Fernley Reporter Election Guide: City of Fernley Positions

For the upcoming primary election, Robert Perea, publisher of The Fernley Reporter, and Cody Wagner, Chair of the Fernley Community Foundation, have teamed up to gather information from local candidates to help educate voters throughout our region. A series of prompts and questions were emailed to primary candidates through their email addresses listed with the Nevada Secretary of State.  A similar format will be compiled for the general election candidates in November.  Responses were not edited for content, punctuation, or grammar. Candidates are listed by position, then alphabetically by last name.  We will update this story as candidates submit their responses.

Mayor, City of Fernley

Name: Roy Edgington

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

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All my life, service to my family, this community, state and our country is a pillar that I have always placed first and foremost.  I enlisted in the United States Air Force and then served as a firefighter for over 27 years at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport.  After retirement, I was elected in 2010 as a Fernley city councilman and now I serve as your mayor.  It has been a complete honor to serve the City of Fernley.  My commitment has been to work with my peers on the council and staff to layout a vision for the City of Fernley that we all can be proud of.  I have watched Fernley grow and prosper and I am humbled that the people of Fernley have trusted me as the city continues to evolve.  My goal is to help navigate this growth with a fiscally conservative approach that supports a vision for tomorrow.  With the City of Fernley for fiscal year 2023 general revenue budget is $33 million dollars with 40% of the budget being dedicated to capital improvement projects.  It is the responsibility to provide efficient and effective services to our citizens while being prudent with our taxpayer dollars.

2. What are the key parts of your platform? 

FERNLEY F.I.R.S.T.

F – Fiscal Responsibility:  Working with the City Council and Staff to maximize and leverage our budget.

I – Industry Development:  Working to bring more businesses and local jobs to the city of Fernley.

R – Recreation and Parks:  We are excited that the Boys and Girls Club will soon be opening a new facility in Fernley for our youth.   The addition of a new Community Center at The Depot.   The establishment of a new Senior Citizens Center.   It is important that we have safe, secure and well-maintained recreational facilities for all.

S – Safety:  Maintaining and enhancing our strong relationship with the Lyon County Sheriff’s Department and Fire Professionals.

T – Tomorrow’s Vision: I have the proven experience and vision to continue to lead Fernley into the future.  We continue as a team to strive towards building Fernley’s future.

The Fernley F.I.R.S.T. platform is my commitment to you. Years as a councilman and Mayor have provided me the knowledge and history to understand Fernley’s challenges and operations.   This knowledge provides me a foundation to provide leadership to insure for a secure Fernley future. 

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected? 

In my final term as Mayor, my goal is to identify a solution to the C-TAX inequity that Fernley currently receives from the State.  This will mean advocating in Carson City to insure we have the revenue necessary to provide adequate public safety.    Responsible and balanced growth is tantamount to ensuring that Fernley has the jobs and infrastructure to be a vibrant community.  Roads, parks and recreation will continue to be a priority for me which will require this administration to work with Federal and state agencies and private sector to identify revenue streams for maintenance and expansion efforts.

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

Fernley has come a long way in the last ten years. It was not long ago in 2012, the city was recovering from the Great Recession and long-term planning was not prioritized. Back then, we had only 51 City employees with a population of 19,368 residents and our General Fund Revenue was $4.4 million. Today, we have 71 City employees serving 23,064 Fernley residents. Our current General Fund revenue is $12.8 million, a 190% increase from levels ten years ago. The General Fund provides general government services and is separate from the Water and Sewer Enterprise Funds. The city has proven and continues to be financially responsible. Development is occurring, and the city is changing. We must look toward the future and adhere to the established plans and regulations to ensure long-term sustainability. It is critical to balance growth with the community’s values and look forward to how that growth will impact the City’s resources and infrastructure.  

