor, Middleton

District 3A: Lauren McLean—Council President, Boise

District 4: Casey Andersen—Councilor, Burley

District 5: Terry Larson—Councilor, Preston

District 6: Robert “BJ” Berlin—Mayor, Roberts

For more information, please contact AIC Executive Director Jess Harrison at or AIC Policy Analyst Justin Ruen at



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Regional Budget & Levy Workshops Coming Up Soon

Posted By Justin Ruen, Thursday, April 4, 2019

The Idaho Tax Commission has scheduled the regional Budget & Levy Workshops to provide training for local government officials on budgeting and levying property taxes.  The sessions for city officials start at 8:30 a.m. and run through Noon.   For more information you can email Gary Houde at




May 7, 2019

Moscow—Latah County Fair Grounds

Exhibit Building

1021 Harold

May 8, 2019

Coeur d’Alene—Kootenai County Admin. Bldg.

451 Government Way

May 14, 2019

Idaho Falls

College of Eastern Idaho

1600 S. 25th E

Morning Session

Alexander Creek Bldg (#5) Rm 541

May 15, 2019

Pocatello—Clarion Inn

1599 Bench Rd.

(208) 237-1400

Registration Fee Required

May 16, 2019

Twin Falls—College of Southern Idaho

315 Falls Avenue

Herrett Center

May 30, 2019

Boise—Boise School District

8169 W. Victory Road

Board Room 1,2,3

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Strategic Communications: H2O - Discount for Small & Medium Utilities

Posted By Johanna M. Bell, Wednesday, April 3, 2019

The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) is offering a special registration rate of $250 for utilities with service area populations under 75,000 for the 2019 Strategic Communications H2O!

What: StratCom -H2O

When: June 3 - 4, 2019

Where: Cleveland, Ohio, 

The purpose of Strategic Communications: H2O is to help clean water utilities create proactive communications platforms—strategically advancing a utility’s long-term goals and initiatives, and not merely reacting to daily challenges. It’s agenda and content are designed to benefit communications professionals, as well as clean water executives.

Join others to share expert strategies, action plans and peer-to-peer solutions to improve your platform and reap the benefits of becoming part of the nationwide network of clean water communicators.

  • Interact and learn from some of the best clean water communicators in the country.
  • High-powered agenda designed to address the internal and external communications issues that face today’s clean water utilities striving to become Utilities of the Future.
  • Take part in a national clean water media story, and bring it back to your home city.
  • Connect with a nationwide network of water sector communicators.
  • Follow up takeaways, resources, and collaboration opportunities extend your conference learning and experience.

For more information contact Tina Kenia at

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Free EPA Webinar: Planning for and Responding to Cyanotoxins in Drinking Water

Posted By Johanna M. Bell, Wednesday, April 3, 2019

When: Thursday April 25th, 2019; 11:00 am – 1:00 pm EST


How to join: Join at the time of the webinar with this link.


The EPA Office of Water is hosting a webinar focusing on approaches for managing Hazardous Algal Blooms (HABs) in drinking water systems. Presentations will include a discussion of the health impacts of HABs, effective drinking water treatment approaches and a discussion of various EPA tools and resources that can be used by public water systems to manage cyanobacteria and cyanotoxins in drinking water. Additionally, The City of Salem, Oregon will share information on what they learned about cyanotoxins management from the cyanotoxins event they experienced in their drinking water system in 2018.


If you have any questions please contact Katherine Foreman at or Lesley D’Anglada at


For more information please visit the EPA's CyanoHABs Website 


* We’re in the process of revamping the EPA’s Cyanobacteria Website and some pages may not be working. Apologies for the inconvenience, we expect the issue to be resolved soon.

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AIC Elected Official Salary Survey Report is Available

Posted By Johanna M. Bell, Wednesday, April 3, 2019

AIC has completed a salary survey of Idaho Mayors and Councilors, and you can check out the results by clicking HERE


This is a hot topic as ordinances to increase elected official salaries must be passed by the City Council and published in the official city newspaper after Council passage by Thursday, August 22, 2019.  The salary ordinance takes effect in January 2020 after the November city general elections.


Mayor and Council salaries are required by Idaho law to be set by ordinance, and the ordinance must be passed at least 75 days before the city general election in an odd-numbered year, which is timed to be just in advance of the city candidate filing period.


We appreciate the help of the many City Clerks and other staff who completed the survey.

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Conservation Voters of Idaho: Getting Ready for Earth Day 2019!

Posted By Johanna M. Bell, Friday, March 29, 2019

Earth Day is just around the corner and this year’s theme from the Earth Day Network is Protect
Our Species!

Cities play a critical role in protecting biodiversity and educating the public about the importance of species and biodiversity in regard to community health and well-being. Local governments have a wide array of options available to implement species and biodiversity protection plans. These include ordinances, citywide strategies, public outreach, and education campaigns. The Earth Day Network has put together an excellent set of resources designed to help local leaders engage and educate constituents and launch initiatives to protect biodiversity.

The Toolkit for Cities and Local Leaders contains ideas for actions, examples of successful  initiatives, media tools, and other resources to help municipalities participate. Since it’s inception, local governments have always been at the center of Earth Day activities and continue to play an essential role in engaging and educating the public. Earth Day offers an opportunity and a platform to bring your community together, amplify actions and initiatives that already focus on biodiversity, and launch new ones to help make your city more biodiversity-friendly.

