Ten state-owned lots at Payette Lake auctioned off

Credit: Troy Colson/KTVB

Ten state-owned lots at Payette Lake auctioned off


by Justin Corr

Bio | Email | Follow: @JCorrKTVB


Posted on October 18, 2013 at 4:09 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 18 at 6:20 PM

EAGLE , Idaho -- Ten families took a big chance today by allowing land near Payette Lake that they were leasing from the state to be put up for auction in the hopes that they could buy it outright.

But, there was also a chance that they might lose the land that had been used by their families for generations.

Ten families own cabins on ten different pieces of land up by Payette Lake, but they didn't own the land. That's been owned by the state since 1890. Today, that all changed.

The state wanted to invest the money from these land auctions into other assets that could make more money.

So, those families agreed to put the land on the auction block.

It was a packed room, with people hoping that property wouldn't be sold right out from underneath their cabin.

The land under Dennis Geis' place was one of the first up for bid.

His family has used it for more than 40 years.

This was his first ever auction for anything, and he was understandably nervous. But things worked out.

"You just never know," said Geis. "Yeah, we got it for the appraised value which is probably fair for the state and for the people bidding on it. Yes, very excited to have the deed to it."

All of the families were able to buy their land at auction today, although some encountered more competition in bidding than they expected.

The state also auctioned off three large vacant lots.

Two of those sold for more than a million dollars apiece.

State land managers say they can reinvest that money to make millions more for public schools and other beneficiaries.