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

The final step will be as an advocate in Carson City working with the Nevada Legislature to continue to push through key legislation that addresses the inadequate funding we receive from the distribution of Consolidated Tax.    The property tax assessment system needs to be upgraded in over thirty years by the State and we need to work with the Nevada League of Cities to  develop an amenable legislation.    With the growth that Fernley has experienced and will be experiencing is it time for the city to look at establishing a police department?  The City of Fernley went all the way to the Nevada Supreme Court where the court ultimately ruled that the City of Fernley needs a police department for it’s allocation of Consolidated Tax.  Without the addition of a police department, the State will not reevaluate the C-TAX allocations currently as distributed to the city which is required by Nevada Revised Statute (NRS 360.740).     

6.  What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

The city continues to make progress which will insure for a sustainable Fernley future.   There were several notable projects which included: 

•           The City awarded a contract for the construction of the surface water conveyance project. This project is now underway.

•           The Wastewater Treatment Plant Waterline Extension

•           We are in the process of developing a new well that will provide additional water resources to our community.

•           The first phase of construction for the Farm District Road Lift Station Rehabilitation Project

We are fortunate to have excellent staff that understands that our sustainability as a community relies on our ability to respond to the water and wastewater needs of our citizens.

•           The refinancing of the bonds removed $9.5 million of debt, and we are halfway thru the repayment period. 

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

As Fernley continues to transform from a rural area to an urban community, I have seen a turn around on how we do business and our community’s priorities. I have seen our organization develop master plans and use them to make sound financial decisions. These long-term plans will help our elected and appointed officials make decisions for the future and ensure we stay on the right path.   We, as a community, have come a long way, but community involvement is a MUST in order for our future to be robust.

Name: Dan McCassie

No information received.

Name: Neal E McIntyre

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

I was born February 20th, 1956 in Oceanside, California.  I moved to Fernley at the age of 4.  I attended Fernley Elementary, Middle, and High Schools, graduating in 1974.  I went on to continue my education at the College of Southern Idaho and received my A.A. Degree in Agi. Business.  To further my education, I received a scholarship to the University of Nevada, Reno.  While attending UNR, I married my childhood sweetheart Victoria Mendoza in 1976 and we are still married (45 years and still going strong).  We have 5 wonderful children: Amy (Henderson), Neal II, Nathan, Mandy, and Anthony.  We have 25 grandkids and 2 great grandkids with one on the way.  Most of them live in Fernley.  I was appointed to Lyon County School Board of Trustees in 2008 and will continue to serve as a Trustee until the end of this year when I’m term-limited.  I’m on Facebook as Neal E McIntyre for Mayor and have a website, nealemcintyreformayor.com.  I can also be reached on my cell phone (775-233-0524) or by email (Nmcintyre2021@gmail.com).

2. What are the key parts of your platform? 

Key parts of my platform are to never give up on looking for ways to obtain Fernley’s fair share of the Consolidated Tax (C-Tax).  I do know that is, or would be, great help in making Fernley move forward in a positive way.  It’s a very complicated process and will take a lot of involvement from a lot of entities and people – such as landowners, county commissioners, assemblymen, senators, and the Governor.  I will never give up on this as it’s vital to helping the people of Fernley as well as the City.

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected? 

Traffic in Fernley needs a lot of attention with the growth of our great city.  I know it’s been looking at, but not moving fast enough for the growth we’re having.  We need to work with the state and landowners as well as the railroad to get Exit 50 (Nevada Pacific Pkwy) pushed through to Hwy 50.

We need to bring in businesses that the people of Fernley need and want to keep them shopping and spending their hard-earned money here.  This would save them money spent on gas and time, and at the same time help Fernley with taxes collected.  If we can get our fair share of the C-Tax, this is where it would be helping Fernley and the people within.

I’m for commonsense approach to growth, affordable housing for seniors and young adults.  With growth, we need to look at location, infrastructure, how it will affect traffic, what type of businesses that keep residents spending their money here in Fernley.

