The Ely City Council held its first meeting of the year and the agenda was simple, and most of the seats were vacant.

Mayor Melody VanCamp reported that she attended a Main Street meeting and things are moving forward.

“We have submitted an application for the Main Street Program. We also applied for a grant for branding on signage and to possibly hire a professional design person,” VanCamp said.

A tour and rec board grant for signage is also being coordinated. VanCamp also reported that four locals are going to Seattle for the National Main Street meeting in March.

“Kyle Horvath, Nate Robertson, Brad Simpson and a member of the Great Basin Heritage will be attending,” VanCamp said. “We are going to have great representation there and they are going to come back with some wonderful information.”

The city council approved the grant for $25,000 from Maddie’s Pet Project, approval to recruit for Mike Peterson’s position of Fire Chief was approved, and a proclamation was approved recognizing January as National Rad Action Month.

The last agenda item listed by all city council members and City Attorney Charles Odgers was for the review of the order denying Judicial Review of Case CV-1803035. The case?

The question of the road on Avenue D.

Only one council member asked a question, and that was Tony DeFelice. DeFelice asked Odgers if that meant the suit was over, and Odgers replied “yes.”

At a City Council meeting in May, The Ely Times reported an Ely City Council agenda item that was to abandon a portion of Avenue D between Highway 93 and the east side of 16th Street. This began when the plans for construction of the Holiday Inn Express would exceed 35 feet, and the Prospector submitted a variance.

Owner of VanCamp Towing Robert VanCamp and his wife submitted a letter and Mike Lemich, owner of the building for Wheeler Machinery, business both located on Avenue D, retained attorney James Caviglia with Allison Mackenzie. A petition was filed on their behalf against the City of Ely, its Council and Planning Commission requesting a judicial review of the order abandoning portions of a city street by the Ely City Council.

The petition explained that 40 feet of the southerly half of the right of way of Avenue D between Highway 93 and the east side of 16th Street was abandoned following a public hearing before the City Council in December of 2017.

The remaining 40 foot wide roadway on the northerly half of Avenue D is proposed to become a one way street. The petitioners, Lemich and VanCamp, challenged the legality of the abandonment and seeked an order reversing the action of the city council.

Steven P. Elliott was the Senior District Judge in the Seventh Judicial District Court of the State of Nevada, where the petition had been filed.

The court stated in the denial for judicial review, that cities in the State of Nevada are authorized to abandon streets and easements pursuant to NRS 278.480. The court is satisfied that the public will not be materially injured by the proposed vacation.

The court also indicated that the city council went beyond NRS requirements by enacting an ordinance regarding abandonment of city streets. Ely City Code 8-1-0 which provides the criteria that must be considered by the council.

The end result? Avenue D will still provide access to the south sides of Lemich and VanCamp’s properties, albeit as a one-way road.