The Ely City Council held a hearing during a portion of the meeting
One item was to approve the medium term obligation of $150,00, which was approved. City Attorney Chuck Odgers said, “This is for purposes of continuing the lawsuit that is currently scheduled for trial. As you recall during budgeting I indicated to you, it was going to cost us more.”
Councilman Kurt Carson said, “I know we had recently done this in the past where we pulled funds from the landfill, I assume we paid that back?”
Odgers said, “Yes we did. What’s maybe being missed is that if the city wins on just one of the allegations that our attor-ney fees and costs come back to us, so in the resolution as well as the promissory note, upon receiving revenue or the attor-ney fees and costs it would be paid off immediately.”
The motion was made by Hanson, and approved unani-mously.
A public hearing was also held for the consideration of an application for a special use permit with the intent to open a medical marijuana establish-ment. The applicant is Acres Dispensary from Las Vegas.
During public comment, city resident Heidi Hanson, daugh-ter in law to Councilman Sam Hanson, said, “I’m very proud of this community, and I defend it most of the time but I find it harder and harder as time goes on to do so. When people come to me and ask me, is it true that you guys have legalized prosti-tution, and have high teen preg-nancy rates? Yes, is it true that you have x amount of bars ev-erywhere and underage drink-ing problem in this town? Yes. Is it true that you have more meth per capita than the entire U.S. and you have an underage influence and suicide? Yes.”
Hanson went on to express her concerns about the pro-posed dispensary right across the street from her house where she has three kids. Her three minute time limit was up, and she continued on saying, “I also have 140 people who have signed this petition, who said it would be absolutely ridiculous that you guys wouldn’t listen to us and it wasn’t even, that you guys wouldn’t listen even though we have signatures.”
Two letters were read into the record from Ely residents opposing the dispensary.
Hanson explained having a conflict with this item since his son and daughter in law live across the street from the location, noting he would be abstaining from voting. “Although I oppose this, it has always been my position that we should have gone with the tribe to begin with however that is water under the bridge,” Hanson said.
John Mueller, owner of Acres Dispensary, was in attendance at the council meeting, and stood before the council thanking the council and the mayor for their time and consideration during this process.
“I wanted to address a few of the things that were brought up. We have a history museum at our dispensary in Las Vegas and we’re also doing studies where you look at the opioid crisis across the country.”
Mueller went on to explain a recent clinical trial that was conducted with 25 people in a four- week period, where they saw a 75 percent drop in opioid uses for people.
“We are cognizant where our place is in this community,” he said. “One, were taking a vacant location and I promise you it’s going to be absolutely gorgeous, the other thing is, is that we do this for a living, you scan your ID, there will not be a human being that walks in that building that’s less than 21 years old. I lose my license if I do, it’s pretty straightforward from a standpoint on how the law is written, I have three kids at home too. We promise to be good stewards to the city.”
The planning commission recommended approval of this permit. Odgers reminded the council that in March of this year the council approved the location for the medical marijuana location.
“It is unfortunate, that Mrs. Hanson didn’t show up in March to express her concerns, it might have changed your decision at that time,” Odgers said.
Hanson spoke out saying, “It’s never too late to do the right thing.”
Odgers said, “The ultimate problem is that the state has issued the license for that location, and to change that location would require Acres to go back and find another location, and go back through that portion of the licensing.”
Councilwoman Jolen Gardner asked if this location was far enough away from the schools, and Odgers replied “Yes.”
The item received the majority vote and was approved.
The White Pine Corral Association approached the city council once again this time with a proposal to lease the property from the City Corrals.
Odgers explained that during a previous discussion it became clear that there are some conflicts that need to be resolved on who owns the land that the corrals are sitting on, the city, or the county, or both.
A map from 1999 when the city annexed Georgetown, and it appears as though part of the Georgetown includes the city corrals. The assessor’s website shows some differences, where things are shifted over so the majority of the corrals are in the county not the city. County Assessor Burton Hilton and Odgers are currently working on to determine what is correct.
“Based on history, in the 1950s we leased that ground out as if it was ours. If we’re wrong we need to know that,” he said.
Much discussion went on about whether having the corral association lease the land would be possible. Gardner expressed her concern that it would take revenue from the city, and councilman Kurt Carson expressed the money that comes in from the corrals the city should be funneling that money down to the horse corrals for maintenance and so forth.
“To me personally I don’t think it would be a bad idea if we figure out the land, and do something with the county,” he said. “I would entertain this idea, but the thing for me is, a contract, I know these folks are ready to go and clean up, but times change and you might get people who don’t care about it, we need some rules and regulations.”
Kent Linskey indicated that the association was currently working on their 501c3. Odgers noted that the association would have to meet the building codes as well.
“As part of trying to ensure, quite frankly the ones that are vacant and if the city retains it, tear it down, because they don’t meet any kind of building codes.”
The item was discussed and Odgers requested it to be placed on the agenda for the second meeting in January.
The blinking stop light may be no more, with the city council voting on putting in stop signs at 11th Street on Nevada Northern Railway.
The decision wasn’t made lightly though. Councilman Ernie Flangas expressed his frustrations on NDOT removing the stop lights all together as part of the future road project slated for 2019.
“I think traffic control is very important and NDOT should listen to what we have to say. Removing this is not something Carson City should make the decision on,” he said.
School buses will have to stop and try to merge into traffic onto Aultman Street. Gardner had concerns about accidents there. Flangas said, “I think it’s mandatory that that stoplight remain.”
Odgers explained that there would only be two stoplights remaining in the city, and it would be at Great Basin and Aultman, and Highway 6 and Great Basin.
It was reported that approximately 10,000 cars a day travel through that intersection, that doesn’t warrant a stop light.
Carson said, “I get their traffic studies and all, a school bus trying to make a left hand turn, they’re going to be there forever.”
Carson suggested reaching out to NDOT to see if they would put flashing red lights on the stop sign. The motion was made and approved for stop signs, the motion was approved with Flangas voting against it.