The Nevada Observer

Vol. 4,  No. 13         May 1, 2007

Nevada's Online State News Journal

 

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May 12-13, 2007

[9:00 AM]

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Nevada Government

State Government

Nevada Legislature

Overview

NV Legislative Hearings: AB 115 on mine mercury emissions (Desert Beacon column, Blue Sage Views)

Nevada Highways

News Reports: Gambling Cartels, Tax Addicts Oppose Governor's Plan

"The diversion of room taxes is already staunchly opposed by various statehouse Democrats, Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman, the Nevada Gaming Association and the convention authority, among others."

Road plan caveat echoes: Gibbons repeats, 'No new taxes' (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Room taxes tempting target (In Business Las Vegas article)

"Gov. Jim Gibbons scored big last week, in the opinion of many here, with a proposal to build roads to ease the state's increasingly congested traffic, without raising taxes."

WEEK IN REVIEW: CARSON CITY -- Gibbons' plan turns friends into enemies (Las Vegas Sun article)

LOOKING IN ON: TOURISM -- If taxes go, so could convention upgrade (Las Vegas Sun article)

"From 2005 to 2006, almost 97,000 people moved into Clark County. In the next 10 years, Clark County anticipates the construction of 45,000 to 75,000 new hotel rooms and that translates to more than 100,000 more vehicles on the clogged freeways, Gibbons said, citing a study by the Regional Transportation Committee."

Gibbons plan shifts tax shares for road crisis (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Opinion

"But lawmakers must consider: What will happen to the Las Vegas tourism trade if they allow already-gridlocked I-15 to become so clogged that visitors from Southern California can't make it here and back in a single weekend?"

Gibbons presents traffic plan: Gamers, tourism officials crying foul (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

GEOFF SCHUMACHER: Gibbons' highway plan is dead on arrival (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

"The Republicans, most of whom were by the governor's side Thursday, look as if they are for the little guy and against Big Gaming while the Democrats (obliquely portrayed as the enemy by Gibbons) seem to be casino pawns and taxaholics."

Jon Ralston wonders why the governor waited so late in legislative session to offer a plan to pay for road work (Las Vegas Sun column)

"All it takes for roads to remain clogged is for good legislators to do nothing - or do just enough to make you think they did something."

Jon Ralston on Politics: Look in the mirror (In Business Las Vegas column)

Jon Ralston writes the script for what would be said in Carson City if the capital was injected with truth serum (Las Vegas Sun column)

Gridlock governor rides again: Gibbons' plan for overcoming highway deficit is insufficient and lacks foresight (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Highway plan a bust: Governor would endanger long-term tourism revenue just to keep campaign pledge (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Jeff Simpson proposes a compromise to Gibbons' transportation plan that might make everyone happy (Las Vegas Sun column)

More on road taxing (Steve Sebelius column, Las Vegas CityLife)

Documents

Gibbons-Adelson-RJ roads plan (Vegas Pundit)

LVCVA responds to governor's room tax proposal (Vegas Pundit)

More reaction to the governor's roads proposal (Vegas Pundit)

Galena Creek Bridge

New plan in place for bridge to connect freeway (Nevada Appeal article)

Green Building

Gibbons faces decision on vetoing budget bill (Associated Press article)

Green building tax breaks too costly for state budget (In Business Las Vegas article)

"In Nevada, we still need to do all we can to save energy and water. At this critical time when change is needed now more than ever, we shouldn't fault the tax incentive for its success, but simply restructure it for - coincidentally - more sustainable success."

Commentary: Going green is the only way to go in Nevada (Pamela Vilkin column, Las Vegas Sun)

The rush to build green to make green (Vegas Pundit)

State Prisons And Prisoners

Detention facility to house both sexes (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Public Employees Retirement And Benefits

Assembly OKs bill to exempt unfunded liabilities from cap (Associated Press article)

Unfunded liability: $4.1 billion -- with a 'b': But lawmakers only pay lip service to reform (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

National Identity Card System

DRIVER'S LICENSE PROGRAM: Some suggest wait and see on Real ID -- State lawmakers say act may yet be repealed (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Nevada's Wretched Ethics Laws

"Right now, there is no hope that ethically diseased local politicians will behave better so long as good citizens stand by and do nothing."

SHERMAN FREDERICK: Let's get mad as hell: Otherwise nothing changes (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

Employment Practices

Unions push for passage of lockout protection bill: Workers' access to unemployment benefits at issue (Associated Press article)

Retail Theft Rings

Crackdown urged on theft rings (Associated Press article)

The State Judiciary

Sealing Court Records

THOMAS MITCHELL: An unfathomable level of hubris (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

Judge Halverson Again

"The state Supreme Court on Friday assigned a senior judge to indefinitely replace District Judge Elizabeth Halverson, who court officials say breached courthouse security."

Replacement assigned for Halverson (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"If they truly had the best interests of our beleaguered local judicial system in mind, Halverson would resign from the bench and Hardcastle would step aside as chief judge. Halverson's career is in shambles. Hardcastle has proven she lacks the temperament to lead the court."

JOHN L. SMITH: The Halverson-Hardcastle harangue cries out for a change of venue (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

State Agencies

State Acts Against Mortgage Lender

"An affiliate of Compass Partners, the New York private equity firm that bought the loan servicing business and some assets from bankrupt USA Capital this year, has broken Nevada laws, a state agency says."

Compass Partners accused by state of violating laws: Commissioner issues cease-and-desist order (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Veterans Affairs

"On average, Nevada veterans wait 42 days before meeting with a service officer, compared with one day in Florida and West Virginia and seven days in Georgia and North Carolina, the report by the Division of Internal Audits found."

State's vets missing out on benefits: Audit recommends hiring more service officers (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

The Governor Of Nevada

Of Allegations And Evidence

FBI probes Nevada governor for corruption: Did Jim Gibbons accept cash and gifts in exchange for defense contracts? (MSNBC article)

Accuser recounts Gibbons-Trepp claims on TV: NBC News report includes photos from 2005 cruise at root of allegations (Associated Press article)

Gas Up

Are we headed for $4 gasoline? No, experts say, even as Las Vegas, at $3.17 a gallon, nears a record and the state breaks one (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

State Tax Structure

Is more money really needed? (Nancy Dallas column, Battleborn Opinion News)

"The head of the Nevada System of Higher Education says he's willing to spend his own money to fund an economic analysis of the Silver State's tax structure, a system Rogers believes is out of whack."

Rogers offers to fund tax analysis (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Local Government

Clark County

The City Of North Las Vegas

In Business Q and A: Mike Montandon, North Las Vegas mayor (In Business Las Vegas interview)

Urban Renewal

Years of promises, no building and no jobs: Clock ticking on money for West Vegas project (Las Vegas Sun article)

West Las Vegas among potential stadium sites (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Tourist Tally

Visitor numbers stay strong in March (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Las Vegas visitor count up 1.4 percent in March (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

The Real Estate Market

Valley land prices strong into 2007 (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Nye County

Town Of Pahrump

"The Pahrump Town Board will begin accepting applications from the public for service on a seven-member residents action committee (with two alternates) to facilitate and direct an incorporation study."

Residents' panel taking applications (Pahrump Valley Times article)

"Nye County commissioners are on record supporting the acquisition of a shooting range on Bell Vista Avenue, a landfill site in the Last Chance Basin and land in Ione, but the tabled action on asking for land needed for three sewer plants in southwestern Pahrump Valley."

Nye supports land acquisitions (Pahrump Valley Times article)

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Nevada Politics

State Democratic Party

Dems get busy, turn state into caucus beehive: Iowa operatives helping turn excited rookies into skilled hands (Las Vegas Sun article)

State Republican Party

2008 PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: GOP counting on early caucus -- For now, candidates unaware of Jan. 19 date (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"Have Republicans absorbed how much trouble their party is in? To the (limited) extent that we do, we tend to attribute everything to Iraq - as if Katrina, the Schiavo affair, corruption in Congress and the intensifying irrelevance of our domestic-policy agenda did not exist. And so we demand from our candidates ever more fervent declarations of fealty to an ideology that interests an ever dwindling proportion of the public."

Republican candidates don't get it, but Nevada can help them: State offers right hope as country moves left (Las Vegas Sun article)

Local Elections

City Of Fallon

Hadsall says he better represents city residents (Lahontan Valley News article)

Nye County Commission

Petell declares for District 2 (Pahrump Valley Times article)

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Nevada Education Matters

Higher Education

Computer Compromised

FEAR OF IDENTITY THEFT: CCSN warns of computer virus -- Letters to current, former students tell of risks (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Public Schools

In The Legislature

LOOKING IN ON: EDUCATION -- Lawmakers give Teachers' Bill of Rights cold shoulder (Las Vegas Sun article)

Petition a last resort: Legislature should head off initiative petition and take the lead on education funding (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

"The problem with America's mediocre, government-run schools isn't a lack of money but a lack of competition."

Give choice a chance (Chuck Muth column, Las Vegas Business Press)

Churchill County School District

School board votes to cut budget (Lahontan Valley News article)

Northside students experience Spring Wings up close (Lahontan Valley News article)

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Nevada Water Matters

The Colorado River

"Just what happened among the seven states in the Florentine Room that day is a tale of power, cleverly exercised. To understand it is to understand water in the West, and how a gambling metropolis with the smallest allocation of Colorado River water came out not only as peace broker, but the apparent winner in the worst drought of the past 100 years."

DRY SPELL, BEHIND THE SCENES: How west was won, with Nevada water (Las Vegas Sun article)

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Nevada's Environment

State Of The Fauna

WILDLIFE REPORT: Big game in Nevada doing well -- Mule deer the exception, expert says (Associated Press article)

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Nevada Utilities

Going Up

Senate panel votes to lift price caps on phone service: Cable franchise agreements also addressed (Associated Press article)

So much sun, so little compliance: Nevada electric utilities will again miss solar-power requirement (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"Rates have doubled since 1990."

ERIN NEFF: The budget-busting sequel: Attack of the Summer Power Bill VII (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

"A proposed power line would run through Storey County, with a substation built at the south end in Mark Twain Estates, but the power would mainly serve Lyon County and Carson City."

The high cost of doing business: Rogers says PUC "overreached" when it denied the utility Merrill Lynch money (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Power line, substation proposed (Nevada Appeal article)

Digging The Scene

Hitting a nerve: Contractors are supposed to call before they dig -- but many don't, pushing service interruptions past the 1,000 mark (Las Vegas Business Press article)

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Nevada Law Enforcement

A Day To Remember

"Peace Officer Memorial Day is Tuesday, a day Congress set aside for survivors of police officers killed in the line of duty."

Ceremony Monday to mark Police Day (Elko Free Press article)

$kindustry Crackdown

Doll House case still unclear: Status of 25 women not yet certain (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

IGNORING PROSTITUTION: Human trafficking and Nevada -- State is the country's 'black eye' (Randall Shelden column, Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Luxor Bombing Case

'COLD, CALCULATED' ATTACK: Two men arrested in Luxor bombing -- Man killed in parking garage caught up in love triangle (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Welfare Fraud

Health Care and Workplace: On a mission to curb unemployment fraud (In Business Las Vegas article)

Clark County Commission Corruption Cases

When is Kenny's turn? (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

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From The Neon Empire

When Will Casinos Start To Pay Their Fair Share Of State Taxes?

Gambling And Labor Unions

Unionization fight threatens to be a replay of 2001 -- or not: There's strength in numbers ... unless you're a Vegas casino dealer (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Wynn dealers vote on union: Election follows heated tip debate (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Moment of truth at Wynn Las Vegas (David McKee column, Las Vegas Business Press)

Steve Wynn, Union Buster (Andrew Barbano column, Barbwire)

Riviera Buyout

Cosmopolitan developer makes bid for Riviera: Share price at new high as market reacts (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Harrah's

Harrah's tops LV public companies (In Business Las Vegas article)

MGM Mirage

MGM Mirage goes far and wide: Casino company varies partners, expands business (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

LOOKING IN ON: GAMING -- Food, entertainment profits pick up slack for MGM Mirage (Las Vegas Sun article)

Stations

Station fast-tracks some developments, postpones others in course of buyout: Castaways project leapfrogs Durango; Palace Station moved to back burner (Las Vegas Business Press article)

Internet Gambling

Utah companies, seven LV residents, face charges in online gambling case (Associated Press article)

An Interesting Study

Does Economic Development Pay For Itself In Nevada? A Research Paper Presented at the 1999 Annual Conference on Economic Development (State Commission on Economic Development, Research Division)

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Nevada's Past

California Trail Day: Celebration Saturday in city park (Elko Free Press article)

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Nevada Journalism

Online story comments changing the face of community journalism (Josh Johnson column, Lahontan Valley News)

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Federal Nevada

Nevada's Congressional Delegation

Sen. Ensign

ENSIGN: HOLLYWOOD DESERVES APPLAUSE FOR PROTECTING CHILDREN FROM SMOKING (Sen. Ensign Press Release)

Ensign and the Patriot Act Games (Desert Beacon)

Sen. Reid

Now Arriving: A New Taxiway at Reno/Tahoe International Airport (Sen. Reid Press Release)

Reid: Democrats Will Fix Immigration System In Tough, Fair, Practical Way (Sen. Reid Press Release)

Rep. Heller

Heller Introduces Legislation for Reno ReTRAC (Rep. Heller Press Release)

Rep. Heller's first bill would transfer federal land to Reno (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Rep. Porter

PORTER INTRODUCES LEGISLATION TO COMBAT PRESCRIPTION DRUG ABUSE: National study will give law enforcement, elected officials and the private sector direction in combating epidemic (Rep. Porter Press Release)

PORTER INTRODUCES THE “SERGEANT HENRY PRENDES MEMORIAL ACT OF 2007”: Legislation increases penalties for cop killers (Rep. Porter Press Release)

National Health Matters

Better drug oversight: Senate backs bill to give FDA authority to track prescription drugs' marketing and use (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Clandestine Service

"An amendment approved in the House late Thursday aims to lay groundwork for former employees of the CIA's secret airline to collect government retirement benefits."

