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Pocatello Christmas Lights Parade is Friday, November 26, Starting at 6:30 P.M.

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November 24, 2021

Pocatello’s annual Christmas Lights Parade will take place this Friday, November 26, the day after Thanksgiving, beginning at 6:30 p.m.

As noted on visitpocatello.com, “Hundreds of floats will have candy and treats for the kids.  The parade route will run from 3rd and East Center and traveling under the Center Street Underpass to The Yellowstone and turning to travel North on Main Street to the Downtown Pavilion.”

To learn more, visit:  visitpocatello.com, Christmas night lights parade

 

City of Pocatello Calendar, Week of November 29 – December 3, 2021

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(City of Pocatello Press Release, November 24, 2021)

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 29

No Meetings Scheduled

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 30

Polling Location
8:00 a.m., Council Chambers

CDBG Advisory Committee Meeting
12:00 p.m., Paradice Conference Room

Site Plan Review
1:30 p.m., Iwamizawa Conference Room

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 1

Historic Preservation Commission
6:00 p.m. Council Chambers

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 2

Water Department Materials Bid Opening
2:00 p.m., Paradice Conference Room

City Council Clarification Meeting
5:30 p.m., Council Chambers

City Council Meeting
6:00 p.m., Council Chambers

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 3

No Meetings Scheduled

 

Pocatello Mayoral Candidate David Worley to Appear on America First with Dr. Sebastian Gorka Today at 2:40 P.M.

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November 24, 2021

Pocatello Mayoral candidate David Worley will be on the nationally syndicated show, America First, with Dr. Sebastian Gorka, today, Wednesday, November 24 at 2:40 p.m.

The show is carried on KSEI News Talk, AM 930/FM 98.9, or listen online here:

 

Idahospeaks.com, protecting Freedom of Speech for Conservatives in Idaho

 

P.A.G.E. Cofounder Lydia Noble: True Leaders Take Ownership

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November 23, 2021

True Leaders Take Ownership

by:  P.A.G.E. Cofounder Lydia Noble

P.A.G.E. Cofounder Lydia Noble

I recently attended a local professional meeting for the first time to learn more about business dynamics in our community.  Although I thoroughly enjoyed what I learned, I left this meeting shocked and dismayed when Mayor Blad volunteered to inform attendees (mostly local business leaders) that the City is attempting to hire a new Chief Financial Officer (CFO) now that the existing CFO has left.  To paraphrase the Mayor—he is struggling to hire a new CFO “because of the Council.”  Clearly implying that the current Pocatello City Council is hindering his ability to hire a new CFO.

 

Are attendees at these professional meetings gullible enough to believe such statements?  I hope not.  Please, Pocatello business community, do not believe everything you are told without investigating for yourselves.

In my opinion, the Mayor’s statement was completely inappropriate on several levels, especially because of his leadership position in our City.  After 40 years in business, having attended hundreds of meetings, this blame-game is so inappropriate to me that it is impossible to believe anyone, let alone a Mayor, would think it permissible to state publicly—for what purpose?  Especially since I have attended Pocatello City Council meetings for nearly two years and know there are many contributing factors and reasons why the Mayor is struggling to find, let alone hire, a new CFO.

First, things said in the heat of the moment are often regretted later.  If you mistakenly still believe rumor and innuendo that “Council caused the CFO to leave” or that Council is making it difficult to hire a replacement, both are false.  On June 16, 2021, in an on-line article in the “Pocatello/Chubbuck Observer,” the outgoing Pocatello CFO publicly clarified:  “I have since had the opportunity to play back the recording of the meeting [when he resigned] and to talk with Council members Stevens and Bray and believe that the intentions of Council members Stevens, Bray and Ortega were not to impugn me or my work personally at that time or at any other time during my stay with the City of Pocatello;” he further stated “I now feel that the entire City Council at that time and before that time did not disregard my hard work and efforts on the budget.  Additionally, I also feel that from the time I began working at Pocatello up to the time of the Thursday budget meeting that my efforts were appreciated by the entire City Council.”

