MIDDLETON -- A Middleton man has a plan to get the Nampa School District's budget shortfall paid off in a short period of time.
The plan is to raffle off homes in Nampa and raise enough money to erase the district’s financial problems.
Faith and hope - those were the two words used today when talking about the likelihood of this plan to raffle off homes to pay off the district’s debt.
Faith in people wanting to help, and hoping they'll buy a ticket.
Phil Allaire moved to Middleton about three years ago.
Like the rest of us, he began hearing and reading about the financial problems in the Nampa School District.
"Being retired I spent a lot of time watching the news, reading newspapers, but I also comment about it to my wife. And after two to three weeks of listening to me complain she finally said either do something about it or shut up. So here we are," he said.
That was about six months ago.
Since then Phil started a non-profit called Enriching Endowments, with the specific goal of helping aid school districts with budget shortfalls.
His goal could be called noble.
"I've done well. I retired young, and it's time to pay back a little bit," said Allaire.
But to pay back, he first needs to pay out.
Using his own money, he has either bought, or is in the process of buying, 40 new and used homes to raffle off.
A home built in 2001 is the first to be raffled off.
"We went right through the home. We took it as though it was a blank slate and brought it up to today's building codes," said Allaire.
That means new carpet, paint, heating, air conditioning and a new water heater.
The home now looks brand new.
"This house basically needs nothing for the next 10 years," said Allaire.
For each home there are only 2,500 tickets. Each will be sold for $100.
After recouping the cost of buying and fixing the home, the rest is a donation to the district. Allaire doesn't keep any of it.
Outgoing Nampa Superintendent Tom Michaelson calls this a wonderful concept and hopes the community jumps in to help.
"This is for real. Phil is for real. His intentions are proper and in the right place, and they're admirable and I support him," said Michaelson.
Allaire has no ties to Nampa, he just believes in education.
After he helps the Nampa School District, Allaire plans to help other districts in the state, as well as nationwide.