Aug/Sept/Oct, 1998 The Reno Citizen takes no responsibility for views expressed by its writers. But we would if we could!
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Staff members thank all citizens for their loyal support... as The FREE Reno Citizen magazine enters its fourth year of publication (2 1/2 years on the internet). We originally planned to dedicate this issue to past successes. But reporting on continuing improprieties throughout local government (Reno Airport, Reno City Hall, Reno Redevelopment Agency, and other guilty agencies) takes precedence.
Reno Sparks Convention Authority Diverted Huge Sums of Taxes (Disguised as Donations) to the Mayors Conference by Sam Dehné
Will Reno's citizens ever have honorable city hall government?
The guiding Order and Dictate for Reno city hall's beloved Mayors Conference was that no citizens' taxes would pay for the lavish extravaganza. All expenses... from the lobsters and raspberry tarts... to the first class rodeo tickets... to the trips to Mustang Ranch(?)... and all the pomp & circumstance in between... were to be paid for from donations.
Citizens became suspicious last summer when the current Reno mayor unilaterally and clandestinely funneled over $25,000 of their taxes to his campaign adviser and chum, Parmer... so that she could supposedly try to get some donations to pay for everything. And to pay herself handsomely of course (but that is a different story).
With donations running short, the city bureaucrats started dipping further into the citizens' till for huge amounts of tax dollars. They continued to refuse to provide proper legal accounting as to how much money was being raised via donations. The episode continues to be shrouded in secrecy... with vague comments the order of the day...
As one example, Reno city council diverted well over $550,000 from the Public Funds to downtown "sprucing up" for these visiting dignitaries. (This money should never have been confiscated, and the scheme must be monitored to ensure that it is returned to the citizens' tax coffers.)
Another example where city hall has been caught red handed diverting citizens' taxes is the obviously devious RSCVA "donations:" scheme:
1. RSCVA is a government organization and most of its money comes from various corporate welfare type tax infusion schemes... mainly room taxes.
2. The Reno Gazette reported on 22 June that the RSCVA "donated" some $50,000 to this convention... as well as another $10,000 "donation" to Sparks.
3. The mayor of Reno and the mayor of Sparks both are on the Board of this RSCVA. They were instrumental in the decision to divert these funds to their very own functions.
Don't the gross implications of Conflicts of Interest, on this one issue alone, demand an independent investigation?
To try to imply that these are donations is nothing short of a lie. There are "taxes", and then there are "donations". They are different. The RSCVA, led by these 2 mayors, confiscated some $60,000 tax dollars and tried to disguise the money as donations.
San Francisco's city hall was chastised by its news media for diverting over $2,000,000 of citizens' taxes to its Mayors Conference last year. Relatively speaking that was a pittance compared to
Reno city council's actions. There is an awful lot money still unaccounted for...
DRUG TESTING: A RESOLUTION TO INSTILL CITIZEN CONFIDENCE IN RENO CITY HALL by Sam Dehné
Whereas, the USA is starting a billion dollar anti-drug campaign.
Whereas, Reno government receives huge amounts of grants from the USA government and thus is under its rules and guidance.
Whereas, many Reno citizens are required to undergo drug tests as a condition of employment.
Whereas, almost all Reno city workers are required to submit to drug tests.
Whereas, governing bodies should follow the guidelines of their OWN rules.
Therefore be it resolved, that Reno city council and top Reno city hall staff and bureaucrats will submit to a drug test before the first city council meeting of each month.
Be it also resolved, that all appointees to the Reno Airport Board and other important Boards and Commissions will submit to random drug testing.
Anecdote: As a show of good faith, citizen Sam Dehne, who attends virtually all meetings, agrees to follow these guidelines.
Just a Few Reasons to Re-elect Jeff Griffin .... NOT! submitted by Guy Felton
Vote for Griffin if you're happy with the destruction of the Rewana Farms neighborhood for false reasons and by using Gestapo tactics.
