DRAC still to be dissolved despite commissioner’s second thoughts | NevadaAppeal.com

DRAC still to be dissolved despite commissioner’s second thoughts

Karen Woodmansee
Appeal Staff Writer

Lyon County Commissioner Don Tibbals had a change of heart after he seconded a motion to dissolve the board of the Dayton Regional Advisory Council, redraw the districts and appoint new board members.

“I screwed up,” he said at DRAC’s regular meeting Wednesday night. “If I had known (members) were going to be appointed, I would not have made a motion. I don’t think they should pick board members when there are elected people here who want to serve.”

He told the two members of DRAC who showed up for the meeting, making a quorum impossible, and the dozen or so residents in the audience that he would try and organize a workshop in Dayton to work things out, but he wasn’t able to convince the other commissioners.

At Thursday’s commission meeting, Tibbals made his request for a workshop on DRAC to be held in Dayton. He got some support from Commissioner Phyllis Hunewill, but Chairman Bob Milz, who represents Dayton, was having none of it.

“I disagree with that,” Milz said. “Appointments will be made by the commissioners. This passed 5-0 and you seconded the motion, Don. I see no need in going over there.”

Hunewill said DRAC should be the ones to draw the districts and recommend board members.

But Tibbals said that DRAC was demoralized by the situation.

“Two members show up, and the others say, ‘To hell with it. They’re going to dissolve us anyway,'” he said. “They have no directive on how to set up another board. They’re not making any arrangement for the districts or for elections. They’re just going to walk off in January.”

Lyon County District Attorney Leon Aberasturi said he received a letter from a citizen misstating the NRS statute that applies to DRAC, and agreed to attend the next DRAC meeting and try and clear things up.

At the Wednesday DRAC meeting, Vice Chairman Richard Foley said he saw no reason to reduce DRAC from seven to five members and added his board never got to discuss the matter with the residents.

“This was never discussed by the board,” he said. “This board was dissolved by commissioner decree. I see no reason to change and redraw districts. This was kind of arbitrary, although NRS does specify three- to five-member boards. I see no necessity. There was no discussion to dissolve ourselves and go away.”

He also said DRAC members were told not to proceed with elections, that districts were to be redrawn and the board of commissioners would appoint new board members.

At the DRAC meeting, Tibbals said he voted to cut the board, but thought there would be elections and some members would stay on the board.

Ed Harris, a longtime resident, had his own guess as to why the board was being reduced to five members.

“We had a seven-member board for 20 years, but a five-member board will be easier to control,” he said. “Seven members would better represent the community than five, but five strings are easier to pull than seven strings.”

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at kwoodmansee@nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111 ext. 351.