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

I believe growth is evident.  It will affect Fernley in a positive way, and we must be better prepared for it.

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

I’ve already spoken about my feelings on C-Tax.  It’s vital for Fernley now and in the future. 

6.  What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

I’m currently learning more about the Enterprise Funds and how they work.  I do know raters are increasing and want to really get to know the facts before commenting further on what can be done. 

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

I’ve been in Fernley for 62 years.  I’ve seen the growth.  I still remember the first chain store to this City, 7-11.  We were so excited but wondered why it was built so far out of town.  Somebody had a vision greater than mine at the time.  I see Fernley as a great place to live, and proud to be from here.  I feel it’s a privilege to live here in Fernley.  We have great schools and caring people, who mostly take pride in living in Fernley.  I will say this: “not everyone agrees with each other, and that’s okay, but we all need to respect each other’s thoughts and opinions”.

I also think the City needs to do a better job of letting the residents know all the good things happening in Fernley.  All the projects coming, as well as those in progress, need to be told to the citizens.  We need more transparency.

Name: Chris Ward

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

I was born in 1956 and raised in Long Beach CA by my single mom in a 27 x 8 ft. trailer where our only mode of transportation were bicycles.

I married my high school girlfriend and had a son and daughter whom are now adults living accomplished lives and now have children themselves.

I worked numerous jobs during my first few years of adulthood.

I worked as a civil servant for the Department of Defense at Long Beach Naval Shipyard, Yuma Proving Grounds, and Fallon Naval Air Station

I retired after 36 years of service in 2016 from the Department of Defense at Fallon Naval Air Station and am maintaining our forever home in Fernley NV.

Please see my Facebook page “Ward for Mayor Fernley City”.

2. What are the key parts of your platform? 

If I am elected to the office of Mayor, I will do my best to move the City forward at a steady pace, and preserve the integrity of the City as a whole. 

I will do my best to ensure the changes to our City are the best for all of our citizens. 

I have been visiting Fernley for over 20 years and have lived in Fernley for just over 8 years. I worked at NAS Fallon prior to retiring from Federal Government, DOD with over 36 years of service. 

I do not have any financial ties to any entity in this City or the State.

I do not have any relatives in this City or in the area.

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected? 

1. Water rates now and in the future.

2. New Housing, how well thought out is it (to include ALL zoning changes) and what is the City getting in return.

3. New Commercial, how well thought out is it and what is the City getting in return.

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

The growth of the City is inevitable; however, the growth and changes to the City need to be consistent and concise to ensure the best possible outcome for our future.

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

These are major issues that were put in to play when the City was first incorporated. These items from my understanding have been in the court system and will need considerable review and insight from all of the City Council members and staff as a whole.

6.  What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

As we all know the initial onset of these projects were not handled well. Thus placing us in the predicament that we have today. As a City we need to focus heavily on the elimination of the bond so as to move forward in this financial quagmire.

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

I would like to see us move forward in having our own police Department and additionally would like to have multiple Code Enforcement and Building Inspectors positions.

In summary:

My many years of working as a civil servant for the Department of Defense has taught me some key skills, and I believe these are essential for the City of Fernley to have.  I have learned how to pay attention to detail, how to communicate both verbally and in writing, how to write contracts and inspect contractual work for a job well done, and how to spend and save YOUR government monies wisely.

City Council – Ward 3, City of Fernley

Name: Tim Bickerton

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

Biography: age 66, Fernley homeowner, retired from Waste Management Fernley in 2019, single, father of 3 boys and 1 girl, grandfather of 4 boys and 1 girl. Attended Tahoe-Truckee High School, attended Sierra Junior College, and studied Administration of Justice. Locally active in community activities, including food drives, clothing drives, senior meals, senior activities, and charitable work. Administrator for local Facebook pages Fernley Rant & Rave and Fernley Community Chit Chat Official Page and Fernley Concerned Citizens.

