Who’s Stealing Our Mail and Why?

Crime Prevention2:38 PM (8 hours ago)
to Crime

In recent weeks I have seen a few complaints of mail theft in various areas of Boise.   So far in 2024 we have received four reports of mail being stolen.   

Mail theft is a different problem than package theft.  When someone steals a package, they are looking for a valuable item sitting on our doorstep.  When a person steals mail, that are looking to steal your financial information or your identity.

What are thieves looking for?  Cash, checks, gift cards, account numbers, your social security number, banking details, pay stubs, and identifying information like your name and date of birth.

Reduce the opportunity.  Switching to paperless billing and statements can reduce the amount of sensitive mail you receive.

Purchase a lockable mailbox.  A lockable mailbox allows the postal carrier to deliver mail through a slot in the mailbox but requires a key to open and retrieve mail.

Don’t flag your mailbox as a target.  Using the red flag on your mailbox can alert thieves that there is something inside to be stolen. Hand your mail directly to a letter carrier, use a secured USPS blue mailbox, or go directly to your local Post Office to send mail.

Pick up your mail regularly. Don’t leave letters in the mailbox for several days, over the weekend or even overnight. Make checking your mailbox part of your daily routine.

Stop delivery. Alert the Post Office if you are going out of town and request them to temporarily stop the delivery of your mail.  When you return, you can pick up your mail at the local post office and resume normal delivery.  https://www.usps.com/manage/hold-mail.htm

Talk to your neighbors.  If your mail was stolen, let your neighbors know.  They may not realize their mail was stolen too. Watching out for your neighbors helps to build relationships and keep your neighborhood safe.

Be aware of and report suspicious activity.  Notice an unknown individual looking at or tampering with mailboxes in your neighborhood?  Report it to non-emergency dispatch 208-377-6790.

Sign up for Informed Delivery through the postal service.  While this won’t prevent mail theft, it will provide you with a daily picture of all letter size mail that is on its way to your mailbox.  You can sign up for this free service through the United States Postal Service at https://informeddelivery.usps.com.

How to report if your mail was stolen?  You can report by calling 208-377-6790 or can report online on the Boise Police website.  To file a complaint with the USPS you can use this link https://usps.my.site.com/emailus/s/daily-mail-delivery-inquiry or call 1-877-876-2455.

Crime Prevention Unit

Boise Police Department

Office: (208)570-6071

Boise Bike Project – Your Centennial Neighborhood Centralized Drop Off Point

Centennial Neighborhood Association just received the email from the Boise Bicycle Project. This is a great cause. We had a neighbor a few years back that left a perfectly good, albeit used, bicycle outside next to their garage. Through rain, snow and sunshine that bike never moved for over a year. Finally, when they moved – it was gone, probably to the landfill.

I received a separate email encouraging Boise Neighborhood Associations to open convenient collection points in their neighborhood area where folks could easily drop these much-needed bikes off, avoiding a separate trip downtown to the Boise Bicycle Project shop and warehouse. My wife and I are volunteering to store donated bikes at our home between now and the first part of December. From here we will call the Bicycle Project for them to come and pick all the bikes up at one time! Convenient for all! Perhaps, my former neighbor just couldn’t be bothered to bring that bike downtown. It’s sad that some youngsters miss out.

Let’s show our Centennial Neighborhood spirit and gather as many lovingly used bicycles that our children have just outgrown! If you are able to help please call me. Thank you and Merry Christmas!


Gary Dufault, President

Your Centennial Neighborhood Association


McDevitt Park Completion Update

McDevitt Park Kickoff Public Meeting

Date: Wednesday, December 6, 2023
Time: 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Location: Lowell Scott Middle School (Library), 13600 W McMillan Rd.

Latest Time Table for Master Plan

Boise Parks and Recreation representatives to present at CTNA’s October 19th, 2023, Annual Member meeting. It’s the kickoff of a search for ideas to finish the east end of the park

This is one of only three parks in the Centennial Neighborhood Association (CTNA) boundaries.

