|Commissioners are joined by new member; discuss county issues|
|Written by Dee Holzel|
|Thursday, January 17 2013 08:00|
WINNEMUCCA — The Humboldt County Commissioners, joined by newly sworn-in member Marlene Brissenden, discussed various county issues at the regular meeting on Monday (Jan. 7).
Along with the new commissioner, the board also has a new chairman. Commissioner Jim French will serve as the chairman for the next year with Dan Cassinelli serving as the vice chairman.
Outgoing chairman Mike Bell thanked everyone for their support over the last year and said it was a wonderful time. He also took a moment to welcome Marlene Brissenden to the Commission.
With the new year came new committee assignments:
Commissioner Jim French: NACo Board of Directors, Nevada Works, Landfill Committee
Commissioner Dan Cassinelli: Winnemucca Convention & Visitors Authority, Board of Equalization, Humboldt Foundation, Regional Transportation Committee
Commissioner Garley Amos: Regional Transportation Committee, Humboldt River Water Basin Authority, Welfare Indigent Committee, and Water Canyon Advisory Committee
Commissioner Mike Bell: Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Humboldt Development Authority
Commissioner Marlene Brissenden: HGH Board of Trustees, Debt Management
There was some discussion about the division of committee assignments, with special reference to Brissenden who initially had only one assignment, which was hospital board. However, she indicated that would probably be plenty for her first year. The Commissioners agreed, noting the significant time commitment required for that board.
The assignment to the Welfare/Indigent Committee required some care to avoid a perceived conflict of interest. The committee meets once a month to determine if a medical application for payment to Nevada hospitals will be made. It was determined neither Commissioner Bell, an employee of the hospital, nor Commissioner Brissenden, now on the hospital board, could serve on that committee.
In his first act as chairman, French officiated over the presentation of service awards to county employees. Service Awards were presented to:
Jeff Johnson, Assessor, 20 Years, Karen Johnson, Building & Safety, 25 years, Chris Bryant, Building & Safety, 5 years, Enoc Gaitan, Buildings & Grounds, 5 years, Michelle Hammond-Urain, Convention & Fairgrounds, 5 years, Brenda Keating, Convention & Fairgrounds, 5 years, Tony Sanchez, Convention and Fairgrounds, 15 years, Ramon Vaca, Convention & Fairgrounds, 15 years, Jody Clark, County Clerk, 10 years, Laura Lecumberry, County Clerk, 25 years, Nancy Jurad, DA's Office, 15 years, Sonia Ramirez, DA's Office, 10 years, Annette Petro, Justice Court, 5 years, Tim Grady, Juvenile Department, 15 years, Colette Hansen, Juvenile Department, 15 years, Michele Scovil, Juvenile Department, 15 years, Samuel Matheny, Juvenile Department, 30 years, Ed Sampson, Juvenile Department, 25 years, Paula Bannon, Juvenile Department, 10 years, Jennifer Mastin, Juvenile Department, 5 years, Maureen Macdonald, Public Defender's Office, 5 years, Matthew Stermitz, Public Defender, 5 years, Allen Armstrong, Road Department, 10 years, Don Johnson, Road Department, 10 years, Tricia Baker, Road Department, 10 years, Darrin Quilici, Road Department, 10 years, Sonny Bengoa, Road Department, 15 years, Jacqueline Lynn, HCSO, 15 years, Angel Cardenas, HCSO, 10 years, Lincoln Fay, HCSO, 10 years, David Milton, HCSO, 10 years, Don Darlington, HCSO, 5 years, Curtiss Kull, HCSO, 5 years, Damon Kuskie, HCSO, 5 years, Kathleen Wagner, HCSO, 5 years, Hellie Casey, HCSO, 5 years, Phillip Smith, HCSO, 5 years, Matthew Formby, HCSO, 5 years, and Ed Kilgore, Sheriff's Office, 5 years.