2. What are the key parts of your platform?

Open and honest transparency in City and Council work, open and easily accessible public communication, making what Fernley has the best it can be, before and always, instead of unnecessary fluff feel-good morsels of “pat ourselves on the back for this” so-called City “accomplishments”.

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected?

1: Public awareness and inclusion, of and in, Fernley Council actions. This will include in depth explanation of voting matters and embracing the strength of social media to bring the facts of City actions and Council votes to the public.

2: Field and facility care of local youth sports programs, including getting sound professional advice on field conditions and upkeep of all city sports fields, and establish a City Council Commission for the same, to ensure cooperation and proper attention from City Parks & Rec, and to establish a permanent field home for FYFL

3: Fernley code enforcement development and implementation of same.

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

Growth will continue and will do the inevitable, push Fernley to be a recognized crown jewel city of Lyon County and Nevada too, or languish due to the reality of not having enough money to grow and exist as a City with that much growth. In my opinion, the results will be determined by Lyon County’s continued mindset of “you wanted to be a City deal with your issues” or a realization of the importance of the growth of Fernley for the betterment of all of Lyon County. Cooperation by other entities, NSP, LCSO, the railroad, and even NDOT is also essential.

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

Even understanding the need for property tax revenue I question the amount in relation to the services provided by the City of Fernley. Too many things in Fernley are shown in relation to other areas but they leave out the truth of the services provided. Unfortunately, Fernley is in the middle of a supply and demand country where they can get away with it.

As far as C-tax, living on the unfairness of a Nevada law by Fernley is a cop-out, the City should have known the rules before it played the incorporation hand, just like every other city does. By the way, the idea Lyon County will not use that same law to never give up more c-tax no matter what the city accomplishes as far as a meeting the city establishment law is not a realistic belief, Fernley is so far away from the possibility that the state would step in if all the other city requirements were met isn’t even worth addressing at this point. Will I support work on getting more? yes, as long as it isn’t a frivolous expense. Will I promise it will happen? no.

6. What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

I find it hard to believe the city would spend upwards of $30,000.00 to get a consulting firm, and BTW still have them, to rectify a department operating in the red. I have been advised by the current Mayor that it is more than balancing a checkbook, of course, that question was a simplification, but no sorry, a City manager and down to a department head and city finance manager operating a division at a loss is unacceptable. If our city management can’t do the cost, and expense needs math then we need new city management. By the way, I was also advised by the former city manager it was more cost-effective than having the staff do the work, yeah they make a lot of money, I think thats the job. . I have also heard questions about those funds always only being used for water/sewer funds, which I will further investigate, so in closing, I have zero confidence in the management stream of those departments and funds.

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

As far as this country, aside from worldwide idiocy my lifetime is ensured to remain basically the same because of my age and financial status. I do worry for future generations.

As far as the state, it’s a shame to see the old west and the small towns disappear, with the growth I guess this is reality. I do wish they would get out from gambling money thumbs and endorse a state lottery for school funding, but a city councilman doesn’t have that kind of pull.

Lyon County could be great, I think the county politicians are missing a great opportunity to achieve that with silly misguided actions of little significance.

Lastly, the City of Fernley, a lingering of a small town and community spirit is what attracts me so much, I embrace it, I support it, I champion it, and will continue to do so. I am so proud of the “We Are Fernley” that still exists here.

Name: Stan Lau

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

I am from Winnemucca, Nevada, where my family owned and operated a large Ranch/Farm.  I received a Bachelors Degree from the University of Nevada-Reno in 1984. In 2003, my Rugby Team won a National Championship in USA Rugby.  In 2004, I bought a house and moved to Fernley, Nevada. In 2012, I was appointed to the Fernley Planning Commission. In 2014, I was elected to the Fernley City Council.  In 2018, I was without an opponent. I have been proudly serving the people of Fernley for close to 8 years.  I have enjoyed every minute of it!

