The Ada County Republican Central Committee got involved in the Garden City municipal election with at least three mailers promoting Republican incumbents and attacking the three challengers.
Earlier this month, voters in Garden City received mailers promoting Mayor John Evans and City Council Member Teresa Jorgensen for reelection. They also featured cartoon pictures of their challengers, mayoral candidate Hannah Ball and city council candidates Rep. John McCrostie, D-Garden City, and Greta Mohr.
One of the mailers put the Ada County Republicans in hot water because it included the City of Garden City official logo. The mailer promoted Evans and Jorgensen’s leadership during a time of financial stability, millions in upgrades to sewer and water infrastructure, and “numerous planning awards for the great work we’ve done as a city.”
Ada County Republican Central Committee Chair Victor Miller did not answer two calls from BoiseDev asking about the mailer and a Facebook message to the organization. His voice mailbox was full, and could not accept messages. Treasurer Steve Bender said he had not been involved in creating the mailer and had not seen it, directing all questions back to Miller.
Garden City City Attorney Charles Wadams sent the Ada County Republicans a cease and desist letter on October 25th.
“I am writing to inform you that the Garden City logo is a registered trademark owned solely by the City of Garden City,” he wrote in the letter. “The City did not consent to your use of the logo related to a political campaign.”
McCrostie’s voting record subject of multiple mailers
The back of the mailer features a cartoon image of McCrostie holding puppets of Mohr and Ball, accusing him of “trying to takeover Garden City and is running his handpicked slate of progressive candidates.” He denied allegations that he was recruited to run for the office or recruited others to run at a candidate forum Wednesday night.
The mailer dubbed him “Bad for Idaho, Worse for Garden City” with a list of some of his statehouse votes in the last session, including his opposition to the property tax reform bill Evans spoke out against.
A second mailer attacked McCrostie’s comments about the Garden City police department, asking if voters would like Garden City to become “another Portland or Seattle.” It referenced reporting from BoiseDev earlier this year where McCrostie made comments that he was interested in potentially hiring some social workers to respond to specific calls in Garden City.
“The liberal progressive policies of State Rep. John McCrostie and his liberal progressive allies, Hannah Ball and Greta Mohr belong in Portland or Seattle, not Boise!” the mailer said.
The mailer also featured a quote against McCrostie from the Vice President of Code 3 to 1, a group of retired law enforcement officers in Idaho.
Republicans hit Ball on development history
Another mailer sent to voters featured images of mobile homes being taken down alongside Ball’s picture, quoting heavily from a 2018 Idaho Statesman profile of her and her East Garden City development efforts.
In recent years, Ball used her LLC to purchase close to 40 parcels in and around the 34th Street area with plans to develop it with a business partner. She earned Garden City’s approval for a specific area plan for a walkable area around the waterfront, but that plan fell apart after a disagreement with her business partner. All of her properties were sold off to various developers at the beginning of this year, BoiseDev reported.
Before purchasing the property, the 34th Street area was home to several mobile home parks Ball tore down to make way for her project. The mailer has several quotes from the article, including, “If I buy a site with trailers, they’re going down. And they’re going down quickly.”
“Will your home be safe?” the mailer asked.