Please hear the outgoing CFO comment about current City financial policies (need to be strengthened and add some accountability “teeth”) on the City website recording (see Agenda/Minutes Tab) of the 10/14/2021 Council Work Session at approx. 03:05:00.

Second, the Mayor stated at the meeting I attended that the City is “now” using a headhunter to fill the open CFO position.  Not only should a serious search for a CFO have started in June, when our CFO first announced his resignation, but also it should have started with using headhunters and/or specialized online recruiters.  Instead, according to the Mayor’s statements, standard City recruitment methods were used until now.  This probably wasted valuable search time.  NOTE:  In my opinion, the City needs to target CFOs with specialized talents in resolving city financial issues.  Yes, I believe Pocatello is facing financial difficulty despite the fact that current leadership is unwilling or unable to admit it.

In mid-January 2021, when the “then-incoming” CFO took over, please understand that this position had been unfilled for 3.5 months (since 10/01/2020).  Unbelievable amounts of work needed to be caught-up, not to mention a crucial audit completed and a new budgeting cycle begun.  Soon, the CFO began discovering a number of budgeting errors from the previous year requiring correction along with more errors discovered into June.  In fact, according to the City, the FY2020 audit remains incomplete, likely due to those inherited issues.  Add in the fact that the City had a sizeable FY2022 budget deficit—largely unaddressed and temporarily deferred by relying heavily upon one-time reserves—and you get a clearer picture of why many CFOs might not be up to dealing with the financial challenges facing Pocatello.

Third, mostly due to COVID, it is just not easy now to find qualified, experienced employees for many jobs.  This isn’t the fault of City Council.  It has been difficult to find experienced replacements for many jobs at the City.  Why place blame on the Council, and for what purpose?

The Mayor basically and publicly “threw under the bus” the entire City Council for his own inability to recruit and hire a new CFO in a timely manner.  I hope and believe local business leaders are wise enough to realize that “fault” is rarely found in a single reason.  I have faith you will engage in critical thinking regarding such statements.  Occasionally attending City Council meetings helps provide the bigger picture.

I believe strong leaders must be able to diffuse conflict, achieve compromise and/or build consensus within group settings—even difficult or contentious groups.  Strong leaders take ownership and foresee the potential delays and pitfalls associated with replacing essential positions quickly.  To me, the responsibility for Pocatello lacking a CFO right now (or even prospects for one) falls squarely on the Mayor’s inability to be proactive and think long-term.  Not only did the Mayor fail to direct an immediate and aggressive search for a replacement CFO in June, he also failed to accept the generous offer of the outgoing CFO to remain in Pocatello until the end of November—an additional two weeks the City could have retained financial leadership.  Based on these failures, the Mayor appears to me to prefer being a “victim of circumstance” rather than a Chief Executive Officer (CEO) managing a $130M+ municipal corporation.

This city “is” having financial difficulties and needs a qualified, very seasoned and experienced CFO sooner-than-later to get financial matters back on track.  Mr. Mayor, you are the Pocatello CEO responsible for running the “business” of this City.  The responsibility for ensuring that we have essential personnel, such as a CFO who is actively serving the needs of this City right now, is yours—not that of the City Council.  Please take ownership of your responsibilities.

 

Columnist Art da Rosa: Disappointment in the Idaho Legislature

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November 23, 2021

Disappointment in the Idaho Legislature

by:  Columnist Art da Rosa

Pocatello-Chubbuck Observer Columnist Art da Rosa

On Friday, November 12th, I interrupted my regular schedule to attend a town hall meeting with the three members of the legislature from District 28.  These legislators said that they said that they wanted to know what their constituents thought of the vaccine mandate.  The overwhelming message was that the State of Idaho must pass a nullification bill, pushing back on all vaccine mandates.

I left the meeting hopeful that the rights of Idahoans would be protected, that the choice of being vaccinated or not would be left to individuals rather than the government.  Sadly, it was not to be.  They passed a symbolic resolution condemning President Biden’s vaccine mandate.  Symbolic, because the resolution does absolutely nothing.