2. What are the key parts of your platform? 

The key parts of my platform will always be  “Positive Sustainable Growth”!  The People of Fernley First!

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected? 

I have canvassed close to 95% of my voters!  #1 Issue:  Water and Sewer Rates!   I am looking at bringing back the water and sewer rates!  Give Citizens more water!  Lower yearly increases!    #2 Issue:  Crime/Code Enforcement.  Our Code Enforcement has recently been sworn in, so they have more authority on the Code Enforcement issues. Because of this, they can be more effective in the field.  I will be finding a way to create an affordable small Police Force. We would possibly have to contract this service out, until we can afford a Police Department.  #3 Issue:  Roads. The City has instituted a Pavement Maintenance Program or PMP.  The PMP is a program that assures the right maintenance for the right roads.  The PMP has a Pavement Condition Index or PCI that gives criteria on roads that need maintenance priorities. Very complicated! The criteria depends on traffic, weight of traffic and speed of traffic. I will get our City Engineer to put the Program online so everyone can see the performance of their roadway!

Other Issues:  Health Care and Growth

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

Growth has seriously affected our Community. We are getting more and more congestion! We do need Positive Sustainable Growth!

My Ideas: A) Develop the North Side of I-80!  Get NDOT to put on ramps and off ramps on the Vine Street Overpass! The North Side between the Terribles Casino and Vine Street is vast.  We can put Industrial, Commercial and mixed Residential in that area.  Traffic will have easy access to I-80.

B) Develop Commerce along US95A!  Citizens would like to see a Grocery Store on US95A.  Going through the Round about is maddening. Citizens want a local store. This will definitely help traffic issues!

To do all this, the City Planning Department needs to perform an Area Study Map, that informs possible Developers what is needed in Fernley!

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

My thoughts on C-Tax?   We have tried to obtain more funding through C-Tax.  I am not happy with the formula. I am seriously not happy that Citizens of Fernley are looked at as “less” value than other cities citizens in Nevada! Remember Citizens of Fernley, the City of Fernley Creates Massive funding to Lyon County through our selling of Alcohol and Cigarettes!   I still want to find ways to obtain Our Fair Share of C-tax! The City needs to look outside the Paradigm!  Property tax and Sales Taxes do effect our City.  Keeping proper distribution is vital. The City needs to constantly monitor Lyon County.  When I was first elected, Lyon County owed the City close to $300,000 in taxes they collected from the Geothermal Industry. It took over a year to get repaid!

6.  What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

 In 2017, it was brought to the City Councils attention that the City was going broke through the Water Enterprise fund.  The City Council, raised water and sewer rates.  Because of this, the Water and Sewer Enterprise Funds have become very Financially Stable. Recently the City Staff wanted another increase.  They want to put 50 million dollars in 5 years into infrastructure.  To me, this was too much in such a small amount of time. So I voted it down.  I also voted it down for other reasons.  Per State Law, the City of Fernley must have a Water Enterprise Fund and a Sewer Enterprise Fund and keep them separate.  As a Councilman, staying on top of these funds are very crucial. I have done my research and have voted accordingly. I feel with Council oversite, these Enterprise funds will be managed properly.

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

I see a Great Future for the State, County and City of Fernley in the Future!  If we maintain Positive Sustainable Growth, our City will prosper! With the City of Fernley prospering, so will the State of Nevada and Lyon County!  I want to see Lyon County and the City of Fernley partnering on serious issues affecting us.  Lyon County and the City of Fernley need to work together, better than they have. I would like to see a better partnership between the City of Fernley, Lyon County and the State.  I have asked the City Council to invite Legislators out to Fernley for a BBQ.  We need to show Legislators our Community! We need to show them our Growth Issues!  

Thank you Citizens of Ward 3 for Electing Me!  It has been a Wonderful 8 years!  I enjoy fighting for you and Your issues!

Citizens of Fernley, You are Worth Serving!

