Carson City supervisors approve car wash water use

In its water use application, Metro Carwash describes itself as a ‘state-of-the-art carwash facility which will utilize cutting edge water conservation measures and techniques.’

In its water use application, Metro Carwash describes itself as a ‘state-of-the-art carwash facility which will utilize cutting edge water conservation measures and techniques.’

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The Carson City Board of Supervisors upheld the Growth Management Commission’s decision to grant Metro Carwash 29,500 gallons of water per day.
They met Thursday afternoon to hear an appeal of that decision. Raceway Car Wash, which operates Sierra Car Wash on South Carson Street, asserted it is irresponsible to allocate so much water to a car wash. Sierra Car Wash is located less than a quarter mile north of Metro’s property.
Carson City’s threshold for commercial water use is 15,000 gallons per day. Businesses who would like to use more water must apply for more through Growth Management. All the city’s car washes currently operate below that threshold.
Supervisors and Community Development Director Hope Sullivan emphasized Metro’s site is large enough to support more than one business, each of which could theoretically use up to 15,000 gpd without applying to Growth Management.
“In my mind, it is an appropriate use of the water based on the size of the parcel,” Mayor Lori Bagwell said during the proceedings.
Supervisor Lisa Schuette interjected with the caveat that, even if several businesses did operate on the site, it is unlikely that they would all use their full 15,000 gpd allocation. Supervisor Stan Jones added that he felt Metro should come back with its application for more water after one to two years of operation, rather than applying before it has established itself in the community.
The board voted 4-1 to uphold Growth Management’s decision to grant Metro 29,500 gpd. Jones voted no, and both Schuette and Bagwell emphasized that they take the city’s water use very seriously and did not want their “yes” to be misinterpreted.
“I don’t think any of us take water use lightly. … Water conservation is the responsibility of the entire community,” Bagwell said.
During the appeal, Raceway’s attorney, James Cavilia, argued the board not only had the right to decide whether Growth Management’s decision was legitimate, but consider the car wash application anew, which contradicted counsel from the District Attorney’s office.
Supervisors clarified in their vote that those who voted “yes” both approved of Growth Management’s decision and approved of Metro’s water use application.
Additionally, among their other agenda items, the supervisors initiated the process of conveying 2.9 acres of city land to Oikos Development for the affordable housing project on Butti Way. The development will create 80 units for senior residents and 80 units for families, the majority of which will be priced under market value to cater to low-income residents.
Supervisor Maurice White voted against the land conveyance. He said that he could not support giving away taxpayer property.
Bagwell countered she believes the project will benefit the community as a whole in the long run.
“The public is getting a benefit in the price of the housing,” she said, adding that without the city’s willingness to convey the property, the affordable housing project cannot be accomplished.
The supervisors also heard a report from the Nevada Rural Counties Retired & Senior Volunteer Program.
Director Molly Walt and program director Sandy Severance highlighted RSVP’s transportation services. From January to October, their vans transported 112 clients on nearly 1,500 trips, many of which helped seniors reach medical services.
Walt teared up while speaking to RSVP’s volunteer program, which connects seniors with people who can provide companionship and home help.
“Really, what RSVP is about is ensuring the dignity of our seniors and veterans,” said Supervisor Stacey Giomi, who serves on the RSVP board of directors. He emphasized it allows elderly community members to live in their homes for longer, rather than seeking care in a group home.
• Carson City is looking for volunteers to serve on the Regional Transportation Commission/CAMPO and the Audit Committee. Each board has two open positions for terms that would run through December 2023.
For details on application deadlines, the positions, and to submit an application, visit


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