Outlet Blvd Closed Thursday for Construction

Idaho Falls, ID – HK Contractors will close Outlet Boulevard – from the Sleep Inn & Suites north to S. Bellin Road – on October 1 to accommodate waterline installations across the roadway for the new Westmark Credit Union building site.

There will not be any access through this location during the waterline installations and roadway repair activities.

We anticipate reopening the roadway to traffic on Saturday, Oct. 3.

Please watch for equipment and workers, follow all traffic signs and flaggers, and reduce speeds to posted limits.

For questions, call 523-6600. For information on all city of Idaho Falls construction projects, see website.

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.  Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/

2015 Regular Season Coming to an End at Idaho Falls Zoo

Sunday, Oct. 4 will be the last day of the 2015 regular season at the Idaho Falls Zoo at Tautphaus Park. But, don’t despair! Guests still have time to visit the zoo this week to see some of the cold-hardy animals that become more active in the cooler temperatures.

The zoo is still open daily through Oct. 4 from 9 a.m. to last admission at 4 p.m. Grounds are cleared at 5 p.m.

The zoo will, of course, still host the annual Boo at the Zoo fundraiser on Oct. 28, 29 and 30. Has your company or organization signed up for a booth yet? If not, don’t delay!  Time is running out, and it’s a great way to advertise to nearly 10,000 people in our community!

For more information on a booth at Boo at the Zoo, email Laurie Gravatt at tpzs@cableone.net. Hurry, space is limited!

Even when the zoo is closed educational programs will still be offered including monthly toddler classes, winter and spring mini camps for kids and Zoomobiles – the zoo’s educational outreach program. For more information on off-season education offerings, visit Idaho Falls Zoo’s website.

Photo credit: Snow leopard courtesy of Paul Sangeorzan.

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Only a Few Days Left to Take Survey on Project that Would Extend Old Butte Road

Idaho Falls, ID – The public has until this Friday, Oct. 2 to complete an online survey on the Old Butte Road Extension Project.

The City of Idaho Falls is conducting an online survey to ask the public to give input on the proposed project. More than 160 people have completed the survey to date.

A link to the survey can be found on the home page of the city’s website at www.idahofallsidaho.gov. Survey responses are due by 5 p.m. on Oct. 2, 2015.

The city is in the very early stages of developing the Old Butte Road Extension Project between Pancheri Drive and West 33rd South (Pioneer). The project, if developed, will provide a direct route from US-20 to the I-15 Sunnyside Interchange and Sunnyside Road. The connection is identified in the Bonneville Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Long Range Transportation Plan as part of an Inner Beltway around the greater Idaho Falls area.

The project is federally funded so the city must undertake a thorough environmental analysis as required by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). The process will include opportunities for public input as alternatives are developed over the next 18 to 24 months.

Media note: To schedule an interview with city staff contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321 or kmccullough@idahofallsidaho.gov.

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.  Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/

Idaho Falls School District 91 Receives $500,000 Energy Conservation Rebate Check from Idaho Falls Power

Idaho Falls, ID Idaho Falls School District 91 was one of four recipients to receive an energy efficiency rebate check from Idaho Falls Power (IFP) at the Celebrate our Hydro Power Heritage event held at the Colonial Theater on Sept. 25.

In the 1980s, with the population in the northwest continuing to grow, the electric division was faced with a new set of issues. The region quickly realized that its hydropower resource was a finite resource. In addition to facing rate increases, the utility launched conservation programs to try to throttle demand. In 1981, Idaho Falls Power’s energy efficiency program was started and continues strong today.

“Investing in energy efficiency is the least cost option to expanding our system capacity and protecting our affordable cost rates,” explains Jackie Flowers, general manager, Idaho Falls Power. “Idaho Falls Power customers have responded very favorably to energy efficiency programs – looking for ways to more efficiently live or work in our community to stretch our current resources,” adds Flowers.

