Stories for June 2020


Tuesday, June 30

Nevada casinos report tiny $5.8 million total win for May

With all of Nevada’s casinos closed, May gaming win was a pathetic $5.8 million. That is less than 1 percent of May 2019’s $981.7 million. Gaming Control Board Analyst Mike Lawton said the only win reported to state regulators came from mobile sports betting and online poker which were not impacted by the governor’s order to shut down. Almost all of that win came from the Strip and downtown Las Vegas.

Casino workers in Vegas sue over coronavirus safety concerns

LAS VEGAS — Unions representing 65,000 Las Vegas-area casino workers accused some resort operators on Monday of putting employees at risk of illness and death during the coronavirus pandemic by skimping on safety measures like a requirement for mask-wearing. "They want to work, but they want to work safe," Culinary Union executive Geoconda Argüello-Kline said of hotel housekeepers, cooks, bartenders, vehicle valets and others. "We're going to do whatever we need to do to protect these workers, these families and this community."

Sisolak extends Phase 2 through July – 'We can only stay open if we stay safe'

"As I've said repeatedly, the virus — and our personal actions to help mitigate its spread — drives the timeline," Sisolak said in a Monday statement.

Ormat Technologies completes Steamboat Hills geothermal power plant upgrade in Reno

Since the work was deemed an essential business during the COVID-19 pandemic, Ormat Technologies was reportedly able to continue the project and keep more than 335 people employed during construction.

Michael Bosma: In business, a crisis is a terrible thing to waste (Voices)

"The only constant is change. If you got into the entrepreneurial game thinking that constant change would not be part of the equation, you didn't do your homework," says Mike Bosma.

Economic officials: Dozens of prospects, thousands of jobs in pipeline for Reno-Carson

Per EDAWN, roughly 1,875 jobs are expected to be created by 15 companies in the process of moving/relocating in 2020, while NNDA in Carson City "has dozens of projects and thousands of jobs in the pipeline."

MAZZ Golf Management takes over operations at Wildcreek in Sparks

The contract with MAZZ Golf Management extends through Nov. 15, 2020, after Washoe County's former golf course operator, Duncan Golf Management, discontinued operations in April.

Initial jobless claims down for 8th straight week in Nevada

The week ending June 20 marks the first report since April where the total number of continued claims has fallen below 300,000 in Nevada.

Monday, June 29

Reno Ice establishes management team

The hiring of a management team marks the latest achievement for Reno Ice, which hosted a virtual groundbreaking on April 30 for the $9.5 million first phase in the opening of the Jennifer M. O'Neal Community Ice Arena.

GNCU awards $60,000 in scholarships to 31 Nevada students for 2020

The 31 recipients from across Nevada were selected from a pool of 139 applicants via the GNCU Scholarship Program.

Virtual conversation about preventing financial scams set for Tuesday

Tuesday's conference hosted by the Community Foundation will feature Lynda Hascheff, of Opportunity Alliance Nevada; Tim Johnston, of the Better Business Bureau; and Thomas Dahdouh of the Federal Trade Commission.

People: Kate Pensotti receives IREM Accredited Manager designation

Kate Pensotti joined Nevada Commercial Services, Inc. as a Property Manager in February; she started her real estate career at Chase International, eventually becoming a Realtor.

NNBW Editor: Wear a mask to save our economy (Voices)

Both for personal reasons, and as editor of a publication that's meant to promote business in our region, I support the mask measure and urge my friends and colleagues who may be on the fence about this first-world problem to please swallow your ego and wear a mask.

With plastic demand higher than ever, Sparks manufacturer pivots to partitions, face shields

Before the pandemic, Tripp Enterprises produced “almost zero” safety partitions — now, more than three months into the virus's vice grip on the state, the plastics manufacturer is making between 150 and 200 sneeze guards a day.

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel

Cole Tripp, vice president of planning at Tripp Enterprises, says the plastics manufacturer is producing 1,000-1,200 face shields and 150-200 sneeze guards a day to keep up with COVID-related demand.

