Highlights from Washoe County Board of Commissioners meeting

WASHOE COUNTY NEWS RELEASE

Washoe CountyThe Washoe County Board of Commissioners held its regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday, April 23, and took action on items including: proclaimed April 2013 as National Volunteer Awareness Month; heard the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District’s monthly update; received a presentation on how the County can further assist the community with major special events; approved a bid which will be funded by grants for the Bowers Swimming Pool Rehabilitation Project; received an update on the Reno-Tahoe International Airport; and approved the County’s five- year, 2014-2018 Capital Improvement Plan.

County celebrates volunteers and announces proclamations for April and May 2013: Items 5 and 8-11. The BCC proclaimed April 2013 as National Volunteer Awareness Month. Washoe County had 6,534 volunteers perform 65,318 hours of volunteer service last year, which was an 11 percent increase in the total number of volunteers and a 13 percent increase in the total number of reported hours over 2011. A reception was also held for the volunteers. Commissioners also proclaimed May 2 as National Day of Prayer, May 2013 as National Bike Month, May 4-11 as Nevada Wildfire Awareness Week and May 25-June 2 as Lake Tahoe Basin Wildfire Awareness Week.

Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District (TMFPD) monthly update: Items 14-15. TMFPD Chief Charles A. Moore said the department is coming in on budget as it completes its first year of service. Moore told the BCC, which convened as the Board of Fire Commissioners for the TMFPD, part of the plan for the next year includes implementing a pilot program for reserve firefighters and combining the Pleasant Valley and Washoe Valley Volunteer departments to improve strength and efficiency. The Board of Fire Commissioners appointed Commissioners Marsha Berkbigler, District 1, and Kitty Jung, District 3, to the Blue Ribbon Subcommittee to select candidates for possible appointment to study regional fire service on the main Blue Ribbon Committee.

Major special events seeking County’s help: Item 16. Representatives from the Reno Air Racing Association and Hot August Nights appeared on behalf of the Special Events Coalition, which also includes the Reno Rodeo, the Best in the West Nugget Rib Cook-off, the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival, Street Vibrations, the Reno-Tahoe Open and the Great Reno Balloon Race. The coalition requested the BCC consider a variety of ways the County may be able to help major special events throughout the community, such as waiving permit fees, reducing or eliminating rental costs for specific events and providing more support from the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District. Commissioners agreed to consider the options.

Bowers Swimming Pool Rehabilitation Project: Item 22. The BCC awarded the base bid for construction of the Bowers Swimming Pool Rehabilitation Project. The $150,000 William N. Pennington Foundation grant for this project will provide re-plastering, tile work and other repairs in order to open the Bowers Swimming Pool for the 2013 summer season. Bowers Pool was closed at the end of the 2009 summer season due to program and budget reductions. When previously open, the pool’s average total attendance in an operating year was 15,542.

Update on the Reno-Tahoe International Airport: Item 17. Randi Thompson, one of two Washoe County appointees to the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority, gave a brief presentation on the completion of the most recent construction projects. Thompson said the expansion of the existing food court area inside the terminal building to accommodate the “Checkpoint of the Future,” and the expansion of the second floor connector concourse for the relocation of a new food court and concession facilities, is complete and operating well. A new $6 million terminal/management headquarters for Reno-Stead Airport is also on track to be completed at the end of this year.

Five-year Capital Improvement Plan: Item 26. The five-year, 2014-2018 Capital Improvement Plan was approved that appropriates $55.8 million in funding for Fiscal Year 2013/14 for capital projects, many of which are funded from restricted sources that can only be used for specific purposes, such as revenues from sewer and water rate payers. These capital projects, while 80 percent lower than pre-recession levels, will create opportunities for potentially hundreds of construction jobs.

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