Vote for Griffin if you're happy with the big lie about the city council having no control over its airport representatives ... who they can fire anytime they want.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with backroom politics at city hall.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with government of, by, and for special interests.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with poorly-paid casino employees who need charity and public support in order to survive.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with city hall refusing to answer questions.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with cancerous growth.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with being lied to by city hall's spin doctors and damage-control doctors.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with a million-dollar propaganda machine at city hall.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with city manager McNeely.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're in favor of city hall whistle-blowers being fired for being... whistle-blowers.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with the smoke-and-mirrors Reno budget... with property tax revenue up 18% each year.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with lobbyists running amok at city hall.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with higher property taxes on homes.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with lower property taxes on casinos.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with his muzzling free expression and denying the 1st Amendment.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with city committees being stacked with lackeys of special interests.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with the death of the Nevada open meeting law.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with a city government that permits so much new home construction that property values of existing homes have been lowered.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with millions of tax dollars being spent to police and maintain downtown streets that may be owned by casinos.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with cronyism at city hall.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with conflict of interest out of control at city hall.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with so many decisions being made that go against the will of the people.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with celebrating the river inside a movie theater.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with city hall making decisions before pretending to give a damn about public input.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with no community impact studies being conducted before major projects are given rubber-stamp approval by the mayor and council.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with window-dressing "democracy."
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with applications for city appointments being lost when they're submitted by people who challenge city hall's "screw-the-people" agenda.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with giving your tax dollars to subsidies for the downtown casinos.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with the National Bowling Stadium fiasco.
$ Vote for Griffin if you're happy with giving your tax dollars to organizations that operate in secret.
$ Vote for Griffin if you believe the city's business is "none of your business".
IT IS AGAINST NEVADA LAW TO REMOVE PUBLIC RECORDS
Dear District Attorney;
Reno city hall recently secretly removed my long-time Standing Application for the Reno Airport Board; that had been on file for many months (dated 1 April, 1997). That application was an official government document that was supposed to be safeguarded by government officials.
City hall secretly purged my Records, with NO DISCUSSION AT ANY LEGAL PUBLIC MEETINGS and did not tell me they had done it.
Reno city hall must not be allowed to violate the law, and the spirit of the law, unilaterally and clandestinely (SECRET SERIAL MEETINGS ARE ALSO AGAINST THE LAW.).
You must put an end to these city council back-room secret illegal "serial" meetings.
Reno city council never properly noticed or discussed their unilateral and clandestine decision to purge citizens' vital official documents.
***** NRS 239. 300, 310, 320, and 330 state very clearly that officials and officers who "steal", "alter", "remove"... "Public Records" are guilty of category C felonies. *****
Reno government officials including, but not limited to; the mayor, the city council, the city manager, and assistant city manager have thumbed their noses at these statutes. This is a gross abdication of their duties as public officers, and they must be investigated by an honorable agency.
Briefly; I attended the city council meeting of 23 June, 1998 expecting that my long-time Standing Application for the Airport Board would be among those being considered. It wasn't. It was only then that I found out that city hall had unilaterally and clandestinely removed these Public Records.
We note that city hall (in an apparent attempt to cover up the paper trail) tried to close the barn door by belatedly changing their Website wording to tell interested applicants to "call the Clerk". However, as of 23 June, 1998, applications were still being solicited on the city government Website. (They have belatedly changed that... backing in a new procedure.)
We request that you immediately investigate this egregious situation to determine how many NRS laws have been violated. It is totally NOT the way government is supposed to operate.
Shady dealings like this continue to make this Reno city council administration an embarrassment to the citizens of Reno.
This investigation is requested on behalf of all like aggrieved citizens who have had their records illegally Stolen, Altered, or Removed.
An update response is requested within 4 days of receipt of this letter. Sam Dehne
(Numbering system is for staff reference only.)
36. The peccabilities of certain city council candidates are in question... rightly or wrongly.
But what about those of mayor Griffin? He is still receiving benefits from a fraudulently plush contract with the Reno Airport... in direct violation of several Nevada Laws' such as:
NRS 281.230, [municipal officers]... shall not, in any manner, directly or indirectly, receive any commission, personal profit or compensation of any kind resulting from any contract or other transaction in which the
employing state, county, municipality, township, district or quasi-municipal corporation is in any way interested or affected ...
