OUT WITH OLD, IN WITH NEW
Minutes, yes minutes, after two school officials skated by with no sanctions for breaking state law, two Clark County School District Board members had ethics complaints lodged against them for using taxpayer resources to campaign in an election, a violation of state law. Board members Deanna Wright and Erin Cranor are accused of using district emails to support a failed ballot question to raise an estimated $669 million from taxpayers for school improvements and construction. If it sounds familiar, it’s because the Nevada Commission on Ethics had just reached an agreement with School Board President Carolyn Edwards and Associate Superintendent Joyce Haldeman that had the pair admit they broke the law but received no discipline, claiming the the violation was “unwillful.” Any bets how this new complaint will end?
GONE TO THE DOGS
A series of deadly incidents between Las Vegas police and family pets has Nevada Sen. David Parks, D-Las Vegas, requesting a bill in the 2015 Legislature to require police to go through training in dealing with dogs to avoid shooting them. Eight dogs have died in 17 incidents in Metro’s jurisdiction of deadly force against dogs starting in 2011. Parks said animal control officers, U.S. Postal Service and private package carriers have founds ways to handle dogs without killing them. Wonder if any of the sheriff candidates will add this to their platform.
UNLV President Neal Smatresk is leaving the university for his home state of Texas. That’s fine, because he lost the faculty a while ago. An apparent fan of naming interims (interim AD, interim deans of the College of Urban Affairs, Honors College, School of Community Health Sciences, and not to exclude the Education College had an interim dean for four years until June!) Smatresk apparently was not all in for the institution for the long hall. Sure, he did some good things while he was here, but the second sentence of his farewell letter stated “We (him and his wife, Debbie) never thought this would be our last stop…” Nice.
PRAY FOR SNOW IN THE ROCKIES
The Southern Nevada Water Authority pushed back the completion date for the third intake at Lake Mead 13 months to July 2015. Officials assure everyone that the water levels are expected to remain 23 feet above the levels of the first intake. Unless the feds projections on Colorado River flow are wrong, but what’s the chances of that? Then, the very next day, it was discovered that one of the two intakes was taken offline until March to work on connecting the two current intakes to each other. Anyone else uncomfortable knowing the 90 percent of the valley’s water usage now depends on a single pipe and pump station?
STANDING WITH THE FLIGHT ATTENDANTS
We at CityLife want to urge the Federal Communication Commission to pull the idea of allowing cellphone calls in flight. With myths about electronics being a danger to airplane navigation bedunked, think about the danger to everyone sitting near the loud, chatty flier loudly discussing relationships, Turkey plans or anything else. The country’s largest flight attendants union doesn’t want this, and we would guess the vast majority fliers don’t want this either.
TO DOME, OR NOT TO DOME
The 11-member UNLV stadium board has finally started discussing the possibilities for a stadium on or around the university’s campus on Maryland Parkway, with the discussion turning to dome vs. no dome. We at CityLife vote retractable roof, modeled on the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona. Yes, that is what should be built.
CRIMINALS IN THE COMMONWEALTH
Another Las Vegas-based casino company has run into questions from gaming regulators and law officials regarding possible deals in Massachusetts. Wynn Resorts is scheduled to appear before that state’s gaming commission, and is being investigated by a federal grand jury and two state agencies in connection to the possibility a felon has hidden ownership in the proposed casino site. Turns out, casino regulators don’t like felons anywhere near their activities. Caesars Entertainment recently backed out of a proposed Boston-area project when regulators raised concerns about a licensing deal with a firm that was partly owned by a businessman with Russian mob ties. Casino regulators aren’t big on the mob, either.