Fire trucks with red, white and blue bunting, kids on their parents' shoulders waving little flags: what’s more emblematic of American patriotism than a Fourth of July parade? Now the volunteer group that has organized Boise’s parade for the last 20 years is concerned about paying for it in the future.
Jacob Barrett with the We The People 4th of July Celebration Committee says a new rule last year from the Ada County Highway District required them to hire a contractor for traffic control rather than relying on volunteers. Barrett says that nearly doubled the price of last year’s parade to $4,400.
“We have what it takes to make it happen this year,” Barrett says. “But we want to be able to take this forward so that the city of Boise can continue to enjoy this for another 20 years and more.”
Barrett says the group had a surplus after the 2014 parade but after two years of the higher cost they’re unsure about paying for next year.
“It is a concern but we are confident that it is something people really do appreciate and want to rally around, that this is something that is valued by Boiseans,” Barrett says. “We see crowds of 10,000 plus as many years as I can remember.”
The We the People Committee has created a campaign on the website GoFundMe to raise money. Barrett doesn’t fault ACHD for creating the additional cost. He says the highway district was just trying to do what’s best for public safety when it made the rule. An ACHD spokesman says the new rule was put in place after injuries at events outside Ada County caused the agency to review its policies and bring them in line with the most current traffic safety guidelines.
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