NRS 281.481.2, A public officer ... shall not use his position ... to secure or grant unwarranted privileges ... or advantages ... for himself ... or and business entity in which he has a significant pecuniary interest ...
And right from the Reno City Charter Laws:
Sec 210.110 (2), The people further have a right to be assured to the fullest extent possible that the private financial dealings of their governmental representatives and of candidates for those offices, present no conflict of interest between the public trust and private gain.
35. Reno Gazette reporter, Robert Anglen, really did it this time... he told as much of the truth as he could fit into a short report! Excerpts:
"Dehne, 57, has made himself a fixture at City Council meetings... he uses the lectern to question official activities --- sometimes with songs, comical redundancies, or pointed accusations."
"Much of Dehne's ire is focused on what he calls Griffin's 'cronyism and kickbacks'."
"Dehne has accused the mayor of getting dirty money for being paid more than $20,000 from the Airport to oversee creation of a free-trade zone. He said the mayor has used city contracts to funnel money to campaign supporters."
38. In a gross attack on the First Amendment Right to Freedom of Speech, RSCVA president (and current Reno mayor) Griffin adjourned the 23 July meeting... rather than allow Watchdog Sam Dehne to lecture the board about on-going improprieties.
34. Forced Annexation of unwilling residents is wrong. The county and city must sit down with citizens and work this out. The cityhall spin doctors claim that Reno is subsidizing Washoe. Is this true?
Washoe commissioner Galloway says; No... much of county taxes are slated for REGIONAL items...
30. Once again the Reno Gazette did not report the whole story. The Norris Bacho tragedy was the result of a huge taxpayer - funded witchhunt and sting operation perpetrated by Reno city hall; because Bacho was about to turn state's evidence against their shady operations... their sleazy behind closed doors dealings.... their violations of the citizens' trust.
30a. Furthermore, Bacho was "hooked" on this LEGAL PRESCRIPTION DRUG (Stadol) by several different doctors... who prescribed it to him.
30b. Why wasn't this vital information in the story?
30c. This man needs defending against the diabolical forces that are trying to destroy him. Watchdog is watching him...
30d. Hey, Gazette editors... "THE WHOLE STORY... OR NO STORY!"
29. Like HIM or not... you have to love Mike Tyson's end run around the hypocritical and unethical Nevada Boxing Commission. He applied to box in New Jersey instead. Who needs Nevada?
This is the same BoxComm that, in an illegal, clandestine, and politically-cowardly payback "decision", denied Reno mayoral candidate, Sam Dehne, a boxing exhibition with Mills Lane. This was a great event that the whole community wanted to see! It was a salute to boxing... and this BoxComm stupidly shot itself in the feet.
27. Why don't the airlines (RenoAir, United, Delta, etc) doing business within Reno have to pay for city Business Licenses... like all the other businesses at the airport?
33. Citizen Watchdog recently had a chance to meet Max Baer. What a confident, articulate, and... very healthy person. Wait until you hear what he has to say before you make up your mind about the Jethro Casino concept.
32. Just 2 of several lingering questions about the beloved Mayors Conference:
a. How much money did the mayor's campaign adviser, Parmer, pocket for herself and the mayor?
b. When are they going to repay the legally embezzled money they took from the Public Funds?
31. Does anybody care that Reno Property Tax Revenue has exploded upward at a rate of 18%... for each of the last 4 years? And that, even at that, the city is in FAR WORSE SHAPE than it was back before the gouging?
***121 (one hundred and twenty one) illegal aliens were caught working for the Atlantis Kasino. The fat cat bosses were totally exonerated from any wrongdoing. Booo!
Why weren't the business owners part of the Grand Jury investigation?
How many laws did they break?
Does anybody really believe they didn't know that ANY of these foreigners were... foreigners?
24. This is what I enjoy doing and if you don't like it, get off my list.
23. More Washoe Schools?
It comes down to one simple question: Should citizens have to SUBSIDIZE the greedy developers... and cancerous-growth mongers... and stupid local fat cat-controlled government decisions?
