Following a series of citywide neighborhood block parties in August, Boise officials are set to launch a policy-driven neighborhood workshop Saturday, Sept. 15, in an effort to forge stronger bonds between City Hall and Boise neighborhoods.
"Our neighborhoods are a huge part of making Boise the most-livable city in America," said Theresa McLeod, assistant to Mayor Dave Bieter.
Boise's 200,000-plus population resides under a patchwork of 37 neighborhood associations, ranging from the city's oldest--the North End Neighborhood Association--to one of the newest, the Harris Ranch Neighborhood Association.
Workshop topics for the event, to be held at the Boise Public Library Main Branch, vary from emergency preparedness to urban gardening. Spreading the word about Neighborhood Reinvestment Grants will also be a part of the outreach. That program distributes $400,000 in annual capital grants to Boise neighborhoods for improvements. For example, East End and Southeast associations are currently applying for funds to plant black cottonwood trees along the Boise River.
"Associations can apply based on projects their citizens call top priorities," said McLeod.
The two-month series of neighborhood events--which city officials hope to make an annual affair--culminates Thursday, Sept. 27, at the Boise Depot, where Bieter will honor good neighbors, nominated by their fellow residents.
Bieter handed out similar honors to 35 Boiseans in 2011.
"My neighbor always mows my front lawn for me," said Adam Park, spokesman for the mayor. "I plan to nominate him this year."