Benefits for ex-Air America workers to be studied (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Fraud, Corruption, Waste And Mismanagement

"Between 100,000 and 300,000 barrels a day of Iraq’s declared oil production over the past four years is unaccounted for and could have been siphoned off through corruption or smuggling, according to a draft American government report."

Billions in Oil Missing in Iraq, U.S. Study Says (New York Times article, via Nye - Gateway to Nevada's Rurals)

Corruption in the Student Loan Business (Jack Wood column, Nye - Gateway to Nevada's Rurals)

Administration Purge Of Corruption-Fighting US Attorneys

Number of Fired Prosecutors Grows: Dismissals Began Earlier Than Justice Dept. Has Said (Washington Post article, via Desert Beacon)

House GOP Stands Behind Gonzales: New Details of White House Pressure to Fire U.S. Attorneys Do Not Sway Republicans (Washington Post article, via Desert Beacon)

Our Nation's Armed Forces

Nevada National Guard: Proxy Measures and Subjective Assessments (Desert Beacon)

Armed Forces Day (Johnathan L. Abbinett column, Nye - Gateway to Nevada's Rurals)

Foreign Policy

The Continuing Occupation Of Afghanistan

Top Taliban Commander Is Killed in Clash (New York Times article)

05/11/2007: DoD Special Security Operations Briefing with Maj. Gen. Mixon from Iraq (US Defense Department website)

The Continuing Occupation Of Iraq

Nevada Commentary

LV clergy call for end of war: 'Our time to get out of Iraq is now' (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

GOP must show courage: More members of the Republican Party need to stand up and call for change in Iraq (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

From Washington, DC

Reid: Bipartisan Consensus Emerging To Change Course In Iraq (Sen. Reid Press Release)

House passes new Iraq funding bill: Measure makes $43 billion available now, holds on to $53 billion until later (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

From The Battlefield

Stryker Losses in Iraq Raise Questions (Associated Press article)

"'This fight depends on securing the population, which must understand that we -- not our enemies -- occupy the moral high ground,' Army Gen. David H. Petraeus wrote in an open letter dated May 10 and posted on a military Web site."

Gen. Petraeus Warns Against Using Torture (Washington Post article, via Desert Beacon)

Haditha Deaths Raised No Red Flags: General Echoes Earlier Testimony (Washington Post article, via Desert Beacon)

USMC Iraq Investigations Webpage

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May 10-11, 2007

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Nevada Government

State Government

Nevada Legislature

Nevada Highways

HIGHWAY CONSTRUCTION: Gibbons has road revenue plan -- Money from room, sales, entertainment taxes would shift (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Gibbons' plan for road construction (Nevada Appeal article)

Gibbons lays out transportation funding plan (Nevada Appeal article)

"A poll conducted for the Review-Journal last week found 72 percent of registered voters in Nevada favor dedicating at least some of the current hotel room tax for highway construction. No other tax proposal to fund roads received as much support in the poll."

TRANSPORTATION SHORTFALL: Road funding pursued -- Sources: Gibbons to support using growth in room taxes (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Roads head toward dead end: A big cash infusion looks less and less likely, even as Southern Nevada gets 100 more cars a day (Las Vegas Sun article)

Gibbons road plan: The fallout (Steve Sebelius column, Las Vegas CityLife)

The Problem Of Methamphetamine

Committee approves $14 million for anti-meth, other drug programs (Nevada Appeal article)

Predatory Lending Practices

Buckley: Close payday loan loophole: High-interest lenders still charging 900 percent or more, lawmaker says (Associated Press article)

Green Buildings

Gibbons seeks legal opinion on tax plan: Liability questions loom on ending break for energy-efficient projects (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"If you were in the casino business, wouldn't you jump in your gondola to make sure the tax break doesn't become a mirage?"

Jon Ralston on the different shades of green in Carson City (Las Vegas Sun column)

Public Employees Retirement System

$50 million to help pay down benefits liability (Associated Press article)

The Right To Know What You're Paying For

Bill would limit ability to close meetings: Amended measure allows closures for confidential reasons (Associated Press article)

Assistance To Impoverished Families

Members of panel back raising grants for needy families: 15 percent rise would give family of three $400 every month in temporary assistance (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Old Crimes And New

Unauthorized cell phones in prisons now a crime (Associated Press article)

State getting not-so-tough on crime: Budget realities force lawmakers to rethink laws passed decade ago (Las Vegas Sun article)

Democracy In Action

Lawmaking absurdities (Deidre Pike column, Reno News & Review)

The State Judiciary

Sealing Judicial Records

Judge says openness 'difficult to deal with': Hardcastle testifies against bill on sealing court cases (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

"Hardcastle asked the committee to kill Assembly Bill 519, which would block judges from sealing court records unless they determine open court records would create a danger to the public."

Judge, prosecutor oppose bill to keep court records open (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Judge Halverson Again

"In an administrative order, Chief Judge Kathy Hardcastle said Halverson jeopardized security at the courthouse this week by bringing her own two bodyguards into the courthouse and allowing them to bypass security checks."

Judge Halverson banned from courthouse (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Nevada's Wretched, Toothless Campaign Finance Laws

"Secretary of State Ross Miller has taken a hard line on 2006 candidates who refuse to follow campaign contribution and expense reporting laws, fining 118 different people who ran for office."

Former candidates fined for campaign violations (Nevada Appeal article)

"Surely it was mere coincidence that the same week Lynette Boggs was spreading the word about her new Christian ministry, the state Department of Public Safety Investigations Division was presenting its criminal case against her to the district attorney's office for consideration."

JANE ANN MORRISON: Boggs taking it on faith as criminal investigation against her advances (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

"State investigators said Wednesday that they have asked District Attorney David Roger to prosecute former Clark County Commissioner Lynette Boggs on charges that she misused political funds and falsified campaign documents."

Felony case weighed against Boggs (Las Vegas Sun article)

State Agencies

The Nevada Tax Commission

"Many of the very same corporate giants who are vying for "green" tax breaks were given a big bag of yummy tax treats during the March meeting of the tax commission. The commission voted on a complicated matter called "remainderments." In the end, their vote received zero media coverage, but it will mean millions of dollars in tax breaks for companies such as MGM-Mirage, Boyd Gaming and Howard Hughes Properties."

Where real tax breaks happen (George Knapp column, Las Vegas CityLife)

The Nevada National Guard

"In Nevada, the National Guard has 90 percent or more of its trucks and other equipment on hand, Conway said. That's also true of personnel, with 10 percent of the Guard's 3,500 personnel deployed overseas."

Does Nevada have the resources to handle a disaster? (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Nevada Guard ready to respond: Only wildfire risk worries lawmakers (Associated Press article)

Department Of Motor Vehicles

"If a private-sector worker appeared before his bosses and, upon being asked to follow through on a minor assignment, demanded an exorbitant raise and made up projected costs from whole cloth, he'd probably be fired on the spot."

DMV baloney (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

Local Government

City And County Of Carson

Governor opens $15 million Basalite concrete expansion: Sales of concrete pavers has doubled since 1999 (Nevada Appeal article)

Clark County

Local Economy

Retail expands, demand slows: Analyst sees signs that consumer spending may dip in next two quarters (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Douglas County

A Developing Stench

Sewer plant expansion concerns neighbors (Gardnerville Record-Courier article)

Neighbors raise stink over plant (Gardnerville Record-Courier editorial)

Lake Tahoe Basin

Incline Village General Improvement District

Crystal Bay resident wants to test his right to Incline beaches (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

"The effort to beautify and create a more functional Crystal Bay by putting utilities underground near the North Shore's stateline has long been a pet project of Washoe County Commissioner Jim Galloway, who represents Incline Village and Crystal Bay."

Crystal Bay gets ready to go 'underground' (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Bright solutions for Incline? (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Emergency Preparation

In case of disaster, is there a plan for your pet? (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Incline Village drill to help disaster readiness (Aaron Kenneston column, North Lake Tahoe Bonanza)

Lyon County

History And Commerce

One-way street in Old Town Dayton considered: Suggestion that would alleviate parking problems causing stir in historic area (Nevada Appeal article)

Washoe County

Urban Renewal

"Including land and architect fees and the canopy itself, the city will have spent $18.4 million to buy the former Mapes Hotel, level it and build the plaza."

$3.8 million shade canopy coming to downtown plaza (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Council approves study (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

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Nevada Politics

National Presidential Primaries

What hath Dem wrought? National Democrats try to control proliferating primaries and caucuses triggered by the Nevada caucuses (Reno News & Review article)

Local Elections

Boulder City

Attorney pleads not guilty to DUI for councilwoman: Karla Burton's case unlikely to be resolved before run-off election (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

City Of Fallon

Erickson says he brings institutional knowledge to city (Lahontan Valley News article)

Rick Dentino has a passion for community service (Lahontan Valley News article)

Tony Giove: Change will improve city (Lahontan Valley News article)

Smith hopes to lead through his example (Lahontan Valley News article)

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Nevada Education Matters

Higher Education

UNR

"If raising the grade point average required for admission to the University of Nevada, Reno next year causes a drop in minority enrollment, UNR's president said Wednesday that he will ask to reverse it."

Glick targets UNR diversity (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Up In Arms

Proposals to arm campus workers present challenges (Lahontan Valley News editorial)

Metal school: The specter of guns on campus sends schools into siege mode. But critics say that approach is a dud (Las Vegas CityLife article)

Public Schools

High funding and low dropouts unrelated (Michael Lafferty column, Reno News & Review)

In The Legislature

"Hoping to end the session on time for the first time since 1999, legislative leaders huddled behind closed doors Wednesday trying to find common ground on the public schools budget and other spending priorities."

Lawmakers enter beat-the-clock zone: As session's end nears, school funding in focus (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Legislative leaders conduct lengthy closed-door meeting (Nevada Appeal article)

Clark County School District

Parents protest year-round school plan: Galloway, other Henderson elementary schools to be converted in the fall (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"RECENTLY, I WROTE A COLUMN ABOUT THE COZY FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIP between local businesses and the Clark County School District's four new empowerment schools. Apparently it touched a nerve."

Socratic dialogue (Chip Mosher column, Las Vegas CityLife)

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Nevada Water Matters

The Colorado River

COLORADO RIVER WATER: Upper basin states take notice -- Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, New Mexico have much at stake in new guidelines (Associated Press article)

Northern Nevada Water Moloch Proposal

"Critics said the proposal is an unnecessary and developer-driven effort to subsidize growth on the backs of area residents."

Panel debates water agency (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

"See, it's widely recognized that we have already allowed for more homes to be built than Northern Nevada has water to offer. Never mind that building beyond demand has created a housing environment with plummeting sales values."

Water wrongs: Talk about the devil you know versus the devil you don’t: Senate Bill 487 (Reno News & Review editorial)

Plan for Northern Nevada water agency debated (Associated Press article)

The Truckee River

"He said the irony is the bigger cities want to buy water rights in smaller communities, yet want to pollute the water coming downstream to those communities."

Officials differ over revision of Truckee River wastewater levels (Lahontan Valley News article)

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Nevada Health Matters

Cancer Clusters

Professor speaks about leukemia cluster findings (Lahontan Valley News article)

Get A Checkup

Healthy exterior can hide terrible surprise (Dave Von Derau column, Gardnerville Record-Courier)

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Nevada's Environment

The Threat Of Fire

Week of events to focus on preparing for fire season: Proper landscaping makes homes less vulnerable (Nevada Appeal article)

Mining And Mercury

Tests find three forms of mercury exiting five Nevada mines (Associated Press article)

The Problem Of Illegal Dumping

Trashy work: A community group will be removing waste like abandoned cars and appliances from 15 local wild sites (Reno News & Review article)

Conservation By Exertion

Putting mettle to pedal might be easier than paying at pumps: National Bike to Work Week begins Monday (Nevada Appeal article)

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Nevada Law Enforcement

Religious Narcotics Traffickers

"Behold the patron saint of Mexican drug traffickers: Jesus Malverde"

Saint's got drug dealers' backs: Cops out to learn about him, make more busts (Las Vegas Sun article)

$kindustry Crackdown

Helping the victims: We must do better to help women allegedly forced into prostitution by human traffickers (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

"Dave Staretz, chief division counsel for the FBI's Las Vegas field office, said none of the 25 women found during the Operation Doll House busts was a victim of human trafficking."

FBI says human trafficking not involved in brothel raids (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Gun Registration

"To buy a handgun from a licensed dealer -- or even to reclaim it from a pawnshop -- Nevada residents have to either show they've gone through the rigorous background check required to carry a state concealed firearms permit, or else submit at the time of each acquisition to a new, federally required background check."

