Bob Hackett taeks leave of absence from TREGID |

Bob Hackett taeks leave of absence from TREGID

by Sharon Carter

More than a dozen residents showed up Wednesday morning at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Topaz Ranch Estates substation to lend support to various factions of the subdivision’s beleaguered general improvement district.

Presently the subject of a complaint to the Nevada Commission on Ethics, board Chairwoman Kay Dupuis has been accused of improperly directing a paving contractor to improve a road adjacent to property she owns. It is an allegation which Dupuis cannot answer publicly until after the Ethics Commission issues its report sometime this fall.

But it is a situation which weighed heavily in the minds of those who attended the meeting, several of whom were at least partly responsible for the complaint against Dupuis.

Of the divers emotions which swirled just beneath the surface calm, pent up anger boiled over only twice in the 12-minute meeting.

The only GID business conducted was the appointment of the board’s vice chairman, Fritz Rubins, to temporarily assume the road inspection duties of ailing board member Bob Hackett.

Hackett, 72, is reportedly on a stress-induced, 30-day medical leave from his board duties. He is one of three board members who has left the board, at least temporarily, since former TRE water master Richard Fosse resigned May 11.

On June 30, treasurer Stephen Sanders resigned. And last week, Secretary Winnie Ferguson left the board.

Sanders and Fosse cited difficulty with working with Dupuis as the primary factor in their decisions to leave the board. Ferguson reportedly quit because of stress and cataract surgery.

Although Hackett was not present, his wife, Eloise Wilson-Hackett, who said she was there to protect her husband’s interests, made a point of reproving Dupuis for allegedly using the gavel and ruling Hackett out-of-order at a prior meeting – an action which Wilson-Hackett said had hurt her husband’s feelings.

And during public comment, TRE grader operator Roger Kilgore read a two-minute-long opinion statement into the record. Kilgore prefaced his remarks with a request that he be allowed to speak without interruption – a request which, ultimately, was not honored.

Normally a five-member panel, the TREGID board currently has only three members: Dupuis, who was appointed by the Douglas County Board of Commissioners in August 1997; Rubins, who was appointed this past June; and Treasurer Betty Rebiejo, who was appointed six weeks ago. Dupuis and Rubins will leave the board Dec. 31.

On Jan. 1, Sanders will return as chairman, Fosse as vice chairman. Both men filed for seats on the board and are running unopposed. Hackett and Rebiejo will retain their positions as road inspector and treasurer, respectively. A new secretary remains to be chosen and appointed by the county commission.

It was not until after the meeting that several audience members, including the two future (and former) GID board members, unburdened themselves.

Longtime TRE resident Bob Lorenzen summed up the general feeling of those present when he said he was looking forward to the first of the year when he hopes to see all the contention settle down.

“There’s no reason to be on the board and take a lot of grief,” Lorenzen said.

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