Bonner County Had No Business Being Involved
There has been a lot of publicity about the East River Spur Rd. bridge…I’d like to simplify the situation and put the facts out there.
The Vrbetas bought a 190 + AC piece of land in 2001, and they had access on an IDL Road. There is a bridge on that road that had a 7 Ton rating when the Vrbetas purchased their land.
To be clear, the road and the bridge were, and are, owned by IDL, not Bonner County. This never has been, nor never will be a County Rd.
The Vrbetas were contacted in 2014 by IDL…the bridge was compromised and IDL had no need or funds to repair it. So, IDL negotiated with the Vrbetas to sell them an easement and they could repair the bridge, or it would be removed.
The Vrbetas were understandably dismayed at the financial burden, and at the same time lack of access would hinder the Seven Springs Retreat they had built and were running as a business.
The Vrbetas contacted Todd Sudick, former County Commissioner and asked for help. For some unexplained reason, Todd negotiated an easement with IDL with the agreement that Bonner County Taxpayers would pick up the bill for the bridge.
Now, as you read this please keep in mind the question…if this was a County Rd, why would Bonner County have to buy an easement on their own road? Todd has never been willing to answer this question.
So after much negotiation between the County, IDL and the Vrbeta’s attorney, it became clear that the most prudent act was for the County to repair the bridge and legally abandon the easement.
Thank goodness Dan McDonald was there to fearlessly negotiate a bad problem. Dan protected the taxpayers pocketbooks by being proactive and doing extensive due diligence. This situation as it was cost the taxpayers 60K…the cost could have gone as high as half a million in taxpayer money if Dan McDonald hadn’t been as diligent as he was. Thank you, Dan!
Now, I am fully aware that there has been some negative press towards Dan over this situation…however the painful reality is that Todd Sudick put the taxpayers on the line for a lot of money in a position that Bonner County had no business being involved in…
It was heartbreaking to watch the Vrbetas have to deal with this, however the County had no reason to step in…
We are so lucky to have a strong, knowledgeable, business minded Bonner County Commissioner in Dan McDonald.
Please vote for Dan McDonald on May 15.
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