I am writing you today to recognize the men and women of the Lincoln County Sheriffs Dept., and the Search and Rescue team. They came together to rescue me on 10/07/18 from the woods near Camp Valley Creek.
Thanks to them, I only spent one night lost in the woods. They were quick to come together as a team and locate me before I became a victim of the elements. How they knew to be at the right place to look was astonishing. Be it the right leadership, training, tools, or knowledge of the area. Everything came together at the right place and time, due to their combined experiences. Their willingness to help another person that they didn’t even know, it was truly remarkable and a blessing for me.
I was thoroughly impressed with their professionalism, dedication, enthusiasm, and working together as a team. Once rescued, they showed me a sense of genuine heartfelt concern for my well-being. This group of men and women are true heroes in my book. I can never thank them enough for what they did for me.
Lincoln County and its visitors are extremely lucky to have a group of people living in your county, volunteering and working for you. To be called in at a moments notice, leaving behind work, families, and responsibilities to help another person in need, is truly commendable. Thank you all for your sacrifice for me and my family.
Our state is on the brink of a water crisis and, as our communities continue to grow and thrive, this crisis will only worsen. But while a path forward may not be certain, one thing is clear – any policies we choose to move forward with must be statewide solutions, not ideas that benefit one locality over another.
That is why I oppose the proposed pipeline project to import water from White Pine and Lincoln Counties into Clark County. My opinion is that this project is not a smart or effective way to spend what is projected to cost more than $15 billion. This plan is nothing more than a 20th-century band-aid to a 21st-century problem. And despite recent actions taken by the Southern Nevada Water Authority Board to remain at the table for conversations about the future of this project, my opinion has not changed.
It is my firm belief that while these studies and discussions regarding the pipeline can continue, the pipeline will not be an element of the final solution to Southern Nevada’s water needs. There are multiple options that we should pursue before we even consider spending that much money on a pipeline, including increased conservation and desalination projects.
My commitment to Nevada residents is to continue my efforts to best manage our state’s limited water resources while preventing the unnecessary destruction of fragile ecosystems. The environmental needs of Northeastern Nevada must be treated equally to the resource needs of other communities. We are one state and we need to deliver solutions that reflect this. As governor, I will hold that as a guiding principle for every policy I pursue.
Candidate for Governor
RPEN, the Retired Public Employees of Nevada, has been representing public employees since 1976.
Headquartered in Carson City, RPEN has over 8-thousand members statewide, mostly retirees, with a thousand or so who are still working. Our mission has never changed in 40+ years. We work to protect the pensions and healthcare benefits earned by public employees during their working career. Much has been reported about an unfunded liability at the Nevada Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS), however according to PERS that number only comes into play if every public employee working in the state today were to retire on the exact same day.
With the 80th session of the Nevada State Legislature around the corner, you’ll be hearing more about the unfunded liability, and how the state needs to move from a “defined benefit” pension system to a 401K/Hybrid plan. But what is never considered by the group that seeks that change, the Nevada Policy Research Institute/NPRI, is that the state would then be operating not one, but two pension plans. Plus, if new employees hired by the state are paid on a different system, they aren’t contributing to the current system (as is the case now) and that could essentially collapse the existing DB plan that all current workers and existing retired public employees are currently paid on.
But RPEN thinks you should know that state, county and local government workers and retirees don’t just take, they give as much as they receive. A perfect example would be RPEN’s recent donation of over $3 thousand worth of donated goods on a wish list along with cash and gift cards, going to the Veterans Guest House of Reno. The donation came during RPEN’s September Convention held at the Nugget in Sparks and hosted by our Sparks and Washoe Chapters. Nearly 100 members and guests were there. But you probably haven’t heard much about it because when RPEN reached out to several media outlets for coverage of the event no one replied. As a former broadcast journalist with 18 years combined experience in several states including California and Nevada, I know that in the world we live in today, “if it bleeds, it leads”, meaning good news isn’t as important as bad news. Media outlets only seem interested in controversy, and making public employees into the “bad” guys for working hard, earning a pension, and enjoying their retirement.
No, these are the folks that work to keep Nevada government, schools and universities running. They earned their retirement, just like you, and like you, they are taxpayers too. They support the communities they live and RPEN would like to recognize these hard working individuals, and we will be at the next Legislative Session fighting to protect those pensions they earned.
Terri Laird, RPEN Executive Director