Gun registration (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

Editors Know Best

Messing with security plans: Governor's proposal is of no value when it comes to planning for security centers (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Off To Prison

"After spending the first half of the decade milking cash from a strip club owner and trying to round up support from Clark County commissioners, Lance Malone could be milking cows or herding cattle for the next several years."

Malone begins time in prison: Six-year term to be served in California (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

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Nevada Culture

From Another World

Tibetan Lamas highlight WNCC's Multicultural Festival (Nevada Appeal article)

Gizmo Allure

How'd we live without it? UNLV engineering students showcase designs and must-have gadgets of tomorrow (Las Vegas CityLife article)

Musical Days

Summer Concert Series commences (Gardnerville Record-Courier article)

Coming Soon

Carson Valley Days on the horizon (Gardnerville Record-Courier article)

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From The Neon Empire

When Will Casinos Start To Pay Their Fair Share Of State Taxes?

The Monthly Take

Soft slot play and calendar problems decrease March gaming win (Las Vegas Business Press)

GAMING WIN: Casinos suffer drop in March -- Slot revenue from final weekend left out of tally (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Nevada gaming win totals slip for the month of March: Profits rise in Carson Valley area as well as in capital city (Nevada Appeal article)

Ups And Downs

Slot maker sees jackpot in China: Reno company's deal could lead to machines across mainland (Las Vegas Sun article)

Station Casinos' earnings fall short of analysts' expectations (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"Tougher new laws outlawing smoking in grocery stores, convenience stores, restaurants and taverns are squeezing earnings for Herbst Gaming, which operates 7,200 slot machines in those locations, the company said Wednesday."

Smoking ban hard on Herbst: Gambling company says earnings decline (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Jethro's Palace

Traveling Salesman, Erik Holland cartoon [click on image to enlarge; click here for more of Erik's cartoons]

Long road for hillbilly casino (Nevada Appeal editorial)

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Nevada's Past

Historic Cemetery

"Founded in 1851 the Dayton Cemetery is one of the oldest, constantly maintained cemeteries in Nevada."

Cemetery keeps Dayton's history alive (Nevada Appeal article)

Carson Valley Courthouse

Jewel in Genoa: Historic courthouse open for season (Gardnerville Record-Courier article)

Reno's Anniversary

Reno celebrates 139th birthday (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

In TNO's Reading Room

Robert Lewers, Early Emigrants (1913)

Annie Estelle Prouty, The Development of Reno (1924) Part 1 Part 2

Old-Time Journalism

Fourth Ward historic press ready to roll again (Nevada Appeal article)

Tahoe Yachting

Thunderbird yacht will stay home for good (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

"Since 1988, Tahoe has had everything necessary for a world-class maritime museum - historic wooden boats, exhibits on the lake's rich, inland maritime history, and dedicated volunteers - everything, that is, except for a suitable home."

New Tahoe Maritime Museum breaks ground (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

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Federal Nevada

Nevada's Congressional Delegation

Porter brings back bill tied to officer's slaying (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"U.S. Rep. Dean Heller is under attack from the publicist for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) for opposing a "hate crimes" measure."

Heller opposes opinion penalties (Reno News & Review article)

Mining Act Reform

"A new bid to update the federal law that has governed mining on public lands for the past 135 years was launched Thursday by a lawmaker who said he wants to strengthen environmental protections and taxpayer benefits from the extraction of gold, silver and other "hard rock" minerals."

New measure targets hard-rock mining: Challenge to 1872 law raises issue for Reid (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

A golden moment to overhaul mining law (Las Vegas Sun article)

New bill might change face of Nevada mining (Reno Gazette-Journal editorial)

Administration Purge Of Corruption-Fighting US Attorneys

Gonzales defends firing, hiring process: 'Nothing improper' with giving others experience (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"For you to come here to say there's nothing wrong with firing a prosecutor to make room for someone else ... I hope you would resign."

Gonzales shrugs off giving away Bogden's job: Attorney general must go, Berkeley and Porter say (Las Vegas Sun article)

Fraud, Corruption, Waste And Mismanagement

Questionable tactics: Some private health plans are taking advantage of older Americans and the Medicare system (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Campaign Finance Reform

"Advocates of campaign finance reform have long insisted that their movement is all about money, not the First Amendment. The reformists continue to maintain that they want to constrain cash, not the campaigns they disagree with."

Stifling political speech: Case highlights dangers of some 'campaign finance' laws (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

Foreign Policy

The Continuing Occupation Of Iraq

Win or lose in Iraq, it's time to bring my son home (Warren Sprinkle column, North Lake Tahoe Bonanza)

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Update for May 9, 2007

[10:00 PM]

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Nevada Government

State Government

Nevada Legislature

Judges, insurers oppose Nevada bill that would open court records (Associated Press article)

Compromise reached on Nevada open meeting measure (Associated Press article)

Nevada Public Works Board hopes to change green building standard (Associated Press article)

Hearings set for bills dealing with proposed joint juvenile detention facility (Fernley Leader-Courier article)

Nevada Senate opens with Sanskrit prayer (UPI article)

The Governor Of Nevada

Dina Titus Asks Governor Gibbons to Bring Nevada National Guard Home (Jack Wood column, Nye - Gateway to Nevada's Rurals)

GOVERNOR GIBBONS ESTABLISHES RENEWABLE ENERGY TRANSMISSION ACCESS ADVISORY COMMITTEE (Gov. Gibbons Press Release)

Local Government

Elko County

"Nearly one mile of new green strip/fire break is being created to protect the northern edge of Elko, through a multi-agency partnership agreement."

Fire Break: Agencies create green strip after Te-Moak ban fireworks (Elko Free Press article)

‘Take Pride in Elko’ cleanup Saturday (Elko Free Press article)

Lyon County

County Affairs

"Public utilities is defined in County Code as: 'All telecommunications companies, electric energy providers, gas providers and commercial mobile radio services.'"

Public utility license fee increased by county (Fernley Leader-Courier article)

City Of Fernley

"If this is benefiting the entire City of Fernley, we're looking at a 400 percent increase on our hook-up fees, $3,600 going up to $12,000."

Developers object to proposed water rate hikes (Fernley Leader-Courier article)

New City Hall to open for business May 14 (Fernley Leader-Courier article)

White Pine County

Blue Diamond residents protest annexation plan (Ely Times article)

As We See It ~ Time to move beyond Chachas (Ely Times editorial)

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Nevada Politics

National Presidential Primaries

A Fistful Of Presidential Polls Bring Good News To Clinton, Bad For Obama and Gravel (Dullard Mush)

GOP Presidential Polls Provide Something For Everyone (Dullard Mush)

Top 5 Things Learned So Far In 2008 Presidential Race (Dullard Mush)

Local Elections

City of Elko

Mayor Rusty Tybo runs for third term (Elko Free Press article)

Challenger Jake Robinson (Elko Free Press article)

City Of Wells

Election is June 5: City of Wells in process of switching election cycles (Elko Free Press article)

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Nevada Water Matters

Vested water rights workshop set tomorrow in Eureka (Ely Times article)

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Nevada Mining

Mining law a dilemma for Sen. Harry Reid (Associated Press article)

China surpasses Nevada as leading gold producer (Ely Times article)

Nevada Copper Shows Promise at Pumpkin Hollow (Resourcex article)

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Our Beautiful Region

Cave Lake State Park prepares for expansion (Ely Times article)

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Nevada Culture

Lyon County Fly-In slated for May 19-20 (Fernley Leader-Courier article)

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From The Neon Empire

When Will Casinos Start To Pay Their Fair Share Of State Taxes?

Riviera Acquisition

One smackdown follows another, at Riviera (David McKee column, Las Vegas Business Press)

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Nevada's Past

Fort Churchill

Celebrate Carson River Day on Saturday (Fernley Leader-Courier article)

The Northern Nevada Railway

At the Throttle: The NNRy museum as a duck (Mark Bassett column, Ely Times)

Moms can ride the train for free on Mothers' Day (Ely Times article)

White Pine Public Museum

Museum Day set May 19 (Ely Times article)

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Federal Nevada

Energy Policy

ENSIGN: AMERICA NEEDS REAL ENERGY SOLUTIONS -- Democrats Ignore Promises to Deliver More Hypocrisy (Sen. Ensign Press Release)

Immigration Reform

Reid Discusses His Commitment to Comprehensive Immigration Reform (Sen. Reid Press Release)

National Health Matters

Food & Drug Administration

Reid: FDA Revitalization Will Improve Access To Safe Drugs (Sen. Reid Press Release)

Drug Safety: Further Actions Needed to Improve FDA's Postmarket Decision-making Process GAO-07-856T, May 9, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Pandemic Preparation

DoD Teams With Other Agencies to Prepare U.S. for Pandemic Flu Outbreak (American Forces Press Service article)

Information Key in Stemming Potential Pandemic Flu Outbreak (American Forces Press Service article)

Pandemic Influenza Watchboard

Homeland Security

Veto Threat Looms Over Security Bill (Associated Press article)

Fraud, Corruption, Waste And Mismanagement

Insider Trading

Insider traders get ready to plead (Ian Mylchreest column, Las Vegas Business Press)

Student Loans

Student Loan Sunshine Act Passes (Desert Beacon)

House Passes Rules on College Lending (Associated Press article)

Conflicts Of Interest

Report Details Reading Program Conflicts (Associated Press article)

Falsified Reports

Democrats Criticize Interior Officials (Associated Press article)

Bilking Medicare

Officials Detail Medicare-Bilking Scheme (Associated Press article)

Veterans Affairs

Case Managers Navigate ‘Medical Maze’ for Patients (American Forces Press Service article)

Nicholson Vows to Improve Veterans Care (Associated Press article)

Our Nation's Armed Forces

Pilots, attack controllers sharpen war skills in Nevada (US Air Force website)

Defense Officials Announce Next Rotation for Afghanistan (American Forces Press Service article)

The National Guard

Gates Rejects Emergency Command Proposal (Associated Press article)

Guard Responding to Domestic Crises Nationwide (American Forces Press Service article)

Foreign Policy

The Continuing Occupation Of Afghanistan

Afghan Lawmakers Call for Cease-Fire (Associated Press article)

France

Getting along with France easy as XYZ (Kent Harper column, Ely Times)

The Continuing Occupation Of Iraq

Nevada Commentary

Iraq Government’s 2 Month Vacation (Jack Wood column, Nye - Gateway to Nevada's Rurals)

From Washington DC

Dean Heller won't back off on support for Iraq (Ely Times article)

Bush Would Veto Democrats' New Iraq Bill (Associated Press article)

Gates: Early Iraq Withdrawal Would Have ‘Dire’ Consequences for U.S. (American Forces Press Service article)

Gates Urges Congress to Approve Defense Budget, Wartime Spending Request (American Forces Press Service article)

"By rushing into Iraq instead of finishing off the hunt for Osama bin Laden, Washington has unwittingly helped its enemies: al Qaeda has more bases, more partners, and more followers today than it did on the eve of 9/11. Now the group is working to set up networks in the Middle East and Africa -- and may even try to lure the United States into a war with Iran. Washington must focus on attacking al Qaeda's leaders and ideas and altering the local conditions in which they thrive."

Al Qaeda Strikes Back (Bruce Riedel article, Foreign Affairs May/June 2007)

From The Battlefield

Four Servicemembers Killed; DoD Identifies 10 Previous Casualties (American Forces Press Service article)

Two Insurgents Killed, 34 Nabbed in Iraq (American Forces Press Service article)

Cheney Notes ‘Greater Sense of Urgency’ Among Iraqi Leaders (American Forces Press Service article)

Cheney: Iraq Still Dangerous (Associated Press article)

General Discusses Milestones for Stability in Iraq’s Anbar Province (American Forces Press Service article)

Iraq Trip Report: 2 – 29 April 2007 (Small Wars Journal)

Stabilizing and Rebuilding Iraq: Coalition Support and International Donor Commitments GAO-07-827T, May 9, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Mexico

Mexico troops comb badlands in drug war (Reuters article)

N.M. governor sends more cops to Mexico border (Reuters article)

Assailants Gun Down Mexico Police Chief (Guardian [UK] article)

Mexico 2nd only to Iraq in journalist slayings (Houston Chronicle)

A Federal Reader

General Services Administration Could Better Manage Unexpended Construction Balances and Make Its Budget More Transparent GAO-07-409R, May 9, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Homeland Security: DHS Enterprise Architecture Continues to Evolve but Improvements Needed GAO-07-564, May 9, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Next Generation Air Transportation System: Status of the Transition to the Future Air Traffic Control System GAO-07-784T, May 9, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

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N.C. Wyeth, The Carpetbaggers (1912)

New Erik Holland Cartoons:
The Nevada Observer: Political Art

(Click on image to enlarge; click here to see more)
Nevada Scenes:
Cartoons by Erik Holland
Long Before There Was Socialism, Communism, or Politics As We Know It, There Was May Day:

From John Brand's Observations on the Popular Antiquities of Great Britain: Chiefly Illustrating The Origin of Our Vulgar and Provincial Customs, Ceremonies and Superstitions, [Arranged, revised and greatly enlarged by Sir Henry Ellis], George Bell and Sons, London: 1908, (Original ed. 1813).

May-Day Customs

Get Ready For Cinco De Mayo:

TNO's Most Popular Feature Article - Over 107,000 Pageviews

The Battle of Puebla, May 5, 1862 (click on image to enlarge)

The Story Of Cinco De Mayo

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IN THIS ISSUE
Feature Story:

Royal Links Investigation At A Standstill?