At least the conservative members of the Idaho House did their part.  They sent bills to the Idaho Senate that would have provided Idahoans with the protections they need.  Equally true is the unwillingness of the State Senate to be on the side of the People.

The Idaho State Senate is the problem, and it is time to send them a different message.  Last Saturday I listened as Liberty Dinner host, John Crowder, quoted Representative Ron Nate’s statement that, “The Idaho State Senate is where good bills go to die.”  I believe that to be true.  They need to be replaced.  Voted out!  Excepting a couple, every senator needs to be replaced.

Idaho, it is time for you to investigate the voting records of your senators and remember them in the next election.

 

David Worley for Pocatello Mayor Video: This Election is a Choice Between the Past and the Future

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Pocatello Mayoral Candidate David Worley (Photo Credit: Barbara Worley)

November 23, 2021 (Cover Photo Credit: Barbara Worley)

Pocatello Mayoral Candidate David Worley has released a series of videos discussing his campaign and what constitutes good governance at the local level.  This video is entitled, “This Election is a Choice Between the Past and the Future.”

Learn more about Worley’s campaign for Mayor of Pocatello at:  David Worley for Mayor, FB

Watch the video, here:

 

Pocatello Area Trail Survey Closes Monday, November 29

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(City of Pocatello Notification, November 22, 2021)

The City of Pocatello, BLM and Forest Service have started the planning process for improving the Pocatello Area trail system, with your input!As part of this process, we are seeking input from residents about your vision for your local trail system.Take the survey by November 29th:

https://isu.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_b4alLf2mRt8lEkC.What is your vision for the trails and open space around Pocatello?  We want to develop a community-driven vision and use that vision to assess local trails for vision compatibility, develop a regional trail map, and create a prioritized list of improvement projects for the agencies to consider implementing.

 

Idaho Freedom Foundation: Lawmakers Fail to Protect Idahoans From Forced Vaccines

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(Idaho Freedom Foundation Press Release, November 1, 2021)

Idaho Freedom Foundation Vice President Dustin Hurst

Boise, ID—Idaho Freedom Foundation Vice President Dustin Hurst issued the following statement upon the adjournment of the 2021 legislation session:

Idaho lawmakers have failed at their most sacred task:  protecting the rights of Gem State citizens.  On Wednesday, lawmakers finished their elongated 2021 session.  Let’s look at their accomplishments.

Did they do anything to protect the medical privacy of Idahoans whose employers are demanding personal information?  No.

Did lawmakers pass legislation to stop school districts from masking students?  No.

Did lawmakers do anything to protect those who might be harmed by the experimental vaccines?  No.

Did Idaho lawmakers protect the liberty of vaccine-skeptical Idahoans who don’t want to be treated as second-class citizens in society?  Nope.

What then did lawmakers accomplish during the three-day special session that concluded Wednesday afternoon and cost taxpayers more than $100,000?

They sent a strongly-worded letter to Congress and extracted a pound of flesh from a good conservative lawmaker during a bogus ethics hearing.

This is a complete and total abdication of duty.  And the blame rests largely with House Speaker Scott Bedke, Senate Pro Tem Chuck Winder, and Gov. Brad Little.  For months, desperate Idahoans begged these three politicians to act to save jobs, lives, and livelihoods.  They didn’t.

Instead of listening to the will of the people, Little, Bedke and Winder did the bidding of special interests that want to continue the medical tyranny unfolding in Idaho.  This trio thwarted commendable efforts by principled conservatives to put an end to vaccination by intimidation and threat.  Those conservatives deserve thanks of Idahoans across the state. Bedke, Winder, and Little do not.

Where is this headed?  More Idahoans will be coerced into getting an experimental vaccine with potential adverse effects or face financial ruin.  All due to failed leadership from those they helped elect.  One thing is certain, many of those who torpedoed efforts to defend freedom will next year campaign on defending Idaho from federal government overreach.  The hypocrisy is breathtaking.

Lawmakers should be ashamed.  Idahoans should be furious that lawmakers engaged in this pathetic charade.

