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City leaders need more pride in landscape maintenance

I have noticed that normal city maintenance has received less attention as the city continues to grow. In the past, the city took better care of problems associated with maintenance. The maintenance issue I see as critical are the trees along Adams Boulevard west of Buchanan Boulevard, as well as the trees north of Adams on Veterans Memorial Drive.

I reported the problem to city staff well over a year ago. Nothing has changed. If anything, the problem is more acute in 2021 than 2020. More trees are now dead or dying than last year.

In a recent City Council meeting, the Boulder City Council decided to spend time and funds on reducing the city’s night sky lighting. Perhaps our “clean, green” community could also spend time and funds on understanding desert plants and landscapes that use less water. It would seem that shrinking levels of water in Lake Mead would create a desire to explore types of vegetation that use less water. That would be a useful project for the City Council to undertake; perhaps even more useful than night sky lighting. Boulder City is, after all, facing an acute water shortage on the Colorado River.

A suggested list of plants can be helpful for the city’s replacement of landscaping in addition to being useful information to new residents in Boulder City. That would also likely reduce the amount of water needed to maintain healthy landscapes or xeriscapes.

The city, at one time, did have a forester on staff who established a list of low-water-using plants that was ignored after he died. The city also had a Xeriscape Park by substation five on the back nine of the municipal golf course. Perhaps it is time to resurrect both so that Boulder City can create examples of low-water-use city landscapes as well as private citizen-owned landscapes. These landscapes will have to look attractive to engender their use by the citizens of Boulder City. They cannot be dead or dying to have citizens want to plant them, can they?

It is difficult for me not to care about Boulder City since I worked for 10 years to make the Eldorado Valley available to Boulder City as a member and chairperson of the Eldorado Valley Advisory Commission. As mayor, in July 1995, I signed documents with the Secretary of Interior, Bruce Babbitt, to purchase the Eldorado Valley from the federal government.

Boulder City now receives over $13 million a year from leases associated with the valley, reducing the need for higher taxes. Boulder City did not have that source of funding available while I was on the City Council. Why is it that Boulder City cannot perform simple maintenance with the current, greater level of funds now available?

Boulder City can continue to take pride in many things. Boulder City built the Hoover Dam, didn’t it? Boulder City now also owns the Eldorado Valley. The city can claim to be forward thinking since it has one of the largest solar facilities in the nation in addition to the pollution-free power generated at Hoover Dam. That can also be claimed as Boulder City’s contribution to the world’s struggle with atmospheric pollution.

Additionally, Boulder City can take pride in our history of resolving Nevada’s water shortage issues by controlling growth as well as reducing air pollution with contributions to green energy, can’t it? For a city of 16,700 citizens, Boulder City is incredible, isn’t it?

While on City Council, I asked the city manager to take care of any problems I noticed while driving through the community. It would be helpful if the City Council would care about Boulder City in the same way so as to resolve any current issues that have been addressed in this treatise.

These issues are not mine alone, they are of a public nature. After all, the city’s manager, Taylour Tedder, works for the City Council, doesn’t he? That will always make the City Council’s requests to the city manager more important than mine, won’t it?

Where is the caring nature of our community that Boulder City enjoyed in the past? The city leaders have to show an interest in the most relevant issues to the community, don’t they?

The opinions expressed above belong solely to the author and do not represent the views of the Boulder City Review. They have been edited solely for grammar, spelling and style, and have not been checked for accuracy of the viewpoints.

Eric Lundgaard is president of the Aquarian Theosophy Foundation and former mayor and City Council member.

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