Citizen December, 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 Last Month's "Citizen Gadfly Asks" by clicking here.
HOW TO BUILD A BETTER RENO... WHILE SAVING TAXPAYERS $680,000 By Guy Felton
Hold a series of town meetings at city hall to discuss this topic. Such meetings NOT to be orchestrated by city officials to achieve pre-determined goals in keeping with agenda of Reno's ruling class.
Identify and fire all City of Reno employees who are not committed to serving the principle of government of, by, and for the people.
Make it a criminal offense for the Reno City Council to attempt enacting and forcing any unpopular decision on the citizens of Reno. According to the Declaration of Independence,
"... governments derive their just powers from the
consent of the governed."
Identify and fire all City of Reno employees who play games with the open meeting law.
Identify all lobbyists who have undue influence over Reno officials. Require them to publicly report every contact they have with any Reno official, including time involved, subjects discussed, and any money or gifts given.
Identify clearly the persons and entities represented by each lobbyist known to visit city hall or known to have any form of contact with Reno officials.
Require the Reno City Council to require each member of the council to publicly admit that promoting and voting for any issue that would benefit one or more of his/her major campaign contributors is a conflict of interest.
Require that each district council ELECT its officers.
Require that the city council sound and honor the will of the people on each and every controversial issue. If there's any question about an issue being controversial, it IS controversial.
Require that each council member acknowledge that public representatives are supposed to represent the will of the people, not the will of lobbyists and/or powerful special interests.
Use public access TV to give ample on-air time to each candidate for any City of Reno elected position to fully present his/her positions on public issues.
Put all major growth projects such as the Silver Legacy and the Double Diamond Ranch to public votes for yes-no decisions.
Make growth pay its way ... including the construction of new schools and the hiring of more fire and police personnel.
Control growth in a manner that does not injure market values of existing homes ... as has happened in the last 1-2 years.
Prevent the stacking of key city committees with representatives of powerful special interests.
Require the city attorney to resign for gross incompetence and failure to monitor/prevent improprieties at city hall.
Kill the $680,000 "public relations" budget. It doesn't take anything like that much money to simply tell the truth about what's going on at city hall.
Require city officials to give straightforward answers in a timely manner to questions asked by citizens.
Establish an elected police commission to monitor competence and integrity of law enforcement personnel in Washoe County, Reno, and Sparks.
Fight with maximum effort for enabling legislation in Carson City to permit the foregoing ... if required.
HONEST ANSWERS TO THESE QUESTIONS WOULD DEMAND THE ELIMINATION OF CITY HALL'S $680,000 TAXPAYER FINANCED BRAINWASHING MACHINE. Felton is a local citizen activist.
DOES RENO's AIRPORT PASS THE GENDER TEST?
By Dorothy Moonfish
Not only No... but Heck, No!
Not only is Reno's Un-american Airport board of "trustees" packed mainly with aviation amateurs... but not one woman can be found anywhere in the chain of command. None, zero, nada, zippo.
____Take a look at its appointed 8 MAN board of "trustees". None!
____Take a look at its hired czar and assistant czars. None!
____Take a look at its hired legal staff. None!
Females at Reno's Un-american Airport are sadly relegated to answering phones and taking notes.
This... at a government agency that is financed by America's taxes...
The despicable absence of the female gender on this vital governmental body stands out like a bump on a pickle.
Ironically, the only place that a woman does appear is as assistant Propaganda Czar, and even she is ordered to walk in goose-step with the Airport's citizen-unfriendly cancerous growth policies. (Surely she doesn't put out that flapdoodle at her own volition, does she?)
It wasn't always this way. Just last year there were 2 females on the board. And citizens attending meetings could see that they were the "trustees" who displayed sensitivity and intelligence... and honor. No wonder they are no longer there.
There is no guarantee that the presence of a woman in the hierarchy would correct things. But as long as the gender test continues to fail, the Airport's destructive, indifferent, ignorant, and arrogant pandering to Reno's Fat Cat Special Interests will continue.