Name: James “Jim” Porter

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

Hello, my name is James “Jim” Porter, I prefer to be called Jim.  As a registered Independent, I’m running for City Council – Ward 3.  On the personal side, I’m a survivor of the Camp Fire in Paradise, California.  Except for my car and the cloths on my back, the fire destroyed everything I had.  After the fire, I moved to the Reno area, where I met a wonderful woman from Fernley, we got married, bought a home at 621 Winter Pl, Fernley (Ward-3), where my wife and I have lived for almost 3-years.

I have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration, with emphasis in Entrepreneurship from The University of Southern California (USC).  I also have a master’s degree in Education – Special Education from Cal-State University, San Bernardino.

I started and owned two businesses, taught for six years in the School of Business at USC, and spent seven years as a special Education teacher; during that time, I earned my master’s degree and spent another seven years as a school psychologist.

In 2016 I voted for Trump, but not in 2020.  I do not think the 2020 election was stolen.  I think America spoke loud and clear.

2. What are the key parts of your platform? 

Crime & Vandalism – Fernley needs to work towards its own police department.

City Budget – The 2022-23 General Fund budget has a deficit of $4,987,715.

City Road Conditions – Cottonwood Lane needs major work as does Miller Lane.  Additionally, why do some neighborhood streets have good parts and bad parts?

Consolidated Tax Distribution C-Tax – The C-Tax is entirely based on MATH.  If Fernley increases the overall sales of and tax collected on cigarettes, alcohol, cars, and everything else– faster than the population growth, we will incrementally increase the amount of C-Tax returned to Fernley.  Is it a quick fix, of course not!

New Small Business Development – New artisan businesses on Main Street will draw people from Reno, Sparks, and Fallon to shop.  Expand special events sponsored by Fernley, thereby requiring tourist to spend their money in Fernley.  All of this is based on the principal of OPM (Other People’s Money).

Shuttle Service for Seniors – Fernley has a beautiful new Senior Center.  We also have many senior and handicapped citizens who are homebound.  A shuttle is seriously needed.

Weed Abatement – Within Fernley there are many vacant lots that look more like a ghost town.

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected? 

How do we get People to come to Fernley and SPEND their MONEY?

  1. Expand Special City Attractions

   Rodeo, BMX Dirt Bike, Motocross MX Races, Car Races, and a Small Movie Theater

Live Music & Music Festivals

   Bluegrass, Country Music, and Jazz

Overnight Stay

   Additional Hotel/Motel, with Dining Room & Gift Shop, or Airbnb

  • Make Main Street a Weekend Destination Point

Nevada is the Silver State

   Silversmith Jewelry Store

Ranch and Horse Country

   Saddle-Maker and Leather Goods

There is World Famous Fishing at Pyramid Lake

   Fly-Fishing Store & Guide Service

Pyramid Lake Paiute Reservation

   Paiute Indian Museum & Store

Fernley Railroad History

   Railroad Museum

Deli Food & Beverages

   Serve Breakfast, Lunch, and Sandwiches

   Bagels Store, Cream Cheese, and Lox

   Donut and Muffin Store with Coffee/Tea

  • Specialty Artesian Stores and Shops

   Art Gallery

   Clay Pottery

   Rock/Turquoise Shop

   Metal Yard Art & Sculptures

Motorcycle Shop

   Repair/Parts/Accessories/Clothing

   Sponsored Weekend Round Robin Ride

Long – Fernley, Dayton, Carson City, Reno, back to Fernley

Short – Fernley, Silver Springs, USA Highway, back to Fernley

(Organized by Fernley Riders)

Additional Preowned Vehicle Dealers/Sales

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

According to the Fiscal Year 2021-2022 Fernley City Budget, Fernley’s population is projected to double over the next 20 years to approximately 40,000 people.  As you would expect, there will be a natural strain on the city resources and physical infrastructure.  Growth of this nature will require additional commercial stores to serve the population, which in turn means employment opportunities.  With these opportunities, Fernley needs to assure future employers the people of Fernley have the required skills to perform the job duties an employer expects.  Skills that fare exceeds asking “Do you want fries with that?”.  We need apprentice programs and trade schools so the workforce of Fernley can easily earn a wage that provides for a comfortable life, raise a family, and own a home.