∙ The land McDevitt sits on was annexed in 1999.  

∙ Most of the park was finished in 2001. 

∙ Impact fees from new construction have been assessed and are available. ∙ Over 10 years later, in 2013 money was in the budget to finish McDevitt. The Boise Parks and Recreation (BPR) master plan for McDevitt included 3 lacrosse fields to be built in the unfinished area in association with a local lacrosse league. That plan fell through. 

∙ Another 10 years after that, in 2023, BPR again had money in the budget to finish the park but needed a new master plan. This was put on hold because of a “capacity issue” or staffing shortage to manage the community outreach needed to develop a new plan. 

∙ In July of 2023, the CTNA appeared before the Boise City Council at the FY2024 budget hearing to request the park be completed in FY2024 and not pushed back again. The City Council denied the request. However, Eric Bilimoria, Boise Budget Manager, said McDevitt was scheduled in FY2025, but he qualified that by saying it was “dependent upon collection of development impact fees.”

(1) When asked, Karen Bledsoe, BPR, said that there was $1.2M in FY2023 for McDevitt and that by FY2025 it was projected to be “over $1.4M.” It was asked if that meant planning in FY2024 for installation in FY2025 and she did not disagree.

(2) ∙ Each year, the park is not completed, the $1.2M in impact fees buys less and less. BPR says installation costs have gone up 40% since 2021. We were told by BPR that they currently forecast $100K per acre for irrigation and turf, so just grass for the bare area in McDevitt could cost over $750,000 today. 

While McDevitt continues to be unfinished for over 23 years, the city has purchased, improved, and finished parks in other areas of the city. Some improvements are as extravagant as a splash pad and free Wi-Fi.  

Impact fees are charges assessed for the impact that new development makes on the City of Boise’s regional parks, local parks, fire department and police department. New residential development pays all four impact fee types, because they impact all four services. Commercial development pays only fire and police impact fees because it typically does not directly impact regional and local parks. 

The city’s park service area extends to the city’s area of impact boundaries and is segregated by two types of park systems – Regional Parks and Local Parks. However, since local parks are intended to serve smaller geographic areas with different capital facility requirements and growth patterns, there are five (5) separate local park fee areas – each with separate impact fees. This means the local park impact fees charged in any of the service areas pay only for the infrastructure which provides the direct benefit to that area. For example, the Northwest Local Park only funds parks in the Northwest service area.  

So, the impact fees from our area will go to area parks, but that might mean impact fees earmarked for and we assumed would go to finish McDevitt, may in fact be diverted to buy or improve other parks inside the planning area, but outside the CTNA, such as Spaulding Ranch Park. Eric Bilimoria stated that “there are other projects within that planning area.”

(3) Councilmember Hallyburton says that “There’s a priority list.”

(4) Here is a map of the impact fee planning areas: 

Currently, we’re being told that the reason McDevitt is being delayed is because of “capacity issues” or lack of staffing. Councilmember Colin Nash encourages us to “stay engaged.”

(5) His advice is good.  Mayor Lauren McLean said that Spaulding Ranch Park, acquired in 2016, a favorite of Boise City 

Councilmember Nash is “being pushed forward.”

(6) McDevitt continues to be pushed back.  

(1) July 11th, 2023, Boise City Council Meeting- FY2024 Budget.  


Mode=Video&MeetingID=4525&MinutesID=3505&FileFormat=pdf&Format=Minutes&MediaFileF ormat=mp4 1.02:45 

(2) July 11th, 2023 Boise City Council Meeting- FY2024 Budget.  


Mode=Video&MeetingID=4525&MinutesID=3505&FileFormat=pdf&Format=Minutes&MediaFileF ormat=mp4 1.35:17 

(3) July 11th, 2023 Boise City Council Meeting- FY2024 Budget.  


Mode=Video&MeetingID=4525&MinutesID=3505&FileFormat=pdf&Format=Minutes&MediaFileF ormat=mp4 1.05:39 

(4) July 11th, 2023 Boise City Council Meeting- FY2024 Budget.  