Included are a series of example initiatives ranging from local government action to public engagement and education. There are tools to organize a roundtable discussion around The Global Day of Conversation, where you can bring together relevant influencers, experts, and stakeholders from all corners of your community. This is a great opportunity to review the status of conservation in your city, current infrastructure and resources in place for fostering biodiversity, as well as how the community can collectively reduce its impact on biodiversity.

For communities that want to take it to the next step, there is a sample proclamation recognizing the importance of protecting species and declaring April 22, 2019 as Earth Day. The Toolkit includes everything you need to implement a communications campaign to highlight your biodiversity plans - talking points, press releases, letter to the editor templates, and social media content. Communities can also Become an Earth Day 2019 Partner City by sharing the city’s plans to take action on Earth Day 2019. By signing up, you receive updates on the campaign and success stories from cities around the world.

For more information about Earth Day 2019 in your city or becoming a Partner City, please contact the Earth Day Network at

About the Conservation Voters of Idaho

Conservation Voters for Idaho (CVI) is a statewide bipartisan organization whose mission is to create the political environment to protect the natural environment. We understand that our connection to our natural heritage is a huge part of being an Idahoan. Whether it be camping in the woods with your family, hunting or fishing with your friends, a great hike on the outskirts of town, or a walk through a neighborhood park, we do our best to help safeguard the air, water, and outdoor spaces that allow us to enjoy those things. CVI works to hold elected officials accountable for their votes and provide independent information to voters through multi-channeled engagement practices.

CVI cultivates and elects candidates to public office who will protect Idaho’s natural heritage because our economy, the health of our families, and our treasured way of life cannot be sustained without sound investments and smart policies. CVI also works to advocate for sound environmental policies and has a successful history of working with communities to support local policy solutions. We are always looking for space to share learnings on municipal issues as we continue to collaborate with cities across the state. Our issues range from open space, water, and wildlife to safer chemicals, transportation, and clean energy. We know every community is starting with a different set of challenges and opportunities and that solutions will be as diverse as those communities.

Please feel free to contact CVI if you have any questions on this year's Earth Day or would like  more information on the work CVI does with cities and communities in Idaho at


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Training Opportunity: L0547 Continuity Exercise Design Course | April 24-25, 2019 in Boise, ID

Posted By Johanna M. Bell, Wednesday, March 27, 2019

FEMA Region X is pleased to announce an offering of the L0547 Continuity Exercise Design Course taking place on April 24-25, 2019 in Boise, ID. For additional details, please review the information and application procedures HERE.

Course Description:  This course is designed to provide participants with the tools and hands-on experience necessary to develop continuity exercises for their organization. This course begins by explaining the unique aspects of continuity exercise design. The course also provides instruction on how to develop a continuity exercise and allows participants to use what they learn to create continuity exercises in class.

Target Audience: The course is intended for state, local, tribal, private, and Federal employees responsible for a Continuity of Operations Program.

For more information and instructions on how to apply, please contact Kate Grant, at or at (425) 487-4505.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Region 10 is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request a disability accommodation contact Stacie Imuta at least five (5) working days in advance at 425-487-4772 or email at

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The End of the Legislative Session Approaches

Posted By Johanna M. Bell, Friday, March 22, 2019

The end of this year’s legislative session is fraught with tension as the Legislature faces major decisions on Medicaid funding and transportation funding that have yet to be resolved. 

We greatly appreciate the high level of engagement from city officials this session and grassroots advocacy has been instrumental in protecting cities’ interests this session.

We will briefly cover where the major issues sit and how city officials can help as we approach the homestretch.


One of the most significant victories this session was the defeat of House Bill 130, which was held in the Senate Local Government & Taxation Committee after cities expressed concerns about the bill’s provisions concerning highway and railroad rights-of-way.  But annexation remains a very live issue for legislators and AIC committed to look at the issue over the interim to see if there are potential reforms to the law.

Online Sales Tax

City officials weighed in strongly asking that House Bill 259 on online sales and use tax collection be sent to the Senate amending order for changes and that effort was successful.  AIC is working hard to protect cities’ interests and it is expected that some compromise will be necessary (e.g. like a sunset of the revenue sharing diversion after a few years).

Transportation Funding

There is still considerable work for transportation funding issues to be resolved.

Senate Bill 1201 was passed by the Senate 19-15-1 and now awaits a hearing in the House Transportation & Defense Committee.  The bill would phaseout the Idaho State Police from the Highway Distribution Account (HDA) over five years beginning in FY 2021 and concluding in FY 2025, resulting in an additional $18 million to the HDA after full phaseout.

Senate Bill 1126 passed the Senate this week by a unanimous vote.  The bill would extend the surplus eliminator for five years, with half of state general fund surplus revenue being dedicated to the Strategic Initiatives Fund for transportation projects that is split 60% to ITD and 40% to local highway jurisdictions.  The bill’s fate in the House is uncertain.

It would be helpful for city officials to weigh in with legislators asking that any transportation funding package include local highway jurisdictions (cities, counties and highway districts) and discussing the significant road and bridge needs that we have at the local level.

Urban Renewal

This remains a very live issue as House Bill 217 was sent by the Senate Local Government & Taxation Committee to the amending order for changes that will likely be drafted this weekend.  AIC will be working diligently to protect cities’ interests on this legislation.  Cities are encouraged to weigh in with members of the Senate, sharing your perspectives on how important urban renewal is as an economic development tool and how it has been used successfully to revitalize downtowns.    

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