INTERNET NUISANCE COMPLAINT: A resident of the Sage Hills subdivision attempted to file a nuisance complaint against a neighbor on the allegations the neighbor's Internet antenna (an Omni Directional Antenna) was interfering with commercial Internet reception in the neighborhood.
Lee Rogers submitted a petition signed by himself and neighbors asking the Commission to shut down and remove the antenna from the Hunt Ave. residence where it is located because it was causing interference with the neighborhood's Internet access, resulting in slow Internet speeds, interruption of service, and loss of some services.
The neighbor's antenna was acting as a hub to relay Internet access to the resident's family, according to testimony.
After discussion, research, and consultation with the DA, the Commissioners decided they had no jurisdiction in the matter because there were no ordinances against the activity.
Paul Burkholder, the county's Communication Director, explained in a letter to the Commissioners that all the parties were operating on the 2.4 GHz band within the unlicensed spectrum. Everyone has the same claim on the band, with no one having anymore rights than anyone else – commercial or not. He added the FCC expects users to work out problems amongst themselves.
To a certain degree, the users have attempted to work out the problems. The neighbor received new equipment that operated in the 5.8 GHz band. While this reduced some of the problems, they were not eliminated. Rogers said his Internet is still slow and there are times his wireless keyboard does not work.
However, the government does not guarantee those devices will work all the time because there are a lot of factors that can interfere with wireless devices and Internet service in the unlicensed bands. Additionally, ordinances passed in other communities to control some of the interference were struck down by higher courts.
Rogers said using a point-to-point relay system, as opposed to a multi-directional antenna, would help, but the Commissioners lacked the authority to impose that requirement on a private citizen.
Although the Commissioners were sympathetic to the problems Rogers and the others were grappling with, they simply had no authority to take action. Rogers does have the option of exploring action at the state level and federal level with the FCC.
PARADISE VALLEY SPEEDING ISSUE: The problem of motorists whipping through Paradise Valley with little regard for the posted speed limit was once again before the Commissioners, who ultimately restated the problem appeared to be an enforcement issue.
The Nevada Department of Transportation took another look at the signage in the area and determined it adequately notified people of reduced speeds going into Paradise Valley, but motorists were just not slowing down. The commissioners reported an HCSO deputy patrolled the area at the beginning of the year and wrote some tickets, but the area has generally not seen much patrol due to its remote location and small population.
NDOT previously determined flashing lights and rumble strips were not appropriate for the community because residents generally do not appreciate lights flashing into their homes or the noise of rumble strips.
Although NDOT had previously considered a speed study, that can be a double-edged sword because the state might ultimately determine the speed limits are too slow and need to be increased. There was also some discussion of parking a law enforcement vehicle by the side of the road, which has been successful in other areas in getting people to slow down. While motorists may ignore speed limit signs, a cop car usually catches their attention.
LEPC: Sheriff Ed Kilgore presented the list of LEPC (Local Emergency Planning Committee) members, which was accepted by the Commission.
Elected Officials: Commissioner Mike Bell, Councilman Doug Cain, Sheriff Ed Kilgore.
Emergency Response Coordinator: Officer Andy Murdock, WPD
Law Enforcement Representative: Chief of Police Eric Silva, Lt. Tom Ames, NHP, Officer Jeff Dawson, HCSD Resource Officer
Medical/HAZMAT Representative: HGH EMS Director Pat Songer
Fire Department: Fire Chief Alan Olsen, WVFD, and Fire Chief Ron Schrempp, WRFD
Utilities Representative: Donald W. Hogue, AT&T
Transportation Representative: Ben Garrett, Humboldt County Road Superintendent
Disaster Services Representative: Stan Rorex, American Red Cross & Civil Air Patrol
Mining Representative: Bill Swindle, Safety, Newmont
Media Representative: Rodd Stowell, KWNA
Local Environment Representative: Bobby Thomas, Humboldt County Building Inspector
Chemical Representative: Cyanco, representative to be selected