Letters to the editor

Community benefits most from court decision

I disagree with attorney Stephen Stubbs’s comment in last week’s paper that the (Nevada) Supreme Court’s ruling was a “lottery ticket” for the initiative sponsors. I doubt they will receive anything beyond reimbursement of their legal fees and costs.

While their’s was the victory, the benefit went to the community in allowing its members to vote on citizen-sponsored initiatives. The court sent a message to our high and mighty city fathers, (Cam) Walker, (Roger) Tobler and (Duncan) McCoy, that the little people have rights, too.

There is, however, a crap shoot taking place in the local federal court. In case No. 2:12-cv-00543-JCM-PAL, Brian Olsen is suing members of the Boulder City and Henderson police departments on allegations that his rights were violated in a matter arising out of his having possession of nude photos a woman had stored on her cellphone. I would just as soon leave this matter to the courts, however, Brian has retained his dad as an expert witness, and his dad is City Attorney David Olsen.

Talk about the mother of all conflicts of interest. How can David Olsen defend the city in one case and then switch sides, and attack it in the next? Olsen’s employment contract, as set out in Resolution No. 3482, specifically forbids outside employment and requires his efforts to be exclusively for the city.

You can argue law and ethics, but you cannot argue that the taxpayers will not be picking up the bill if Brian wins. Remember that it cost the city twice as much to lose their lawsuit as it did the initiative sponsors to win it. Last year, when Councilman Walker evaluated David Olsen’s performance as city attorney, Walker reminded Olsen: “… he is an example in the community.” Heaven help us if anyone else follows David Olsen’s example.

Joseph Kranyac III

Residents’ voices need to be heard by city officials

Five Boulder City residents went out on a limb for local residents, wanting to exercise the rights of citizens to engage in the legislative process we have all been denied by the city administration. And for this they were sued by the city and were victims of strategic illegal lawsuits to prevent them from doing so.

The city was determined to prevent residents from having any voice on land sales and other matters. Now, with the (Interstate 11) bypass, which entails about 700 acres of land, residents need a voice, if for nothing else than to consider the controlled growth policy, which I’m sure the city will not want any resident involved in. We can look for more resistance from the city to prevent this.

They used taxpayer money to sue these taxpayers, forcing them to pay for opposing the initiatives they wanted to vote on. This made them basically sue themselves to defend themselves.

Hundreds of millions of dollars were wasted and lost by the city. An appointed city attorney advised the people who appointed him to ignore the law, as well as an ethical complaint against the city, flawed land leases, contracts and financial discrepancies with dedicated funds being transferred to other projects.

Residents need a voice in these boondoggles, such as agreeing to be a defendant in a lawsuit having nothing to do with Boulder City (the gun club suit against the county).

The initiative debacle loss is more than $300,000. The outside law firm was hired by the city attorney without the authority to do so. And with taxpayer money.

Nowhere is anyone held accountable or responsible. No one.

Residents definitely need a voice in Boulder City transactions and issues before the council wastes any more resources.

Al Wengert

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