FBI Fraud/Corruption Team Formed In Clark County

by Johnny Gunn

There are rumblings in and about the City of Las Vegas, rumblings that need to be addressed by Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto and even federal fraud and corruption investigators.  Mayor Oscar Goodman and his former business associate Bill Walters are showing signs of champing at the bit over the long delay in following up an Attorney General investigation of the Royal Links Golf Course project.

First, some background

The Royal Links Golf Course land was first leased and then sold to developer Bill Walters with stringent deed restrictions.  Some say that Walters manipulated both the lease and sale and now with the mayor's help wants to end the deed restrictions so he can build homes on the property.  Initially the land was designed as a buffer to protect nearby private property from the effects of a sewer treatment plant.  The deed restrictions were placed on the property that forbade the land from being developed into housing.  As a golf course, the buffer works well.

Attorney General Brian Sandoval was nominated and named to the federal bench and southern Nevada lawyer George Chanos was appointed to the Attorney General's office.  It was Chanos that began an investigation into the dealings between certain employees of the City and Walters.  Chanos hired the Senn Meulemans law firm to do the investigating.  Senn Meulemans has offices in Reno, Las Vegas, and San Francisco and following months of investigative work turned in a 157-page report that blistered the city and Walters, and called into question the legality of several land deals.  See full story

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One Way Blocked, One More Exists For DOE

Northern Route To Yucca Off The Menu, Not Caliente

by Johnny Gunn

The relief was palpable in northern Nevada when the Walker River Paiute Tribal Chairwoman announced that the tribe would not allow nuclear waste to travel through tribal land.  The rail line through the reservation was part of the Department of Energy's (DOE) Mina Route, one of two railroad routes the agency has been discussing.  According to tribal officials, the rail line through the scenic reservation along the banks of Walker Lake is owned by the tribe and they have withdrawn from a federal environmental impact study and will not allow nuclear waste on the reservation.

If the Mina Route had been approved, high level nuclear waste would have traveled through almost every major population area of northern Nevada in order to reach its destination at the Yucca Mountain repository.  Mayors, County Commission Chairs, residents, and tourists all took a long breath of relief at the news from tribal Chairwoman Genia Williams.  In a prepared statement she simply said, "The tribe will not allow nuclear waste to be transported through our reservation."  See full story

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Water May Yet Flow South As SNWA Gets Partial OK

Developers Want More, White Pine County Wants To Give Less

That $2 billion pipeline from White Pine County south to Clark County still has life, although the cost per acre-foot of water may have doubled following the decision of State Engineer Tracy Taylor.  Taylor granted the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) 40,000-acre feet of water per year from the Spring Valley area of the county.  SNWA had petitioned for more than 90,000-acre feet per year.

There are still humps in the road before water can flow south, primarily permission from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) since much of the proposed almost 300 mile pipeline will travel through public land.  There are also several court proceedings that will have to be resolved including those in Nevada and federal courts.  Utah for instance has questions about whether the Spring Valley aquifer spreads into Utah and whether the pumping in Nevada would affect ranches and metropolitan areas in Utah.  See full story

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Who Is Running Crazy Horse Too? Rizzolo Or Signorelli?

Las Vegas City Council Doesn't Seem To Care

The Crazy Horse Too strip club now has a permanent license and the man holding the license hasn't done one single thing the Las Vegas City Council demanded of him.  Even the Las Vegas City Attorney is aware that Mike Signorelli allows Rizzolo family members and former employees to come and go from the club, some even drawing paychecks, which is supposed to be prohibited.

Rizzolo was forced to sell the lucrative business following his felony conviction for federal crimes that involved the business.  Fourteen employees were also found guilty, but none of this had any impact when the council voted to approve a license for the man many believe is nothing more than a straw man, one who carries out the wishes of the Rizzolo family.

Southern Nevada's $kindustry has been involved in all the most recent fraud and political corruption cases, and the Rizzolo family is part of the action.  Rizzolo is on his way to federal prison following guilty pleas dealing with conspiracy, money laundering, and the beating or threatening of patrons.  As part of a plea deal, Rizzolo is required to sell the strip club and pay off millions in debt. See full story

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Mortgage Company Troubles Continue In Silver State

Millions In Investment Funds Found In Overseas Accounts

Bankrupt Southwest Exchange may be in more trouble according to Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller.  The exchange was shut down in the first month of this year and those whose funds were held by the exchange fear they may have lost all.  Miller says he may have located as much as $110 million in accounts out of the country.  Miller says some of the funds were used to buy airplanes, ranches, and other high-end properties, while other funds have wound up in France, Mexico, even Scotland.

Southwest Exchange, as so many others in the field, holds real estate money from investors so they aren't hit with gains taxes during their real estate deals.  Money is rolled from one account to another without taxes being charged.  Southwest Exchange is being charged with looting those accounts and former chairman Donald McGhan may be behind the alleged wrongdoing.

The conversion of investment money into personal property for McGhan is being investigated and has led Miller to disclose that a considerable amount of the missing funds may have been found.  Whether or not any of that money can be returned to investors is questionable.  See full story

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Renewable Energy Sources Discussed Among States

Reduction Of Greenhouse Gasses At The Head Of Many Talks

by Johnny Gunn

Nevada Governor Jim Gibbons joined with other governors, most from the west, in an energy summit that was hosted by Utah Governor John Huntsman.  The conference, sponsored by the NextGen Energy Council was held in Salt Lake City but Gibbons contributed by way of videoconference.  Among those attending were Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal, Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer, and West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin.  Montana, Wyoming, and West Virginia produce the most coal in this country, and while many spoke in favor of renewable energy sources, the emphasis was on coal production and use.  For a complete look at the summit in retrospect, go to http://www.utahenergysummit.com

Gibbons pointed out the resources that are available in Nevada including solar, geothermal, and wind, but also said the use of clean coal is important to energy efficiency today.  Many at the conference were inclined to discuss the use of coal as a means of weaning the country from foreign oil.  Converting coal to diesel and jet fuel was high on many lists.

The gasification of coal, mostly misunderstood by the general public simply because it cannot be defined in non-technical terms is high on many scientific lists but not necessarily with politicians.  The process breaks coal into its molecular structure then uses those molecules for uses other than polluting the air.  Coal can be broken into several different substances including hydrogen, carbon dioxide, oxygen, and others.  It could be a leading source of hydrogen as a fuel for automobiles, power plants, and heat generation.  Combining hydrogen and oxygen simply produces water and considerable heat.  See full story

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Nevada's Children At Risk Says Advocacy Group

Two Reports Point Up Problems Faced By Children In Care Services

A child advocacy group called First Star (http://www.firststar.org) has issued a national report saying "nearly half the states fail to provide legal representation for abused and neglected foster children."  The Washington, D.C. based group says it is a first of its kind study, released at a congressional briefing on Capitol Hill.

First Star seems to be advocating as much for federal law as for children in its report, a 156-page study.  Peter Samuelson, President and founder of the organization said, "Fragmented standards result in fractured lives."  At the hearing, he went on, "These children are already vulnerable emotionally, and in many cases abused physically."

Nevada did not fare well in the study receiving an F with 31 points out of a possible 100.  Nevada joined 14 other states with F grades.  Only five states received A's, 14 received a B, 11, including California got C grades, and six states were graded D. See full story

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A Means Of Raising Perception Of Image

Northern Counties "Brand" Together For Economics

The economic and life style image of northern Nevada is pretty well understood in northern Nevada, but outside the area, the image is slightly tarnished according to representatives of several economic development groups in the area.  This "outside the area" image has led to the creation of a brand for eight counties that are vying for new economic development including Washoe, Carson City, Douglas, Storey, Lyon, Churchill, Mineral, and Pershing.

During the annual Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada (EDAWN) luncheon recently it was disclosed that the television program 911 Reno has had more of an affect on the area's image than one would expect, and the recent motion picture of the same name just added to the misinterpretation of Reno and surrounding communities.  EDAWN was joined in co-sponsorship of the branding program by Northern Nevada Development Authority (NNDA).   See full story

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"Vegas Perspective" Released; An Economic Source Book

Economy, Real Estate, Community, Discussed In 120 Pages

The "Vegas Perspective" booklet for 2007 has been released at a public gathering on April 24.  Called the definitive source of business, demographic, and economic information about Clark County, the publication covers everything that influences southern Nevada's economy. See full story

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Economic Figures  Labeled Just So-So

Unemployment Holding Steady -- Sales Tax: No Big Increase

 Nevada's employment department released job figures for March 2007 and compared to February 2007, the unemployment rate held steady at 4.3 percent.  This compares to the national rate of 4.4 percent.  The construction segment of the economy has fallen sharply, particularly in southern Nevada where the sale of new or existing homes has dropped well off previous months and years. Anticipated employment growth has been lowered for the year as well.

Another economic indicator, taxable sales, was up in February compared to a year earlier, but not as strong as in previous months.  The state collected $289.49 million in February, up slightly more than 3.5 percent.  Clark County sales totaled $2.74 billion, up 2.8 percent while Washoe County's taxable sales were up 4.9 percent.  See full story

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World Trade Day To Be Celebrated May 24

Nevada To Participate  With Reno Function

Annual World Trade Day (WTD) will be celebrated by Nevada World Trade Council (NEWTRAC), Nevada’s international trade organization, at the Atlantis Casino Resort, Reno, on May 24.  Nevada ranks high in exports to other countries, with precious metals, electronics, and jewelry high on the list.

According to Rajan Zed, a member NEWTRAC board of directors, the theme of the annual event this year is “Challenges in International Trade—Ignore at Your Peril.”  Other topics to be discussed at this event include “Exporting Opportunities in Post-war Conflict—Stabilization and Reconstruction,” and “Women in International Trade.”   See full story

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Letters We Get:

Letters To The Editor

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Editorial:

Cinco de Mayo; A Holiday  Of The Americas

As So Many Others, This Holiday Is One For Both Continents

by Johnny Gunn

Once again the flavor of another country has become an American holiday, one in which, similar to St. Patrick's Day, everyone is (fill in the blank).  On March 17 everyone is Irish, enjoying all the trappings of Celtic pride including beer and potatoes.  In February, we all try our best to say Gung Hay Fat Choy (Chinese New Year), usually not quite in a Mandarin cadence and eat tons of our favorite Chinese food.  May's international holiday is Cinco de Mayo, which in Mexico is seldom celebrated.

A bunch of rowdy Pueblans demolished a French legion creating a small holiday celebrated primarily in and around Puebla, Mexico.  In the U.S., Cinco de Mayo has taken on a life of its own, not just with those of Mexican descent, but with Hispanics all, and hyphenated Americans.  Irish, Polish, African, Canadian, even French Americans do their best to say Buenos Días, order tacos and burritos by the ton, and drink Mexican beer made in the U.S.A.  Read full Opinion

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Editorial:

Changes In Mental Health Laws Are Overdue

Virginia Tech Student Received Little If Any Help For Problems

by Johnny Gunn

As Bob Bennett has written about so many times since joining the columnists that write for The Nevada Observer, the mental health laws in this country are not adequate to the job.  This little "great truth" was brought home in spades at Virginia Tech University with the deaths of 32 students and teachers.  So many questions had been asked about the shooter's mental stability, but nothing was done, no one came forward and offered the young man help, no law exists that could have stopped his rampage that came from severe mental anguish.  Some are placing blame today on many things, but when the smoke clears, when the radical pundits take a breath, it will come down to a lack of practical mental health laws and rules.

An example of a radical pundit is Adam Gopnik's lead article in The New Yorker, April 30, 2007 issue.  Gopnik spends several hundred words blaming a lack of gun laws on the shooting, never once mentioning the fact that there is that little thing called the Second Amendment to the Constitution.  He even tried to relate gun laws to tobacco laws in that tobacco kills people.  He barely recognized the fact that the young man in question had serious mental disabilities that were not attended to.  Read full opinion

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Some kind of blog
The Irascible One

Another reason for a grand jury --- Regarding the license issued for the operation of the Crazy Horse Too strip club, those representing the club, and those on the council may just be a syndicate, that's right, a criminal syndicate.  Here's how criminal syndicate is described in NRS 207.370.  "Criminal Syndicate means any combination of persons, so structured that the organization will continue its operation even if individual members enter or leave the organization, which engages in or has the purpose of engaging in racketeering activity."  If that doesn't describe the current operation of the Crazy Horse Too, I don't know what would.

Maybe if Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto doesn't want to get her pinkies dirty with follow-up on the operation of the City of Las Vegas, here is an opportunity.  Form a state grand jury, combine many items, and keep your own hands clean.  There are enough current criminal, political, and business fraud, corruption, and questionable activities cases discussed in the daily press to keep a grand jury active for several years.  And that may be the only way that indictments will be handed out in this state.

•••

The Good --- With Cinco de Mayo on us already, I mean a whole 'nother year already?  Anyway, a whole new breed of chili peppers has been discovered, and they are the hottest ever recorded.  The heat in a chili comes from what is called capsaicin, a chemical compound.  As described in the May issue of National Geographic Magazine, the jalapeño that we know so well has a Scoville heat rating of about 5,500 Scoville heat units and the new chili, called Bih/Bhut Jolokia, it hails from Pakistan, has a Scoville heat rating of 1,000,000.  Try that on your tacos cavros.  Read full blog.

