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Only two Council members vote against UNR farm development proposal

By ThisIsReno

brekCITY OF RENO NEWS — Yesterday, the Reno City Council held their regularly scheduled meeting. Below are some highlights from the meeting.

• Agenda Item M.1
The City Council approved a request by the University of Nevada, Reno to rezone a 104 acre parcel known as UNR Farms and to uphold the recommendations by the Planning Commission. The vote was 4 to 2 with Council Members Brekhus and Delgado opposing and Council Member Hillary Schieve abstaining. The zoning amendment will allow for commercial and light industrial development. The Planning Commission recommended approving the request along with including: disclosures to project property owners and tenants of the adjacent agricultural uses and slaughterhouse; a 30 foot setback from the northern perimeter; a change to industrial uses in the delgnorthernmost planning area; ensuring better than 1:1 flood mitigation; and a handbook provision ensuring that agricultural uses will continue to be allowed within the project area. The parcel is part of the University of Nevada, Reno’s 1,081 acre Main Station Laboratory located north of the intersection of South McCarran Boulevard and Pembroke Drive. The University of Nevada, Reno has stated they have no current plans for the land but requested the rezoning to protect the parcel and its value. Additionally, the University stated that Wolf Pack Meats would not be impacted as a result of the zoning change.

• Proclamation declaring April 2013 as Fair Housing Month
Urging all citizens to join the City of Reno in recognizing Silver State Fair Housing Council and its importance in our community, Mayor Cashell proclaims April 2013 as Fair Housing Month. Silver State Fair Housing Council is a non-profit agency working since 1989 to ensure equal housing opportunity for all people in Nevada. The City of Reno supports the efforts of the Silver State Fair Housing Council and all other agencies pursuing fair housing. For more information about the Silver State Fair Housing Council visit silverstatefairhousing.org. To learn more about how the City of Reno is working to provide decent affordable housing, developing suitable living environments, and creating expanded economic opportunities for the community visit Reno.gov.

• Proclamation declaring April 1 through April 6, 2013 as Reno Community Development Week
Celebrating the importance and necessity of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program in bettering our community, Mayor Cashell proclaims April 1 through April 6, 2013 as Reno Community Development Week. The CDBG Program provides annual funding and flexibility to local communities to provide decent, safe, and sanitary housing, suitable living environment and economic opportunities to low and moderate income people. The City of Reno receives annual CDBG allocation from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Accessibility improvements, neighborhood revitalization projects, and Community Assistance Operations are just some examples of beneficial projects that were funded with the assistance of the CDBG Program.

• Proclamation declaring April 7, 2013 as Pathways to Aviation Day
The City of Reno recognizes the important contributions of the Reno Air Racing Foundation and its Pathways to Aviation Program, including its support and promotion of the speaker event to be presented at the University of Nevada, Reno on April 17, 2013. The Reno Air Racing Foundation was established in 2004 as a way of introducing youth to the fascinating world of aviation while highlighting the role of air racing in shaping the industry. As part of the Reno Air Racing Foundation, Pathways to Aviation was launched in 2008 and through partnerships with the University of Nevada, Reno, Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority, Challenger Learning Center of Northern Nevada and Sierra Nevada Corporation, the program inspires local youth through aviation and aerospace educational activities, grants and scholarships to pursue educational studies in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

• Agenda Item E. 4
The City Council approved a Cooperative Agreement for the funding of the Virginia Street Bridge Replacement Project with the Nevada Department of Transportation in the amount not to exceed $10 million.

Total funding for the replacement project is estimated at $21.2 million. Funding for the Virginia Street Bridge Replacement Project has been identified from the Nevada Department of Transportation federal funding sources, from the Flood Management Authority 1/8th cent sales tax in an amount not to exceed $7.5 million, and from the Regional Transportation Commission local fuel tax in an amount not to exceed $2 million. Each agency has budgeted, or is in the process of budgeting for the respective portions of the project. Agreements with the Flood Management Authority and the Regional Transportation Commission are currently being drafted and will be brought forward for Council consideration at a future meeting. Potential City of Reno street funds is estimated to be $1.7 million.

After over a century of use, the Virginia Street Bridge is showing signs of extreme wear and must be replaced to ensure continued public safety. The City of Reno, in partnership with the Truckee River Flood Management Project, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have implemented a plan to replace the bridge while respectfully preserving its distinguished history. Pending environmental permitting and available funding, the Virginia Street Bridge Replacement
Project will commence late spring 2014. For more information about the Virginia Street Bridge Replacement Project visit vsbreno.com.

• Agenda Item J.7
The City Council approved to move forward with funding an additional graffiti abatement employee, adding to the one employee currently assigned. Since April of 2010, necessary budget cuts led to a reduction in resources related to graffiti abatement and investigation. Graffiti incidents within the region continue to trend upward while enforcement and abatement programs remain challenged by resources and staffing. Additional funding will be reviewed during the 2013/2014 budget cycle when the Reno Police Department will provide recommendations to meet the current needs of the community. The City of Reno will continue with the goal of building on community outreach programs and clean-up coordination events.

• Agenda Item L.4
The City Council approved the allocation from Council member Oscar Delgado’s Council donation funds for fiscal year 2012-2013 in the amount of $1,000 to the Wells Avenue Merchants and Property Owners Association. The fund will be used to purchase graffiti removal supplies, banner installation for the promotion of their association, and the printing of their 2013 brochure highlighting the vitality of this area. These efforts provide opportunities for businesses and residents to preserve the character and livability of this neighborhood. Council donation funds can only be used for nonprofit organizations that provide substantial benefits within our community.

• Agenda Item L.5
The City Council approved the allocation from Council member Dwight Dortch’s Council donation funds for fiscal year 2012-2013 in the amount of $5,000 to the Reno Continental Little League. These funds will be used to install artificial field turf in the infield area at Jack Tighe Park. This improvement will provide a safer and maintenance free field for many years for participants and visitors. Council donation funds can only be used for nonprofit organizations that provide substantial benefits within our community.

• Agenda Item L.6
The City Council approved the allocation from Council member Dwight Dortch’s Council donation funds for fiscal year 2012-2013 in the amount of $1,000 to the Washoe County 4-H Livestock Leaders. These funds will be used to offset costs associated with the Washoe County Livestock Show on April 21 at the Reno Livestock Events Center. Council donation funds can only be used for nonprofit organizations that provide substantial benefits within our community.