The Dec. 14 Sparks City Council action to wipe out licensing standards for plumbers and electricians must be agendized for reconsideration.
Councilmember Ed Lawson failed to disclose a glaring conflict of interest and voted with the 4-0 majority to allow just about anybody with a pulse to plumb and wire buildings.
Councilmember Charlene Bybee did the right thing by abstaining, so advised by legal counsel because her nephew is executive director of the Associated Builders and Contractors.
The city website lists Mr. Lawson as vice president of business development for Sierra Builders of Nevada, which has 60 building permits on file, some involving plumbing and electrical work. Cutting labor costs certainly develops a business.
Mr. Lawson’s actions appear to violate Nevada Revised Statutes 281A.420 (1) barring participation by an official with “a significant pecuniary interest.”
Mayor Geno Martini opened the Dec. 14 hearing with a legendary quote from The Godfather: “It’s not personal, it’s business.”
He could not have been more correct.
FYI: I consulted on campaigns against City Attorney Chester Adams in 2008 and Mr. Lawson in 2010.
THE DEVIL’S DISCIPLE. Procurer Dennis Hof has declared his Libertarian candidacy for the western Washoe state Senate seat being vacated by Republican Greg Brower. Former Assemblymember Heidi Gansert has announced for the GOP. The brothel boss thus splits the moonhowler vote and paves the way for a Democrat.
DUST DEVIL DUSTUP. Dayton High School history teacher Elizabeth Clausen has been suspended after redneck pressure on Lyon County bureaucrats. Fortunately, she has a strong union representing her in the kind of case that usually costs school districts a couple of hundred grand.
She asked students their opinions of a painting which artist Michael D’Antuono illustrated after the 2012 execution of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.
“A Tale of Two Hoodies” shows a uniformed officer wearing a KKK hood pointing his .45 at the head of little black boy pointing a package of Skittles. The kid wears a hooded sweatshirt like Martin wore the night he was exterminated.
Clausen’s students are supporting her online.
You will find the painting, TV stories and the artist’s response linked to the web edition of this column at NevadaLabor.com/
FADING INTEREST. The Reno newspaper printed nothing about the Dayton travesty – disappointing, given that the RGJ owns Lyon County’s venerable Mason Valley News.
Meanwhile, the penny-pinching carnage continues. The RGJ ousted 22-year reporter Guy Clifton last week, which pretty well erases the outfit’s institutional memory.
AFFAIRS OF THE HEART. Heading a National Alliance for Retired Americans affiliate apparently constitutes hazardous duty. Former state President Scott Watts just went home after bypass surgery. Women of Washoe President Wendy Boszak just had a short hospital stay for arterial blockage. Can they apply for combat pay in an election year?
LIP SERVICE. Somebody finally came up with an appropriate remedy for football season chapped lips: Beer-flavored lip balm with “natural paraben-free beeswax, aloe and Vitamin E.”
I’m licking my chops.
Be well. Raise hell. Esté bien. Haga infierno.
Andrew Barbano is a 47-year Nevadan and editor of NevadaLabor.com. E-mail <email@example.com> Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988.