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Posts tagged: Tony Berns

Berns: Gookin Wrong Re: Windfall

Executive Tony Berns of LCDC responds to comments made by Councilman Dan Gookin earlier this month:

At the City’s June 6, 2013, strategic planning session, Councilman Gookin shared that a key strategy of his to address the City’s budgeting challenges would be to terminate the LCDC, thus resulting in more revenue to the City (link to his comments:  As you know Wendy, LCDC has two redevelopment districts; the Lake District which sunsets in 2021, and the River District which sunsets in 2027.  Councilman Gookin shared that via his analysis, it would take about 3 years to “unwind the debt” of the LCDC, which he shared would then result in an additional $3 million/year of revenue for the City. There will not be $3 million in revenue per year to the City of CDA in three years by terminating the LCDC in 2014The City will not experience a windfall of new revenue if the LCDC is terminated.  Here is why: More here.

Question: Would it be foolish/wise to terminate LCDC in 2014?

Bill Sez Of Tony: Off With His Head

At the Lake City Senior Center this week, Sharon Culbreth, state Sen. Kathy Sims, and Mary Souza line up to bash Lake City Development Corp.

Never one to fail to attack when she smells blood in the water, Bill McCrory of is crying for Tony Berns's head over his decision to deal with her and the Coeur d'Alene Press via email. (Side note: How would you like to get up every morning knowing Mary Souza was sticking pins in your voodoo doll in one quarter & Bill was spitting & spewing at his keyboard command post: “Me hatessss him”? Poor Tony Berns.) Bill believes the lack of public access is a firing offense. Reluctantly, HucksOnline agrees with her that it's a poor decision, even though the intent behind the decision is to put some distance between you and a relentless foe who can't be pleased. But Bill wants more than just Tony's head this fine morning: “The Executive Director and some Commissioners of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho’s urban renewal agency, the Lake City Development Corporation, appear to have enacted and then on more than one occasion followed an official policy which is contrary to the Idaho Code.  They have engaged in a pattern and practice of unlawful conduct.  They all need to be removed.” You can read the rest of the spiel here.


Berns: Adams’ Overrun Claim Wrong

At the candidates forum sponsored by the Coeur Group Tuesday night, Coeur d'Alene council candidate Steve Adams (pictured) claimed the Education Corridor project is experiencing cost overruns of $2 million to $3 million. HucksOnline asked North Idaho College about this claim. Here's the reply from executive Tony Berns of the Lake City Development Corp., responded under the heading “Mr. Adams is wrong in his statement.” He emailed: “MDM's bid price of $3.69 million for Phase 1A came in under JUB Engineer's project cost estimate for Phase 1A of $5.1 million.  So a great deal for the public.  Currently, MDM is adhering to their budget.  There will be some minor change orders to the original contract for project add-ons that NIC has requested (not big money, you can talk to Ron or Garry about those). Change orders are not project cost overruns; they are simply additional work items added to the contract agreed to by all parties.”

Question: Should Adams publicly correct his error made in public?

LCDC’s Berns Reacts To Hayes’ Info

The information contained in Mr. Hayes’ email today regarding estimated urban renewal tax increment receipts for the 2010 tax year are higher than the fiscal year 2011 LCDC district budget tax increment receipts adopted by the LCDC Board last August (please refer to 8/18/10 LCDC Board Minutes).  Assuming everyone pays their taxes, Mr. Hayes’ documents show $3.9 million of estimated tax increment revenue for the LCDC Lake District ($3.1 million per FY2011 LCDC budget), and $1.7 million of estimated tax increment revenue for the LCDC River District ($1.4 million per FY2011 LCDC budget). The primary reason for the variance in Mr. Hayes’ values and the LCDC budget values is that LCDC has to use projected increment valuations and estimated taxing district levy rates when setting the budget in August of each year/Tony Berns, executive director/Lake City Development Corp. More here.

$1.5M For Corridor, $500K For McEuen

LCDC exec Tony Berns tells Hucks Online that the $2M budgeted for next year by the agency for the Education Corridor ($1.5M) and McEuen Field upgrade ($500,000) is a guesstimate. The values “may be amended once the planning efforts for both initiatives are completed later this calendar year.” Also, he said, LCDC may look to borrow funds “to partner on both initiatives,” If the two planning efforts come in with big price tags. Bottom line, he said, “it is still too early to know how much the two projects will cost to complete, and thus too early for LCDC to clearly define its financial partnership role in each.” (No Coeur d’Alene Press reporters were fired in the making of this post.)

Question: Do you support LCDC’s financial involvement in McEuen Field/Education Corridor upgrades?

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D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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