Citizen August, 1997The Reno Citizen takes no responsibility for views expressed by its writers. (But we would if we could.)
Comments happily accepted. Click on the Mailbox, Read This Month's "Citizen Gadfly Asks" by clicking here.
How Can Reno Create an Honorable city council?
By Rebecca Devonshire
Here is one way! All eligible patriotic applicants for the Reno city council would have their names placed into a citizen-supervised computer. The computer would then randomly select persons from each of the 5 Wards (and 2 At Large) to serve on the council for 2 years. At the end of the 2 years, the process would be repeated. The computer would then choose a mayor from these 7 members for one year terms.
The tremendous benefits from this innovative and patriotic (s)election technique would permeate throughout all levels of Reno society... creating increased morale and a renewed community confidence, and interest, in democracy.
Some Basic Eligibility Rules:
a. 18 years of age or more.
b. Only interested citizens who apply would serve.
c. One from each of 5 wards and 2 at large.
d. Since this process is replacing the current technique, and since this IS to create a city council, a minimum IQ would be required... say above 80.
a. Special Interest Groups would hopefully be eliminated from the selection process.
b. Billboard Blight would be a thing of the past.
c. Mud Slinging would be worthless.
d. Honest and Integrity, even though not guaranteed by this process, would be far more likely.
e. There would be no need for huge "PR" budgets.
f. Cancerous Growth COULD hopefully be brought to a standstill... with developers more likely being forced to pay for the terrible negative impacts they are creating.
g. Citizens would finally begin to participate in the government process... at all ends... both as council members and at council meetings.
h. Secret Serial Meetings would be a thing of the past... as Openness would be encouraged... maybe even demanded!
i. Dynasty building would be a thing of the past.
j. The rights of regular citizens would finally be respected... as "career" politicians would disappear.
Note 1: District Councils (rather than being composed of surrogates of the fat cat controlled city council) would be created using the same process... with the same Eligibility rules and Benefits.
Note 2: The savings from the adoption of these guidelines might even allow a higher salary for city council, and even a token salary for the district council members.IS IT RIGHT TO SQUELCH THE PUBLIC AT CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS?
By Ginger Applegarth
What happened to the First Amendment Right to Free Speech... at the Reno city council meeting of 22 July, 1997?
Certain members of that council appeared nervous about citizen input concerning the proposed Pyramid-Tahoe link... and it showed.
Public discussion was closed down, and scores of citizens at the council meeting were shocked when they were denied their Constitutional rights to voice their suggestions, opinions, and concerns on a very critical agendized item. All this, as 150 or so citizens in attendance looked on... and were left in the dark...
Some members of the council tried to use excuses such as; there was probably "nothing new"... and citizens would probably have a chance to talk at a later date... and, oh yes, that fast-becoming-standard... we can't decide anything today, anyway.
Earlier on, the council seemed amenable to hearing the citizens who had turned in official requests to discuss the Pyramid-Tahoe link. But for some unknown reason, after Sam Dehne turned in a request to speak, the modus operandi shifted, and all citizen input was eliminated... severely wounding the First Amendment. Was the council "that" fidgety about hearing what they had to say?
Councilman Tom Herndon, later told a contingent of VFW members in the audience that they had just observed an example of what they had fought for in the wars. What?!?
In a further bizarre twist, the council later allowed numerous citizens in the audience to speak several times about Vendors Licenses.
Citizens can watch the whole thing evolve on Channel 13, SNCAT, starting at 1030 AM on Sunday morning (27 July).
A video tape of council activities like this... especially by the mayor... is in the offing. Please stay tuned...WILL THE CRONYISM IN RENO EVER END?
By Andy Cat & Bruce Mulberry
The Reno-Casino city council had their Rubberstamps well oiled as they again ignored ordinary citizens and appointed two more fat cat clones to go with the other 6 on the Reno-Casino Airport "Authority" Board. Citizen Activist, Sam Dehne, refused to say what the council wanted to hear... instead he told the truth and thereby blew his chance.
(There are those who might say sour grapes, but it is really a case of sour prunes... that Renoites will be experiencing with their noses, their ears, and their other sensibilities as the airport blight continues unabated.)
A brief summarization of Dehne's answers to the questions that were asked of each of the airport board applicants (with the others all mimicking the "party line") follows:
Ques. #1. What do you see as the Duties of a Trustee?
My actions have spoken for me... as an ordinary citizen I have attended all of the airport meetings and briefed the city council each time. Otherwise you [the cc] would continue to be left in the dark... and at the mercy of the airport's huge public relations machine.
Ques. #2. What are your goals and vision for the airport?
To balance the scale away from cancerous airport growth and special interest groups. There is not one citizen rep on the board. At meetings there is never a word spoken by staff or trustees about the well-being of the citizens. They actually voted to ignore the well-fare and safety of citizens! I want to change that attitude and get citizens back into the ball game instead of just special interest groups.
Ques. #3. Is the airport masterplan a correct reflection of community values?
It is corrupt because of, among many other reasons, the huge citizen landgrab and bogus noise studies and grants. When the airport receives money, they call it a grant... it is really corporate welfare and there is far too much of that down there. They try to get "free" FAA money. Someday it will run out, and then what will they do?
The plan is out of control with no limit to amount of flights they will allow.
There is no citizen friendliness in the plan as it exists today.
Ques. #4. If you could tell [us] one thing, what would it be?
I am unique for this position. The other applicants might have expertise in certain areas... but in this one, all of them added together don't match my qualifications. Here are just 5 of them;
* I live near the airport... and know what is going on with noise and other problems.
* I have a background in activism at airport... example, helped correct the Air Guard mission away from noisy dangerous fighters.. and saved 500 jobs.
