WASHOE COUNTY NEWS RELEASE
The Washoe County Board of Commissioners held its regularly scheduled meeting today. It unanimously re-elected both Commissioner David Humke as the chair of the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) and Commissioner Bonnie Weber as the vice chair, both for one year terms.
It also directed staff to proceed regarding implementation of provisions of the Nevada Medical Marijuana Act; appointed a subcommittee to fill the temporary vacancy on the Sparks Justice Court; approved the appointments of several county management positions; announced the Senior Services nutrition program will increase to two daily meals; accepted a $21,950 grant from the William N. Pennington Foundation for pool covers at Bowers Mansion Regional Park; and proclaimed January 2014 as National Radon Action Month and as EnergyFitNevada Month.
BCC Chair and Vice Chair for 2014: Items 4-6. The Board unanimously re-elected Commissioner David Humke, District 2, as the Chair of the BCC, and Commissioner Bonnie Weber, District 5, as the Vice Chair, both for one year terms. Chairman Humke and Vice Chair Weber reach their term limits serving on the BCC at the end of 2014. “It’s good to have our veteran commissioners as it’s important for the stabilization of the County and we thank you both,” said Commissioner Marsha Berkbigler, District 1.
Nevada Medical Marijuana Act: Item 16. Commissioners received a status update and directed staff to continue working on the implementation of provisions of the Nevada Medical Marijuana Act (SB 374). The County is not currently accepting any applications from potential medical marijuana establishments, to include dispensaries, until the County Commission adopts appropriate regulations and procedures to support SB 374. The bill allows for 10 dispensaries in the County and staff asked for direction from the Commission to allocate the dispensaries as follows: two in Reno, two in Sparks, one in the Incline Village-Crystal Bay Township, one in the Gerlach-Wadsworth Township and two in the unincorporated Washoe County (outside of the Incline Village-Crystal Bay and Gerlach-Wadsworth townships) and two unallocated to be distributed based on a future petition from one of the Cities citing needs to serve areas with greater population. Staff will continue to work on the required County Code amendments, to study appropriate fee structures for all medical marijuana dispensaries, and to bring a resolution allocating the 10 dispensaries back to the Board. Commissioner Kitty Jung, District 3, thanked the staff for their due diligence on the project and encouraged them to continue working with Reno and Sparks to ensure conformity of the implementation of SB 374 throughout the region.
Vacancy on Sparks Justice Court: Item 15. The Board authorized the County Manager to establish a process for recruitment and to advertise the vacancy on the Sparks Justice Court caused by the early retirement of Judge Susan Deriso. Applications will be accepted Jan. 21- Jan. 27, 2014 with a selection target date to fill the vacancy Feb. 11. Applicants must have a high school diploma or a GED and be a registered voter in Nevada. Commissioners Hartung and Chairman Humke will head up the subcommittee to review applications.
Approval of County appointments: Item 20. Commissioners approved several appointments suggested by Washoe County Manager John Slaughter. Dave Solaro moves from Acting Director to Director of the Community Services Department and Don Jeppson is now the Division Director of the newly created Building and Safety Division in the Community Services Department. The Board also approved the appointment of Ken Retterath, Division Director of Adult Social Services, as Acting Social Services Director to replace Kevin Schiller, who is now the Assistant County Manager. The Social Services Department Director is appointed by the County Commission, which will direct the next steps specific to recruitment and appointment for that position.
Senior Services Meals Program: Item 19. Assistant County Manager Kevin Schiller announced Washoe County Senior Services will be increasing the number of home delivered meals to approximately 150 seniors by adding a second daily meal. Schiller said a survey showed more than 35 percent of seniors in the program said the one delivered meal was their only meal of the day. Adding the second meal to deliveries in February is the result of the continued collaboration of Social Services and Senior Services towards a single human services agency as directed by the Board of County Commissioners.
Pennington Foundation Grant for Bowers Mansion: Item 10 B. The Board accepted a $21,950 grant from the William N. Pennington Foundation for the purchase and installation of pool covers for the Bowers Pools at Bowers Mansion Regional Park. The covers will protect the recently renovated pools, decrease spring maintenance, and add an element of safety during the off-season. Bowers Pool was closed at the end of the 2009 summer season due to program and budget reductions. During this period of time, the pool facility deteriorated. Through a generous grant from the William N. Pennington Foundation, the Bowers Mansion Pool was renovated and re-opened for the 2013 summer season. Attendance for the 2013 season topped 14,000, averaging nearly 200 visitors per day.
Proclamations: Items 8 & 9. The Board proclaimed January 2014 as National Radon Action Month. Radon is a colorless, odorless, naturally occurring radioactive gas and the leading cause of lung cancer for nonsmokers and the second leading cause for smokers. All Washoe County residents are encouraged to test their homes for radon. More information is available by calling 1- (888) RADON-10 or by visiting www.radonnv.com. The BCC also proclaimed January as EnergyFit Nevada month. Home Performance with ENERGY STAR is a national program designed to promote home energy efficiency. Benefits from the program include not only increased comfort and health, but also reduced energy costs, reduced reliance on fossil fuels, reduced pollution from power sources, and job creation in an emerging residential energy efficiency industry. More information is available at energy.nv.gov.