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Tetonia Impact Area:  Progress being made

For the second time in recent months, the County Commissioners and Tetonia City Council sat down together and discussed how to move forward with the Tetonia impact area negotiations. Both parties expressed a desire to not use the terms of the recently-exhumed agreement from 1995, but instead draft something more mutually agreeable.

Commissioner Larry Young emphasized that the county needs to have consistency between the Victor, Driggs, and Tetonia impact area agreements because enforcement of these agreements consumes a lot of county staff time and resources. Tetonia Planner Jan Gallup again inquired as to why the agreement from last year could not be used, to which County Attorney Kathy Spitzer emphasized that there were provisions in that proposed agreement which were contrary to Idaho law and needed to be corrected. Spitzer also explained that it was much easier and efficient for the County’s regulations to apply in the impact area since the Idaho Constitution requires that all enforcement of regulations be left up to the County.

Gallup emphasized that Tetonia really just wants a say in applications that are proposed near the City’s boundaries. It seemed that the Commissioners were amendable to Tetonia having first review of development applications in the impact area, and would even consider the creation of an urban growth boundary around the City. Both parties also agreed to take the sheriff’s fees issue off the table for now because it was crippling the progress of negotiations. At the end of this discussion, Kathy Rinaldi inquired as to the City’s boundaries in light of the May 25th referendum vote to repeal the controversial Egbert annexation. Mayor Rex Jardine responded that the City has not yet met to discuss their position on this issue. 

So what happens next? Tetonia officials will get together and draft another impact area agreement to propose to the county, and hopefully they will incorporate the County’s comments and concerns.

In other Tetonia news, Tierra Ball has been reappointed to City Council with the recent resignation of Deck Green.

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