Sunday, June 28

Kelly Bullis: Employee retention credit under CARES Act

Over the last few months, has your business slowed down from the speed of a hare to that of a tortoise? If you have employees and you did not get the PPP Loan or an EIDL loan from the SBA, you may be entitled to the Employee Retention Credit. You must meet at least one of the following: 1. Your business fully or partially suspended operations during any calendar quarter in 2020 due to government orders on the COVID-19 outbreak. 2. Your business experienced a significant decline (more than 50% from the same quarter in 2019) in gross receipts.

Initial unemployment claims decrease for eighth week in Nevada

Initial claims for unemployment benefits decreased to 10,620 during the week ended June 20. Dave Schmidt, chief economist for the Department of Employment Training and Rehabilitation, said that is the eighth consecutive week of decreases in initial filings.

Saturday, June 27

Jim Valentine: How to value the components

It can be interesting how the assorted components of a transaction take on different values depending on the timing, context and perspective of the parties. While most people focus on the price, there are many tangible and intangible aspects of the negotiation that can be the catalyst for bringing the parties together. Common personal property items that often come in to play in real estate are the kitchen refrigerator, washer/dryer, pool table, hot tub, riding lawn mower, yard art, and tractor.

Friday, June 26

Reno author's new book seeks to offer solutions on income disparity

“I point out many cases of where privately owned companies do just as bad a job as publicly owned companies,” says Reno resident and former teacher Robert (R.D.) Gardner.

‘Becoming Bulletproof' worth a shot for business readers (Biz & Books review)

This book will appeal to lovers of espionage, business readers and, because of the author's work with the Secret Service, to presidential history buffs.

Photo: Peter Hurley

Evy Poumpouras is the author of “Becoming Bulletproof.”

People: Quartet re-elected to NCET board of directors

Matt Fisher, Andrea Quiruz, Toni Quiruz and Chuck Sweeney were recently re-elected to the board of directors for the nonprofit NCET.

Thrive Wellness of Reno moves to new location in historic Roy House

Kat Geiger, LCSW and founder of Thrive Wellness of Reno, says of the Roy House allows the treatment center to offer more services.

State officials announce phased lifting of Nevada eviction moratorium

Per Nevada's updated order, landlords will not be able to kick out residential tenants solely for non-payment of rent until September.

Since 2015 Reno expansion, Clear Capital continues to scale up

"We just hit $200 million in revenue this last year — that was an 18% increase over the previous year," says Duane Andrews, CEO of Clear Capital, which expanded to Reno in 2015 and has since increased its Reno workforce from 65 to 250 employees.

Thursday, June 25

U.S. job market's modest improvement may be stalling

WASHINGTON — The number of laid-off workers seeking U.S. unemployment aid barely fell last week, and the reopening of small businesses has leveled off — evidence that the job market's gains may have stalled just as a surge in coronavirus cases is endangering an economic recovery. The government also reported Thursday the economy contracted at a 5% annual rate in the first three months of the year, a further sign of the damage being inflicted by the viral pandemic. The economy is expected to shrink at a roughly 30% rate in the current quarter. That would be the worst quarterly contraction, by far, since record-keeping began in 1948. Economists do expect a snap-back in the second half of the year, though not enough to reverse all the damage.

May unemployment numbers show improvement as reopening begins

As the economy began to reopen in May, 32,700 Nevadans returned to work. Restaurants and retail stores were allowed to reopen in early May but only at 50 percent capacity in stores or eateries, social distancing, face masks for workers and other controls. Hairdressers and auto dealer showrooms were also permitted to reopen.

Packaging company leases 133,108 sq. ft. warehouse at Reno's LogistiCenter at 395

Ernest Packaging Solutions has leased 133,108 square feet at Dermody Properties' LogistiCenter at 395 Phase II, Building 1, leaving 47,952 square feet still available.

Courtesy Dermody Properties

Exterior view of LogistiCenter at 395 Phase II Building 1.

Survey: Tourists getting cold feet to visit Nevada as COVID cases spike

A dip in consumer confidence is evident in the latest market research from Destination Analysts — as one example, there was a 13-percentage point increase in the number of people surveyed who believed the coronavirus situation was going to get worse over the next month, reports The Nevada Independent.

