February 8, 2024

Bozeman Journal

Good Morning Bozeman. It's Thursday, February 8th. This past week felt like the first full week of winter; thank you snow gods 🙏. However, Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow last Friday so this could also be... our last week of winter :/

Here's what we're diving into in this edition:

  • City Commission Updates
  • The INC
  • Valentine's Date Ideas


Speaking of Punxsutawney Phil, how accurate have Phil's predictions been in the past decade?

a) 20%

b) 45%

c) 40%

d) 30%

*Answer at bottom of this email

City Commission Updates

The City Commission met Tuesday evening. Here's your 30 second rundown of what was discussed:

  • Only 3 commissioners were present, with Commissioners Coburn and Fischer absent.
  • A bunch of consent items were bulk approved
  • Consent items were comprised of a number of Professional Service Agreements (PSA) to work with local companies on a number of city-related projects
  • One PSA was to begin work with Root Policy Research for the FY24-26 Consolidated Plan, Community Housing Action Plan, and Citizen Participation Plan, in alignment with the city's strategic goal of promoting sustainable housing and transportation options.
  • Other consent item(s) were related to the Bozeman Swim Center. The facility continues to remain open but will continue to undergo modifications and upgrades which can be read in more detail here and here.
  • It was decided to continue public conversations on March 5th, 2024 around zoning changes and a change to the Future Land Use Map related to potential developments at the NE corner of 19th and Graf.
  • And lastly, there's two Low Income Housing Tax Credit projects, applying for tax credits and exemptions. The Midtown Aspen Apartments and the Aspen 8 Residences are located around 7th Ave in the Midtown Urban Renewal District. There were questions from the commission and comments heard from the public. Nothing was approved or denied.

To watch the meeting in its entirety or to read through the agenda and related items click here.

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There's a lot going on in this town. Some things get a lot of attention and some things just haven't found their way out of committee meetings - likely not due to malintent, but rather just under investment in certain areas like communication. Have you tried navigating the City's website? So here we are, a quick primer on the Inter Neighborhood Council (INC).

The INC is made up of representatives from each of the 14 Neighborhood Associations. Neighborhood Associations, not to be confused with Homeowner Associations (HOAs), stem from The City of Bozeman Neighborhoods Program which was created in 2007 to enhance communication between residents and the city, foster partnerships, and encourage public participation to develop solutions for mutual problems throughout the city.

The INC as a whole gives a voice to neighbors and neighborhood concerns and facilitates communication between the City and neighborhoods through a representative forum as an advisory board to the City Commission. You can find a map of the existing Association boundaries at this link.

Why should you care? For starters, there's an INC meeting this evening in City Hall @ 4:30 if you want to listen in or attend in person. But more broadly speaking, as an advisory board, this committee has the ear of the City Commission.

One example of their involvement can be seen in a past initiative by the City Commission and the City Manager's office, which involved creating a model document for HOA covenants. The INC had been asked for their input and support of the final document which can be found here. The final document is meant to help new & legacy HOAs craft or revise bylaws that may be misaligned with City priorities in specific categories like water conservation, childcare, neighborhood connectivity, sustainability and ADUs.

If you're a property owner, you can see how the conversations between the INC and the city ultimately impacts you and your neighborhood.

A quick look at a few Neighborhood Association online forums suggests some are more active than others. If you're looking to make an impact here in Bozeman and enjoy the idea of the independence from an HOA or a City backed board, we would encourage you to look into your Neighborhood Association.

You can find the agenda for tonight's meeting here along with minutes from the last 3 meetings.

On Our Radar 📡

News from around the valley and across the state:

Valentine's Date Ideas

In lieu of our Things To Do this weekend, below is an excerpt from our date ideas which can be read in full here.


For those looking for dinner on the town:

Fresco. This place has one of the coziest atmospheres in Bozeman and their pasta dishes are fantastic to boot. Make sure you save room at the end for a slice of Tiramisu and an affogato.

After dinner, you'd be remiss to not continue the night with some jazz over at the Tune Up. Jazz Night with Eddie T, which takes place every Wednesday just so happens to fall perfectly on this night of love.

For those in the friend zone:

Bozeman Bowl. Bowling is an underappreciated competition activity for a good time with friends. At ~$30/hour per lane with $2 shoe rentals after 6pm showing your friend your hidden talents on the laminate lanes could be one way out of the friend zone.

Trivia Answer

If you guessed d) 30% you're correct.

According to the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) Phil has gotten the forecast right 30% of the time over the last decade.