And citizens can expect to see more skullduggery; such as kickback contracts to governmental officials... and appointment of "trustees" who have unethical conflict-of-interest contracts with Reno's Un-american Airport.
Nobody will let the truth get in the way of bad government... as this gross discrimination by the good 'ol boys persists unabated. Note: This article was edited by Sam Dehne due to potentially inflammatory content in the original. SHOULD CITY HALL MICRO-MANAGE the RENO AIRPORT?
By Sam Dehné
The term "micromanage" is normally used in a derogatory sense... often when a bureaucratic city hall politician wants to alibi for having either ignored an issue... or has just plain blundered. He shouts; "I am not going to micromanage the Airport operation! I'm not a penny-ante bean counter!"
Most citizens are uncomfortable arguing with him because of the negative connotation of the term he has used. The truth though; this bureaucrat is just passing the buck.
But public officials have responsibility for oversight of operations within their domain. So, what is left if they can't micromanage? The answer is macromanage. (These terms are often misunderstood.)
Here is the difference... simply put:
1. MICRO-management is taking care of finite (nit-picking) details; for example deciding what color to paint the interior of the airport parking garage or deciding which day of the week should be casual dress day for airport employees, and so forth.
It is the airport's job to oversee these LITTLE issues.
2. On the other hand, MACRO-management is taking care of big (important) issues; for example deciding how stupid it would be to build a huge military complex in the middle of Reno, or deciding whether the mayor should be allowed to have kickback contracts, and so forth.
It is city hall's job to oversee these BIG issues.
Note #1: Citizens macromanage when we demand that the council obey the First Amendment.
Note #2: Citizens micromanage if we tell the city hall which pastor should say the opening prayer.
There are basically three options; 1. Do Nothing, 2. Macromanage, or 3. Micromanage. Macro-management is the option... "in between" doing nothing and micro-managing.
It is city council's obligation (as the appointors of the airport trustees and overseeing "bosses" of the airport) to monitor the BIG issues... macromanage. They are failing badly in this responsibility, obligation, and duty to their constituents.CITIZEN GADFLY ASKS: Sam Dehné
22. With the sad departure of the J.R. Reynolds radio talk show, Reno citizens are now relegated to listening to surrogates of the fat cat Special Interest groups. Has anybody noticed that most of these radio "hosts" are now carpetbaggers?
21. As the Christmas and New Year season approaches, can Reno citizens have a shiver of hope that city hall will start abiding by the rules of good honorable American government? Sure, when pigs start swimming in Virginia Lake...
20. Reno's Un-american Airport is stacking itself with what it calls a "citizens advisory committee". You can bet it will be another of those deals where the appointed fat cat amateurs will appoint more amateur business crony-clones. As usual, there will be no citizen advocates... as the airport continues its citizens-be-damned cancerous growth policies. Incompetence and corruption ooze so badly that people literally slip when they try to walk around those offices.
19. Despite what the Reno Un-american Airport's $312,000 taxpayer financed Brainwashing Machine would like you to believe, there has been no official vote to move the Air Guard to Rewana Farms. Why are they afraid to face the public? Why do they just keep quibbling about this issue... trying to make people think it is a "done deal"... when it isn't? There are still a lot of brave citizens fighting against the theft of their land... by the airport... with public funds.
19a. Their lawsuit against the bullying airport is to be heard before judges (in California) in December. Let's hope they are honorable and do the right thing. Cancerous airport expansion must be stopped... for the sake of dozens of 1,000s of innocent civilians. This travesty is much worse than the "Save the Mapes" brouhaha...
18. Now... when citizens want to complain about Reno's Un-american Airport... they will have to contend with the District Attorney. No conflict of interest there? Most citizens respect the Office of the District Attorney, but who will the D.A. be supporting? Can his office serve 2 masters? Which will it be? Let's remember... it is the citizens who do the electing and deserve his loyalty. NOT an airport that is continuously embroiled in self-induced controversy...
18a. The Reno Gazette opines that; "... the authority has left itself open to the perception that there are conflicts of interest between the public's desires and the airports business interests..." Why has this "perception" happened? BECAUSE IT IS TRUE! There are too many Airport conflicts of interest popping up all over down there...
