Our questions*, with the unedited answers posted in the order they are received, are below.
*Compiled by ThisisReno’s Laurel Busch, Bob Conrad and Ryan Jerz.
1. Please detail your experience administering government programs and/or government agencies.
EDDIE LORTON: I will talk about all of this on live TV at the up and coming debates on the 29 th otherwise it wouldnt be very prudent of me to give all of my info out just yet. Watch the debates and see.
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: I am currently a Washoe County Commissioner and have worked on County budgets and projects impacting our county residents. I serve as a board member on the Tahoe Regional Planning Commission, the Tahoe Transportation Commission, NV-Tahoe Conservation Commission, Washoe County Audit Committee, and several other regional boards. For the past 4 years my partner and I have managed a State Governors Office on Economic Development small business investment project which has required us to work with GOED and the Federal Treasury Department on providing collateral support funding for small businesses growing or relocating to NV. I’ve also managed the regulatory affairs for the City of Fernley, NV.
IDORA SILVER: I have worked in a number of governmental agencies helping them in their strategic planning, team building, and consensus building. I was recently brought in by the City of Reno to facilitate the council’s development of the strategic plan they are using now. I have worked with a number of other city departments in planning and communication, including the city attorney’s office and Reno police department (starting with them in 1987).I have worked with the school district and UNR’s Small Business Development Center with accreditation and other projects, and I have conducted training programs for NDOT, the former SIIS, the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, and the Washoe County Health District, to name a few.
KEN STARK: I often have worked with the Reno, Sparks and Washoe County planning commissions and other departments to assist new and existing businesses in acquiring the permits and approvals needed to do business here in the Truckee Meadows.
DELORES AIAZZI: I work daily with government agencies from the CDC, the State of Nevada and the Washoe County Health Department. There are many regulations and procedures, as you can imagine, that govern health care. The local laboratories are often where emerging dangerous organisms are isolated and identified first.
We are always aware of how quickly something can spread and how important it is to notify our State Health Laboratory and CDC when anything unusual or suspicious is identified. As the Technical Specialist in the Microbiology department at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center, I develop procedures to stay abreast of any new emerging biological threats and make sure our staff is also aware and prepared to act when necessary.
[nextpage title=”Question 2: Culture”]
2. Please explain how you would promote and encourage cultural sustainability in the Reno area.
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: I have worked with the Chamber and other interested groups on Reno ArtTown and the Discovery Museum. I believe these type of projects are very valuable to our community because they promote cultural projects for residents and attract tourists to our community. The River Walk project should be extended further into the City and we need to find ways to use the baseball stadium when it is not being used for baseball. As Mayor I will continue to promote these and other cultural projects that draw tourists to our community and residents to our downtown.
IDORA SILVER: Cultural sustainability requires the recognition and promotion of local cultural values in policy planning and decision-making. It includes music, art, creativity and other cultural activities, which are considered important for sustainable development. As mayor, I would support and promote the workings of artists, musicians, and others in growing the cultural heritage of this community. We have a thriving arts community and our Artown is world-renown, putting Reno on the cultural map. I would encourage more of these beautiful programs.
KEN STARK: Reno offers a fantastic slate of nearly year round cultural and art opportunities – it is a key component to our quality of life. Artown, community theater, music and art events offer something for just about everyone. I would support continuing the excellent work by the City Arts Commission to support local artists and create opportunities for them to show and sell their works. And I would use the platform the Mayor has to promote our cultural attractions as a key ingredient of what makes our City such a great place to live, work and raise a family.
DELORES AIAZZI: We have a vital, strong cultural base now and I want to keep building on that. With the relatively small amount of funding from the City going to actual arts and cultural events, I don’t believe it would take very much money to double what we are doing now.
The Arts is actually what is putting Reno on the map world-wide. I have heard from some of their disdain for Burning Man but one cannot look the other way when we see its global impact. We have not been capitalizing on that to any great extent. Burning Man brings more billionaires to one place than the G7. We need to recognize that and embrace the positive effects it can bring to our community.