And it comes down to one simple solution: Make these greedy confraputigulators pay their way... and growth will slow down... and there will be less need for new schools.
21. Why does every decision at the Reno Airport have to have the FAA's blessing? This is the citizens' airport. Not the FAA's...
20. Did the Reno city councilman really say that one vote doesn't count? "One vote isn't going to have an effect."!?!? When does a vote have an effect? According to his thought process, why even bother? With attitudes like that, no wonder this council is running amok. The voting process IS Democracy in America.
19. Any idiot can figure out that moving the Reno Airport departure flight path slightly east will only "move the noise slightly east"... still blasting dozens of 1,000s of (new/different) citizens with airport assault an battery. Ridiculous ideas like that are what we get when aviation amateurs are running the Reno Airport. The simple solution(s):
a. Reduce power after SAFELY airborne, and
b. Turn to the east after passing Rattlesnake Mountain.
18. Any Airport "trustee" who says that he has tried 3 times to get the airport to look into a night time curfew is full of beans. Pleas to those aviation amateurs BY CITIZENS have fallen on deaf ears.
17. We don't want to rain on anybody's parade. But who helps pay for those citizen-subsidized ARTtown celebrations (bands, security, pomp & circumstance, etc) at Reno's Wingfield Park? Could that be one of the reasons why property tax revenue INCREASES are being confiscated by city hall at the rate of 18% each year?
17a. And when is Reno council going to repay the $550,000 they weaseled out of the Public Tax Funds to pay for their beloved Mayors Conference trappings of aggrandizement... lobster, wine & steak... cowboy hats, plush travel, first class accommodations everywhere... at the government trough?
16. Where does the Propaganda minister of Reno's $$million dollar tax-funded Brainwashing Machine live? Rumor has it that he is NOT EVEN A CITIZEN OF RENO!
15. Are the secret rumors about burger mogul, Luther Mack, being a candidate to get another hamburger joint AT THE RENO CASINO [SOON TO BE RENAMED "HAMBURGER BUN"] AIRPORT true? Payola for his help in all those Airport shady dealings of the last several years???
14. Reno Police Officer, Ron Dreher, was very close to the mark in his recent accessment of city manager McNeely ("YOUR TURN"). However, one of the main reasons McNeely (and the rest of Reno city hall/kouncil) did not want a Reno Police investigation of the Norris Bacho fiasco... was the fear that the nasty "business as usual" running rampant down there might finally be exposed.
14a. City hall short-sniffing landed Bacho in the slammer. With some professional sniffing by the RPD, would McNeely and his krowd be very far behind?
13. Remember... those billboards and TV/radio/newspaper ads... attempting to brainwash you to vote for the current mayor... ARE BEING PAID FOR WITH YOUR TAXES.
12. Home Depot is ordered to follow city noise and nuisance laws. Why are the airlines at the Reno Airport allowed to violate those exact same laws... virtually destroying the "livability" of dozens of 1,000s of citizens... 100s of times every day... and all through the night? Other people are put in jail for
12a. The real point is that there ARE ways to mitigate this noise, but the Special Interest fat cat-appointee aviation amateurs running the airport, don't know what to do...
11. Is it right for the Reno Casino Airport to, once again, mis-use USA taxes... this time to offer a subsidy Continental Airlines - to the tune of $200,000? The other airlines should be screaming about this govt corporate welfarism. (Not RenoAir though... the Reno Kasino Airport has been throwing our taxes at them for years.)
10. It was refreshing to watch citizens defend their property against Home Depot's violations of development rules... and city hall's refusal to properly police those violations. City staff says "this", and citizens say "that". Who is lying? A clue: It's NOT the citizens...
10a. Wasn't it extremely discouraging to see staff caught in one lie after another... and to watch city kouncil do nothing about these insults to good government?
9. City kouncil disclosure rules: It is wrong for elected officials (especially this mayor) to vote to help cronies... and himself... WITH OR WITHOUT "disclosure". IT IS CALLED ABSTAINING. But that requires integrity... honor... character.