18b. That "authority" is mostly packed with amateurish Special Interest lackeys who are ignorant of people-friendly airport policies... AND who have a goal to NOT ensure the well-being and safety of Reno's citizens. (Incidentally, it IS their official policy to ensure the well-being and safety of the traveling public and airport employees... but NOT Reno's innocent citizens...)
17. Another "Blight gauge"... to determine for yourselves just how bad Reno is getting: Check out the massive increase in cars parked on the streets... everywhere you go... indicating mucho "doubling up" in apartments. Not a good sign...
17a. The role of good government (of course this is an oxymoron) is to "Sound the Will of the People... and then Honor it". In Reno there is a $680,000 taxpayer-funded Propaganda Machine. Their mantra is "consensus building"... which is nothing more than "Brainwashing".
17b. Do you have any Blight Gauges? "Click" here and then write them down. (Internet readers)
16. Isn't it unfortunate that the all of the attention being paid to the shady dealings of the mayor and city hall have diverted much needed attention away from the terrible mess at the Un-american Reno airport? But, then, aren't they intertwined anyway? So... so what!
Their common goal is to make sure that the facts don't get in the way of BAD government: a) city hall has a $680,000+ Tax-Financed Propaganda Machine and b) the Airport has a $312,000+ Tax-Financed Propaganda Machine...
15. The Reno Gazette reports, "Gaming Win and Jobs Boost the Local Economy...". What is going to happen when the economy slumps (and it eventually will), and more casinos and businesses downsize and/or go out of business... putting 1,000s of local workers out of work? What are these poor workers going to do to put food on the table? Watch out, Reno... that is the nasty side of the cancerous growth policy of most of Reno's current government that panders to casinos and developers... and any other big business that enters the picture.
15a. The Fat Cat mantra of "More Jobs" has many dangers. And ask yourselves... why do they want more "jobs"? Are they great humanitarians? Or are they just exploiting the workers to fill their own blotted coffers?
14. Do the shenanigans between the Reno mayor and "Parmer" Public Relations firm(s) pass the smell test? Consider this: a) "Parmer" and/or aliases were reportedly involved in the mayor's 1996 election campaign, and b) huge amounts of public funds are now being funneled unilaterally (and in a previously clandestine manner) by the mayor to these cronies... Do you think other firms might have liked a shot at this plush job? What is that stench in the air?
13. Citizens are asking; was the county commission paid off? How else can one explain... that, despite vehement protests from an overflowing crowd of citizens of Reno, Nevada... it reversed its earlier decision to deny BOOMTOWN a cancerous-growth-casino-development? This Fat Cat-heavy group of Special Interest lackeys again refused to take into account (or give a hoot about) the terrible impact this ill-advised expansion will have on the ENTIRE city of Reno. Increased pollution, crime, water contamination, traffic jams... and added noise-polluting and dangerous airplanes that will continue to wreak havoc with the lives of dozens of 1,000's of innocent citizens.
13a. This latest bizarre decision is only the latest in a long line of community-devastating decisions by government-sponsored panderers...
12. Las Vegas has finally started its own paper version of The Reno Citizen. It is the called Ralston Report. It's not cheap, but it is good. Not on the internet yet though.
11. Shouldn't there be a "quota" limit on the number of lawyers in government? When the limit is reached, no new lawyers until someone leaves?
10. Here's an amazing story yet to be fully verified: There is a private aerial combat flight competition in southern California... where people from all walks of life (military and civilian) go to see who is the best fighter pilot. They pay a reasonable fee to fly airplanes at speeds up to 350 mph and dogfight in the skies overhead. Guess who won the last two years. Non-pilot civilians who learned and honed their skills on computers. "Amateurs" actually climbed in these planes and beat some of the best "real" pilots at this competition.
9. So popular Reno judge (and erstwhile boxing referee) Mills Lane is off to Hollywood for fame and fortune. Will that make him a "Lane" Duck? Whew! Just kidding, Mills... we wish you the best of luck in your new venture(s), and you are always welcome in Reno.