 

Winners Announced in Pocatello VFW Post 735 Voice of Democracy, Patriots Pen Competitions

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November 22, 2021

Jenna Bree Moncur (Photo Credit: VFW Post 735)

Pocatello’s VFW Post 735 and the VFW Post 735 Auxiliary have announced the winners of their annual Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen competitions.

Winners of the Patriot’s Pen contest were:

1st Place, Jenna Bree Moncur

2nd Place, Isaac S. Summeril

3rd Place, Cole Knapp and Heidi Crowder

Isaac S. Summeril (Photo Credit: VFW Post 735)

Winners of the Voice of Democracy contest were:

1st Place, Michael Anthony Hoskin

2nd Place, Forrest C. Morgan

3rd Place, Zoe E. Zufelt

VFW Post 735 President Doreen Ray and VFW Post 735 Commander Richard Hollingsworth presented certificates, medals, and monetary awards to the winners.

Cole Knapp (Photo Credit: VFW Post 735)

Each year, VFW Post 735 and Auxiliary members provide all schools with middle and high school aged students in the area with application materials.

Each year, VFW hosts two youth scholarship competitions, Patriot’s Pen, for students in grades 6 through 8, and Voice of Democracy, for students in grades 9 through 12.  Students compete for scholarships worth thousands of dollars in the competitions that are designed to foster patriotism.  Students in public, private, parochial, and home study programs in the United States, its territories or its possessions may enter.  Entries for both competitions must be submitted to a local VFW post by midnight on October 31.

Michael Anthony Hoskin (Photo Credit: VFW Post 735)

Patriot’s Pen is an essay competition.  Students must submit an essay of no less than 300 words and no more than 400 words on the designated theme, along with the entry form.  This year’s theme was, “How Can I Be a Good American.”

Voice of Democracy is a speaking competition.  Students must submit a reading of their speech on audio CD or flash drive, along with the entry form, to a local VFW Post.  Speeches must be no shorter than three minutes and no longer than five minutes (+/- five second).  This year’s theme was, “America:  Where Do We Go From Here?”

Forrest C. Morgan (Photo Credit: VFW Post 735)

The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is a nonprofit veterans service organization (VSO) comprised of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, guard and reserve forces.

The VFW has many programs and services that work to support veterans, service members and their families, as well as communities worldwide.  You can check out their latest fact sheet or spend some time browsing our site to learn why, according to their motto, “No One Does More For Veterans.”

To learn more, visit:  https://vfw.org/community/youth-and-education/youth-scholarships

Zoe E. Zufelt (Photo Credit: VFW Post 735)

VFW Post 735 is the local post in Pocatello.  You can learn more about VFW Post 735 on their Facebook page, here:  Local VFW Pocatello, ID (post735vfw.org)

Editor’s Note:  In addition to the VFW, other VSO’s hold annual competition for students, including essay and speech competitions, that encourage patriotism in America’s youth.  you can find articles with details regarding such contests sponsored by the American Legion and Fleet Reserve Association, in addition to the VFW, by searching the name of the VSO, or, “student contest,” in the pocatellochubbuckobserver.com search bar, located at the top right-hand section of our website.

Pocatello: Sanitation Collection to be Delayed Due to Thanksgiving Holiday

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(City of Pocatello Press Release, November 22, 2021

Thursday and Friday’s garbage, recycling, yard waste, and leaf collections for Pocatello residents will be delayed by one day because of the Thanksgiving holiday.

Garbage, recycling, yard waste, and leaves will not be picked up Thursday, November 25, so residents with a Thursday pickup are asked to place their autocarts, as well as leaves that have been placed in compostable bags, out for pickup Friday by 7 a.m.  Residents with a Friday pickup are asked to place their autocarts and compostable bags out Saturday by 7 a.m.  The change in schedule will not affect pickups earlier in the week.

The Sanitation Department will resume their regular pickup schedule beginning Monday, November 29.

Officials would also like to remind residents that the Bannock County Landfill will be closed on Thanksgiving.

For more information on the programs offered by the Sanitation Department, visit pocatello.us/sanitation.