Scene In Passing: Marano, Salogga & Tatro, Adams, Laxalt
City Manager Nick Marano said he doesn’t need a public information officer.
“I’m my own PIO,” he said when queried about duties for Michael Salogga, the man he’s bringing onto his own Carson City management staff to help handle internal city communications management and other things. Salogga also will help with a LEAN citywide management system to upgrade efficiency, as well as continue working on small business development. Marano indicated Salogga won’t be the city’s spokesman.
It’s all part of city manager office changes unfolding as the work week played out, which came after Moss Adams LLP, city internal audit consultant, a week earlier had issued a city staff efficiency report. In it, one finding was the city lacks a document and knowledge management strategy with supporting systems.
Elsewhere in the report, Moss Adams said the city lacked an external public relations strategy. I blanched when I heard that and again when I later read the report. Half a lifetime ago, I was a PIO. Such roles are overdone, costly and can be used to obfuscate city messages responding to inquiries from media and the general public. Not a boon.
The Moss Adams report said city government had a “communications manager” until Fiscal Year 2006-07, when the post was eliminated. “As a result,” said the report, “the city lacks a communications and public relations strategy, as well as a key spokesperson for the media.” No it doesn‘t. Marano is the main man and formulates such strategy; he also says his department heads are departmental spokespersons. His attitude is welcome.
So, let’s move on to a different topic. It’s anecdotal and became public information here lately, but harkens to the Carson City of about four decades ago. It became public here when Judge John Tatro shared it with a Carson Nugget Rotary Club luncheon audience awhile back. It’s too much fun to keep from a wider audience, and must be true; after all, it came from a judge.
When Tatro was a stripling lad in his teens he lived in Boise, Idaho, where both he and his father worked for Hop Adams. Later Tatro’s father ran the Carson Nugget for Adams, and the eventual judge also worked there after they had moved to Carson City. While still in Boise in the early 1970s, Tatro learned Hop Adams and Paul Laxalt had a conversation in which Adams tried to persuade Laxalt to locate the Ormsby House across from the Nugget here.
Tatro said Adams warned Laxalt — now known best as Nevada’s former governor and senator — tif the Ormsby House went elsewhere bankruptcy would befall one place or the other eventually. Tatro, who called Adams a character who feared no one, said the Nugget owner also told Laxalt if one of them went broke, it sure as heck wouldn’t be Adams.
“If he said it once,” Tatro told your columnist, “he said it 100 times.”
John Barrette covers Carson City government and business. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.