8. EDAWN... another of those local publicly funded (your taxes) organizations top-loaded with Fat Cats. No citizens... no "workers"... to protect the other citizens who are inflicted with the blight and sprawl promulgated by these Special Interest groups... who usually live high above the blight and sprawl they create. This is the publicly funded (your taxes) organization that lists the Reno mayor's private company as the operator of the (its) Free Trade Zones! How do you spell "conflict of interest"? Or "cronyism"? Or "corporate welfare"?
8a. The chairman of EDAWN, Jeff Cordega, is one of the biggest developers in Northern Nevada. Not much conflict there... public funds helping support private development companies... his and others. That's America for you... This group of business Fat Cats can probably take (along with Reno's Un-american Airport Authority) the lion's share of credit for the destruction of what was once the Truckee Meadows...
8b. Is this why the mayor rubber-stamps every development that crosses through city hall?
7. Fund-funneling by public officers, to and from political cronies, only gives bad government a worse name...
6. When considered on a state per capita basis, does Nevada have one of the best football teams in the country? Same for basketball?
5. Where do the airlines find the audacity... to turn on their tail advertisement lights at night... as if they want 1,000s of innocent citizens below to know who is blasting them with the noise blight? Considering the nuisance they are creating, they would do themselves a favor by leaving the lights out... and just sneaking out of town.
4. It is unfortunate that the Reno mayor's antics have taken some attention away from (temporarily) the continuing conniving at Reno's Un-american Airport. Not for long though...
3. Is it true that with RenoAir's arrival in 1992, the Reno Airport bosses started immediate subsidization (aka - Corporate Welfare) by purchasing the gate jetways... a system usually paid for by the airline? With public tax funds?
3a. And were Airport Fat Cats secretly "rewarded" with special RenoAir stock deals?
2. How can the "system" possibly justify allowing airline pilots to make 4, 5, 6, 7 times more money than school teachers... or nurses?!?
1. It is time to lop the heads off of ALL OF THE PARKING METERS! Who owns the streets?MEDIA RELEASE: REGARDING LEGAL COMPLAINT AGAINST GERALD W. _________________"JEFF" GRIFFIN, Mayor of Reno (14 Nov, 1997)
______PLAINTIFF: GUY FELTON, Citizen of Reno
Corrupt government can only exist when citizens permit corrupt public officials to assume a mantle of impunity.
Reno Mayor "Jeff" Griffin must be removed from office well before the 1998 Reno meeting of the United States Conference of Mayors. He is an embarrassment to our city, to Nevada, to the Republican Party, and to honest, dedicated public servants everywhere.
Reno cries for a mayor who deserves local and national respect. Griffin does NOT qualify! He must be replaced with a person who will put maximum effort into delivering clean municipal government.
Griffin was recently found guilty of conflict of interest by Nevada's so-called Ethics Commission although the Commissioners tip-toed through the tulips and used less abrasive language in dealing with their fellow politician. This conflict involves a contract between Griffin's business company and the Reno/Tahoe International Airport which is overseen by eight trustees, four of whom are appointed by ... and are accountable to ... Griffin and the Reno City Council. To quote citizen activist Sam Dehne, "Griffin was caught with both hands in the cookie jar."
Further, Griffin is responsible for one or more secret meetings which led to an illegal contract between the Reno City Council and a corporation headed by Oliver McMillan. Nevada's open meeting law was disregarded and broken by involved public officials in an incredibly arrogant manner. Councilwoman Judy Pruett Herman was the ONLY council member who voted AGAINST the McMillan contract; she did NOT participate in any involved secret meeting(s).
Secret meetings and disregard of due process are nothing less than assassins of open, honest, trustworthy government. Public officials who participate in or condone secret meetings are enemies of the American vision for which countless Americans have given their lives .
The McMillan contract, pertaining to redevelopment of downtown Reno, is highly controversial and involves millions of public dollars; it must be declared null and void. Any penalties demanded by the McMillan company must be paid by those public officials who participated in "approving" this illegal contract. Such manner included sham public discussion and a "window dressing" public vote by the council AFTER the Mayor and most members of the Reno City Council had already decided to approve the contract.