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That Road To The Hot Spot Is Paved With Good Intentions

by Bob Bennett

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and the road crew is working overtime.  In large part, it is the law of unintended consequences which has driven the country -- and Nevada -- to the brink of wrack and ruin.  Short sighted lawmakers micro-managing the affairs of ordinary people while ceaselessly appeasing the insatiable hungers of powerful interests.  Laws and regulations based on greed and revenge have driven many crazy, and put others in jail; the rest of the population may not be far behind.

Some good examples of this are Senate bill 14, which places anyone under 18 caught smoking or possessing tobacco under the supervision of the court and Assembly bill 107, which makes it a gross misdemeanor for anyone to have a pocket knife on school grounds, including locked in the trunk of a vehicle.  AB 193, the Assembly version of Senate bill 380, which I wrote so glowingly about last edition, has been amended past recognition.  I believe parts of it will be struck down as unconstitutional, while other parts may set the groundwork to begin imprisoning political dissidents.  Read full opinion

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Thinking Outside The Yucca Mountain Sandbox

Another Look At Another Way

by Bob Bennett

I attended a provocative lecture by Terry Battista, a Ph.D. at Idaho National Labs, on the reprocessing of nuclear fuels the other evening, narrowly avoiding the lockdown on campus at UNR caused by the overreaction by police and the media about the Iraqi war vet with PTSD who allegedly called the shooter at Virginia Tech a hero.  Fortunately he was in Carson City when the police stormed his Reno home, scaring the neighbors with multiple automatic weapons, SWAT teams and shields.  You would think that police would first try to find someone, and then speak to them in a calm manner when rumors of a threat are heard.  The use of bullhorns and threats of violence only increase the risks. 

But in a way the policy on nuclear power has mirrored the attitude toward the mentally ill: Drug, store and ignore, and expect them to melt down or explode.  Just hope that when they go off, you’re nowhere near them.  Reason often gets left behind, as does involvement in assisting to transforming the system to make it more rational.  The talk on April 19th by Dr. Battista, hosted by Dr. Scire for his Energy class, was the exception.  Read full column

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Nevada History: The Real Story As Told By State Archivist

Who's Lyon? A County Named After Him

by Guy Rocha, Nevada State Archivist

An editorial column appeared in a Nevada newspaper in 1997 discussing unusual places and how they received their names. Lyon County was among them. Citing Helen Carlson's Nevada Place Names (1974), the column noted there was some confusion as to whether the county was named for General Nathaniel Lyon or Captain Robert Lyon. In the ensuing years since the publication of Nevada Place Names, we have come to know how Lyon County received its name and who is responsible for all the confusion. Let me tell you then, the rest of the story!

Nobody was confused on November 25, 1861 when the Territorial Legislature, demonstrating its loyalty to the Union, named Lyon County in honor of fallen Civil War General Nathaniel Lyon. Lyon, a Connecticut native and West Point graduate, had recently died at the battle of Wilson's Creek, near Springfield, Missouri, on August 10, 1861. All the 19th century sources have the facts straight including Myron Angel's well-known History of Nevada  (1881, p. 494). So when did the confusion begin?    See full column.

General Nathaniel Lyon [click on image to enlarge]

Battle of Wilson's Creek (detail, showing General Lyon's death), Kurz & Allison chromolithograph, 1893 [click on image to enlarge]

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The Nevada Observer's Fabulous Cartoon Features !!!

The Nevada Observer: Existential Art
 
(Click on image to enlarge; click here to see more)
The Drifter Hotel:
Cartoons by Woodrow

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The Nevada Observer: Political Art

(Click on image to enlarge; click here to see more)
Nevada Scenes:
Cartoons by Erik Holland

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Last Week's Nevada News Digest And Links Of Interest

For previous entries in the Nevada News Digest, see the TNO Archive

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May 8, 2007

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Another Nevada Soldier Killed Overseas

Staff Sgt. Coby Schwab, USAR

IRAQ WAR: Family says soldier felt need to help buddies -- Henderson man killed in roadside bombing (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Nevada Government

State Government

Nevada Legislature

Overviews

Taking a closer look: Skipping Community Service and Privatizing the County Jails (Desert Beacon column, Blue Sage Views)

NV Legislature: Health, Safety, Ethics, Private Jails (Desert Beacon column, Blue Sage Views)

Dead Kids, And Your Right To Know What You're Paying For

"The hows and whys behind individual cases of child death in Nevada may continue to be withheld from the public."

Child welfare bill may be cut: Official urges panel to scrap open-meeting provision, two others (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

More lip service on child welfare system (Donna Coleman and Toni Isola-Bayer column, Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Bill would move some children out of group homes (Associated Press article)

Nevada Highways

Panel looks at Spaghetti Bowl to Craig Road project funds: Appeal made for Route 160 improvements (Associated Press article)

Thieving Proposal

"But this bill isn't about consumer protection. It's a money grab, pure and simple."

Gift card grab (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

Intermediate Appeals Court Bill

Assembly backs appeals court plan (Associated Press article)

Nevada's Predatory Lending Industry

"Credit card companies' practice of ratcheting up customers' interest rates for seemingly unrelated financial mistakes - such as paying a utility or phone bill late - has recently caught the attention of consumer advocates, journalists and now state Sen. Dina Titus, D-Las Vegas."

Rate hikes pique Titus' interest: Banks offer compromise to ease up on cardholders (Las Vegas Sun article)

Ferocious Dina Gets Tired

"Senate Minority Leader Dina Titus says she's tired of the Gibbons administration proposing new spending without the money to pay for it."

LOOKING IN ON: CARSON CITY -- Governor proposes spending, Titus bares her teeth (Las Vegas Sun article)

Tip Pooling Legislation

Hearing on tip-sharing plan canceled (Associated Press article)

Entertainment Chameleons

Music acts target imposters: Bill would compel full disclosure (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

 Good Samaritan And DUI Holdover Bills

Governor signs good-Samaritan doctor, DUI delayed-release bills (Associated Press article)

Lobbyists (Or Crypto-Lobbyists)

"In a Nevada political climate dripping with outright corruption and shoddy ethics, Perkins' decision was bound to generate skepticism."

JOHN L. SMITH: For a concerned citizen and police chief, Perkins goes to a lot of trouble (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

State Agencies

Unlicensed Predatory Lenders

Record fine levied against payday lender Leads Global Inc. (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Payday lender fined record $50,000 -- Officials: Woman harassed at home, work (Associated Press article)

Local Government

City And County Of Carson

Residents' thoughts sought at regional transportation meeting (Nevada Appeal article)

"Land owners in Carson City owe $582,627 in property taxes and penalties, according to the Assessor's office."

Carson City's delinquent tax list is out (Nevada Appeal article)

Churchill County

"The Fallon Tribal Development Corporation, a federally-chaptered corporation, founded in 2005, has two board of director members whose terms have expired and applications for the positions are being accepted."

Tribe accepting applications for two development corporation directors (Lahontan Valley News article)

Clark County

City Of North Las Vegas

"The nation's second-fastest growing city is still using some zoning laws established in the 1960s, when North Las Vegas had 20,000 residents and was largely rural."

LOOKING IN ON: SUBURBS -- NLV rolls up sleeves to innovate away outdated zoning laws (Las Vegas Sun article)

Urban Renewal

Community's views sought on grocery: Developer seeks West Las Vegas site (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Real Estate Market

April home data for LV called 'awful' (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Lyon County

It's best to prepare now before an emergency strikes (Nevada Appeal article)

Washoe County

Inequitable Taxation

"The Nevada Supreme Court has issued an order barring a Washoe County tax appeals board from meeting today to list its reasons for reducing property values for 9,000 homes in Incline Village and Crystal Bay this year."

Board ordered to explain reduced Incline values (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Just Don't Forget The Campaign Contribution

"The Reno-Sparks area has held onto its Top 10 status among Inc. magazine's annual list of the best mid-sized cities for doing business."

Reno-Sparks still ranks with Inc. magazine (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Civic Spirit

Area volunteers defy report, groups say (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

__________

Nevada Politics

Local Elections

Voter registration open until May 15 (Lahontan Valley News article)

__________

Nevada Education Matters

Higher Education

CCSN

Facility comes up short: CCSN project cuts corners, misses its mark of providing state-of-the-art instruction (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

UNR Student Drug Court

"High expectations for the new drug court program at the University of Nevada, Reno, are in order."

Help needed to keep students OnTRAC (Reno Gazette-Journal editorial)

Public Schools

Churchill County School District

High teacher pay cited for salary freeze (Lahontan Valley News article)

District drivers take honors in bus road-eo (Lahontan Valley News article)

Clark County School District

Grads raise rate in '05-'06: Graduation figure at 63.5 percent (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

Nevada Health Matters

University Medical Center

Unthinkable cuts at UMC: Burn center, Quick Care centers, clinics and other major services are indispensable (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Placenta Pills

"Placenta contents are said to provide relief to women suffering from postpartum depression. Swanson had hoped Jodi Selander, a North Las Vegas mother, would have taken her placenta and transformed it into pill form for consumption."

SUNRISE HOSPITAL: Placenta befouled, mom told -- With contamination, plan for consumption forsaken (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

Nevada Law Enforcement

The Problem Of Methamphetamine

"Washoe County's top law enforcement officials say the methamphetamine epidemic might have peaked, crediting greater community awareness, more arrests and keeping ingredients behind the counter to stemming the illegal drug's use."

Meth use may have hit peak (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Human Trafficking

"The anti-trafficking league's work rests on coordinating law enforcement agencies, often the first to come across foreign women forced into prostitution, with different social services and immigration law agencies."

Where's the help promised for prostitutes, lawyer wants to know (Las Vegas Sun article)

Mysterious Car Bomb Killing On The Las Vegas Strip

LUXOR PARKING GARAGE: Strip blast kills man -- Hot dog vendor dies in bombing; LV police rule out terrorism (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"The study completed last year estimated that coordinated car bombings at the Las Vegas Convention Center could kill up to 10,000 people and cause more than $7 billion in damage."

Blast highlights vulnerability of hotels to terrorism (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

Our Beautiful Region

A wagerless trip to Nevada: Tourists take on the great outdoors for third season of 'The Nevada Passage' (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

Nevada Culture

Made In Nevada

Joining forces, a Made in Nevada success story (Nevada Appeal editorial)

Made In Nevada Website

__________

From The Neon Empire

When Will Casinos Start To Pay Their Fair Share Of State Taxes?

Station Sells

GOING PRIVATE: Fertittas will cash, take stake -- Those behind Station will get combined $494.8 million for issues (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

How To Wynn

Macau success lifts Wynn Resorts' quarter: Revenue, earnings rise; chairman suggests results may foretell success in future periods (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Chinese Gambling Ventures: Handle With Tongs

"Terry Yungjen Wang's day went from bad to worse when he was arrested in Hong Kong a few years ago for attempting to exchange counterfeit dollars manufactured in North Korea and then made an agitated call for help to a colleague - whose husband happens to be a high-ranking member of the Chinese mafia."

LOOKING IN ON: GAMING -- Sketchy episode doesn't keep license from executive's grasp (Las Vegas Sun article)

__________

Nevada's Past

V&TRR

V&T commission supports documentary on reconstruction effort: Asks producers to come back with more detailed proposal (Nevada Appeal article)

Josephine Baker And Las Vegas

Did Josephine Baker Change Vegas? (Richard Abowitz column, Los Angeles Times)

The Gangster Years

Car bombings once popular mob tactic in Las Vegas: Maneuver efficient, attention-grabbing, retired FBI agent says (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

Federal Nevada

Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Dump Project

"Once again showing his clout on Yucca Mountain, Sen. Harry Reid helped the Walker River Paiute Indians reach a decision against allowing nuclear waste to be shipped through their reservation to the proposed repository, according to government officials and lobbyists."

YUCCA MOUNTAIN RAIL LINE: Reid steps in, sways tribe -- Senator uses his clout to persuade Paiutes to refuse DOE's rail plan (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

In The US Congress

"Lawmakers in Washington should reveal projects they are planning to earmark in spending bills."

Go the whole way; let voters in on requests for federal funding (Reno Gazette-Journal editorial)

Veterans Affairs

"Donny Fisher learned the hard way on Monday that the company that shuttles patients for free from one Veterans Affairs clinic to another in the Las Vegas Valley has abruptly quit, saying it is owed nearly $600,000 from the federal government."

Veterans stranded, VA accused of not paying fare (Las Vegas Sun article)

============================================

Update for May 8, 2007

Five Members Of The US Navy Killed In Austin Helicopter Crash

Navy helicopter crash kills 5 on training flight in Nevada (Associated Press article)

Reid Statement Regarding Navy Helicopter Crash in Nevada (Sen. Reid Press Release)

_____

Nevada Government

State Government

Nevada Legislature

Overview

Taking a closer look: Arms and Reports (Desert Beacon column, Blue Sage Views)

Actions In The Legislature

New revenue estimates reduce 'hole' in proposed Nevada budget (Associated Press article)

No changes to Nevada bill targeting high credit card interest (Associated Press article)

Phone company executives ask Nevada lawmakers to drop rate caps (Associated Press article)

The Governor Of Nevada

Nevada governor researches bill to erase green building tax breaks (Associated Press article)

From The Office Of The Governor

Governor Gibbons’ Statement Regarding the Death Of Army Reserve Staff Sergeant Coby Schwab (Gov. Gibbons Press Release)

Governor Gibbons to Attend National Cable and Telecommunications Association's 56th Annual Convention (Gov. Gibbons Press Release)

Doesn't Like Gov. Gibbons

Monday Quick Hits (Steve Sebelius column, Las Vegas CityLife)

The State Judiciary

Justices to hold court in Spring Creek (Elko Free Press article)

__________

Nevada Politics

Local Elections

Carlin candidate event Thursday (Elko Free Press article)

__________

Nevada Health Matters

Fallon Cancer Clusters

Study shows high tungsten coincides with Nevada cancer cluster (Associated Press article)

Temporal Variability of Tungsten and Cobalt in Fallon, Nevada (Environmental Health Perspectives Journal website)

__________

From The Neon Empire

When Will Casinos Start To Pay Their Fair Share Of State Taxes?

U.S. gambling revenues up 6.8 percent to $32.4 billion (Associated Press article)

Harrah's first-quarter profit rises 2 percent (Associated Press article)

__________

Federal Nevada

In The Congress

Tighter Border First; Immigration Later (Associated Press article)

Highlights of Immigration Proposals (Associated Press article)

House Endorses Renewal of Some Tax Cuts (Associated Press article)

Genetic Discrimination Bills

RL33987 - May 02, 2007 Genetic Non-discrimination in Employment: A Comparison of Title II Provisions in S. 358 and H.R. 493, 110th Congress (Congressional Research Service Report)

RL33988 - May 02, 2007 Genetic Nondiscrimination in Health Insurance: A Side-by-Side Comparison of the Title I Provisions in H.R. 493 and S. 358 (Congressional Research Service Report)

The Environment

Panel Approves Fuel Economy Increase (Associated Press article)

RL33982 - May 01, 2007 Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE): A Comparison of Selected Legislation in the 110th Congress (Congressional Research Service Report)

National Health Matters

RL33986 - May 01, 2007 FDA's Authority to Ensure That Drugs Prescribed to Children Are Safe and Effective (Congressional Research Service Report)

RS22656 - May 01, 2007 Scientific Evaluations of Approaches to Prevent Teen Pregnancy (Congressional Research Service Report)

Medicare Part D: Challenges in Enrolling New Dual-Eligible Beneficiaries GAO-07-272, May 4, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Medicare Part D: Enrolling New Dual-Eligible Beneficiaries in Prescription Drug Plans GAO-07-824T, May 8, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Medicare Part D Low-Income Subsidy: Progress Made in Approving Applications, but Ability to Identify Remaining Individuals Is Limited GAO-07-858T, May 8, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Hospital Quality Data: HHS Should Specify Steps and Time Frame for Using Information Technology to Collect and Submit Data GAO-07-320, April 25, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Global Health: Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria Has Improved Its Documentation of Funding Decisions but Needs Standardized Oversight Expectations and Assessments GAO-07-627, May 7, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Government-Chartered Cable TV Monopolies

Cable execs at Vegas meeting attack government regulation (Associated Press article)

International Organized Crime

"Something strange is going on in the global opium market, and it could spell trouble."

An Opium Market Mystery (Washington Post article)

U.N. Says Colombian Coca Plantation Down (Associated Press article)

U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime

UNODC Annual Report 2007

Fraud, Corruption, Waste And Mismanagement

Interior's Oil Lease Program Head Quits (Associated Press article)

Federal Student Loan Official Quits (Associated Press article)

TSA Loses Hard Drive With Personal Info (Associated Press article)

Employee Misclassification: Improved Outreach Could Help Ensure Proper Worker Classification GAO-07-859T, May 8, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Satellite Censorship

Curbs on Satellite Photos May Be Needed (Associated Press article)

Veterans Affairs

Information Technology: VA and DOD Are Making Progress in Sharing Medical Information, but Are Far from Comprehensive Electronic Medical Records GAO-07-852T, May 8, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Our Nation's Armed Forces

Defense Department Announces Next Iraq Troop Rotation (American Forces Press Service article)

Pentagon Prepares 35,000 Troops for Iraq (Associated Press article)

Highlights of Possible Iraq Deployments (Associated Press article)

White House Rebuts Guard Shortage Claim (Associated Press article)

Security at Bases at 2nd-Lowest Level (Associated Press article)

Defense Transportation: DOD Has Taken Actions to Incorporate Lessons Learned in Transforming Its Freight Distribution System GAO-07-675R, May 8, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

From The Office Of The President

May 8, 2007 Press Briefing by Tony Snow (White House website)

Foreign Policy

The Continuing Occupation Of Afghanistan

U.S. Soldiers Continue to Gain Trust of Afghan People (American Forces Press Service article)

U.S. Commander Expresses Remorse over Accidental Deaths (American Forces Press Service article)

05/08/2007: DoD News Briefing with Col. Nicholson from Afghanistan (American Forces Press Service article)

U.S. Toll in Afghan Invasion Reaches 319 (Associated Press article)

The Continuing Occupation Of Iraq

In Washington DC

Reid: Costs Of War Underscore Need To Change Course In Iraq (Sen. Reid Press Release)

Dem Leaders Brief Party on New Iraq Plan (Associated Press article)

Israel

RL33476 - April 30, 2007 Israel: Background and Relations with the United States (Congressional Research Service Report)

Mexico

Mogul Linked to Mexico Bribery Set Free (Associated Press article)

Army kills 4 in shootout in Mexico (Reuters article)

North Korea

Chances Slim for Return of USS Pueblo (Associated Press article)

Pakistan

Taliban Starting To Rule Northwest Frontier Province

Music Crackdown in Pakistani Region (Associated Press article)

United Arab Emirates

RS21852 - May 01, 2007 The United Arab Emirates (UAE): Issues for U.S. Policy (Congressional Research Service Report)

A Federal Reader

RL33984 - April 27, 2007 Foreign Direct Investment: Current Issues (Congressional Research Service Report)

Aviation Security: Risk, Experience, and Customer Concerns Drive Changes to Airline Passenger Screening Procedures, but Evaluation and Documentation of Proposed Changes Could Be Improved GAO-07-634, April 16, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

Maritime Security: Opportunities Exist to Further Clarify the Consequences of a Liquefied Natural Gas Tanker Spill GAO-07-840T, May 7, 2007 (Government Accountability Office Report)

============================================

May 9, 2007

[Noon]

_____

Nevada Government

State Government

Nevada Legislature

Our State Budget

Nevada state budget news better than expected (Nevada Appeal article)

Nevada Highways

"Assembly Transportation Committee members expressed incredulity Tuesday that implementing a bill to allow drivers to make contributions to reduce the state's $3.8 billion highway construction debt would cost $51,000 in computer programming fees."

Legislators question cost of implementing highway fund bill (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Nevada's Predatory Lending Industry

Close those payday loan loopholes (Reno Gazette-Journal editorial)

Create-A-Crime Seatbelt Stops Bill

"Under the state's current "secondary" seat belt law, a motorist or passengers cannot be cited for failing to wear seat belts unless the police officer pulls the vehicle over and cites the driver for another driving offense."

Mother asks lawmakers to toughen state's seat belt law: Assembly weighs bill already OK'd by Senate (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

State Prisons And Prisoners

Money must be spent on prisons, too (Reno Gazette-Journal editorial)

Assorted Bills

"An American Civil Liberties Union lobbyist testified Tuesday that the rich will take advantage of legislation designed to allow people charged with minor offenses to pay a fine in lieu of having to perform community service."

ACLU lobbyist decries bill as 'law for the rich' (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Original member of Sha Na Na tells band impostors: Get a job (Las Vegas Sun article)

The Problem Of Methamphetamine

Meth's deadly assault (Nevada Appeal article)

The Governor Of Nevada

Problems Created By The Poorly-Drafted, Ill-Considered Green Buildings Bill

"Gibbons has five days starting on the day after receipt of the measure and, not counting Sundays, to sign or veto it. That would make Monday the deadline for action. If he takes no action within the five days, the bill would become law anyway."

Governor concerned state might get sued: Gibbons mulls veto of bill that ends tax breaks (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

"Some major resort projects have applied for the tax breaks, including the $7.4 billion CityCenter on the Las Vegas Strip. Dozens more businesses are interested or have applied, but the regulations are so unclear, few in state government are certain exactly what a business must do to apply for and adhere to the standards."

Shades of gray abound in green law: Gibbons turns to attorney general to unravel the mess (Las Vegas Sun article)

Smoking casinos qualify for breaks as 'green' environments (Las Vegas Sun article)

Our State Judiciary

"A bill aimed at reducing the need for judges to raise campaign funds passed the Senate on Tuesday and goes to the governor."

Gibbons gets bill affecting judge election (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

AB505

State Agencies

Inadequate State Regulation Of The Mortgage Industry

"Hearing that the daughter of the former chairman of Henderson-based Southwest Exchange continued to spend potential assets after the company was put in a receivership, a judge Tuesday put related business entities in receivership and froze their assets."

Judge cracks down on more businesses: Assets of entities linked to failed Southwest Exchange are frozen (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Inadequate State Regulation Of Corporations

"Senior U.S. District Judge Stephen Limbaugh of St. Louis ruled that Asset Protection Group of Las Vegas and its partners, Richard Neiswonger and William S. Reed, violated a 1997 order that barred Neiswonger from engaging an a fraudulent asset protection business."

Company found in contempt: LV venture, partners found to violate order (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Nevada Homeland Security

"Authorities in Southern Nevada and Washington believe that the Las Vegas center should be recognized by Gibbons as the state's primary intelligence-sharing hub with the federal government. This is where most of the state's population and threats are and where Nevada has devoted most of its anti-terrorism resources."

Terror fight takes shotgun approach: Concerns raised about governor's strategy causing confusion, delays (Las Vegas Sun article)

Taxicab Authority

"Land was dismissed by Nevada Department of Business and Industry Director Mendy Elliott in a move that neither Land nor the Taxicab Authority board were aware was even being contemplated beforehand."

Taxicab Authority leadership changes: Czehowski replaces Land in a move that comes as surprise to ousted chief (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Local Government

Churchill County

Residents sought to serve on advisory panels (Nevada Appeal article)

Clark County

Urban Renewal

"In an announcement last week that somehow failed to make a Jay Leno monologue, it was revealed at a City Council meeting that the oft-maligned and questionably designed Neonopolis would undergo that most dicey of marketing gestures, a name change."

JOHN L. SMTH: Neonopolis by any other name still has smell of disaster (Las Vegas Review-Journal column)

West Las Vegas plans pitched: Several proposals for grocery store made (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority

LV CONVENTION CENTER: Authority approves upgrades -- $890 million in work aims to help LV stay top trade-show site (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Waiting For Ivanpah

Making the wrong turn: City should drop its disingenuous - and costly - opposition to the right-turn flight path (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Douglas County

Gardnerville retains Tree City USA title (Gardnerville Record-Courier article)

Family Support director resigns (Gardnerville Record-Courier article)

Lake Tahoe Basin

Preparing For Emergencies

Once a disaster occurs, where does an Incline resident go? (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

In case of an emergency: (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Emergency plans for students, elderly (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Seize the opportunity to be prepared (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza editorial)

Best Management Practices

Looking at BMPs and how to achieve Incline's goals (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Consolidated Chambers Of Commerce

Consolidated chamber holds 21st annual trade fair (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Lyon County

"The Lyon County jail was built in Yerington in 1972, and two cell blocks were added later to make it a 54-bed facility. But it averages about 78 inmates a day, Veil said."

Jail overcrowding creates problems for Lyon County officials (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Washoe County

Going Up

"The Washoe County Building Department is preparing to raise building permit fees by 40 percent, about $900,000 more than in 2006, to compensate for the current slowdown in housing construction."

Building permit fees to go up by 40 percent (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority

RSCVA's Unprofitable Golf Courses: Turn Them Into Public Parks Or Sell Them

Merger should be in courses' future (Reno Gazette-Journal editorial)

Alleged Bidding Irregularities

"The controversy is a hot topic in the contracting arena, where construction firms strive to follow each public bid guideline to the letter. Not only do bids have to be delivered to the proper address, but they must meet strict qualifications for how the work will be completed."

Company protesting RSCVA bid (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

__________

Nevada Living

Mother's Day: May 13th

Mother's most precious gifts are her stories (Marilee Swirczek column, Nevada Appeal)

Made In Nevada

Marketing the home state advantage (Nevada Appeal article)

__________

Nevada Politics

Nevada's Hispanic Vote

Coveted Hispanic vote is state's sleeping giant (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

Local Elections

City Of Fallon

Knell wants to take politics to the people (Lahontan Valley News article)

Tedford: There are still things to be done (Lahontan Valley News article)

City Of Las Vegas

Mud's flying fast and furious in Ward 5: Calm of April primary disappears as Barlow, Truesdell campaign (Las Vegas Sun article)

__________

Nevada Education Matters

Public Schools

Schools show appreciation for teachers this week (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Searching for scholarships (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Shenanigans on the school tax front (Jim Clark column, North Lake Tahoe Bonanza)

Churchill County School District

Budget cuts, student medical equipment on school board agenda (Lahontan Valley News article)

Clark County School District

"Desert Rose will be demolished in the coming months to make room for a Career and Technical Academy that is slated to open in 2009."

Adult students moving on: School makes way for career academy (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

Nevada's Environment

Our State's Firefighters

Commercial jet being converted to use for fire tanker duty (Nevada Appeal article)

Fire district tests its wildfire response (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

Lake Tahoe, The Jewel Of The Sierras

Tahoe watershed water quality to be measured this weekend (North Lake Tahoe Bonanza article)

__________

Nevada Health Matters

Health Care In Our Banana Republic

"It's not going to elevate the state to anywhere near the national average in terms of pre natal care. Nevada lags near the bottom because one-fourth to one-fifth of all Nevadans lack health insurance."

Poles apart on health care, with a gulf between (Las Vegas Sun article)

Mental Health

"There were signs: aggression, isolation and acting out in school. But it wasn't until a police officer showed Cynthia Escamilla a letter written by one of her sons that the mother of seven realized her third oldest was mentally ill."

More care sought for mentally ill children (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

__________

From The Neon Empire

When Will Casinos Start To Pay Their Fair Share Of State Taxes?

Hauling It In

"For the 11th straight time since it began surveying the public's attitude toward legalized gambling, the American Gaming Association said Tuesday the U.S. commercial casino industry took in record revenues."

$32,400,000,000: Record revenue for U.S. casinos (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Casinos in Nevada grow faster than those throughout rest of U.S. (Reno Gazette-Journal article)

State of the States 2007: The AGA Survey of Casino Entertainment (AGA Report)

American Gaming Association Website

Curtailing The Rights Of Free Speech And Assembly

"A federal circuit court on Tuesday ruled The Venetian violated U.S. labor law in March 1999 by trying to prevent more than 1,000 members of the Culinary and Bartenders unions from rallying on a sidewalk outside the casino."

Court finds Venetian violated law by trying to block rally (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Venetian Casino vs. NLRB (Washington DC Circuit Court of Appeals website)

__________

Nevada's Past

The Old Breed

Lawmakers honor former legislators and member of pioneer family (Nevada Appeal article)

__________

Nevada Journalism

A Spring Cleaning Of The Soul

"Carson City's Pride Week has passed. We've employed "spring cleaning" on our yards, maybe our homes. Now it's time to clean out our lives."

This spring, clean up more than just the yard (Nevada Appeal editorial)

__________

Federal Nevada

The US Congress

"If 'it was so, it might be,' said Tweedledee, 'and if it were so, it would be, but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic.'"

Humpty Dumpty on Capitol Hill (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

Our Environment

New costs for auto makers -- and consumers: Washington prepared to mandate more fuel efficiency (Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial)

Enlightened energy effort: Racing to build a better bulb as Congress discusses setting a lighting-efficiency standard (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

National Health

"A bill introduced Tuesday in the House calls on federal agencies to examine ways that consumers might dispose of unwanted prescription drugs to keep them out of the hands of addicts or children."

Measure introduced on 'take-back' efforts: Bill calls for study of efforts to dispose of medicines (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Veterans Affairs

POST TRAUMATIC STRESS: Panel: Better tests needed for veterans -- Some say those who suffer not evaluated or compensated well (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

PTSD Compensation and Military Service (Institute of Medicine and National Research Council Report)

Our Nation's Armed Forces

Navy helicopter crashes, 5 killed (Lahontan Valley News article)

Helicopter crash grim reminder of danger at home and abroad (Lahontan Valley News editorial)

US Agency For International Development

BUSH ADMINISTRATION: Nevadan acting chief of agency -- White House officials say Fore's nomination to follow (Las Vegas Review-Journal article)

Foreign Policy

The Continuing Occupation Of Iraq

New pitch on Iraq: With President Bush dropping in polls and war going badly, watch for GOP to change course (Las Vegas Sun editorial)

Has Reid truly committed treason? (Ed Gurowitz column, North Lake Tahoe Bonanza)

============================================

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    2007 DATES TO REMEMBER
    • May 1: May Day

    • May 2: Full Moon

    • May 5: Cinco de Mayo

    • May 8: National Teacher Day

    • May 11: Military Spouse Appreciation Day

    • May 13: Mother's Day (Don't forget this one!)

    • May 15: Peace Officers Memorial Day

    • May 17: Ascension Day

    • May 19: Armed Forces Day

    • May 24: Shavuot

    • May 28: Memorial Day (observed)

    • May 30: Memorial Day (Traditional)

    For details on Nevada festivals and events see the Nevada Commission on Tourism's Events website.

    ______________________________

    From TNO's Reading Room:

    NEVADA'S DESERT AND ITS VICTIM

    by

    JACKSON H. RALSTON

    __________

                Cold, bleak and desolate was the Nevada desert one day of early May, 1864, and yet it was not altogether without human life, for at the turn of a mountain of the Smoky Range was a man older in appearance than his years would seem to justify. He was tall, but bowed more by recent suffering than by time, his furrowed countenance bearing evidences of fatigue, hunger and thirst. His footsteps tottered as he rounded into a canyon new to him, while there approached an Indian squaw, the wife of Oneweda, chief of a band of Shoshones, bred to the desert. A glance told the woman of the plight of the elderly white man. With the compassion of her sex she advanced to him and tendered pine nuts. Too feeble even to understand his own needs he refused and when by gesture she sought to guide him to the camp of her band he shook his head and murmured, "My house, my ranch," words that she treasured up without knowledge of their meaning. So they parted.

                With wavering steps the man wandered on his road toward a bourne he, perhaps, not even dimly apprehended. For five miles farther his feeble will and yet feeble body carried him forward. Night came on with all the chill of the desert and the snow began to fall as he sank to the ground never to rise again. Before he paid the debt of nature and time ceased for him and eternity began, may we assume that there passed in review in his uncertain mind the more striking events of a life in a way typical of his country and of his time? If so, he would have recalled himself as a boy grouped with his parents, seven sisters and three brothers around the open fireplace of a Kentucky farm house.

                There might have been brought to his mind an elder brother, who, assisted by his parents in a modest way, was able to become a physician of local distinction in Illinois at a later period ; another, whose eloquence as a preacher became well known in Kentucky, and whose work on divinity was widely accepted by the Methodist Church and translated into several European languages ; a younger brother afterward a well known and respected citizen of Leavenworth, Kansas ; sisters, one among the rest, married to the most prominent Kentucky educator of his time, and another to become the mother of a governor of Tennessee and of a dozen other sons—judges and physicians—of only lesser prominence and usefulness in that and other states.

                He might have pictured his own firelight studies for the bar, and his admission thereto at the age of twenty-three in Quincy, Illinois, where his older physician brother had preceded him. Memory would have dwelt upon his early struggles for a livelihood, his political ambitions sending him to the lower and later to the upper house of the state legislature, in one or the other of which he was the associate of Lincoln, Stephen A. Douglas, Shields, (afterward senator of the United States from three states), Baker, (later senator from Oregon and killed at the battle of Ball's Bluff), McClernand, (Union general), Browning (senator, attorney-general and secretary of the interior) and others of only less distinction, and that such men as these, his colleagues, selected and elected him at the age of twenty-nine as a circuit judge of Illinois, in which capacity he served for two years.

                Recollection could have revived the incidents of a contest for congress in which he was defeated by John T. Stuart, law preceptor of Abraham Lincoln. His mind, could it have risen above his numbing weakness, might have gone back to his service in, the Black Hawk war with Lincoln, and his own captaincy in the Mexican War, when for three years he commanded at San Antonio, where to this day the spot upon which he organized the Alamo Masonic Lodge is pointed out.

                Then he might have reviewed ten years of his life in Sacramento, in which period, having been widowed for several years, he married a second time, and, after serving as state senator, was a candidate for chief justice of the state, defeated by Justice Stephen J. Field, and but for ill-health would have been elected to the United States senate. He might have recalled the last four years of his life in Nevada, where he took part in the first attempt to form a constitution, representing Storey county, and at the moment was serving as probate judge of Lander county. But the snow which fell that night was his winding sheet.

                When the Indian squaw of Oneweda returned to join her husband she related her encounter and in the morning they, believing the man could not have survived the rigors of the night, sought him and found the realization of their fears. He had died not far from where he might have received aid from those of his own race, for the Indians went only a few miles to a place then (and, perhaps, now) known as Sink Barnes' ranch, and tried to tell those there what had happened, but could not make themselves understood. About eight miles off was the little camp of San Antonio, but there the Indians feared to go. Then it was that in accordance with their customs they burned the body, first preserving his money, but committing to the flames his watch, which they did not understand, and his spectacles, the burned remains of both of which are now in the custody of the Nevada State Historical Society at Reno.

                Judge James Harvey Ralston had a little ranch on what was known as Birch Creek, while acting as probate judge at Austin. He started from Austin to go to this ranch and at the same time look up lost oxen. He left Austin on this trip of forty miles, and passed the first night in the open, a few miles from his destination, and about the same time lost his horse, which was found by an Indian and afterward recovered, though the ownership was for a time unknown. Then began wanderings for eight days, the general history of which is known because of the searchings of, parties sent out by the citizens of Austin. The simple direct English of the first searching party's journal deserves extracts :

                On the morning of the twentieth they "started about ten o'clock and traveled in a southeasterly direction about twenty-one miles. On the twenty-first crossed the plain southeast of Smoky Valley and traveled twenty-eight miles, to where the Indian showed footprints of a man wearing boots. These were the first signs we had seen of him. We followed the track two and one-half miles to a beautiful stream which we named Ralston Creek. Here were evidences where the judge, having no doubt that it was he, had dug with a knife for roots of the thistle. Here we camped for the night. Gilson followed the track up the creek for a mile and a half, where it turned back again to camp. On the twenty-second traveled up the creek and crossed a rugged mountain, going in a southerly direction. After a rest on the summit started down the opposite side, still following the track of the judge. At the foot of the mountain, we found where he had been sitting down and where were also pieces of cactus partly eaten.

                Following his tracks into the valley for about three miles we found four Indians setting traps for catching sagehens. Our Indian guide talked with them and they said they had seen footprints of a white man a great distance off in the course we were pursuing.

                We accompanied the Indians to their camp and got the son of our guide, who said he had also seen the tracks. With our two guides we now continued our course southeast about three miles. The track then turned off the trail, and the judge had evidently seated himself in the shade of a cedar tree. From this the track continued in a southwesterly course. About a quarter of a mile farther on he had evidently sat down again. The staggering track and short step indicated that the lost man was severely suffering with fatigue. For several miles this continued, when we found a place where he camped for the night.

                At daylight of the twenty-third we resumed our search, still going southwest. At this resting place we found a stick that the judge had carried for a long distance as a cane. It was standing in the sand as he had placed it. In this direction we continued for about ten miles to a ravine coming from the east, into which the tracks turned, evidently seeking water and food. The tracks led up a few miles and then turned down again. Our guide told us that the lost man had found pine nuts or other food, as he exhibited greater strength upon entering the ravine. Our guide was an expert in the business, never failing, and speaking as confidently of all the actions of the judge, his condition and the object of the search, as if he had been in his company at the time. After leaving the ravine the track turned directly south for about ten miles, and went up another range of mountains. He then changed his course toward the west. The Indian said it was a long way to water in that direction. It was the course, however, that would have taken him to where he could have found assistance, if he had continued on it; but after pursuing it for eight miles he again turned to the southeast.

                He had evidently sought water in many places and had found some in a ravine ; also he had found a small cave in the rocks where he had lain down and probably passed a night. Here were more pieces of cactus of which he had evidently eaten. Here too, we camped and spent another night. The judge had evidently been attempting to find a manner of escape from his perilous situation. He had wandered around and clambered upon high rocks, as if to take observations, but at last the trail struck off in a southwesterly direction.

                On the twenty-fourth, at daylight, we again started upon the search, following the tracks down the ravine, from which it turned north for about three miles, when they turned again and went southwest and into the valley. We were now in sight of the San Antonio mountains, when the track again turned to the southeast. We followed it in that direction for eight miles. Our Indian guide then told us there was no water for a long distance, and as we were now nearly sixteen miles from known water and nearly out of provisions, we decided that after a short search we would return for supplies. So, building a monument that we could easily find, we returned to Austin after an absence of eight days. We followed the track for upward of one hundred miles, very tortuous and wandering.

                When the first exploring party made its report, the citizens of Austin solemnly directed the sending out a second expedition to determine the fate of the late Judge Ralston. Retracing the steps of the first searching party and proceeding farther, its members finally encountered Oneweda, who described to them the interview between the lost man and the Indian squaw. The place of death was determined as eight miles east-northeast from San Antonio and five miles from Barnes' ranch. The money the Indians had taken from the body they gave over at once to the searchers, explained the efforts they had made to communicate with the men at the ranch, their dread of San Antonio and their somewhat naive fear of the watch which to them was a great mystery.

                Sadly such remains as could be found were gathered up and the party returned to Austin, where as the Reese River Reveille said there was "the most imposing funeral that has ever occurred in Austin. The worth, position and high esteem, with the melancholy circumstances attending the death of Judge Ralston, gave a solemn and universal interest to the occasion."

                Meetings of Masonic bodies and of the bar testified to his worth as a man, a lawyer and a citizen, and as the father of a family, but with them the public now has little concern. We may, however, remember that this tragedy gave name to the Ralston Desert and the Ralston Valley, and that with such incidents the history of Nevada, that "Titan land of wonder," as his widow, a poet of distinction, has termed it, is replete.

                These things I know, because the victim of the desert was my father.

    From The Nevada State Historical Society Papers vol. III 1923-1924, pp. 213-222, another selection in TNO's Reading Room.

    ____________________

    From TNO's Reading Room:

    LOST IN THE STORM.

    A 250 MILE RIDE IN THE MOUNTAINS AFTER CATTLE - FOUR DAYS WITHOUT FOOD - THE TERRORS OF DEATH AND DEATH VALLEY.

    We are indebted to Dr. Buncher, of Dayton, for the following particulars attending the recent adventure of Mr. John Carling, brother of Hon. H. Carling, of Fort Churchill, while hunting cattle in the storm of April 7th, and in which Carling came as near the gate that leads out of this world as most people would care to approach. Mr. Carling had cattle ranging in the Big Bend country, and fearing the herd would wander away during the storm and extreme cold, his brother-in-law, himself, and one other, all resident near Churchill, started on horseback to look them up and bring them in. The party traveled all day without seeing the herd and at night camped about twenty miles from Churchill. On the following morning the three started out again, in different directions, and with the understanding that all were to meet at the camp in the evening, if unsuccessful. The brother-in-law and the other, whose name we did not learn, were unsuccessful and in the evening returned to camp, built up a fire, prepared supper, and awaited the arrival of their companion - Mr. Carling; but the evening and the night passed and morning came without his return. Fearing that he had met with an accident or become lost, the two saddled up, went in search, and when several miles out struck the trail of Carling,

    LEADING THROUGH THE SNOW

    toward the mountains. Thinking he had found trace of the herd and hoping to overtake him soon, they followed as fast as possible; but although the trail looked fresh and they rode hard, darkness came and they camped without him. So passed the next day and the next day after on the tortuous trail, and no Carling. The scanty provisions of the party in search were fast giving out and had to be rigidly economized if any was to be saved for the missing man. At times the trail led over log barricades, through dense undergrowth, and over rocky declivities, and here and there

    DROPS OF BLOOD ON THE SNOW

    marked the struggles and falls of the benighted wanderer and his faithful horse. It was now evident that Carling was thoroughly lost, and when found would be helpless - perhaps dead - as he took no food, matches, knife or firearms, and he rode night and day. On the morning of the fourth day the searching party emerged from the mountains upon the edge of

    DEATH VALLEY,

    and at a deserted cabin near Black Springs, having traveled over 200 miles. On entering they were overjoyed to find their lost comrade had recently been there, and were rewarded a few moments later by discovering both horse and rider a short distance away. Both were in a famished and almost dying condition, and had  it not been for this opportune arrival of help yet another tragedy would have been added to the melancholy history of that Sahara of death. Mr. Carling was soon made comfortable with food and fire, and was able to give an account of his wanderings. After becoming

    LOST BEYOND ALL HOPE,

    and either not daring to trace his long, wearisome trail back again, or hoping to find speedier relief, he determined to pursue a straight course until he found shelter and food. But imagine his despair as at last, after all his determined struggles and patient sufferings, he emerged from the enveloping wilderness only to find himself on the edge of Death Valley - that terrible waste of alkali plain, on whose blistered, barren surface lie bleaching the scattered bones of those who year after year have undertaken its pilgrimage. It will be remembered that a number of herders and a band of six thousand sheep, which they were attempting to drive across into the Coso country, perished on this desert last summer. The heat at that time was most intense and the hot winds swept the alkali waste like the burning Sirocco of the African desert, carrying death to every living thing beneath its arid wings. The remains of these Mr. Carling saw, and in his faint and half delirious state, what wonder if he imagined he beheld the unsepulchered host rising up before his bewildered vision! - the 

    GHOSTLY HERDERS

    with fleshless, beckoning fingers, alluring him to their fate! - the skeleton rocks capering hither and thither over the snowy expanse, - skeleton horses neighing a plaintive welcome to his own jaded beast; and heard the weird melodies of the marching dead, as they sentineled their phantom herds. To attempt to cross that sixty miles of plain was to approach the deadly Upas, while to remain on its desolate confines was no less than death by starvation; and Mr. Carling was resigning himself to his fate, when the voice of his companions reached his ears. When Carling first entered the cabin he found two pieces of tallow candle which he devoured. He had despaired of ever reaching home, and taking a piece of brown paper, in which the candles were wrapped,

    HE WROTE HIS WILL,

    bequeathing his property, worth $50,000, to his wife and children, and also recorded the date and circumstances of his adventure, that those who should find his body might also have a clue to its identity. Luckily for him his companions persevered in their search, his friends are spared that grief, and he lives to recount his most fortunate escape. We congratulate Mr. C. and are glad to learn that he is almost entirely recovered from the effect of his eventful trip.  (Lyon County Times, April 20, 1875).

    An excerpt from Life in Churchill and Lyon Counties: A Newspaper Scrapbook 1865-1899, Part 1 (1865-1879), one of the many features in TNO's Reading Room.


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    The Problem Of Methamphetamine

    Methamphetamine And The Big, Bad Wolf -- Only This Time He Is For Real (Nevada Observer article)

    Methamphetamine Awareness Spreads Slowly In Nevada: Police Agencies Have Backs To Walls While Citizens Ignorant (Nevada Observer article)

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    Governor's Working Group on Methamphetamine Preliminary Report

    Selected Reports and Hearings from the 109th Congress

    Methamphetamine Abuse (US Senate Appropriations Committee Hearings)

    Comprehensively Combating Methamphetamines: Impacts on Health and the Environment (House Committee on Energy and Commerce Hearings)

    Fighting Meth in America's Heartland: Assessing the Impact on Local Law Enforcement and Child Welfare Agencies (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)

    The Problem of Methamphetamine in Indian Country (Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Hearings)

    Appalachian Ice: The Methamphetamine Epidemic in Western North Carolina (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)

    Subversion of Drug Testing Programs (House Committee on Energy and Commerce Hearings)

    Fighting Meth in America's Heartland: Assessing Federal State and Local Efforts (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)

    Law Enforcement and the Fight Against Methamphetamine: Improving Federal, State and Local Efforts (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)

    Roundtable on Methamphetamine: Fighting Meth Use -- A Coordinated Effort (Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Hearings)

    H.Rpt.109-352 The Methamphetamine Epidemic: The International Roots of the Problem (US House of Representatives Report)

    Alien Gang Removal Act of 2005 (House Committee on the Judiciary Hearings)

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    Methamphetamine Epidemic Elimination Act (House Judiciary Committee Hearings)

    H.Rpt.109-299, Pt.1 Methamphetamine Epidemic Elimination Act (US House of Representatives Report)

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    Combating Methamphetamines Through Prevention and Education (House Committee on Education and the Workforce Hearings)

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    Selected Reports and Hearings from the 108th Congress

    Law Enforcement and the Fight Against Methamphetamine (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings) 

    Facing the Methamphetamine Problem in America (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)

    Ice in the Ozarks: The Methamphetamine Epidemic in Arkansas (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings) 

    The Poisoning of Paradise: Crystal Methamphetamine in Hawaii (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)  

    Stopping the Methamphetamine Epidemic: Lessons from Oregon's Experience (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)  

    Northern Ice: Stopping Methamphetamine Precursor Chemical Smuggling Across the U.S.-Canada Border (House Committee on Government Reform Hearings)  

    Other Resources

    National Clandestine Laboratory Register -- Nevada (US Drug Enforcement Agency website)

    Guidelines for Law Enforcement for the Cleanup of Clandestine Drug Laboratories - 2005 Edition (US Drug Enforcement Agency website)

    Online Information About Methamphetamine: 1390 Articles (US Drug Enforcement Agency website)

    Tips for Teens: The Truth About Methamphetamine (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    Methamphetamine Update (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    Methamphetamine Jeopardizes Children's Welfare (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    Methamphetamine Abuse Rises (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    The DASIS Report: Methamphetamine / Amphetamine Treatment Admissions in Urban and Rural Areas, 2004 (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    The DASIS Report: Trends in Methamphetamine / Amphetamine Admissions to Treatment, 1993-2003 (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    Methamphetamine: The Child Welfare Impact And Response (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    The DASIS Report: Smoked Methamphetamine / Amphetamines, 1992-2002 (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    The NSDUH Report: Methamphetamine Use, Abuse, and Dependence: 2002, 2003, and 2004 (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    The DASIS Report: Primary Methamphetamine / Amphetamine Treatment Admissions, 1992-2002 (US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website)

    ____________________
    Our Heritage:

    The Bill Of Rights Of The American Republic

    AMENDMENT I.

    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

    AMENDMENT II.

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    AMENDMENT III.

    No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

    AMENDMENT IV.

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    AMENDMENT V.

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of  a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval  forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.  

    AMENDMENT VI.

    In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

    AMENDMENT VII.

    In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

    AMENDMENT VIII.

    Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

    AMENDMENT IX.

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    AMENDMENT X.

    The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

    ___________________
    Nevada Reference Material

    _____________________________________

    From The Nevada State Demographer

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    From The Nevada State Data Center

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    From The Office Of The Governor

    Nevada Statistical Abstract

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    From The US Census Bureau: Nevada 2002 Economic Census Reports
    Nevada - County Business Patterns

    Census Of Governments Vol. 1 No. 2 - Individual State Descriptions (Nevada at pp. 181-184)

    Nevada QuickFacts

    _____________________________________

    Nevada State Government
    From The Legislative Council Bureau
    From The Nevada State Controller
    From The US Census Bureau
    • Nevada Governments (210 Separate Government Entities In Nevada In 2002, Not Counting Special Assessment Districts and 48 Other Types Of Quasi-governments)

    • State And Local Government Finance (Long Term Debts Of Nevada State And Local Governments In 2002:  State $3.6 Billion; Local Governments $11.8 Billion)

    • Local Government Finance (Long Term Debts Of Nevada's Local Governments In 2002:  Counties $5.5 Billion; Municipalities $1.5 Billion; Special Districts $1.8 Billion; School Districts $3.2 Billion)

    ____________________

    The 2007 Legislative Session

    From the Nevada State Legislature Website:

    ______________________
    An Overview Of The Nevada Tax System
    --o0o --
    Nevada State Constitution
    Nevada Revised Statutes
    Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) Study
    Governing Magazine's Evaluation
    Recommended Reading From The Nevada Taxpayers Association

    __________

    Gov. Gibbons' Plans For Nevada In 2007-2009

    State of the State Address, January 22, 2007

    Proposed 2007-2009 Budget

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    State Controller's Nevada Financial Reports

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    Funding Public Education in Nevada: The Issues

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    Financing Nevada's Public School System -- Latest Report (March 2005) From US Census Bureau

    Public Education Finances 2003 (March 2005)

    Gov. Guinn's Proposal for 2005-2007

    From 2005 State of the State Message

    2005-2007 Budget Overview:  Education

    Proposal of the Nevada Association of School Boards and Nevada Association of School Superintendents

    iNVest '07 (Clark County School District website)

    iNVest '05 (pdf file)

    Nevada Policy Research Institute (NPRI) Studies
    2005 National Governors' Conference Study

    Achieve Inc. Nevada Data Profile

    US Bureau Of The Census

    Public Education Finances 2003 (US Census Bureau March 2005)

    From The National Center For Educational Statistics (NCES)

    National Center For Educational Statistics

    Current per-pupil expenditures for elementary and secondary schools: School year 2001-2002

    NCES Financial Statistics Center

    Other NCES Reports On Nevada
    Other Recent National Studies
    • Nevada's Inefficient Public School System -- High Administrative Costs; Fifth Worst State In Per Pupil Spending

    Public Education Finances 2003 (US Census Bureau March 2005)

    • Nevada 49th Smartest State In The Union 2004-2005

    Which State Is Smartest Ranking

    • National Governors' Conference Report on High Schools Says Nevada Graduation Rate Below US Average

    Achieve Inc. Nevada Data Profile

    Achieve Inc. Website (Other Education Studies Available)

    Higher Education

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    TNO Citizens' Guides To Campaign Finance Reports

    Campaign Finance Reports Of The 2005 State Officers Of The Executive Branch

    Campaign Finance Reports Of The 2005 Legislators On The Nevada Secretary Of State's Website

    Campaign Finance Reports Of The 2005 Nevada Supreme Court Justices

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    TNO Articles on the Theory and Practice of Good Government in Nevada

    How Elections Are Bought -- A Primer Or, Why Campaign Finance Reform Needs An Open Debate In Nevada

    Nevada Campaign Finance Law Among Nation's Worst: Lack Of Meaningful Disclosure Opens Door To Political Distrust

    Public Records Access: New Lyrics to an Old Tune -- How It Really Works

    Can There Even Be Such A Thing As Campaign Finance Reform?

    Campaign Finance Reporting Laws In Nevada Don't Reflect Reality

    Contribution And Expense Reports: Should You Care? Do You?

    Expense Reports Tell You Nothing. Are Worthless

    Discrepancies Found In Attorney General's Contribution & Expense Reports

    On Campaign Finance Reform

    Why the Apathy In Local Elections? -- Does The Word Money Come To Mind?

    Follow The Money, A Mantra Not Always Followed -- Report's Accuracy Rarely Questioned; Politicians Rarely Challenged

    Abuse of Political Power: An Ongoing Saga

    State’s Financial Administration Needs A Legislative Update

    Corruption Potential High In Nevada -- Little Opportunity To Catch Thieves


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