Idaho Falls School District 91 worked closely with IFP and Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) in its new building plan to identify energy efficient building opportunities. The investment in energy efficiency measures installed at Dora Erickson, Ethel Boys, Longfellow and Edgemont saved the school district money over the long-term operation and maintenance of the facilities. All four new schools combined are expected to save more than 3,596,682 kilowatt-hours from these measures – enough energy to power 217 homes. The school district was presented with a $500k rebate check ($125k per school).

Busch Agricultural Resources is the utility’s largest customer and has continuously demonstrated interest in a partnership with IFP to make their operations more efficient. Recently, IFP has been working with Busch Ag to install energy efficient equipment in their new wastewater handling facility. These improvements will save more than 263,000 kilowatt-hours – enough energy to power nearly 16 homes. The company was presented with a rebate check for $48,910.50.

InteGrow Malt LLC, the utility’s second largest customer has been able to expand their plant capacity without substantially increasing their electric load by improving efficiency of their processes. IFP has been working with InteGrow Malt to replace compressors with variable speed drives that will save more than 437,000 kilowatt-hours – enough energy to power more than 28 homes. The company was presented with a rebate check of $75,460.88.

Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center (EIRMC) has led IFP’s business community in energy efficiency – going above and beyond any program offering IFP has provided. They obtained Energy Star Designations in 2008, 2009 and 2011. A few of their recent projects include lighting upgrades that have resulted in more than 225,000 kilowatt-hours savings – enough energy to power more than 13 homes. EIRMC was presented with a $38,688 rebate check.

In recent years, IFP has seen energy efficiency trends move from an average annual savings of 1.369 million kilowatt-hours to an annual savings of 5.672 million kilowatt-hours.

“The pursuit of energy efficiency has allowed this community to extend the life and capacity of its generation resources – both locally owned and regionally under contract like those BPA resources – saving us all money in the long run,” states Flowers.

For additional information on Idaho Falls Power’s energy efficiency program, see link on the homepage of the city’s website.

Media Note: To schedule an interview or for additional information, contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321.

Photo:  Idaho Falls School District 91 Superintendent, George Boland receives check from Idaho Falls Power’s Conversation Energy Specialist, Wid Ritchie at the “Celebrate our Hydropower Heritage” event on Sept. 25.

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.  Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/

Idaho Falls City Council Approves New Municipal Services Director

Idaho Falls, ID – At tonight’s meeting, Idaho Falls City Council approved the hiring of the city’s new Municipal Services Director. This comes after current director, Craig Rockwood announced his plans for retirement after 29 years of service to the City of Idaho Falls.

Pamela Alexander is a Certified Public Manager who received her certificate from Arizona State University in 2006. She received her Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix in 1996.

Ms.  Alexander currently works as a Senior Fiscal Analyst for the City of Mesa’s Development and Sustainability Department – a position she has held since 2013. Prior to 2013, she worked as the Police Budget Coordinator for the City of Mesa Police Department where she managed a $150 million budget, coordinated capital improvement programs, managed purchasing functions and developed financial analysis and forecasting of operational funds. From 2007 to 2010, Ms. Alexander worked as a Budget Coordinator for the City of Mesa and was charged with coordinating the city’s five-year capital improvement program of over $1 billion.

“Ms. Alexander will add critical expertise to our city administration,” states Mayor Rebecca Casper. “She is particularly well-trained in budget analytics and is very familiar with internal city processes. Her professional training will serve our organization and our citizens well as we seek to improve key budget and city finance processes,” adds Casper.

Ms. Alexander was one of many applicants and was offered the job after the selection committee identified and interviewed five finalist candidates. The selection committee consisted of city staff, department directors, council members; as well as a finance executive from a local business and a finance director from a neighboring city.

“Working in local government provides me an opportunity to dedicate my profession and skills to an organization that embodies my belief in giving back to and serving the community. I am looking forward to the opportunity to serve the community of Idaho Falls as the Municipal Services Director,” states Alexander.

Ms. Alexander’s official start date is November 2. Her annual salary is $110k.

