Growing out

Activists fight sprawl into areas remote from the Truckee Meadows.

“Once they develop that Winnemucca Ranch, it’s gone forever. Once they cut down the old growth, it’s gone forever,” Bob Fulkerson said. “We can stop them right now on those issues, but next year, yeah, they could be back. But, you know what? It’s our watch that matters. … The next generation—it’ll be up to them. They’d better freakin’ be up to the challenge.”
Winnemucca Ranch protest

At a demonstration last week, protestor Susan McNeall displayed a regional planning map showing the distance between the remote Winnemucca Ranch land west of Pyramid Lake and the Reno metro area.
PHOTO BY DENNIS MYERS


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Lobbyists without moneybags

Citizens go one-on-one with their state legislators on family issues.

For Sandy Akins, who came to learn about her legislature, Grassroots Lobby Days showed her the strength of each voice in this state. “It led me to find out what I could do on my own,” she said. “This isn’t something just for a privileged few. This is for citizens of Nevada”
Without moneybags

Sandy Akins of Reno, left, met Kathleen Harney of Henderson when both traveled to the state capital to be volunteer lobbyists.
PHOTO BY DAVID ROBERT


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Those cardboard plates

There’s a new look to Nevada license plates. They no longer have raised letters, and they look like they’re imprinted on cardboard.

“It’s true,” Jacobson said. “Our tag plant is in the Nevada State Prison, and workers in the tag plant are prisoners.”
Tom Jacobson is a public information officer for the Nevada DMV.

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Published in Reno News & Review

Richardson meets the locals

Five days after announcing his candidacy for president, New Mexico governor Bill Richardson addressed a core group of Democrats in Reno.

“I’m a Westerner, like you,” Richardson said on why he was stumping Nevada so early in the campaign (besides Nevada’s second place in the national caucus lineup). “I want to be able, when I campaign in the West, to wear blue jeans.”
Richardson Reno

Democratic presidential contender Bill Richardson, here addressing a group of Nevadans at the Gold-N-Silver Restaurant, is cultivating support around the state.
PHOTO BY CAROL CIZAUSKAS


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New package for an old war

Reno AntiWar Coalition members protested for peace following President Bush’s announcement to send an additional 21,500 soldiers to the war in Iraq.

“[Bush] is terribly optimistic about his so-called new plan achieving the desired results, but I think that’s all speculation,” Emerson said of the President’s speech. “And frankly, I have learned not to trust his judgment.”
John Emerson was the Democratic candidate for state senator in Washoe District 2 in November.

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Turning point?

Local activists hope the Iraq Study Group’s report is the way out.

“Absolutely, I think we have to use all diplomatic measures to get to a solution,” she said. “Why would we not do that? I mean, people are dying—not just our soldiers, but thousands of civilians in Iraq are being killed.”
Assemblymember Sheila Leslie supported withdrawing from the war in Iraq.
Ellen Pillard

Former social worker Ellen Pillard has marched against the war and now sees some hope of a disengagement.
PHOTO BY DAVID ROBERT


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Second thoughts

People with murder experiences try to get others to take another look at the ultimate punishment.

“I’m not advocating forgiving violent people and putting them back out on the street again. I know the cost of that violence, and I don’t want that for anyone. But we don’t have to kill people in order to keep society safe. Every time we take on the same mindset as the killer did to solve their problems, we demean and degrade ourselves, we dehumanize ourselves. We demean our own worth and dignity by becoming people who kill people.”
Marietta Jaeger-Lane, who forgave her daughter’s molester and murderer and now advocates against the death penalty.
Nancy Hart of Reno wants people to think about the death penalty instead of recycling rote arguments on each side.  PHOTO BY DAVID ROBERT

Nancy Hart of Reno wants people to think about the death penalty instead of recycling rote arguments on each side.
PHOTO BY DAVID ROBERT


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Published in Reno News & Review