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Decision on Foothills Airstrip? ETA Set for Wednesday, Aug. 10

"We’re going to need some fresh minds and little bit of rest."

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After listening to hours worth of evenly-divided public testimony on July 27, regarding a controversial proposal to build an airstrip in the Boise Foothills, Ada County Commissioners said they needed to delay their decision.

"You get into these land-use issues and it tends to get emotional," said Commissioner Dave Case. "We received 250 pieces of testimony that we still need to go through."

Though only 31 people testified at the public hearing—16 in favor, 15 against—more than 200 apparently sent in testimony or documents for commissioners to consider.

"We have a lot of material to consider here, and some very good testimony," said Commissioner Jim Tibbs. "There were quite a few new exhibits introduced that we haven't had a chance to thoroughly review yet."

"We're going to need some fresh minds and little bit of rest," said Commissioner Rick Yzaguirre, as the evening of July 27 approached the morning of July 28 and with that, Case, Yzaguirre and Tibbs agreed to push their decision to Wednesday, Aug.10 at 7 p.m. at the Ada County Courthouse.

It was earlier this year when landowner Dean Hilde asked for special zoning to build a private airstrip in the Wildhorse subdivision, north of Table Rock, in the Foothills. Because the subdivision is outside Boise city limits, the Boise City Council asked the Ada County Planning and Zoning Commission to reject the request. Boise Mayor David Bieter said he was stunned at "the audacity" of such a request and Councilman TJ Thomson said an airstrip would be "out of touch with the community."

Arguments fell on deaf ears when in May, the commissioners approved the request. Undeterred, however, the City of Boise appealed the decision. The three county commissioners will be acting as ad-hoc air traffic control managers when they try to negotiate a safe landing of the issue on Wednesday, Aug. 10.

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