Lisa Helget, a vocal opponent of the recent city sales-tax increase, said Thursday that the tax question prompted her to file this week to seek Karen Abowd’s seat on the Board of Supervisors.
Helget and Abowd are running from Ward 1 in the primary, but someone else could still join them by filing before 5 p.m. today. This is the final day for filing, so if no one else joins the Ward 1, fray the pair will face off in November’s general election with the one-eighth-of-a-cent sales-tax hike a primary bone of contention.
“That’s my big issue,” said Helget, who retired last year from state government after 27 years with the Nevada Department of Transportation. Helget, a Carson City resident since 1977, said a big part of her opposition to the tax hike was the plan’s downtown overhaul.
Now that the tax hike and projects are moving forward, she said, she will propose a pedestrian-friendly alternative for downtown that would avoid narrowing Carson Street to one lane each way. She said it envisions closing Third and Fourth streets, as well as making Curry Street more pedestrian-oriented.
Helget said she remains supportive of two other elements in the capital improvement projects package — a new animal shelter and a multi-purpose athletic center. But she said those could have been done, in her view, by finding existing revenues rather than seeking new money from taxpayers.
Helget said though the tax hike is her big issue, she also will propose alternative solutions to such things as city government’s golf land use and treated wastewater-effluent problems as the campaign unfolds.
The challenger pledged an aggressive run against Abowd, who filed for another term more than a week ago.
“I will be challenging her voting record,” Helget said.