Outside of Burning Man, the Reno arts and culture scene is resplendent with people and organizations. I believe that this is a major reason why people (particularly those in their 20’s and 30’s) are moving to Reno. In many instances, are moving BACK to Reno.
[nextpage title=”Question 3: The Environment”]
3. How will you promote and support environmental sustainability?
ERIK HOLLAND: I have an eight year history of fighting sprawl. In fact, protecting Winnemucca Ranch from leapfrog development was the single largest reason I ran for mayor this time and last time. I also want to work with Nevada Energy to target the monies collected for green energy to create maximum jobs. I think Reno and Nevada has opportunities to utilize renewable energy sources for jobs and to lessen our dependence on fossil fuels.
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: When I worked for a gold mining company several years ago part of my job was to assure environmental stability of surrounding areas. As a board member of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency I work on projects directed at assuring Lake Tahoe is protected from pollution and that we halt particulate runoff. I am committed to assuring we work to keep our river clean and protected and that includes working on projects throughout our community that protect our river and nearby wetlands and I would like to see the flood project move forward at a quicker pace. I’d like to see a growth in green energy projects which will reduce the inversion smog problem we have in the winter. I will plan to work with our energy provider and businesses in our area to find ways to grow green energy and technology projects.
IDORA SILVER: It is important for government agencies and private companies to work together to maintain some sort of environmental or ecological balance. Recycling is one such partnership and is promoted to encourage individuals and businesses to take responsibility for the health of the environment and to protect it from abuse. I was the first Executive Director of Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful, which is an affiliate of Keep America Beautiful. Our job was to encourage waste reduction, recycling, environmental protection, and beautification projects. As mayor, I will continue to encourage and promote all such efforts, as we all need to be good stewards of our precious environment.
KEN STARK: I would continue the hard work that’s been done by the City of Reno to take advantage of distributive generation programs that put solar panels on our government building rooftops, saving taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars. I would continue to support single stream recycling and work with the other local governments to make that a regional effort. I would also work with the District Board of Health to ensure that dust levels and carbon emissions are kept at low levels.
DELORES AIAZZI: I believe we need to improve our infrastructure within the McCarran Ring so developers will build homes close to the city core. Provide incentives for development where we want it. Encouraging more people to live close to their work where they could ride bikes or walk and enjoy the downtown area .We need to improve our inner city schools and create Complete Streets. We should also work closely with the University to encourage exchange of ideas and involvement with local projects such as solar energy, urban farms and agri-hoods.
Energy conservation and efficiencies are also very important and I would continue with the practice of making modifications where we can. We also need to work together and work with Waste Management (or some other entity) on a composting program.
[nextpage title=”Question 4: Finances”]
4. How will you promote fiscal accountability in local government?
ERIK HOLLAND: I think we simply need to be a bit more conservative in some of the decisions made. My very first cartoon that I did in Reno was for Mike Robinson….who was running against Cashell in 2000. It depicted a woman labeled Reno tied to tracks labeled Train Trench, and an on coming train labeled Debt. So here we are. I think the sprawling development pattern has led to problems. I think giving any business that wants to move here massive tax breaks leads to problems..not just here, but nationwide.
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: As a County Commissioner I have worked with staff to assure we retain the fiscal accountability that the County has worked so hard to establish and sustain over the past few years. As Mayor I will work with staff to review ongoing City programs/projects to see if there are places we can cut costs. I will also work with the other governments in our region to find economies of scale on various projects. There are additional areas where we can work together to lower operation costs similar to what we’ve already done in our planning departments where we’ve regionalized business licenses and document filings. I will also look at ways to reduce the government interference in new business startups and work with EDAWN and GOED on bringing new businesses into Reno. As Mayor I would work with our legislative delegation to make necessary changes to the City Charter and possibly other statutes to assure we can develop the same fiscal accountability in Reno that we have in the County.
