Nevada 4th District U.S. Congressman Steven Horsford was in Caliente Dec. 20, visiting with business leaders, and taking a tour of the Caliente Youth Center

Nevada 4th District U.S. Congressman Steven Horsford, right, presents several boxes of books donated by the Library of Congress to the library at C.O. Bastian High School at the Caliente Youth Center. Also pictured, Assistant Superintendent Bruce Burgess, left, and school principal Dr. Ken Higbee. (Dave Maxwell photo)

Nevada 4th District U.S. Congressman Steven Horsford was in Caliente Dec. 20, visiting with business leaders, and taking a tour of the Caliente Youth Center and facilities at C.O. Bastian High School.

Created after the 2010 census, the 4th district, includes most of northern Clark County, parts of Douglas, and Lyon counties, and all of Esmeralda, Lincoln, Mineral, Nye, and White Pine counties, encompassing over 51,000 square miles, from just north of Vegas to Yerington to Ely, almost the size of the state of Alabama. More than four-fifths of the district’s population lives in Clark County.

Bill Hartman, Lincoln County Democratic Central Committee Chair, along with Horsford and several members of his staff, held a breakfast meeting with a number of business leaders, local government leaders, and members of the Lincoln County Rural Development Authority, and discussed the USDA Rural Small Business Loan Program. At the meeting Rodney Mehring of Blue Lizard Farms, gave a detailed presentation of his operation. Blue Lizard recently received a large amount of funding from the USDA program.

Horsford said he was very pleased to hear of the International Mountain Biking Association Program that is seeking to possibly develop mountain biking trails in the county, with the hope of even linking the six state parks within a 50-mile radius of Caliente. “That will help bring thousands of visitors and tourists and help the local economy, he said.”

As a member of the National Resources Committee in Congress, Horsford said, “This is something we will be working on with the BLM so that they understand how unique of an opportunity this would be for Caliente and how it would help create jobs grow the economy here.”

Horsford also presented the library at the school with several boxes full of books donated by the Library of Congress to be used in the reading program for the students.

He also visited one of the men’s cottages and met with the boys, sharing a little of his own background which was a surprise to many, including the students.

Horsford said the Caliente Youth Center is “a model for helping turn kids’ lives toward being more productive and help them find the resources to be able to successfully function when they return to the outside world, and not succumb to the bad influence of the their past.”

He encouraged each of the boys to learn what they can while at the school. “It’s a safe place for you. No one is going to hurt you or use you here. Make education a priority, and get the high school diploma C.O. Bastian does offer,” he said, “even if it means remaining at the school a little longer.”

Dr. Higbee told of an inspiring letter he received recently from one of the girl students at the school, expressing her deep gratitude for earning her high school diploma there. He said she wrote she was the first person in her family to ever graduate from high school.

After visiting in Caliente, Horsford was heading to Ely for a town hall meeting there. He said he had visited in Yerington last week, and also met with Governor Brian Sandoval. “I work very hard to be available to constituents, to answer any questions may have, to let them know that my office is here to several them, and help them when they have any issues with a federal agency or federal program.”