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.  Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/

Local Businesses & Schools to Receive More than Half a Million in Rebate Checks at Community Celebration

Idaho Falls, ID – The public is invited to join the City of Idaho Falls and Idaho Falls Power as we celebrate our energy independence at the IF150 Celebrate our Hydropower Heritage event on Friday, Sept. 25 at 6 p.m. at the Colonial Arts Theater.

Originally built in 1912, the City Hydropower Plant was rebuilt after it was destroyed in the Teton Dam Flood, work made possible thanks to $48 million in bonds that garnered 90% support from the community in 1978. The community stepped up to the plate again in the mid-1980s to pass another $48 million to help build the Gem State Hydropower Plant. Both bonds retired this year, resulting in significant savings to the community.

The event is free and open to the public and will include a historical read, award presentation and a panel discussion with former Idaho Falls Mayor Tom Campbell; former Electrical Engineer, Jeff Paine; and former Idaho Falls Councilmembers Mel Erickson, Paul Hovey and Art Chandler.

The utility’s largest customers and schools who have recently partnered with Idaho Falls Power in energy efficiency initiatives will receive substantial rebate checks and will be showcased at the event, these include: Busch Agricultural Resources, Integrow Malt (Modelo) and Idaho Falls School District 91.

Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center (EIRMC) will also be recognized for their longstanding commitment to energy efficiency. “Successful energy efficiency projects like those implemented at EIRMC have helped the community extend the capacity of these low-cost resources,” states Idaho Falls Power General Manager, Jackie Flowers.

EIRMC’s Engineering Director, Grant Gohr states, “With the help and expertise from Idaho Falls Power we began our journey to energy conservation, and in 2008 we became the first hospital in our company to earn the Energy Star Designation. Our parent company, HCA, took our ideas and shared them with over 150 sister hospitals nationally so that other facilities could work toward achieving the same energy conversation. We believe because of Idaho Falls Power’s commitment to our community, Idaho Falls has the most reliable power in the region.”

Media Note: To schedule an interview or for additional information, contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.  Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/

City of Idaho Falls Conducts Public Survey on Old Butte Road Extension Project

Idaho Falls, ID – The City of Idaho Falls is in the very early stages of developing the Old Butte Road Extension Project between Pancheri Drive and West 33rd South (Pioneer Road) and is seeking public input.

“The survey is an important part of gauging what residents know about the project. It will help shape our public involvement efforts over the next couple of years and provide us with early input regarding their desires and expectations for the corridor,” says Kent Fugal, city engineer.

The project, if developed, would provide a direct route from US-20 to the I-15 Sunnyside Interchange and Sunnyside Road – a connection identified in the Bonneville Metropolitan Planning Organization’s plan as part of an inner beltway around the greater Idaho Falls area.

The project would be federally funded, and a thorough environmental analysis will be required by the Federal Highway Administration.

Further opportunities for public input as alternatives are developed over the next 12-18 months will also be included in the project development process.

A link to the survey can be found on the homepage of the city’s website or by clicking on this Old Butte Road Survey link. The deadline for survey responses is October 2.

Media note: To schedule an interview with city staff contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321 or kmccullough@idahofallsidaho.gov.

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.  Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/

City of Idaho Falls & REDI Conduct Travel Study

Idaho Falls, ID – The City of Idaho Falls and REDI (Regional Economic Development Corporation for East Idaho) are requesting input from the business community on a travel study. The deadline for responses is Sept. 30.

The questions presented in the short survey include business travel frequency, flight destinations, business travel annual budget and seasonal travel trends.

“The information gathered from the survey will serve to assist the economic development efforts of the City of Idaho Falls and REDI,” states Dana Briggs, economic development coordinator for the City of Idaho Falls. “The data will also serve as a guide for air service development projects and opportunities at Idaho Falls Regional Airport,” adds Briggs.

“Ease and affordability of travel in and out of eastern Idaho is crucial to our existing businesses and new businesses we hope to attract,” says Darlene Gerry, interim executive director of REDI. “The information learned from this study will be invaluable in converging on a strategy and plan to meet the travel needs of the business community in the region. We hope interested parties will take the time to participate in the survey,” adds Gerry.

