Dear Editor,

I enjoyed Mr. Mitchell’s article on the physician shortage and agreed with many of his points, however, I wanted to clarify the educational requirements for a nurse practitioner. A bachelor’s degree in nursing is approximately four to five years including prerequisites. A master’s degree in nursing is approximately two years, with an additional one to two years to complete the post-master’s Nurse Practitioner Certificate. This is approximately seven to eight years by the current standards. In 2015, the entry level nurse practitioner will have completed a Doctorate in Nursing Practice (DNP) which is approximately an additional two to three years, which raises the overall requirement to eleven to twelve years. Additionally, Board exams are required for both registered nurse and nurse practitioner.

The education content for nurse practitioners is different from that of physicians, but the professional expectations for taking care of patients are the same. Nurse practitioners care for patients, manage diseases, perform screenings, order diagnostic tests, write prescriptions, and promote wellness using a holistic philosophy. The goal for all providers should be to provide access to high quality patient care for everyone including rural and urban areas.

Dr. Scott W. Lamprecht,


President, Nevada Nurses Association

Dear Editor,

I am the former White Pine County Health Officer. It was my job to ensure the citizen’s health safety and this includes water and soil contamination.

It has come to my attention that Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) proposes a 300-mile pipeline to pump approximately 57 billion gallons of Great Basin groundwater each year to Las Vegas. I cannot find any studies with the National Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which shows SNWA, has done a complete study regarding contaminants, which includes microorganisms, disinfectants, organic chemicals, inorganic chemicals or radionuclides of the Great Basin. This is of great concern as there have been ranchers and farmers in the area where SNWA proposes to pump water. Leaching has caused contaminants to leak into the aquifer. Hopefully even a non-scientist understands that? Comins Lake, in White Pine is now polluted with methyl mercury, which has been documented with NDOW and the EPA.

The University of Nevada, School of Medicine (family medicine) has a down winders clinic in Ely due to the amount of exposure Nevada and Utah experienced from atomic bomb blasts experimentation in the 1950’s. We have found multiple cancers due to the wind spread as radioactivity is still present in the dust. If SNWA pumps water from a drought-ridden area, as we are in Eastern Nevada, they will cause a huge dust bowl. Additionally there will be a new threat of erionite exposure. Erionite is a natural mineral in the same family as asbestos but is hundreds of times more toxic when exposed to the air, as SNWA proposes with the building of the pipeline. The Great Basin is uniquely suited to the formation of erionite and the State of Nevada has more known deposits than any other state. This particulate can cause a serious lung cancer called mesothelioma, which is irreversible. It causes me even more concern when I find that the National EPA Science Board wrote a letter to Pat Mulrow (SNWA) on 2/24/13 regarding their great concern on the high levels of Perchlorate in the potable drinking water in Lake Mead. Pregnant women, children and the immunocompromised are at an elevated risk of illness. Mulroy wrote a response dated March 21, 2013, stating that NSWA does not have the funds to clean up the Perchlorate (a particulate of rocket fuel) in her own water resource – Lake Mead. She wrote to David Allen, Chair of the EPA Science Advisory Board stating it will cost 512 million dollars in capital and 64 million dollars per year in operating costs by utilizing her current use of 900 gallons per day from Lake Mead.

Finally, where is the tremendous amount of funding to build the pipeline from Clark County to White Pine County??? Is the State of Nevada, or the United States of America to bear the cost?

I was always taught to clean up your own mess before you make another. Also I was taught to not use and abuse other people’s property without their explicit permission. I have yet to see a current White Pine County Commissioner report stating that SNWA has permission.

Very Sincerely,

Dr. Nancy L Baker: DO,

MS and BS

To the Editor,

Outside influences are determined to rob White Pine County (WPC) residents of our water supply one way or another. It isn’t enough that we have been fighting the Southern Nevada Water Authority- Groundwater Development Project (SNWA-GWD) since 1989. Now the BLM Ely District is officially considering leasing 400,000 of WPC acres for oil & gas development.

So we have a choice. We can either let our underground water be piped away or poisoned by secret ingredient fracking fluid. I personally don’t like either choice. Please join me in my protest of the destruction of our beloved Great Basin area, including WPC.