Public officials are NOT empowered to engage in illegal activities. When they do, they must bear financial and other consequences and not the taxpayers whom they have betrayed.
American citizens have a clear right to extend their trust only to officials who appreciate and respect such trust. Abuse of political influence and the power of public office for personal gain simply can not and must not be permitted.
American citizens have a clear right to honest, open government under law. When due process is circumvented by secret meetings and other "backroom" political tactics, our form of government and our American ideals are trashed. It is the birthright and obligation of American citizens to challenge any appearance of corruption in government ... especially when checks and balances within government are not enforced by appropriate public officials. Reno
City Attorney Patricia Lynch often seems to be asleep at the switch; she may well be the focus of a future legal complaint.
Further, we must take a hard look at public officials, lobbyists, and other persons who make excuses for Griffin's improper activities. This will reveal dimensions of the problem we have with rogue government in Reno ... and will indicate direction for further legal action.
Plaintiff, Guy Felton, is indebted to Samuel T. Bull, Esquire, for his willingness to make this legal action possible. Mr. Bull is a well-experienced attorney whose career includes having once served as a Deputy Reno City Attorney.
Individuals and media representatives having questions may submit same by facsimile transmission to Guy Felton at 747-1029.
Submitted questions and answers will be displayed on the Internet at http://abcsn.com/griffin.htm ("Click to read)CITIZENS NOISE COMPLAINTS AGAINST THE RENO AIRPORT
To: RENO AIRPORT NOISE GENERATION DEPARTMENT
FAX number: 328-6510/328-6463
Phone number: 328-6400/328-6468
(Readers should feel free to call these numbers with YOUR complaints!)
These are grievances concerning noise that far exceeds the boundaries of FAA decibel ratings.
Note 1. These complaints are about noise pollution at a point approx. 1 mile to the west of the airport.
Note 2. These complaints are indicative of the noise pollution some 4 to 5 thousand innocent citizens (in one neighborhood alone) are subjected to each and every day by the cancerous-growth, citizen-be-damned, attitude of the airport hierarchy.
Note 3. There is a substantial amount of Federal Tax money (Grants) available at the airport for noise insulation. However, the airport gurus are using most of this money to force innocent citizens out of their homes in Rewana Farms (because they have made the preposterous decision to move the Air Guard there). And those citizens are not complaining about the noise! Honorable adherence to the spirit of the FAA rules would demand that the noisiest homes (and where citizens have legitimate complaints) should be insulated first.
Note 4. These complaints (which are only a small sampling of the terrible noise being generated by the airport) are being FAXed because the airport phone message is far too lengthy to have to listen to every time an airplane violates citizens' air space.
Note 5. I, personally, have average hearing for a person my age, and thus, one can surmise that the noise pollution is damaging to a large number of other citizens.
TWO DAYS OF NOISE VIOLATIONS:
h 24 November:
Approx. 0830 AM to 0930 AM, 12 different airliners made a tremendous racket for a long period of time.
Approx. 2200 PM to 2230 PM, 6 different airliners made a tremendous racket.
h 25 November:
At 0120 AM, a noise shattering airliner of some sort rattled the peaceful valley.
Starting at approximately 0730 AM to 0930 AM, 727s, and more than 10 RenoAir MD-80s shattered the peaceful air with deafening noise. From that time until 1530 PM, some 30 airplanes of various airlines, one after another, shattered the peacefulness of dozens of 1,000s of innocent citizens.
TOTAL NOISE COMPLAINTS THIS PERIOD: NO LESS THAN 59 .
Sam Dehné, a citizen
Note 6. One of the most despicable aspects of this Airport Assault and Battery is the fact that THERE ARE ways to mitigate the noise, but the Airport refuses to listen to logic... or use good judgment. But then, what else should one expect... from amateurs? Staff reserved some space in order to make positive comments about local government.
Research found nothing...
!!HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM STAFF!!
Please visit out online Christmas Card... to see if you are part of it. If you aren't, you can send a (click-on) email and ask to be included! (click on north pole)