IDORA SILVER: The mayor’s role is to promote careful accounting of all the city’s income and expense streams, making sure that all expenditures are prioritized, legitimate, and work toward the good of the community. One of my biggest focuses will be to make sure we hope for the best, but plan for the worst. We need to move forward with big projects when we can, but also need to be mindful of overextending.
KEN STARK: The City Manager has done a good job of improving transparency by posting all city employee positions, pay and benefits on the website, along with the budget so that information is available to anyone who wants to see it. However, we could do more to simplify those documents so that residents can understand better where the money goes. I’m aware that there already are areas where local governments are working together to cut costs but I would support looking ways at expand those partnerships.
DELORES AIAZZI: The best way to promote accountability is that well-worn phrase “transparency”. If the public knows everything that is happening and is listened to at the time of a decision, then there will have been a thousand set of eyes on the proposal. I also believe we need to look closely at where the county spends its tax dollars. Washoe county includes ALL of Reno, Sparks and the unincorporated areas why then do they spend our resources on roads and snow removal only in the unincorporated areas , it seem that the city residents are being taxed and subsidizing these services in the unincorporated areas. The taxes that the county raises should be spent equally in all areas of the county or on projects that benefit the entire county such as the Health Department and the Jail at Parr Boulevard.
Education is another way to promote fiscal accountability. I know it seems a very dry subject, but it should be put out so those who want to read it, will read it. For instance, many in this election are discussing the “insolvency” of the City of Reno. There is a lot of discussion about this issue but not very much actual research is being done (including many candidates for Mayor) The City of Reno is NOT “insolvent” and actually is not even near insolvency. It may get its credit scored downgraded but that is far from insolvency. Let’s take a look at the facts:
In the 2013/2014 Budget, the City of Reno had outstanding General Obligation Bond debt of $139,165,318. That money was used for street repair, sewer repair, fire station and apparatus and clean energy. Reno has a statutory limit on these types of bonds of $888,237,464. That leaves a margin of almost $750 million.
Now I am not proposing that we borrow any more, I am saying that some candidates want you to vote from fear. Imminent bankruptcy will face the City of Reno if you don’t elect them. Well, it’s illegal for a City to declare bankruptcy in Nevada, so it just can’t happen.
Then there is an obligation of $19 million in Special Assessment Debt. This money is used to repair the sidewalks when street repair is done. It is paid back by the people who actually had their sidewalks replaced by the City of Reno.
What some don’t seem to understand is the other debt that Reno has, “Revenue Bonds” or, as it’s listed in Reno’s budget, “Bonds Supported by Sales Tax and Room Tax Revenues”? This is a very large amount. $372,749,940. This is how ReTRAC, the Special Events Center, etc. was funded.
If they do understand this fact, what they don’t tell you is what a “Revenue Bond” is. These are bonds that are sold to big companies like Goldman Sachs. These big companies understand that these bonds will only be paid back by whatever was promised to pay them back. In Reno’s case it is Sales Tax and Room Tax. NOT MONEY THAT COULD BE USED FOR POLICE, FIRE, STREETS, ETC. ONLY by sales tax and room tax.
What these big companies also understood, and the City of Reno agreed, was that this is a riskier investment than general obligation bonds are, where the full faith and credit of the City is backing them. Since both sides understood it was a riskier investment, we agreed to pay them a higher interest rate. These bonds are mostly in the 5% range with one being 7.88%. The largest one, however, is at 3.32%. Compare those to General Obligation Bond Rates. They are in the 2, 3 & 4% range.
You see, the big banks took the risk that the money might not be there and now, many of the candidates want to bail them out! There is one candidate saying we should sell ReTRAC property to pay of the General Obligation Bonds. That can’t happen. All the revenue from those sales has to go to ReTRAC Debt. It would not help with the issues revolving around the Fire Department.
