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Transportation Board Member Questions Selection Process For New Agency Director

CARSON CITY – A member of the state Transportation Department Board of Directors questioned today the proposed selection process for a new agency director.

Member Tom Fransway questioned whether the construction industry should be involved in the process of selecting the finalists to bring to the board for an appointment to replace Director Susan Martinovich, who is retiring on Sept. 6.

Fransway said the director and governor should pick the finalists.

At that point, the construction industry and others could get involved, he said.

“Because you are leaving with the highest of standing,” Fransway told Martinovich. “You know the job description. You know the ins and outs of the way the department is handled. And I am very comfortable with having you go through the applications, after HR (human resources) looks at them, along with the governor’s office, because this is a cabinet level position.”

Susan Martinovich, director of the Nevada Department of Transportation, is retiring in September. / Nevada News Bureau file photo.

But other members of the board, including Gov. Brian Sandoval, supported the selection process and the involvement of the construction industry in picking finalists for the position.

Martinovich said the process outlined to the board at its meeting today is new, and is intended to make the selection transparent for the public.

Two members of the construction industry, one from northern Nevada and another from the south, would be among seven members of a selection committee to review the applicants and recommend at least three finalists to the board. Also involved in the review would be a representative of the Nevada Association of Counties, representatives of the northern and southern Regional Transportation Commission boards, a transportation industry member and a member of the governor’s staff.

Martinovich will also assist in the applicant review in a non-voting capacity.

The review process by the nominating committee will be subject to the state’s Open Meeting Law

Sandoval said he wanted the industry involved because otherwise it would be too much of a closed process if it was just the current director and governor’s office involved in picking the finalists.

“For me it’s important to have their input into the process,” he said. “So I’m trying to broaden it out. It is new. There is no doubt about this. But I appreciate the director’s comments about being open and transparent and having the opportunity to have as much input from the folks that are going to be dealing with the new director on a daily basis.”

The timeline is to accept applications for six weeks beginning April 9. The nominating committee will forward its selections to the board at its June 25 meeting. The candidates will be interviewed in a public meeting on July 23 at which time a new director will be selected.

Board member Frank Martin said having the construction industry involved in the selection is critical, “because they are a very integral part of what that department does every day.”

Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, also a board member, asked that it be made clear that having the construction industry involved in the selection process will not create an issue for the new director when contracts are awarded.

There is no way any currying of favor could occur in the process of awarding contracts, she said.

Martinovich agreed, saying the contracts are low bid and they are scrutinized by many officials within the agency before being approved by the director, and if they are over $5 million, by the board.

“So I don’t see an issue with that,” she said.

-

Audio clips:

Board member Tom Fransway says the director and governor’s office should pick the finalists:

040512Fransway :36 cabinet level position.”

Gov. Brian Sandoval says he asked that the construction industry be involved:

040512Sandoval :16 a daily basis.”

Board member Frank Martin says having the industry involved is critical:

040512Martin :12 does every day.”

 


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Family time is around the bend in Carson City as Labor Day weekend arrives. The 1905 Steam Locomotive No. 25 highlights the Labor Day weekend celebration at the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Carson City. The historic Virginia and Truckee train will carry passengers on 30-minute trips departing every 45 minutes from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday through Monday, Aug. 30 through Sept. 1.

The museum’s Jacobsen Interpretive Center will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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The fundraising event is a great way for families to show off their pets while giving them some exercise too. Awards will be given to the 1st place male and female K9 finishers. Every participant receives a free gift.

Check-in time is between 8:15 - 8:45 a.m. with the run beginning at 9 a.m. Pre-registration is encouraged and discounted fees are offered.

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The following statement was posted on the organization's website:

Raul Garcia entered a guilty plea today in Carson City District Court in the April 6, 2013 murder of Nevada's chief insurance examiner.

Garcia was arrested in connection with the beating death of William McCune, 62, at his apartment in Carson City. Three other co-defendants — Makyla Blackmore, Anthony Elliott and Michael Evans — pled guilty to lesser charges in October. Blackmore and Evans had agreed to testify against Garcia had it gone to trial.

With the Burning Man counterculture festival taking place this week on the Black Rock Playa, many local artists are taking part in the event. Jake Smith of Carson City returns for a fourth time and talks about the project he's worked on for the festival.

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Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and several local ministries will be on hand to share the work that is being done in our community. This is the third Engage event in Carson City and momentum has continued to grow with each event.

This week on Women to Women is Jo Etta Brown, executive vice president of the Alliance for Retired Americans.

In its third season, Women to Women Nevada, hosted by Carol Paz of Carson City, is televised on Charter Media every Thursday at 7 p.m. on Channel 190 in Carson City, Gardnerville, Dayton, Reno, Sparks, Fernley, Fallon and Lake Tahoe. The program also airs Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays at 8-8:30 p.m. and on Sundays from 11:30 a.m. to noon. Episodes also appear every Friday on Carson Now.

From 120 members in 2012 to 180 in 2014, the University of Nevada, Reno has seen its marching band, the “Pride of the Sierra,” grow in numbers, support and pride.

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An 18-year-old Carson City man was arrested Thursday, 9:55 a.m. in the 1600 block of East Fifth Street on five misdemeanor charges, including driving under the influence of marijuana, following a traffic stop, a Carson City sheriff’s deputy said.

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UPDATE: Fire at Hells Bells and Fifth Street in Carson City Thursday night was reported extinguished at 9:04 p.m.
***
Carson City firefighters were called Thursday night to a brush fire in the area of Fifth Street and Hells Bells. The fire was reported at 8:29 p.m. Arriving first responders, including Carson City sheriff's deputies, said smoke was coming from the fire, reported to be about 30 feet by 30 feet in size. It was reported under control to dispatch at 8:43 p.m.

New and returning Western Nevada College students were treated to a barbecue lunch Thursday, an annual Carson City event hosted by the Associated Students of Western Nevada College. WNC officials report a significant increase in full-time student enrollment, with more than 4,000 total students registered this semester.

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Pershing County officials have identified the victim of Thursday morning's deadly bus incident at Burning Man as Alicia Louise Cipicchio, 29, of Jackson, Wyoming.
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Two men with gang ties were arrested Wednesday in the 2700 block of Menlo Drive by the Tri-County Gang Unit. One of the men was wanted on a felony fugitive from justice warrant out of California, a Carson City sheriff’s deputy said.

Oswaldo Torres, 28, is being held without bail awaiting extradition on the California Department of Corrections warrant issued June 2, 2014. The other man, 29, faces misdemeanor warrant related charges.

The Carson City Board of Supervisors and the Carson City Board of Health are holding a special joint meeting today. The meeting begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Sierra Room of the Carson City Community Center, 851 East William Street. Go here for the agenda and here to watch it live.

Nevada gaming revenue from casinos remained relatively flat in July compared to the same period last year, while Carson City and South Shore Lake Tahoe area casinos saw declines, according to Nevada Gaming Control Board figures released Thursday.

Statewide nonrestricted gaming licensees reported a total “gaming win” of $931,819,621 for the month, or a .65 percent increase over July 2013 figures.

Carson City gaming revenue fell 3.53 percent, taking in $8,137,396 for the month. In July 2013 the revenue was $8,435,440.