The candidates for City Council and mayor in Kimberly on Thursday expressed reservations about a proposed truck route that would bypass Twin Falls to the south and link up with U.S. 30 west of Kimberly.
Three of the candidates — councilmen Jim Eisenhower and Connie Sowka, and current councilwoman and mayoral candidate Nancy Duncan — were on the Council when they voted in July not to back any of the proposed routes.
Responding to a question at the candidates’ forum hosted by the Times-News, mayoral candidate Burke Davidson also said he is personally against the route, although he added he doesn’t know much about it and the people of Kimberly should decide whether they want it or not.
“The people need to make that decision for us,” he said.
Eisenhower said the route should go farther south, to get trucks farther from any congested areas, and that the recommendations might have been different had the public weighed in while they being developed.
Eisenhower, Sowka and Duncan all took issue with the way the proposed routes were developed, without any input from Kimberly officials. This was the same objection they had in July when they voted not to back the route.
“No one involved in the Kimberly government knew anything about this truck route,” Duncan said.
Duncan said the city’s Community Development Director Rob Wright, who is on the Greater Twin Falls Area Transportation Committee, will be at any future meetings where the route is discussed.
Burke Richman, one of the challengers for City Council, said that most of what he knows about the proposed truck route is what he has read in the Times-News, while Delores Brewerton, the fourth of the candidates running for the two Council seats on the ballot, said the controversy shows how public involvement in general is important. Sowka said she is glad the plans for the route appear to have been slowed down to get more input.
“Ultimately it was a select few making a decision that affected a lot of other people,” she said.