It’s time for all WPC folks and that includes Agency employees to consider our future. Please get involved, at least send a comment to the BLM Ely District office, attention: Emily Simpson, HC33 Box 33500, Ely NV 89301 – Due July 29. BLM gave us 30 days – Only. Not much time when you are fighting for your life.

Delaine Spilsbury, Board member: Great Basin Water Network & Great Basin National Heritage Area, Ely Shoshone Tribal Elder

Dear Editor,

While driving the Thomas Petroleum Company with my son, daughter-in-law, and four grandchildren that were handing out ice pops to the crowd I noticed some of the faces along the route. One child was crotched behind with her eyes peering over the back of the canvas back chair until one of the our granddaughters handed her an ice pop. The kids scrabbled to get an ice pop. Some of the older kids gathered them up keeping them away from the younger ones. One face that really caught my attention was near the end of the parade route when I saw one face that had the expression of anticipation of wanting an ice pop coupled with the expression of despair of maybe not getting one. I had wished I had a picture of that expression. It said a lot to me. We had forgotten a placard to place on the truck of song sung by Patsy Cline, Through the Eyes of a child.

If I could see the world through the eyes of ! a child of a child. What a wonderful world this would be. There’d would be no trouble or strife, just a big happy life. With a bluebird in every tree. I could see all the good things, In life I’ve never had. Smiling faces would greet me all the while. Like a lovely work of art, It would warm my weary heart. I could see right, no wrong. I could see good, no bad. This is what I saw.

Orval Draney


So, oil companies want to drill and frack for oil in Nevada, including Steptoe Valley. But who really benefits? And what will be the real costs?

1. The BLM requires a lease fee. But that money won’t be spent here.

2. That lease fee will not cover any cleanup. Taxpayers will be stuck with that bill.

3. Employees for the drilling and fracking companies will spend some of their money locally. But taxpayers will have to cover the extended services for these new people. And with other places for these transient workers to go (like home), the money won’t be that good, and in the long run will only be a blip in our economy.

4. Fracking will require the equivalent of SNWA watergrab amounts of water.

5. Substantial evidence shows that fracking pollutes groundwater. Even the EPA admits; anyone who drinks groundwater from some nearby wells or works with the fracking fluid is at great health risk. Who will pay their health care costs? Either the victims or taxpayers will.

6. All farms and ranches nearby will be at risk. A Cornell study has found numerous symptoms in cattle near fracking wells: “reduced milk production. Gastrointestinal, neurological, and urological issues. Even sudden death.” Eventually, nearby farms and ranches will have to close – or sell poisoned food.

7. Anyone who has seen aerial pictures of fracking fields in Wyoming realizes that the tourism potential of those areas is ruined. Presently, Rural Nevada brings in millions of dollars in tourism money. Scratch a big chunk of that.

8. Drillers and frackers spill. In the past year, the more than 6,000 spills on land in the U.S. have amounted to more than the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska. The oil companies will pay for much of the cleanup on these spills, but they will never completely clean things back up, and they have to send the spilled chemicals somewhere. Which means Nevada gets a toxic waste dump in the deal.

9. Fracking causes earthquakes. The USGS has reported that “the annual number of earthquakes recorded at magnitude 3.0 or higher in the Central and Eastern U.S. has increased almost tenfold in the past decade.” So, who’s going to pay for the earthquake damage? It won’t be the fracking companies. They’ll claim it’s an act of God.

10. The oil the frackers want from here is not for here, and it will not drive the price of oil down significantly.

11. Oh yeah, and that Global warming thing… The cost to the world has been estimated by insurance companies to be beyond humanity’s ability to pay.

Americans want cheap oil. But we’re not actually getting it. It just looks cheap at the pump. American taxpayers are paying billions for subsidies to the fossil fuel industries. If you are an American taxpayer, even if you drive an electric vehicle powered by the sun, you have been forced to pay big oil company profits. If the fracking companies had to compete on a level playing field in a genuine free market economy, they would be investing in renewable energy.

It’s a foolish act to waste water in the desert. And poisoning water is wasting it.

It’s a foolish act to pay companies to poison you. And American taxpayers are being forced to subsidize dirty energy.

…Either speak up, or let your children drink the poison kool-aid… literally.

BLM comments will be accepted until July 29th.

Rick Spilsbury

PO Box 1055

McGill, NV 89318


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