To finally summarize, I will not lead with fear. I will tell you the truth. The $650-$700 million dollar debt figure is what the bonds sold for and not what is currently owed on them Add those three figures up and it is $531 million and $18 million more of that will be paid off by June 30th so that leaves Reno in debt $513 million. I know, it’s still a lot, but the repeated figures are off by over $120 million maybe they don’t know how to read a budget, but I do.
[nextpage title=”Question 5: Experience with Emergency Situations”]
5. Please outline your experience managing emergency situations (shootings, natural disasters, etc.).
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: As a regional external affairs VP and corporate officer for a telecommunications company, I was responsible for working with our staff to assure our operations were protected during wild land fires and/or earthquakes throughout CA, TX, and NV. I also worked with staff in OR and WA when snow and ice became a problem for our operations or we were worried about tsunamis resulting from nearby earthquakes. These situations required me to work with the press to assure customers were informed of outages or potential outages and when operations would be repaired and back up providing service. I worked with the FCC, NPUC, CalPUC, WPUC, and ORPUC to be certain they were aware of all operations and how soon we could be back in operation. I am qualified to step in and handle emergencies as the Mayor of Reno and would not require on-the-job training.
IDORA SILVER: The mayor’s job is to help ensure that the city has adequate resources to handle emergency situations with fire, police, ambulance, hospitals, and other. I am an FBI-trained hostage negotiator, but our law enforcement personnel are trained and equipped to handle these situations. After the appropriate agencies have done what they can to the best of their ability, then it is the mayor’s job to work with the victims to ensure they have the help they need to help them cope with their losses and start with rebuilding. Sometimes the mayor’s job is to “help people cry.”
DELORES AIAZZI: I can’t say that I have had experience managing others in an emergency. We have all had emergency situations in our lives and have managed them. That being said, I understand what the role of a Mayor is and what it is not. While a Mayor is required to declare an emergency, and a Mayor is often the face to the public explaining what is going on, a Mayor doesn’t actually manage an emergency. A good Mayor knows when to step aside and let the trained professionals manage an emergency. Always staying abreast of the situation and ready to communicate when necessary.
[nextpage title=”Question 6: Fire Services”]
6. Would you work toward re-consolidating the Reno and Washoe County fire departments, or would you prefer to keep them separate?
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: Yes I would work toward a regional fire department where the City and County had the same funding plan, where there was an independent board to oversee fire operations throughout the region, and where we had one chief responsible for oversight. This plan would result in automatic aid so no citizen was disadvantaged, it would allow the station closest to the fire to roll the truck. I also think there are some ways we can reduce costs by setting up 2-man rescue vehicles to roll to medical situations rather than rolling the large fire trucks every time. Wit out question this is not something that would be easy and might require legislative activity to fully establish. Due to my background as a mediator and contract negotiator I am fully qualified to work with the various parties to resolve differences.
KEN STARK: Yes. The bottom line is when your house is burning down the fire station closest to your house should be the one dispatched to respond. The focus needs to be on cooperating, whether that’s through automatic aid agreements or a consolidated department with independent oversight. Our local governments have worked together to resolve water management issues and we can and should do the same when it comes to public safety. We owe it to residents to work together to maximize limited resources.
DELORES AIAZZI: I believe what has to be said from the beginning is that the City of Reno currently has good fire service. It could always be better but, again, I am not running a “fear” campaign. Whatever happens would have to be beneficial in both service and cost to the citizens of Reno. In my opinion, the City has a better fire department in terms of coverage and training than the County. We must be careful not to dilute that when we talk of regionalization.
The City of Reno has had a “mutual aid” agreement with the City of Sparks for decades and it has worked out well for both parties. (Mutual aid is when a department calls for help after they have arrived on scene and actually determines they need help). When the County Commissioners decided to “divorce” from the City of Reno, they did it for a few divergent reasons.
