Supervisors to mull over Prison Hill Master Plan

A Carson City Parks, Recreation and Open Space map shows the entirety of the Prison Hill public area.

A Carson City Parks, Recreation and Open Space map shows the entirety of the Prison Hill public area.

The Carson City Board of Supervisors will consider a draft of the Prison Hill Master Plan on Thursday that aims to balance conservation with recreational uses of the popular public area.

The meeting begins at 8:30 a.m. in the community center.

“Carson City’s population is growing steadily and so is the demand for outdoor recreation,” reads a draft of the master plan. “Increasing numbers of visitors to Prison Hill reflect those trends. Further, this plan recognizes that not only are the numbers of visitors increasing, but that the types of recreational pursuits are also evolving.”

The plan outlines goals and future land management to meet such demand. Named after the historic Nevada State Prison nearby, Prison Hill encompasses 3,200 acres. The Prison Hill Recreation Area makes up the majority of that. Under the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009, the recreation area was conveyed to the city in 2015. Roughly 900 acres on the south end were reserved for off-highway vehicle use. Trails spanning the non-motorized area to the north have become popular for a variety of activities, especially to escape snow on the west side of town.

“Prison Hill offers many miles of popular recreational trails which are snow-free for most of the year,” reads the master plan. “The trails are popular with dog-walkers, hikers, runners, mountain bikers and equestrians.”

To connect all types of recreationists — including those with disabilities – the master plan calls for an “accessible shared-use trail around the base of Prison Hill, connecting all the trailheads in a single loop.”

The trail would be approximately 10.7 miles when completed, according to the plan. As of 2021, about 4.5 miles of the base trail had been constructed. Recent grant funding from the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act will be used for a 2.5-mile segment on the west side between the Koontz Lane Trailhead and Clearview Drive Trailhead.

Another element of the master plan deals with the 114-acre parcel on the west side of the hill near Koontz Lane. Trailheads are maintained on the property as well a water tank and pump station from Public Works.

“In 2019, the Prison Hill Master Plan Survey specifically asked for opinions about the Koontz Lane parcel and received 190 responses,” reads the master plan. “In January of 2020 an open house to review and discuss planning for Prison Hill was attended by about 100 people.”

Following public input, the master plan calls for improving the trailheads on the property, rehabilitating eroded areas and improving safety for those crossing from the west to access Prison Hill.

In other action:

• Supervisors will consider a proposed settlement arising from a dispute between the city and the Carson City Deputy Sheriff’s Association.

The association had filed a grievance which “ostensibly stemmed from the decision of CCSO not to promote a deputy sheriff (the grievant) to the position of sergeant,” according to the city. The dispute went to arbitration in October of last year. On Feb. 7, the arbitrator issued a finding in favor of the deputies association. The sheriff’s office was required to provide retroactive promotion along with backpay, seniority and benefits. The question of a 12-month probationary period became another sticking point.

“In post-award discussions for the implementation of the award, the association asserted that the 12-month probationary period normally required for a newly promoted sergeant — as established under a separate collective bargaining agreement defining the terms of employment between CCSO and the sergeants — is inapplicable to the grievant,” reads a staff report from the city manager’s office.

In March, the Board of Supervisors authorized the district attorney’s office to challenge the arbitration award.

The settlement to be reviewed Thursday would include promoting the grievant without a probationary period. However, the city would not extend the same waiver to other employees.

“In consultation with CCSO, the sheriff and the association have tentatively agreed to a resolution, subject to the Board of Supervisors approval, whereby the grievant will be promoted without a probationary period, but that the arbitration award does not create a waiver of probation for promoted employees and does not preclude the city from requiring a deputy (or other employee) to be under probation upon promotion,” reads the staff report.

• Supervisors will consider appointing two members to the Carson City Audit Committee, each for a partial term ending in December 2024.

The appointments would be for citizens at-large. The five-member committee makes recommendations on the city’s financial reporting and internal controls.

Residents David Lambin and Joseph Scalia submitted applications.


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