Idaho Lands Agency Critics Blast 2012 Swap

Sep 17, 2013

Grant Burgoyne, a Democrat, represents Boise.
Credit Idaho Legislature

Two lawmakers who have so far sought unsuccessfully to halt the Department of Lands' expansion into commercial real estate are again criticizing the agency, this time over a 2012 property swap they contend wasn't to Idaho's advantage.

Last year, the Department of Lands swapped state endowment land on Payette Lake in McCall for privately-owned Idaho Falls commercial property.

Idaho's assessor concluded each property was worth about $6.1 million.

Now, however, a group including Reps. Grant Burgoyne of Boise and John VanderWoude of Nampa say the Idaho Falls property was worth just $4.5 million, meaning Idaho was shorted $1.6 million.

Burgoyne and VanderWoude have long been Department of Land critics, contending its expansion into properties including a Boise self-storage business puts the state inappropriately in direct competition with the private sector.