A storm has been raging in Pocatello and Bannock County for the past month. This storm was triggered by the ineptitude of our county assessor, Sheri Davies, and county commissioners Steve Brown, Ernie Moser and Terrel Tovey. These four public officials have attempted to defend their actions, deflect the voters’ anger and shift the blame to the State Tax Commission.

The public officials who should be looking out for the best interests of the people of Pocatello, however remain silent. Our esteemed Mayor Brian Blad and our council members have not uttered a single word with regard to the property tax valuation and the outrage it has brought to the surface. Perhaps our city officials think that they can stay out of the line of fire if they keep quiet, perhaps they dream at night of dollar signs from the flagrant money grab that this obviously is.

The people of this town are tired. The people of this town are fed up. We have had enough of the lack of transparency in our city government, we have had enough of the apparent conflict of interests that exist in city hall. We have had enough of the pandering to developers who appear to have friends at city hall while the taxpayers foot the bill.

All the while these people laugh all the way to the bank. To the mayor and council members we, the people of Pocatello say; your conspicuous silence on this debacle is quite telling.

You all ran on platforms of doing what’s best for our community and our residents, yet you do nothing and say nothing when your constituents’ right to due process is repeatedly violated by the county officials you work hand-in-hand with.

You whine about needing raises, yet you don’t tell the public that you all receive health benefits for yourselves and families at our expense. You don’t care about this town and you don’t care about its residents. Your obvious silence is sign of consent...you agree with what the county assessor and commissioners have perpetrated on the people of this town and county.

It is disgraceful that none of you have spoken out on behalf of the people you are supposed to be watching out for. We aren’t surprised however ... disappointed yes, but surprised no. It’s time for a regime change at city hall. If you think your silence will keep you in your cushy positions, think again.

Claudia Ortega,

Pocatello/Bannock Homeowners' Alliance