1. Some Commissioners wanted to break up the union (didn’t happen)
2. Other Commissioners wanted better fire service for some neighborhoods. (They built a new fire station at Arrowcreek). When they built that station, they realized they did not have the money to staff that station and keep the same staffing levels at Verdi and Washoe Valley.
3. Their solution was to break up a mutually beneficial agreement. They were betting that Reno would give them “automatic aid” (different than “mutual aid”. Under “automatic aid”, the nearest station would respond to any calls. In essence, they wanted to collect tax money from their underserved areas (Hidden Valley, Caughlin Ranch) and transfer all of that tax money to the Arrowcreek area for staffing.
When Reno decided that they couldn’t afford to subsidize the Commissioner’s idea, the County was then forced to build another new station in Mogul and beef up their protection in Hidden Valley. To pay for that, they also had to increase property taxes by as much as 20% in some case to residents in the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District and the Sierra Fire Protection District.
It had been noted many times that consolidated agreement saved close to $20million during its life. If we still had those savings today, things would not be as stretched as they are now.
With all of that history, I still would work on re-consolidating them. The contract that was in existence for so long worked well for all involved. I believe it was broken up because of personalities trying to break the union. All those personalities will be gone in January of next year and, I believe the new elected officials can work with the unions and get something ironed out.
[nextpage title=”Question 7: STAR Bond Projects”]
7. What is your position on STAR bond projects? Would you consider approving new STAR bond projects?
ERIK HOLLAND: I don’t like them. The law of unintended consequences comes in here….we have existing retailers moving to the Legends project. I’m tired of the competition to give million and even billion dollar businesses tax breaks. I dislike that Cabella’s is on the edge of town. No more!
IDORA SILVER: Moving forward, Reno government needs to be very careful and circumspect in looking at any special revenue arrangements, as some of the current ones, including STAR bonds, are in rather precarious conditions. There have been some positive outcomes from some of the projects, but some did not work and some have had unintended, negative consequences. I am skeptical of using STAR bonds for future projects but, as with everything, it would depend on unique details and opportunities.
KEN STARK: This was a good idea with unintended consequences. The idea of using STAR bonds to lure new national retail and other corporations is a good one. However, we didn’t set the bar high enough and we’ve seen too many retailers abandon our neighborhoods for these projects to take advantage of the tax incentives. I wouldn’t support any new STAR bond projects until we can work with the Nevada Legislature to change the law.
8. The Cliven Bundy situation elevated the conflict between local and federal government authorities in Nevada. If a similar situation were to happen in the Reno area, how would you respond? How would you expect law enforcement to respond? How would you manage a militia presence in Washoe County?
ERIK HOLLAND: I want to point out here that I have been furious over the violations of the Bill of Rights since 2001. I dislike the Patriot Act, and the NDAA was a last straw for me. It is a “hidden”reason why I am on the ballot. The Mayor of Reno has a higher platform to advocate for the Bill of Rights! That said, I do not agree with the militia as they are happening with the Bundy situation. The fellow simply needs to pay his grazing fees. He has violated several laws, and needs to be accountable. I would advocate removing the militia with the National Guard, because they are violating the rule of law…which I believe in. That is why I stand up for the Bill of Rights.
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: Although I believe Mr. Bundy should pay his fees just as other ranchers do, I believe the BLM overstepped their rights by threatening and essentially attacking some members of the Bundy family. I am a strong supporter of the Bill of Rights and believe it allows for militias to have a presence in our States. I’m also a strong supporter of States rights and think there is a valid reason to ask the federal government to return some of the federally controlled land to the State. As Mayor I would respond much as our Governor did by asking the BLM to stand down before someone was seriously injured. I would work with the land owner to work out a resolution to the problem, perhaps by advocating for the grazing land to be turned over to the State of NV or to be purchased by the land user. I would work with our federal representatives to find a way to protect our citizens while complying with the law. Since I’m an experienced negotiator and mediator, I am fully qualified to step in and assist with negotiating a resolution to these problems. As a free country we have the responsibility to assure our citizens can use the land without interference by the federal agencies and that our citizens comply with rules and regulations.
