NAMPA -- The City of Nampa is on the verge of a big change.
On January 6, Bob Henry will become the city's new mayor, replacing the man he beat in the November election, Tom Dale.
Dale has been walking through the doors of city hall as the Nampa's Mayor for 12 years, and Monday will be his last day, as he makes way for Henry.
On Thursday, the city held a farewell party for Dale at the Nampa Civic Center. Firefighters, police, and other city and county government officials were on hand to wish the mayor well.
However, the big question for the people who live in Idaho's second-largest city is, What's going to change when Henry takes over?
He won on a platform of lowering taxes by trimming government and creating more efficiencies.
We don't know exactly what all that will mean, but Dale says, as you might expect, believes the city was on a great financial path already, and hopes the cuts don't go too deep. The city is in great financial shape. We have a 25 percent fund balance in our operating budget. Our crime rates are as low as they've ever been. Our insurance rating for the fire department is the top in the state.
From what we've heard from Henry supporters, their main financial concern with the city are the taxes, which they believed were too high.
Henry has said he won't just come in and start firing people, but he does say everything will be on the table for possible cuts, including police and fire. Dale hopes those cuts don't go too deep. Our crime rate is so much lower today, than it was 12 years ago, and that crime rate steadily dropped, once the city council made a firm decision eight years ago to really beef up public safety, particularly in the police department, and there's no way this city can afford to go backwards on that.
Henry says he loves public safety, but says he was elected to lower taxes, and with so much funding going into police and fire, he says, they'll have to look at efficiencies, especially with their contracts.
Henry will be working with four new council members, so there are going to be changes. We'll have a much better idea what those possible changes might be, at Henry's first State of the City address on January 22. KTVB will air the complete address on Idaho's Very Own 24/7 on January 23.
Dale, meanwhile, says he has no immediate political plans for the future, but also says he has loved serving the people of his community, and is not ruling out doing something similar again.