Mayor’s Roundtable: A State of the City

Print Article


I hope all had a happy holiday season. As is customary at this time of year, I’d like to share a brief “State of the City” to celebrate a few successes in 2017 and give you a heads up on developments underway in 2018.

Last year, the city completed Phase 2 of the fiber project. Three providers signed leases on the city’s fiber network, increasing competition in the local market, which resulted in higher speeds and more affordable internet for Sandpoint. Expect to see improved service to homes and small business later this year.

Notable public works projects included the downtown street two-way reversion, the Schweitzer Cutoff roundabout and bridge project and the Phase 1 sewer replacement on First Avenue.

The Strategic Planning Initiative kicked off in 2017 with council and our leadership team. Resiliency, improved communications, accountability and effectiveness were primary goals prioritized by city leadership. To meet these goals, council passed the city’s first financial reserve policy, ensuring the city has the means to meet financial obligations in the midst of economic downturns, emergencies and other unforeseen financial challenges. The city contracted with Opengov to enhance financial transparency for the public while enabling data driven decision making for city leadership. Included in Opengov is an online forum, Open Town Hall, which gives the city enhanced outreach and engagement capacity through the City’s website.

Finally, I have initiated a Mayor’s Roundtable inviting the public to meet with me monthly to discuss updates and issues important to the city. Previously called “Lunch with the Mayor,” the “Mayor’s Roundtable” is now meeting at 8 a.m. on the last Friday of the month at Cedar St. Bistro.

The city’s Strategic Planning Initiative will continue in 2018 with the citizen survey. This will be the test run of Open Town Hall and will give the public the opportunity to provide valuable feedback to City Council on city priorities, levels of service and other important issues.

Open Town Hall will also be used to invite public feedback on continued planning for the University of Idaho’s Boyer property. After completing the Comp Plan Map Revision in late 2017, a more detailed analysis is underway to develop a plan that can accomplish the goals identified in the Comp Plan revision.

Downtown revitalization will continue this year as bids go out soon for construction of Phase 1, Cedar Street from Fifth to Second avenues. Phase 2 of the sewer replacement project will complete the sewer main on First from Bridge Street to Cedar and Second. Design and scope of work for the second phase of downtown revitalization will also be done this year and will include Farmin’s Landing along Sand Creek. It will also give special consideration to the First/Bridge/Church intersection to ensure the best outcome for safety and traffic flow. There will be ample opportunity to participate in all these planning efforts through public workshops and the Open Town Hall online platform.

Wastewater treatment is another major issue facing the city in 2018. The city has contracted JUB to assist in developing a facility plan. The city’s wastewater treatment plant is at the end of its useful life. Now is the time for the city to plan for a new facility that can meet future growth and future permits which are likely to have heightened discharge standards. Thoughtful planning can ensure least impact on utility rate payers. Two locations are currently being considered, the existing site at Lakeview Park and the Baldy site where the disc golf course is located. Public input will be sought after the plan develops over the next couple months.

2018 will include a revision of the Parks Master Plan. Special consideration will be given to City Beach, Farmin’s Landing and the Sand Creek lot. The purpose of the plan is to identify opportunities to improve our parks to better meet public needs. The Little Sand Creek Watershed will also be considered. As we see with the Watershed Crest Trail, there may be economic and quality of life benefits to be gained from expanded use of the city’s watershed.

To discuss these topics in greater depth please join me: The Mayor’s Roundtable, Jan. 26, Cedar St. Bistro, 8 a.m.

Shelby Rognstad is the mayor of Sandpoint. He can be reached at

Print Article

Read More Letters to the Editor

Please support the LPOSD supplemental levy

February 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee Because of the way our schools are funded or not funded by the state, the time has come to once again approve a levy. This two-year levy is roughly $12 million per year which will replace the expirin...


Read More

Vote yes to support community, academic excellence

February 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee Vote “yes” on Lake Pend Oreille School District’s replacement levy on Tuesday, March 12, 2019. A “yes” vote reflects well-deserved confidence in our staff, our students, our community, and our future...


Read More

LPOSD levy is property taxpayer abuse

February 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee Fearmongering is a staple of school districts nationwide; the LPOSD is no different. In their glossy, full-color flyer, they lay out the doomsday scenario should taxpayers reject their demands for th...


Read More

It’s always about the money

February 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee On Jan. 20 in the Daily Bee, we learned Bonner General Health, Inc., a for-profit organization, has been illegally using Bonner County taxpayer money for years to help fund their operations. Apparent...


Read More

Contact Us

(208) 263-9534
PO Box 159
Sandpoint, ID 83864

©2019 Bonner County Daily Bee Terms of Use Privacy Policy