IDORA SILVER: As with so many things, it would depend a great deal on the particular circumstances of the situation. As an FBI trained negotiator, I know, among other things, that having too many cooks in the kitchen in a situation like this can make matters worse. If there was a component of the situation that involved law-breaking in the City of Reno, I would work with the police chief and all other appropriate law enforcement agencies to ensure that law abiding citizens were protected, that our enforcement response was proportional to the situation, and do everything we could to de-escalate tensions.
KEN STARK: Cliven Bundy broke the law and no one is above the law. Grazing and permit fees paid by the many users of public lands provide critical resources to support conservation and land management. However, the situation was unnecessarily escalated by the federal government, which in turn escalated the militia-type presence. I would work with those involved and the federal authorities to avoid such a standoff as occurred in Southern Nevada, and use the platform the Mayor has to help dial down tensions.
DELORES AIAZZI: AS in the Bundy situation, the Sheriff would take the lead on something of that nature in Washoe County. Sometimes you have to know what is NOT in your power but you may, perhaps, influence a decision. I believe in following the law and working to change a law if it seems unjust.
I believe the BLM has let this go on too long and should have addressed the situation sooner. I am glad that our governor asked the BLM to stand down and let cooler heads prevail.
[nextpage title=”Question 9: Problems in Reno”]
9. What do you see as the biggest problem facing Reno right now, and how will you work to fix it?
ERIK HOLLAND: I think inconsistent regional planning is the biggest problem. I think growth is coming back, and our biggest challenge is how to manage it, so that it doesn’t destroy the quality of life that attracts people to our region. We should encourage infill, of the type that my rival Schieve is good at doing, but absolutely, absolutely, discourage the leapfrog and cherry stem sprawl that has occurred over that last two decades. The sprawling urban foot print ( not all our fault) leaves jobs in Fernley and Patrick, while people without cars live in older areas of Sparks and Reno. Let’s connect them with decent public transportation, and STOP sprawling even further out!
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: The biggest problem facing Reno is the debt. I will work with staff to review each departments budget for areas where we can reduce costs and I will work with both EDAWN and GOED to grow business. I have a background in economic development and believe I’m qualified and well-versed in how to grow business and attract new businesses to our community. I will work with key departments to find ways to get the government out of the way so it is easier to start up a new business and grow existing businesses. There are many things that the government can do to attract and encourage businesses to locate in the Reno area and as Mayor I will work with staff to assure we put in place programs to do that. I will also work with staff to continue the process of cleaning up downtown because that will attract more tourists.
IDORA SILVER: We need to get people back to work, and help our existing businesses. Working families and local small businesses fuel the economy. People need the dignity and income of work to provide for their families. My job as mayor will be to encourage and promote the growth of business in our community. We need to be attractive enough to bring in out-of-state companies, and that includes improving our educational system and making Reno an easy and favorable place in which to do business. More importantly, I will encourage and help enable the growth of our current businesses. There are incentives and grant programs available from the state, like the Catalyst Fund and the Knowledge Funds, which I will help our local businesses pursue, and can help connect UNR with downtown. This will be my biggest economic development focus: advocating for our existing businesses, who have already committed to Reno, and who live, work, and grow their families here.
KEN STARK: Reno has a few challenges – homeless downtown, reduced services to seniors, parks not maintained to the standards we would all like to see. But all these issues come back to the same thing – the budget. We can’t continue to slice and dice at a too small pie – we need to grow the pie and we do that not by increasing taxes but increasing the tax base. Focusing on recruiting new companies and supporting local businesses is how we are going to move forward and continue to recover from the cutbacks of recent years. Reno is beginning an upswing and I’m optimistic that working together as a region we can grow our economy.