8. We have been told that there is a simple way for citizens to tell when most of Reno city kouncil (as well as most of that top-level bureaucratic staff) is lying. Just watch real closely. It's when their lips are moving...
7. Why are the carpetbaggers allowed to come to town to pillage and plunder for their putrid personal profit... and then leave when the "pickings" get slim?
6. The bizarre scheme of selling off profitable golf courses to finance an unprofitable Convention Center is exactly bass-akwards. Any accountant will tell you to sell off the money losing operation & keep the profitable ones -- or is the plan to sell off these money machines to cronies of the mayor? Another kickback to add to so many others?
6a. Since the Convention Center continues to lose money, then why do we - the taxpayers - want it? Why buy a continuing loss? What's the net present value of a future loss? It's negative.
6b. If the Convention Center could make money, then why won't the casinos build it themselves?
6c. It looks crooked on the surface... and of course, underneath...
5. When citizens ask important questions of city hall, they must be answered. Click here to read a list that was sent back rejected from city hall... with a 6 inch high "REFUSED" imprinted across each of the seven pages. Shame on those... city hall bureaucrats. THAT is nasty government!
4. Prez Clinton thought so little of the beloved Mayors Conference... that he refused to show... because he had to feed the dog. Shows just how (un) important this elitist party was.
3. The Mayors Conference was not to be seen anywhere in the news media (except maybe on the inside pages... where it belongs). Only Reno thought this taxpayer-funded farce deserved front page headlines...
2. It was Sam Dehne who pointed out that casino mogul Farahi did not belong on the RSCVA Board as an "airline rep". AND once again the Reno Gazette failed to give credit where credit was/is due. But that is in keeping with the fact that this solitary "paper" is controlled by the fat cat Special Interests.
1. Musings about the elitist Mayors Conference... or what's wrong with these pictures?
* Kouncilman Aiazi chomping on lobster and shrimp at taxpayers' expense... while the homeless... go homeless.
* Current mayoral imposter Griffin heading the M.C. Criminal and Social Justice Committee.
This is just more evidence portraying how ludicrous this whole affair has been... and proof that Reno city hall needs overhauling... badly. Hypocrisy run amok amongst the kouncil bureaucrats.
Those citizens who received invitations to these taxpayer-funded lavish festivities, please let us know via email by clicking right here.
We are going to keep tabs, but we will not hold our breath.
By the way, the media flaunts these 2 critters as representing the cowboy "community". Not!
QUESTIONS AND COMMENTS ABOUT THE HOT AUGUST NIGHTS MESS By Sam Dehne
Anybody in downtown Reno on the early evening of 8 August, 1998 had to have a feeling of foreboding. The noise... the vibrations... the smell of booze... the scurrilous people... the general pollution permeating the air... were flat disgusting.
On the other foot, what could one expect from a city that invites dozens of 1000s of people to come to Reno and drink booze out in the hot sun from 10 AM to midnight? (Let's take a poll of Rocket Scientists...)
Anybody stupid enough to want to mingle in that mire... was "asking for it"... and apparently some of them "got it".
What is going to be done about it?
With the on-going lack of leadership in Reno government, probably not much...
Keeping in mind, that at this point, most citizens can only rely on news reports from the
cityhall-subsidized Reno Gazette, here are some initial observations:
* An Elected Police Commission should be created as soon as possible. It is mandatory that this be an elected body... so that it won't be relegated to just another gaggle composed of the usual cast of Special Interest Lackeys... like the Ethics Commission, the Airport Board, the RSCVA, etc.
* Who benefits from these extravaganzas... besides the casinos and fat cats?
* How much do citizens pay to subsidize this event... extra police, advertising costs, pollution to their air and damage to their streets, lack of ability to travel around their own city, etc?
* Shouldn't all big events and projects be decided by a citizens' referendum vote, and in this case shouldn't the Police also have a say as to whether events of this magnitude should continue?
* Why are so many major issues ignored by local government... until they are out of control or there is a tragedy?
