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Barber: Essential Reading: Week of June 3, 2024 (commentary)


Reno City Council, Planning Commission, the future of South Virginia Street & more

First off, before anything else, I have one question for you: 

Have you voted in the primary election yet?

If the answer is no, I want you to go to your stack of mail, dig out that mail-in ballot, take a few moments to fill it out, and send it on its way. Prefer to vote in person? You’re in luck! Early voting at Washoe County’s Vote Centers extends through Friday, June 7. And of course, Primary Election Day is Tuesday, June 11.

Still have questions on the candidates? For Reno City Council, refer back to my May 19 Voting Guide which links to candidate websites and interviews. The Reno Gazette-Journal has a page linking to op-eds submitted to them by local candidates here, and their Opinion page will link to any op-eds written about those candidates, too.

If you want your representatives to actually represent you, the only way to ensure that is to participate in the elective processso please don’t shirk that responsibility and privilege.

This coming week brings meetings of both the Reno City Council (June 5) and the Reno Planning Commission (June 6), gearing up for Council’s annual summer break—after their June 12 meeting, Council won’t meet again until July 24.

As seen on the City’s Meetings webpage, this week’s meetings also include the Ward 3 Neighborhood Advisory Board (NAB) on June 4. I have more news and updates below, but first let’s preview what’s on deck for City Council and the Planning Commission.

Wednesday, June 5: Reno City Council

The agenda for the June 5th Reno City Council meeting can be found here, so skim through it for items of interest to you. Some highlights include the following:

C. 1 – Request for abandonment of part of an alley between S. Virginia and Haskell Streets. As public right-of-way abandonments go, this one is pretty minor, consisting of an approximately 700-sq ft triangle-shaped portion of an alley directly behind the newly-renovated Best Bet Motel in MidTown. You can view the Staff Report here.

D. 1 – Presentation, discussion, and potential approval of a number of improvements to the Truckee River corridor along Riverside Drive using ARPA funds. 

This includes a painting refresh, Riverside Drive Park design, cantilever path design, and lighting design, purchase, and installation. The illustration above pertains to a section between Arlington and Booth Streets. Staff Report (with images) here.

D. 2 – This item is listed on the agenda as “Presentation, discussion, and possible direction regarding the recruitment and selection process including feedback to develop a recruitment strategy and recruitment brochure” but doesn’t mention that it refers SPECIFICALLY to the recruitment and selection of a new City Manager.

As stated in the Staff Report, the Mayor and City Councilmembers are being asked to tell the recruiter what qualities they would like to see in candidates for Reno City Manager. Since City Councilmembers are your representatives, that means this is the time for you to let them know what you would like to see in the next City Manager.Doug Thornley will vacate the position effective July 7, 2024 and staff has previously suggested that the selection process could extend from June through December.

I. 1 – This is an appeal of the Planning Commission’s decision to approve a request for a tentative map that would allow for a 59-lot single-family detached subdivision in Rancharrah. The Planning Commission’s approval was appealed by Audrey Keller, who argued that “the approval of the tentative map will allow for the demolition and removal of community owners association (COA) property, conflicting with the covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&Rs).”

You can view the Staff Report here and go back to the full agenda to link to the accompanying materials including the appeal and the Planning Commission minutes.

To comment on any City Council item, you can attend Wednesday’s meeting in person; use the online public comment form at Reno.Gov/PublicComment; send an email to [email protected]; leave a voicemail at (775) 393-4499; or attend via Zoom by registering at https://links.reno.gov/Council06-05.

Read the rest at The Barber Brief.

The Barber Brief is an independent e-newsletter and blog written by Dr. Alicia Barber on the Substack platform. It is reposted by This Is Reno with her permission.

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