Mode=Video&MeetingID=4525&MinutesID=3505&FileFormat=pdf&Format=Minutes&MediaFileF ormat=mp4 1.33:00 

(5) July 11th, 2023 Boise City Council Meeting- FY2024 Budget.  


Mode=Video&MeetingID=4525&MinutesID=3505&FileFormat=pdf&Format=Minutes&MediaFileF ormat=mp4 2.15:00 

(6) July 11th, 2023 Boise City Council Meeting- FY2024 Budget.  


Mode=Video&MeetingID=4525&MinutesID=3505&FileFormat=pdf&Format=Minutes&MediaFileF ormat=mp4 2.19:45


One of the benefits of living in Boise is the number and quality of our parks. Mayor McLean has established a goal of having a Boise park within a 10-minute safe walk of all Boise Citizens. For many of us in the Centennial Neighborhood, McDevitt is that park.

McDevitt is one of only three parks within the boundaries of the Centennial Neighborhood Association, but it’s a nice one. The park includes:
 Norm’s Pond, a 1.2-acre fishing pond
 the 10,000 Sq. ft. McMillan skate park
 2 children’s play structures
 7 groomed and fenced ball fields complete with tall backstops, foul line markers, batting cages, covered dugouts with water fountains, bleachers, league storage sheds, a concession stand and restrooms
 parking
 a walking path around most of the perimeter
There are also a few small, old backstops with wooden benches in the unfinished area that might have once been softball fields.
However, about a quarter of the park in the NE corner is unfinished.

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Crime and Safety

ACHD Proposed Changes in Neighborhood “Speed Calming” Policy

This is a recap of a proposed change in ACHD policy for those requesting speed calming.   In the past applicants would need to collect data to prove excessive traffic speed, traffic volume, and cut-through. A cut-through is when traffic passes through a residential neighborhood that did not originate, nor arrive at a destination in that neighborhood. Additionally, a petition for speed mitigation needed signatures from 75% of affected residents. At that point, ACHD would consider if it would pay for the speed mitigation structures, or if the requesting party were responsible.

Under the proposed policy, calming applicants will have to prove either excessive speed or traffic volume in the area — not both — and get the required signatures on their petition. This eliminates the cut-through requirement. ACHD will pay for the cost of the structure installations.

Traffic speed and volume are typically determined by placing tube counters across the road at an agreed-upon location. According to the policy, a street must be over 750 feet in length and have more than 400 cars per day to be considered eligible for traffic calming evaluation. If a street has more than 4,000 vehicles per day, it surpasses the upper limit for traffic calming and is not eligible. Only residential streets and collector roads that have a speed limit of 30 MPH or less are eligible for traffic calming.

The default speed limit in Boise is 20 mph, so the majority of our side streets qualify.

We’re not sure how ADHD would define “affected residents” when requiring signatures. And, while now a moot point, we also don’t know how ACHD would define the boundaries of the “neighborhood” for cut-through.

We are expecting to hear more about where these proposed changes stand over the coming weeks. We’ll keep you posted!

Neighborhood Contact Officer – Presentation – May 16, 2023

Here is the Power Point presentation that was made to your Neighborhood Watch leaders at the West Boise Police Station, Mark Stall Place. There was good attendance and many questions addressed by BPD officers and staff. Many thanks to our BPD community for taking their time to keep our neighborhoods informed and protected!

National Night Out

National Night Out is Tuesday August 1.  Registration for Nation Night Out 2023 opens today and runs through July 25, 2023. 

Please do not wait until the last minute to register.  While we encourage all to enjoy a great time with their neighbors and community, we can only guarantee City representatives (police/fire, etc.) for the first 50 parties to register.

REGISTER HERE: https://www.cityofboise.org/departments/police/national-night-out/register-your-national-night-out-event/

Boise Neighborhood Watch Information and Documents

We will be adding updates and new information for Neighborhood Watch and BPD as we receive them.

