Meridian is the geographic, employment, and residential “Center of Gravity” for the Treasure Valley. Growth will happen in our community and in the areas surrounding us which means there will be impacts we can control and others we cannot. When growth does happen in Meridian it needs to be responsible and meet our community’s expectations for quality. That means the city, our government partners, the development community, and residents all need to be on the same page and working together. If we aren’t working together growth will be pushed to other communities and Meridian will still likely deal with the impacts from growth. Addressing growth will be a majority priority for my administration.

As the center of the Treasure Valley, all roads lead through Meridian – and on them most of the traffic. We have a great working relationship with our transportation partners at the Ada County Highway District and the Idaho Transportation Department that have led to needed projects being completed in the community, but there is much more to do. In addition, there are limitations to the relationship that exist as Meridian’s role is to identify our priorities, but our partners determine when and where road projects will be completed. We should take greater control of our needs to address our transportation and infrastructure needs with local solutions.

Our Public Works Department is in the process of completing nearly $100 million of investments in water and sewer infrastructure over the last several years. This has been done without incurring any debt and will allow us to meet the regulatory requirements of the Federal government. The staff are passionate about what they do and are constantly striving to improve the service to the community by eliminating odors and issues concerning our water and wastewater system. Extra attention should be given to these items which can have a direct impact on consumers.

With the sixth Meridian fire station set to open in 2020 and discussions under way about the seventh and eight stations in the works, we are seeing additional resource needs for this department as well. We have more urban/vertical style development being built, yet a majority of the calls for service are medical related. It is important that as a City we are focusing our resources appropriately to address the immediate needs and future challenges in front of us.

Meridian is one of the safest cities in Idaho regardless of size and we have outstanding men and women who serve our community in this role. As we grow residents are drawn here because of this fact. In order to keep our community safe we need to be able to hire police officers so more proactive policing can take place. There are currently open positions at the department and to maintain our staffing levels due to growth, we need to add 13 additional officers to the department in 2019/2020. However, if we are unable to fill the existing positions and recruit to meet our future needs, we are jeopardizing the safety of those in our community.

The City of Meridian has invested in our parks creating spaces where families gather, teams practice and memories are made. We have first class facilities and are bringing uniqueness to our parks through theming efforts that should continue as we add new parks and evaluate how we can bring character to our existing facilities. These efforts, along with the care our employees show in maintaining the parks, will ensure we have premier open space available to the community. More attention should be given to expanding our pathways and providing indoor recreation space.

The City of Meridian provides these essential services to residents: police and fire protection, parks facilities and recreation classes, water delivery and sewer handling, community development, and trash removal through a franchise provider. We have been able to save before we spend and are debt free. There are several services that are provided by partners including roads, schools, libraries, the swimming pool, cemetery, voting, and more. As Mayor I will take on the responsibility for all aspects of Meridian in order to meet the overall expectations of the community and be as local as possible by letting citizens weigh in on issues at the ballot box to give residents a greater voice.

Paid, Simison for Meridian Gary Raney, Treasurer
PO Box 971 Meridian, ID 83680
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