Given today’s bizarro follytix, the above title from Clint Eastwood’s 1997 movie is ghastly appropriate.
THE GOOD. Washoe County commissioners have a narrow window of opportunity to slightly atone for a major sin of their predecessors.
In 2006, a previous commission was poised to acquire the 1,119-acre Ballardini Ranch in southwest Reno, the last large swath of open space in the Truckee Meadows. They chickened out under legal threats and handed a Minnesota developer $13.5 million in taxpayer money for hurting his feelings.
Only the Great Recession stopped the bulldozers.
Nevadans have always had to fight for parks. Compared to Gomorrah South’s sprawling neon asphalt, we’re way ahead in these parts.
For years, Rancho San Rafael was on the edge of mondo condo, a malady facing The Garden Shop today. A few years back, the five-decade institution relocated from Gentry Way to the wooded southeast corner of Mayberry and McCarran.
The late, great Tribune columnist Travus T. Hipp and I attended Mr. Vegetable’s memorial service there. In overalls and a straw hat festooned with waxed fruit, popular Nevada musician Gene Klump engineered an awesome second act as radio and television’s Mr. Vegetable. Unlike today, our three talk radio shows were credits to the community. The Garden Shop made Gene’s program possible.
The Garden Shop will close on Oct. 2. Proprietor Ed Bath chalks it up to chain stores granted taxpayer-funded corporate welfare and burdensome regulation.
The gorgeous manor house, converted to a gardeners paradise, sits on four acres surrounded by existing park space. The commission must act to preserve it. The City of Reno is broke from past corporate welfare tax freebies. Please contact me if you want to help.
GOOD, PART DEUX. Addressing last weekend’s NAACP regional conference at Circus Circus-Reno, University of Nevada President Marc Johnson supported recent human rights demonstrations by football alumni Colin Kaepernick and Brandon Marshall. Bueno.
THE BAD. I submitted a query to the NAACP law enforcement panel: “Show of hands: Do you support background checks at gun shows?”
Only Commander Adam Summers of the state police academy and Salt Lake school principal James Yapias raised their hands. Hands down: Sparks PD Chief Brian Allen; interim Reno Chief Jason Soto; Dan Schiess, criminal chief of the U.S. attorney’s office; Nevada Parole Commission hearings examiner David Smith; Dr. Darcy Davis of State Prison Behavioral Services and NHP Lt. Harold Hughes II. Washoe Sheriff Chuck Allen did not attend.
Sparks Chief Allen said there’s a city ban on officials making statements on ballot questions. Afterward, I reminded him I didn’t ask about a ballot question. He then said he supported background checks. I asked him to send the city policy.
THE UGLY. Sheriff Allen and Storey County Sheriff Gerald Cook-Antinoro appear on a Nutso Rifle Association spot opposing November Question One to close the chasmic/orgasmic gun show loophole. Lie down with dogs, you get fleas. Their shabby records of public service will be linked to the web edition of this column at NevadaLabor.com/
Wear insect repellent.
Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno.
Andrew Barbano is a 47-year Nevadan, first vice-president of the Reno-Sparks NAACP and editor of NevadaLabor.com. As always, his opinions are his own. E-mail <email@example.com> Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988.