Carson sticks with state’s ethics code

Carson City’s Board of Supervisors gave its preliminary blessing Thursday to repealing city government’s ethics ordinance, opting as recommended for complying with a stricter state statute.

The board joined Ande Engleman, who served as the chairwoman of a citizens’ Ethics Ordinance Review Committee, in lauding sound ethics and pushing training by state officials but jettisoning the local ordinance. Elected officials and city staffers all are governed by the ethics law. Engleman told Mayor Robert Crowell and the four supervisors that the city’s ordinance now set for repeal was “much easier on you than state law.”

She said it was a great committee, and “working with staff was wonderful.” City Manager Larry Werner returned the compliment, saying Engleman ran the committee well.

Final action on the ordinance and the resolution calling for state ethics compliance and training is expected Dec. 19.

The board also adopted a few changes to the Animal Services ordinance, including implementing a five-day period before impounded animals are declared strays.

The new language nails down some of the matters that came to light as problems with the ordinance, some of which surfaced during a subsequent controversy over a dog euthanized before an owner could raise money to pay required fees to recover it. The ordinance also contains language allowing Animal Services, which is in the Health and Human Services Department, to work with needy owners in such cases.

Board members approved their $35,000 contract with Ralph Andersen & Associates of California to handle head-hunting to help the city’s Human Resources Department find a new city manager. Werner’s resignation takes effect Dec. 19. Deputy City Manager Marena Works will serve as interim city manager until Werner’s replacement is hired.

The board adopted financial and budget policies for Carson City as recommended by Finance Director Nick Providenti. Supervisors also reviewed an appeal of special-use permit conditions by Evergreen Gene’s, a business on North Carson Street. After spending two hours on that review, the board sent the issue back to staff and the Planning Commission in the hope a compromise between the business and staff can be forged.


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