Committee looks to extend life of authority |

Committee looks to extend life of authority

Amanda Hammon

Carson City’s redevelopment district still has 16 years left to help improve downtown, but a state law passed in the 1999 Legislature allows the addition of 15 years to districts.

Carson’s Redevelopment Authority Citizen’s Committee will consider today recommending the Authority add those 15 years to the life of the redevelopment district.

Started in 1986, the district has seen a drop in revenue lately. Redevelopment Director Rob Joiner said expanding the district would allow the authority to continue economic development and perhaps find more funding.

“We’re 15 years into a 30-year program, and it’s crucial to have redevelopment capabilities downtown to finish what we’ve started,” Joiner said. “It will allow us to expand our district and redevelopment allows us to borrow against future revenue. We could refinance our bonds over a period of time to expand our revenue. There are lots of advantages.”

Redevelopment Authority Chairman Robin Williamson said she didn’t know if the committee is prepared to make a decision until a definite future for the district is nailed down. She said the idea is worth discussing.

“I don’t want to do it just because we can,” she said. “I want to see what other projects we need to do. It’s an opportunity for the citizen’s committee to look at what they want to do in the future.”

Committee members Art Hannifan and Linda Johnson said they thought an additional 15 years would allow the redevelopment authority to complete unfinished projects.

“I think its a great idea that will allow us to finish what we started,” Johnson said. “We’ve made a lot of progress, but we have some eyesores to deal with. Until those are taken care of, we still have work to do.”

Hannifan agreed, saying he didn’t “think the job was done.”

“You can’t rest on your laurels,” he said. “There are all sorts of changes taking place and we need to protect the assets the city has in downtown. There are too many issues to give up.”

Committee members will also discuss:

– The addition of 3.2 acres of U.S. Forest Service property to the redevelopment district. The three acres is next to the 15 acres of land near Fuji Park that the city recently added to the redevelopment district. City officials have said the full 18.5 acres is necessary for the development of Costco warehouse at the South Carson site.

– The status of the Carson City Area Chamber of Commerce’s downtown business recruitment plan. City supervisors gave the chamber $10,000 in August to work on recruiting businesses to downtown. Chamber Executive Director Larry Osborne will update the committee on the status of the program.

– Committee members will continue consideration of a statute in downtown that would prohibit in-line skating and skatebording in the downtown core. Several businesses in the area complain of destruction of property by skateboarders. In December the committee members opted to have the district attorney’s office begin drafting an ordinance to allow the sheriff’s department to arrest reckless skate boarders and to prevent them from defacing property in the downtown area. Deputy District Attorney Neil Rombardo wrote that the best way to stop the property destruction would be enforcement of current trespass and destruction of property laws.

What: Redevelopment Authority Citizen’s Committee

When: today, 5:15 p.m.

Where: City Hall’s Capitol Conference Room, 201 N. Carson St.