If Fernley is to maintain the feeling of a small-town and continue to grow, strategic planning for the future will take the hard work of dedicated professionals and devoted city personnel.  Not squandering taxpayers’ money.  Budgets for the development of services and infrastructure will have to be tirelessly scrutinized, line item by line item.  Hard questions will have to be asked, and some unliked decisions will have to be made.

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

To say it plain and simple, I do not know a single person who thinks they are paying too little in Nevada property and sales tax.  As for the Consolidated Tax (C-TAX), the dice have been rolled, and the cards dealt.  In 2015, The Fernley Fair Share Committee tried to get things changed.  The legislators in Carson City will never make the discission to give Fernley its fair share.  Trying to make big changes did not work, so it is time to make an end-run and collect all the incremental parts we can.

Consolidated Tax includes taxes on cigarette, liquor, government services (sale of cars and trucks), real property transfer (sale of property), basic city county relief tax (sales and use tax), and supplemental city county relief tax (sales and use tax).  By increasing the sales in these areas, Fernley can increase the amount we receive.  Yes, this is a slow process, and it takes time, but by increasing the number of visitors and tourist to Fernley (remember OPM) we can.  Will it be millions of extra dollars – of course not.  However, it will increase the money C-Tax distributes back to counties and city where sales are made.

6.  What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

No one needs me to tell them they pay too much for water.  You don’t need me to tell you that the government is displacing the percolation of water into the Aquaphor system by lining the Truckee channel.  On average, Fernley receives about 5 inches of rain a year.  That is not a lot of rain, but when it comes, it’s in torrents.

The quality of our drinking water is considered within acceptable levels; however, I, as many people in Fernley don’t want to drink it.  When you make your morning coffee, the tap water smells like chlorine or rotten eggs.

To be completely honest, I am not a magician who can wave a wand and have all the answers to the city’s problems appear in a dream and deliver answers the next morning.  As for the specific issues related to water, sewage, and other related topics, there is another candidate running in Ward 1, that knows more about this topic than I do.  What I do know is that I’m smart enough to seek expert advice and not dumb enough to think I know all the answers.

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

Currently, Fernley is the 7th largest city in Nevada.  I am pragmatic, optimistic, and realistic.  My future view of the Fernley is that of a successful city with a small-town feel, where people will want to visit and spend their money on unique treasures offered at a variety of artistic stores located on and along main street.  A city with a renown Rodeo, and where Pro-circuit BMX and Motocross MX races are held.  A city with its own police department, hospital services, safe and clean streets, safe neighborhoods, green city parks for family recreation, walking paths for pedestrians, bike paths, a shuttle service for the senior and handy capped community, a variety of retail stores to provide things that will not require driving into Reno to get, except for specialty items.  I see a city with low unemployment, a well-educated citizenry, raising a family, earning a wage that allows for a comfortable style of living, owning a home or living in an apartment of their choice.

In conclusion, I see a city that is great to live in, raise a family, a wonderful place to work, and one of the most beautiful places for camping, hiking, and fishing.

Name: Joe Rausch

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

My name is Joe Rausch.  I was born in Reno, NV, and I was raised in Doyle, CA.  I worked at Sierra Army Depot for 16 years.  As well as running logistics for the Reno Air Races.  I currently reside in Fernley, NV in Ward 3. I have been here for 1.5 years, and I am interested in helping my community grow in the direction it should.  I also want to bring my fresh point of view, and the out of the box, thinking to create the changes that need to be brought to the community.  I am running this as a personally funded Campaign as well as the help from my 12-year-old daughter that has been helping and learning the whole way through. love my community, and my views are my own.  