* As former airline pilot, I know there ARE ways to mitigate the terrible noise... they refuse to listen... because they are amateurs and novices. They had to create a $300,000 propaganda staff just to cover up their blunders and thwart my efforts to make the airport a better place for the city.
At this point the mayor shut him off and told him his time was up...
There you have it. The Rubberstamps contained not one vote for Dehne... obviously the most qualified candidate for THIS post. It is gaffes like this that re-validate Reno citizens' conviction that city hall lacks the ability to "just do the right thing".A RESOLUTION BY SAM DEHNE TO CANCEL THE NEW PARKING METER FEE STRUCTURE AND PLACE ELECTED GOVERNMENT AND RENO CITIZENS IN CHARGE OF THE FEE PROCESS (REF: RENO MUNICIPAL CODE, Sec. 6.08.050, Parking time limits)
WHEREAS, Reno's Parking Meter fee structure is a potentially severe form of taxation, and
WHEREAS, the citizens of Reno should not be improperly punished for visiting THEIR own downtown, and
WHEREAS, the recent changes in parking meter fees effectively increases overall fees by over 400%,
NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that all isues relative to Parking Meter fee structure shall be a DIRECT function of, and controlled by, the Reno city council and Reno citizens, and
BE IT ALSO RESOLVED, that the new (July 1, 1997) grossly inflated fee structure is to be immediately reinstated to previous rates and remain there until elected officials (WITH PUBLIC INPUT AND DEBATE) can determine a proper and reasonable rate structure, and
BE IT ALSO RESOLVED, that in the future Parking Meter issues will be monitored and controlled by the Reno city council and the citizens of Reno.
NOISE ABATEMENT TECHNIQUE
(Visual Flight Conditions & Light Weight)
(Runway 16 South Departure)
In the interest of Community-Friendly Airport Operations, the following Operating Procedure will be adhered to by ALL airlines at Reno/Tahoe Airport. Any aircraft types (727, etc) that cannot follow these procedures are to be eliminated from operating at Reno, Nevada.
RENO/TAHOE AIRPORT AIRLINE OPERATIONS MANUAL SUPPLEMENT
Listed procedures to be adhered to during the following airport conditions:
a. VFR weather (visibility, 10 Miles and Cloud Ceiling above 5,000 feet Above Ground Level).
b. Surface wind below 15 knots.
c. No reported turbulence within 15 Miles of airport.
d. Planned Aircraft Takeoff Weight 85% below Manufacturers Maximum Takeoff Gross Weight.
NORMAL NOISE ABATEMENT
PROCEDURES (to be integrated with Normal Procedures):
1. Takeoff: Normal Takeoff Thrust as per airline procedures,
2. Climb: Normal Climb Thrust as per airline procedures,
3. At 800 feet Above Ground: Thrust reduction to maintain 500 feet per minute rate of climb maximum,
4. At 1500 feet Above Ground & past Rattlesnake Mountain: Gentle bank turn to heading 090 degrees.
5. After 10 NM east of airport and/or 5,000 feet AGL: Engines to NORMAL CLIMB THRUST.
** Engine Failure Procedure: Declare Emergency... control power on operating engine as necessary... RETURN AND LAND. (DO NOT, REPEAT, DO NOT, ATTEMPT TO CLIMB AND COMPLETE FLIGHT)**
SAFETY NOTE: Properly implemented, this procedure will enhance safety. Among numerous benefits:
1. Reduction of wear on aircraft engines.
2. Increased safety for citizens of Reno as airline flight path is directed away from densely populated areas.
The Citizen of Reno thank you!
[Note: This Perfectly Safe Procedure, created by Sam Dehné, is subject to "fine tuning" as circumstances warrant.]What would YOU do? A Quiz for amateur Rocket Scientists. If you had just taken off from the Reno-Casino Airport and lost power on one of your airplane's engines, would you:
a. Continue climbing with the good engine... maybe running into the mountains?
b. Shut down the good engine.
c. Return and descend and land at the perfectly good airport you just left?
If you picked "c", congratulations, you are a genius... bordering on being a rocket scientist!
If, on the other hand, you picked "a", then you qualify for a job with the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA)... because that is what an airline spokesman says they are told to do... "continue climbing to safely clear the mountains..."
So therefore, we have the threat of this possible bizarre scenario at Reno-Casino Airport... (a conversation recorded some 2 minutes after takeoff... retrieved from the cockpit voice-recorder):
Capt: "Copilot, we just had an engine flameout. Push power up on the good engine and let's CLIMB."
Copilot: "Yes sir! Ummm... but, sir, I can see a perfectly good airport right there behind us. The one we just took off from. Why can't we just return and land THERE? It would be so simple. Why keep climbing with just one engine?"
Capt: "Son, the FAA says we are to climb out of this valley, and you know what happens to your pilot's license when you don't follow FAA orders. So climb we will... mountains or no mountains... push that power up."
WHY NOT LET CITIZENS DECIDE? By Sam Dehné
Citizens continue to ask: Shouldn't all Big Item Issues be put to a Public Referendum vote? Why should Special Interests be allowed to control and decide huge disputes? For example (not in order of importance):
a. Whether to allow a huge Parking Meter Fee Structure increase?
b. Whether to build a huge military complex in the middle of Reno?
c. Whether the railroad should be allowed to control the land it owns?
d. Whether to stick the Pyramid-Tahoe hiway in the middle of 1000s of homes and continue the blight?
e. Whether Developers should continue to be allowed carte blanche to build more and more projects?
f. And just plain whether or not citizens want this cancerous growth to continue... and who should pay the negative impact fees?
These (and other) critical questions should be placed on a single ballot and citizens allowed to go to the voting booth and decide FOR THEMSELVES!"Click" Back to The Reno Citizen