A link to the survey can be found on the home page of the city’s website or by clicking on this Travel Study link.

Media note: To schedule an interview with city staff contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321.

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About Idaho FallsSituated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.

About REDI: REDI for East Idaho! We are the economic development agency for Bingham and Bonneville counties, Idaho. We are proud to embark on our mission of marketing the many attributes of our great region to businesses looking to move and/or expand. REDI is about more than Bingham and Bonneville counties; it’s about the region in the broadest sense.

Eastern Idaho is located in a wide agricultural valley surrounded by mountain ranges, national parks and a national lab. With a vibrant business environment, an industrious and well-balanced workforce, and one of the lowest costs of doing business in the nation, increasing numbers of companies are discovering that eastern Idaho is a great place to grow a business. Our cost of living is below the national average and our overall tax burden per capita is the second lowest in the western states.

I.F. Fire Department Open House & Fallen Heroes Memorial

Idaho Falls, ID – The Idaho Falls Fire Department would like to invite the community to two events this weekend, Sept. 11 & 12.

On Friday, Sept. 11 from 4-6 p.m., the department will host an Open House at Station 4, located at 3180 S. Woodruff Avenue.

The open house is an opportunity for the community to meet members of the fire department and incoming recruits, learn about the department, ask questions and tour the station and trucks. Refreshments will be served.

On Saturday, Sept. 12 at 8:30 a.m., the 9/11 Fallen Heroes Memorial 5k/10k Run & Walk will take place at Snake River Landing.

Saturday’s event, sponsored by Paul Davis Restoration, is in honor of the 403 fallen firefighters, police and EMS heroes who died on 9/11 and also local fallen heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our communities. “We will never forget.”

Media Note: For additional information or to arrange an interview with city staff, contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321.

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About Idaho Falls Fire Department: The mission of the Idaho Falls Fire Department is to protect the lives and property of the citizens and visitors of Idaho Falls by providing the highest possible levels of service through fire prevention, public education, fire suppression, emergency medical services and mitigation of the effects of natural and man-made disasters consistent with the resources provided as desired and dictated by the citizens and elected officials of the city of Idaho Falls.

The Idaho Falls Fire Department Fire Services division serves population of approximately 85,000 residents occupying approximately 250 square miles. The area includes the city of Idaho Falls and the Bonneville County Fire Protection District. The Idaho Falls Fire Department Emergency Medical Services (EMS) division serves a population of approximately 118,000 residents occupying approximately 1900 square miles. The area includes Bonneville County and portions of Bingham and Jefferson counties.

Idaho Falls Historic Preservation Commission

Idaho Falls, ID – The Idaho Falls Historic Preservation Commission is seeking a new member after the recent resignation of their architectural historian. Deadline for applications is Oct. 9.

The commission is charged with identifying properties within Idaho Falls and educating residents and visitors about historic resources through walking tours, brochures, workshops and presentations to community groups.

In addition, the commission prepares nominations to the National Register of Historic Places and has completed nominations for the former municipal airport hangar and caretaker’s dwelling, the Ridge Avenue Historic District, the 11th Street Historic District and the Holy Rosary Church.

“Preserving our collective history, and the tangible and intangible elements associated with that history, is essential to the economic and cultural well-being of Idaho Falls and its present and future residents, businesses and visitors,” explains Idaho Falls Historic Preservation Chairperson, Julie Williams. “If you’re qualified, passionate and interested, please consider becoming a member,” adds Williams.

Those who have a strong interest in historic preservation or history may apply to be appointed by Mayor Casper and City Council. A link to the application can be found on the homepage of the city’s website at www.idahofallsidaho.gov. The application can also be picked up at the Mayor’s Office inside City Hall on Constitution Way.

Preference is given to those who have professional education, training and/or experience in the disciplines of architectural history, architecture, history, city planning, law or archaeology.

The commission meets monthly at noon on the first Thursday of the month in the City Hall Annex Building located at 680 Park Avenue. The approximate time commitment is thirty hours annually.

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About Idaho Falls:  Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications.