Pet problems not front page news
I don't personally care about any pet problems as front page problems. Maybe you could restrict your paper to the news.
Groundswell against 'cabal'
Mary Ann McNeill
Sanford E. Deyo
Warren Harnden and Arline Zeidler
Jack Van Dien
All of the above and more, including myself, have written to The Record-Courier expressing our dismay, in one form or another, at the actions taken by our current Douglas County commissioners, specifically Kelly Kite, Jim Baushke, Nancy McDermid and their County Manager Dan Holler. Doug Johnson and Dave Brady have done an excellent job representing their constituents and not special interests and are not included in the "cabal," as Mr. Nowosad labeled them so correctly. With the above list of irate citizens growing with each issue of the The Record-Courier and with what I sense as a groundswell of anger towards the cabal simmering in this county, I believe it is time for the citizens of Douglas County to put these people on notice.
You are blowing it. Your actions to benefit only the power elite and special development interests are so transparent, it's pathetic.
You were elected to represent your constituents and have quite blatantly turned your backs on them in order to further your own private agenda and further solidify the county government's power. The removal of Dave Brady as vice chairman of the commission by the trio was an enormous abuse of power and smacked of retribution for his honest review of Dan Holler. In many people's eyes, it represented the last straw. What the Douglas County commission has become is a disgrace to the democratic process in this county. It's time for an even greater number of citizens to stand up and realize we no longer have a representative government here, it's nothing more than a sham.
A Hollywood minute in Douglas
Douglas County's long running favorite TV show, "Hollerville" falters during current script writers strike. A recent episode went awry when one of the leading men, Commissioner Brady, broke from director Holler's script and asked for a vote of "no confidence" in County Manager Holler.
The scene began to fall apart since no one had lines prepared for them to second the motion. In the following weeks episode, Commissioner Baushke was able to upstage Brady with new scripted lines by Director Holler and had Brady removed from his role as vice chairman of the commission because he won't follow the script. Commissioner Nancy McDermid was placed in the role of vice chairman.
This reporter spoke to the actress Nancy McDermid about this sudden move. She thought it was very nice of Commissioner Baushke to give her a chance at the role. When I asked her if she had spoken to Commissioner Brady about the change in the script she had no comment.
It's been rumored that long-time sponsors have called the show's director into secret negotiations to attempt to settle with the writers guild because ratings for the show have been falling rapidly and are affecting sponsors profits. This reporter was unable to reach Director Holler because he is on vacation. In the meantime, former leading man, Chairman Doug Johnson has retired to his dressing-room trailer and won't come out until the writers are brought back to the series. He cites that the current series upheavals are interfering with his current reelection campaign obligations.
In the meantime, some of the filming crew is demanding that Nancy McDermid be given the leading role as chairman. Inside sources reveal that the series has lacked equitable female camera time for several years and the role might divert audience attention from the current programming problems. In addition, one makeup artist (and who would know better than your makeup artist) says the show needs Commissioner Kite back in as chairman because he can ad-lib lines better than anyone else in the cast.
Insiders revealed that the director wants a "sweetheart" contract before he settles with the writers guild.
He cites Baushke's recent statement that he is "one of the premier county managers in the country." My goodness, if you can't trust Hollywood, who can you trust?
Man on the street interviews revealed that the audience feels "the whole show needs an overhaul, reality shows are what's hot now, not fairy tales."
Watch this newspaper for further inside updates or, better yet, come on down to the studio and watch an episode in person.
Regarding Park Cattle's Jan. 23 community meeting: not much new. Park asked for input on what the community wants in exchange for its proposal to add thousands of homes here beyond what our master plan allows. For the most part the community responded, "We don't want that deal, just follow the master plan."
I think two of Park's strategies deserve comment.
First, they say their intent is to implement various select goals of our master plan. Those are broad statements that provide the foundation for the plan. They could mean different things to different people. Park would like us to think that they mean that we should want Park's plan.
But that's not true. The meaning of those goals is made clear in the rest of the county master plan. The land use map and the densities it designates, the various specific policies and regulations that control development, etc.
And those tell us, for instance, that our goals and policies for the Park property are no more than 600 units clustered on 30 percent or less of the property (or 248 units dispersed on the property if Park doesn't use the clustering provisions).
Second, Park seems to present its offer of various community facilities as sort of a magnanimous gesture. That they are good neighbors who want to give back to the community some of what the community wants, in exchange for what Park wants. So it is important for the public to understand how public improvements in projects like this are actually funded.
Park will form a series of community improvement districts that will then issue bonds to pay for whatever public improvements Park provides. Those bonds be repaid by the future residents of those districts, not Park Cattle.
When those residents buy their homes they will pay the sales price of the house, but they will also assume their share of responsibility for the repayment of those bonds. The bill will be added to their property taxes, for many years to come.
There is nothing wrong with that. I just think those considering Park's offer should know how this works.
One good thing did come out of this meeting. Developers like Park often make an argument that they have property rights that go beyond the master plan. It was refreshing to hear Brad Nelson, Park's CEO, clearly agree that they do not.
He acknowledged that Park's "rights" are those delineated in county plans. Which means that anything beyond is at the discretion of the county. So, while our elected officials might eventually agree to what Park requests, they also clearly have the authority to deny it.
It appears that Park will file for a master plan amendment in June, which will make for an interesting summer. Please stay abreast of developments and let your officials know how you feel. In my case the message will be: follow our master plan.
Missed the caucus
I am not a very politically active person, but I cherish the priviledge of voting. This year, I was out of state on business and therefore not able to voice my opinion for the candidate of my choice.
Had this been a primary election, I could have at least voted absentee. I haven't missed voting since I was of age to vote and I feel cheated.
Where is the secret ballot in a caucus? I may not want all of my neighbors to know for whom I voted. If it is socialization with neighbors that I'm after I can do that better and easier from my front yard.
Mary Ann Teders
Prefer a primary
No on the caucus. Yes on the primary.
With absentee ballots not allowed, the caucus eliminated many for religious or work reasons; most importantly it ignored and disrespected our overseas military. Can't we the people, instead of only party leaders vote on this at our state primary in August?
The caucus enthusiasts' - some mini-political Poobahs - greatest concern is recognition by the national press.
I thought we voted the candidate we consider best for our country's future, not to be pom-pom girls at meetings and conventions.
Saying they wanted to save tax payers' money is really a joke, coming from the politicians and their advocates who merrily write checks with our tax dollars on a regular basis.
It's nice that some folks could schmooze and feel good; they can do that on their own with ad hoc discussion meetings. Let's have the primaries for a legal vote instead of restricting it to a private club.
Victoria J. Roberts
Good time to
buy a home
I thought your readers might like a little good news about the housing market and what a great window of opportunity there is for those who've been sitting on the fence. It's true this is not the best market for home sellers, but potential buyers should be climbing down off that fence and seeking the advice of a professional Realtor today.
No one can predict a "bottom" to the real estate market. We may have already hit it in this area. What we do know is that interest rates are at near historical lows and there are lots of choices in every price range for buyers looking to own a piece of the American dream.
If owning your own home is something that you've been dreaming about, there is no better time than the present to do something about it. Again, you have eager and cooperative sellers, low interest rates and plenty of choices.
My advice is to beat the speculators and investors to the punch and get to work with your local Realtor on finding your next home.
For those who say this is no time to buy real estate, I say they couldn't be more wrong.
Buying today allows you to better your chances at a secure financial future.
It's an established fact that homeowners have substantially more net worth than those who rent.
When you pay rent, you are doing nothing more than increasing the net worth of your landlord. And, you are losing out on huge tax deductions in the process.
Even with this past cycle of slightly downward home prices, those who invested in a home five or six years ago are still way, way ahead of the game.
They watched their home values go up 10, 20, even 30 percent each year for several years.
With the 10 percent adjustment of this past year, their homes are still worth 80 to 100 percent more than when they bought them. Of course, if you bought 10 or 15 years ago in this area, you know that you've probably tripled your investment.
Nationally, over the past three decades, the average home has appreciated 6 percent per year. Locally, we're well above that pace.
Today's buyers can take comfort in knowing that real estate is a solid, tangible investment for themselves and their families. Remember, you're buying a home to live in, to enjoy and appreciate.
You can't live in a stock certificate or a treasury bond. With a home of your own, you can take pride each night when you drive home from work and say to yourself, "I love our house."
Talk to your Realtor today.
2008 Nevada Association
of Realtors President