DELORES AIAZZI: I believe our biggest problem is our own self image. I hear from many of the Mayoral candidates how much they love this place and in the next breath they tell us they can hardly wait to change it. Bring more high tech jobs and become the next Silicon Valley. Have you ever BEEN to Silicon Valley?
Much of what everyone loves is how easy it is to get around, our beautiful weather, blue skies, the river and access to parks. Hiking and the many new small businesses popping up. I believe we need to encourage more small businesses with local owners who put their heart and soul into Reno, their home. As elected officials we need to participate in the local activities watch and learn how and where to support the next generation so our community will continue to flourish organically not force it to be something artificial and unsustainable.
[nextpage title=”Question 10: Reno’s Benefits”]
10. What is Reno’s biggest benefit right now, and how will you use/promote it to improve the city?
ERIK HOLLAND: Reno is a small, yet cosmopolitan city surrounded by amazing natural wonders. We also have a strong local art scene, affordable housing,adequate water, and an amazing quality of life. I think these factors could encourage out of state, as well as instate companies to locate and grow here. One of my rivals, Robert Avery, talks about bringing in the tech industry. I agree, but caution that we manage it to retain the quality of life and affordability of housing that we now enjoy. I dislike “boom” economies. I prefer slow, sensible growth, that provides for the folks who live here today. Avery talks about wanting his kids to stay here…..and the quality of life. I agree.
MARSHA BERKBIGLER: Our location is our biggest benefit. We are close to Lake Tahoe, we have a beautiful river running through our City, we have wonderful weather pretty much year-around, we have reasonable housing prices, and reasonable taxes. All these factors make us an attractive location for people who are looking to establish a business and move their families or who just want to take an enjoyable vacation. Our Washoe County schools are very good and although we have some challenges, we are doing a good job of providing a well-rounded education to our students. We have a class A university with a beautiful campus, outstanding medical school, top engineering school, and UNV-R is the host to many students from all over the world. I would promote the college-town concept and work with other interested groups to merge our university into downtown. College towns are highly respected as places to live and when a community is fortunate enough to have a university with the caliber of the University of Nevada in Reno, we should take every opportunity to incorporate it with our town.
IDORA SILVER: Reno is a great place, with great people. Our strength is that we have no “one big benefit” now, but many wonderful benefits. There is something for everyone here, including outdoors recreation, arts, the University of Nevada, our business community and tech start-ups, an exciting restaurant and bar scene, you name it. We are a true community, and we take pride in our quintessential Western “can do” spirit. As mayor, I will be the leader promoting these assets both within our region and to the outside world, and I will be accountable for moving us forward.
KEN STARK: Our entrepreneurial and startup community is clearly one of the biggest benefits, in terms of both growing local talent and attracting new residents with innovative ideas looking for the right place to launch. Our university system and Desert Research Institute are key partners in expanding the research component and workforce development critical to startup success and our region offers the quality of life so attractive to business leaders who can set up shop just about anywhere.
DELORES AIAZZI: Our people are our biggest asset. A city is a place for people of all persuasions to come together and share ideas, discuss new inventions, build art, make music, share a meal or perhaps a craft beer produced with our great water. We have so many hard working people excited to share their latest creation or their next project. I would work with these people to make sure there is a foundation of support for our artists, musicians, hikers, photographers and Educators. I am so proud of a community where a local bookstore thrives, we have volunteers who run a ski program, preserve hiking trails, build the Challenger Learning Center, act in community theatre, put on a month long art festival, repair bikes so local veterans can get to work, hold a River Festival, help build an amazing temporary city….. Leave No Trace and come home with a renewed sense of community.
[nextpage title=”Contact the Candidates”]
ERIK HOLLAND: 775-322-3582
Erik Holland for Reno Mayor on Facebook
Erik Holland for Mayor on Twitter
DELORES AIAZZI: www.aiazzi.com