2. What are the key parts of your platform?

The key part of my platform is why there is so much illegal dumping and vandalism I feel that the city could be doing more to take care of this problem.  Maybe a neighborhood watch or community clean event.  Also, the roads and infrastructure why are they not taken care of.  Where is the budget being put towards?  I would like to change it being hard for new businesses to come into town, and why do some end up not opening at all because of all the hoops they have to jump through.  I heard there was supposed to be a hospital built why has it not been started.  With our growing city, we also need a police station which would probably help the vandalism.  I also would like to understand why the water rates keep rising, and why we are paying for past council members’ mistakes.      

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected?

I want to get back to basics and establish better communication between the city council and the community.  My second biggest priority is to get Fernley cleaned up, stop the vandalism, and get a neighborhood watch started.  Something for the community and the City to stop the issue altogether.  My third priority is I want a hospital and make it easier for businesses to come to our town.

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

I believe growth needs to be managed correctly with good places of employment, good healthy thriving businesses from grocery stores down to daycares.  I believe the city needs to allow growth and business to come into town so we can grow in a healthy way.   

5.  What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

I believe they are necessary as long as it is distributed and used in the way they are intended to be used.  They should be re-evaluated often to make sure they are always being used correctly.  I want the money from the taxes to stay in Fernley and be used to grow our community to its fullest potential.  

6. What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

I feel that the water cost, as well as the wastewater systems, are too expensive for the community members.  I want to get better up to speed and figure out why they are the price they are to make it better and easier on the community. 

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and the City of Fernley evolving?

I see growth and prosperity coming to the State, County, and City of Fernley as long as we can work as a team.  I am looking forward to having the opportunity to serve my community and even if I do not get voted in I will still be an active participant in my community.

Name: Sara Thomas

1. Please provide a short biography and include anything voters might be able to use to research further (website, social media, etc.)

I’ve lived in Fernley since 2011. My husband and I decided to come to Fernley to raise our family in a place where kids can play and run with open space. My professional background includes customer service, financial, community engagement, government and farming. Some of you may know me from my years of service with the City of Fernley. I worked in the water department and clerks office from 2012 to 2019. In 2021, I started managing and running the Fernley Poolside Farmers Market for our community. I am an urban farmer and entrepreneur. You can find my campaign page on Facebook @SaraThomas4Ward3

2. What are the key parts of your platform?

The key part of my platform is that I want to be the voice of the citizens. I hear you and have heard many of you for over 10 years while living and working in the City. I want your wants and desires to come across at each council meeting. I want to be the voice of the community. I don’t have my own agenda, I want to work for you, truly.

3. What are your three biggest priorities if elected?

Responsible decision making, sound judgment and integrity. I am your community member dedicated to helping Fernley be the best it can be.

4. How do you believe growth will affect our region, specifically Fernley?

I believe growth will affect every part of Fernley including (roads, water, housing, etc.) I believe growth is great for Fernley, if done responsibly. As long as we plan for the future we will be alright. I also believe we need more in the way of police, emergency services, stores and so on to help with the demands brought by growth.

5. What are your thoughts on Nevada’s property tax and sales tax/Consolidated Tax (C-TAX) collection and distribution system and how they affect Fernley?

Honestly I believe they need to be looked into further. I believe there is more that can be done for us to get “our fair share”. I understand how it works and what we need to get a bigger piece of the pie if you will.

6. What are your views on the management of the water and wastewater systems in Fernley and the enterprise funds responsible for operating each?

Water has always been a big issue/subject here or a cause for concern. Our water treatment was built for the future and for growth. We are not using it at its full capacity. The wastewater system definitely needs improvement and I think we as a city are capable of fulfilling that need.

7. How do you see the future of our State, County, and City of Fernley evolving?

The future is growth. As the tech world expands so will the need for the space that Nevada has to offer.

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