U.S. Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) and his wife Lynne, participated in the Sesquicentennial celebration in Panaca last week, rode their horses in the parade

Nevada U.S. Senator Dean Heller and his wife Lynne ride in the Panaca Sesquicentennial Parade. (Dave Maxwell photo)

U.S. Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) and his wife Lynne, participated in the Sesquicentennial celebration in Panaca last week, rode their horses in the parade, visited with constituents throughout the day, and attended the performance of the musical play that evening at the Mathews Center.

“It’s a great privilege and an honor to participate in Panacas’s 2014 Pioneer Days and Sesquicentennial,” he said. “It’s good to stop in town this trip and spend some time here. The statewide Sesquicentennial celebration has allowed all of us who love Nevada the opportunity to reflect on our proud history and great traditions. Francis Lee and his family entered the Meadow Valley and founded southern Nevada’s first permanent settlement here five months before Nevada even became a state. The spirit of rugged perseverance we hold so dear in Nevada lives in Panaca like nowhere else.”

Heller served in the House of Representatives from Nevada’s Second Congressional district (2007-2011), was Nevada’s Secretary of State (1995-2007), and in the Nevada Legislature (1991-1995).

He said rural issues are a dominating concern of his at present, especially the wildfires, and “we need some treatment and ways to control the intensity of the fires so they don’t become so large, as we have seen in the West the last few years. Just in the past few years, we have burned over 1 million acres in Elko County alone, that’s bigger than the state of Rhode Island.”

He said he is in the process of trying to educate the east coast senators on the magnitude of the problem.

In addition, Heller said he is working to litigate the possible listing of the sage grouse by the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife as an endangered species. “Harry Reid and I are working to put together some kind of a proposal that will, if not eliminate, mitigate some of the very difficult impacts that the ruling would have.” A ruling from US DFW is expected in September 2015.