Grand jury report confirms what we already knew " working together makes sense

A recent grand jury report of Douglas County's operations corroborated what may Carson City officials have long been saying " it's better for the two entities to work together toward a brighter economic future than it is to compete.

That's a new way of thinking in Douglas County, where officials have enjoyed, and exploited, their competitive advantages " more and cheaper land and lots of money to spend on redevelopment " whenever possible.

The report said that then-County Manager Dan Holler, fearing a "bidding war" with Carson City, rushed into an agreement with Riverwood LLC on a major development in northern Douglas County. County Commissioners voted in December 2006 to spend $24.7 million in redevelopment funds to land the project.

The grand jury said commissioners may have based that move on overly optimistic data and, now, the "Redevelopment Agency's financial viability could be in jeopardy."

"Perhaps, a sense of competition with Carson City and pro-growth stand from some in the county rushed the agreement in favor of the developer," the report said.

Fortunately, no bridges have been burned, and it looks like a new page has been turned in the relations between the two counties.

Credit for that seems to go to Douglas County interim County Manager T. Michael Brown and Carson City Manager Larry Werner, who, even before it was recommended by the grand jury report, began talking about ways to work together.

Said Brown: "I walked up there with an olive branch. We talked very openly about how both communities would be better off if we took a regional approach."

That's welcome news, even if it's late in coming.

- This editorial represents the view of the Nevada Appeal Editorial Board


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