“Citizens For a Library” Present to the Boise Public Library board meeting – September 13, 2023

The Centennial Neighborhood Association applauds the continued progress made by “Citizens for a Library” to establish a library facility in west Boise. “Citizens for a Library” founder, Mark Salisbury along with Jennifer Gravel, a life-long library patron and a long-time advocate, presented testimony, and the organization’s formal petition for locating a public library in west Boise. Our Centennial Neighborhood sits in the middle of this underserved area and formally supports “Citizens for a Library” and its efforts.

A discussion and questions by library board members followed the presentation. While board members expressed skepticism as to any ability to impact funding for the FY 2024 fiscal year, which begins October 1st, it was clear that Mark and Jennifer made a positive impression.

Boise Public Library Board Presentation Sept. 13, 2023

West Boise / East Meridian Needs a Library Too!

Your Centennial Neighborhood Association supports the need for Boise to have a library closer to the citizens of West Boise.  Ideally libraries are within walking or at least biking distance.  “The Library!” at Cole & Ustick is more than five miles away from parts of our Neighborhood Association.  Many citizens of Boise live within 1 mile of a library, and most are within two miles. “?” West Boise stands alone in a “library desert”!

What do you know about the “townsite” of Ustick? It’s right here in west Boise!

West Valley Neighborhood Association has invited our CTNA community to an entertaining and informative presentation about the past and future of the historic Ustick Townsite. 

Most folks in West Boise aren’t aware of the fascinating history of the Ustick Townsite. Dan Everhart, Outreach Historian from the Idaho State Historic Preservation Office has an entertaining and informative presentation to share with West Boise residents. The presentation is free, and refreshments will be available. 

Dirty Water – Don’t call Ghost Busters – Call your water provider! Do’s and Don’ts!

Violia Water Maintenance flushing its line on our street corner

Earlier this week I was running water in our master bathroom sink when I noticed the water was coming out “tea” brown. I checked our toilet on the other end of the house, and it was also flushing brown. Everyone has this happen on occasion and it can be a water system issue or the “dreaded” I have a leak in one of my exterior pipes – yike! I should have purchased that insurance the water company is always pushing on me! It was almost 10 PM. I took a deep breath and decided I’d call Veolia (24/7 service line 208-362-7304), our water provider and ask if there was a system issue. Of course, I got voice mail at that time and left a message.

The next morning at around 9 AM I got a return call from Veolia from a “real person”. The young lady asked me if the situation had improved, and I said that things had cleared up. She told me that they were sending out a maintenance crew just in case to flush the line at the street. Fifteen minutes later the maintenance truck was at our corner flushing from the hydrant.

Ok, so I asked my Violia maintenance man “Why do we get these occasional spates of discolored water. He told me that there are several reasons for discolored water, which is generally rust that is dislodged from the sides of the water pipes. He added that rust actually protects the pipes and creates a barrier between the water and the pipe and reduces pipe erosion. Occasionally, this rust will be dislodged or loosened due to:

  • A surge of water pressure due to opening a line or closing a line.
  • Heavy construction equipment overhead will cause ground vibrations loosening rust.
  • Even small shifts in the earth that occur naturally can cause a loosening of rust.

A TIP and Very Good to Know –

  • If you have discolored or water with an odor – Call you water provider right away so they can be aware of the issue.
  • Avoid (DO NOT) run “hot” water to flush the water in your house. Running hot water draws the problem water into your hot water heater and from there sediment will settle into the bottom of your water heater tank and this could require you to completely drain your hot water heater to clean it out.
  • To flush dirty water already in your home piping fully open the COLD Water tap in a bathtub and let it run until the water clears – this is assuming you’ve called your provider and the issue has been flushed out of the system on their end. Then you are good to go!

After I called Veolia, they even told me that I would be getting a credit against my next billing because I had to use water to flush my home system. I thought they provided great service!

Now maybe the above information wasn’t helpful to many folks because “intuitively” they knew not to run the hot water to clear the system. For those who aren’t always at their “intuitive” best, like me, I hope this information helps.