*Are there enough police to handle these huge events and are they properly trained in BIG CROWD riot control? If not, why not?
* When will cityhall start being pro-active about these big issues?
* What can citizens expect from "leaders" who spend most of their time and attention feathering their own private nests, catering to their Special Interest cronies, and funneling money to those cronies? Could this be a taste of true justice... a portend of more similar things to come?
* Does the fact that many local businesses and casinos pay sub-level wages... often to immigrants... have anything to do with the "Bangers"... who were hanging out?
* Should some of the highly-rated Nevada Air National Guard Security Force been put on standby alert?
*Can we soon look for cityhall to try to blame the melee on the Full Moon?
* Are conspiracy to riot and carrying a concealed firearm without a permit not felonies? Why were involved persons released after a short time? How much bail did they pay?
PERSONS WHO INSIST THAT HOT AUGUST NIGHTS BE CONTINUED ... WITHOUT
SIGNIFICANT CHANGES ... SHOULD BE ASKED TO SOMEHOW-OR-OTHER GUARANTEE
THAT RENO WILL NOT BECOME A GANGLAND KILLING FIELD IN FUTURE.
THIS YEAR'S HAN WAS A CLEAR WARNING. IT CAN NOT BE IGNORED. ANY EVENT THAT ATTRACTS ARMED GANG MEMBERS IS AN EVENT THAT NEEDS TO BE
The Organizers (and all related entities) of Hot August Nights must sign the following statement before they proceed: "We, the undersigned, want the event known as Hot August Nights to again be held in 1999 and following years. We individually and collectively assume all responsibility and liability for (a) any injuries or deaths that may result, and (b) any damage to property that may result. We understand that related liability could amount to many millions of dollars. Further, we accept full responsibility to pay for police overtime and to compensate the family of any police officer who may be killed in line of duty relating to HAN, such compensation to be ten million dollars per instance."
Reno After the Election
Well, here we are in our time travel machine. Let's visit Reno two years from now.
Seems Sam Dehne was elected mayor back in 1998. Just look at how clean and sparkly the town is ... and NO NEW casinos!
Let's look at a newspaper. Hey, it isn't the Reno Gazette-Journal. Sam set up a citizens' committee to bring a new newspaper to town. Seems this one, called The Reno Citizen, tells the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth; it's NOT controlled by fat-cat special interests.
This is great! New housing subdivisions and other construction projects now have to be approved by a vote of the people ... and they've been saying "no" to one project after another. Taxes have actually gone down.
And look at the city's streets ... no potholes; they've all been fixed. And ... son of a gun ... the airport's been moved to Stead.
The voters made the right choice for mayor back in 1998 ... Sam Dehne.
Well, here we are in our time travel machine. Let's visit Reno two years from now.
Uh, oh, Jeff Griffin was re-elected mayor in 1998. All those big bucks from the fat-cat special interests paid off in Jeff's campaign. And too many registered voters didn't bother to go to the polls. They could have voted for Sam Dehne who wanted
to take control of city hall away from the fat cats. Let's look at a newspaper. No surprise. Griffin is still running Reno City Hall for his own benefit and for his cronies. Griffin still doesn't give two hoots about what average citizens want.
More casinos have gone up with more employees not given a living wage.
Growth is still cancerous. Taxes have gone up, up, up and away. Quality of life continues down.
City officials still refuse to answer questions about what's really going on in city government. The truth would probably cause rioting in the streets.
"Constituents can visit, and bow to, the lavish new Griffin mansion, paid for with the money from his airport kickback monopoly contract, between noon and 2 PM weekdays."
If only more registered voters had turned out on election day ... and voted for Sam. To hear about Sam's campaign platform, call 828-1245.
Sam has lived in Reno for 31 years.
Sam graduated from the Air Force Academy and is a former Air Force pilot who retired as a Lieutenant Colonel.
Sam created a B-52 fuel conservation procedure that has saved taxpayers hundreds of million of dollars.
Sam is an IDEA Person who can help save Reno.
Vote for Sam!
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