Photo: Mikayla Whitmore

A few friends walk down the Las Vegas Strip with yard long drinks while various properties reopen to the public after a temporary shutdown caused by the COVID-19 health pandemic on Thursday, June 4, 2020.

Nevada companies can apply for piece of $1 million entrepreneurship grant

The application deadline for Nevada companies and entities to apply for piece the $1 million “Lee School Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship” is July 5.

People: Emily Creighton joins The Ferraro Group as account executive

Emily Creighton, who this month joined The Ferarro Group, previously worked as a marketing content specialist for Carson Tahoe Health in Carson City.

Q-and-A: Laborers Union Local 169 head discusses construction workforce in Reno-Sparks

"If we exercise social distancing and we take all the measures to work responsibly, we could possibly trigger the economy to get back on track," says Eloy Jara, president of Laborers Union Local 169.

Sisolak: Facial coverings mandatory inside businesses, in public spaces amid rising COVID-19 cases

Gov. Sisolak emphasized that it wasn't his goal to heavily police individuals or businesses, but he thought a mandate was necessary in order to ensure a greater percentage of the population started to wear masks.

Wednesday, June 24

Nevada's already-slim physician workforce may grow slimmer with patients slow to return to the doctor

A majority of Nevada doctors believe they can only keep their doors open for another 2-6 months unless the volume of patients trickling back into their offices significantly increases, according to the American Medical Association.

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

A receptionist checks in a patient at A+ TotalCare in Elko on Wednesday, April 4, 2018.

Nonprofit Spotlight: Eddy House announces expansion projects for 2020

Among other projects, in early May, Eddy House opened its respite care center in collaboration with Washoe County Social Services. This program serves kids between the ages of 7 and 17, giving them a safe place to live and continue therapeutic services.

Buzz Harris: How to dispel myths about business transfers (Voices)

"The real value of a business is based on its cash flow; assets simply are the tools required to generate the businesses sales and earnings."

People: Dan Crippen joins CCMedia as media strategist

Prior to joining CCMedia in Reno, Dan Crippen was a supervisor with AKQA in San Francisco.

Clean Cars Nevada initiative would aid state's effort to combat climate change

The "Clean Cars Nevada" initiative would seek to adopt clean car standards used by California and 14 other states requiring dealerships to sell a certain percentage of low or zero-emission vehicles beginning in 2024.

Northern Nevada businesses brace for July 1 minimum wage increase

"I think this is a good push forward to close the gap a little bit and make sure people are being valued correctly.”

Photo: Getty Images

Nevada's minimum wage will increase by 75 cents an hour on July 1.

Tuesday, June 23

Nevada domestic violence services expect to lose $2 million in funding because of drop in marriages

In Nevada, the wedding industry is big business. But the number of licenses issued during the pandemic has fallen 87 percent — and the drop directly translates into varioufunding shortfalls.

Barnes & Noble College to manage UNR book store

The Associated Students of the University of Nevada has operated the Nevada Wolf Shop for 67 years. That changes Monday when Barnes & Noble College takes over.

Courtesy UNR

ASUN recently entered into a new agreement for management of The Nevada Wolf Shop.

Michael Bosma: Key takeaways from PPP Flexibility Act documents (Voices)

This updated guidance should be beneficial for many borrowers, because it provides additional flexibility, depending on the timing of a borrower's application, advises Mike Bosma.

People: Ty A. Nebe promoted to senior VP for Plumas Bank's Sierra region

A Northern Nevada native, Ty A. Nebe joined Plumas Bank as Vice President, Commercial Loan Officer in June 2018, a few months prior to the bank acquiring a branch in Carson City.

Digital, cashless gaming tech viewed as bringing casinos into the 21st century

Gaming equipment providers, through the Association of Gaming Manufacturers trade organization, are supportive of the proposed regulatory changes covering the electronic transfers of money to games or gaming devices, The Nevada Independent reports.

Photo: David Calvert / The Nevada Independent

Gaming machines inside the Eldorado Resort Casino in downtown Reno just before midnight on on Tuesday night, March 17, 2020.

Runway to recovery will be long for Reno airport; master plan work continues

Mere months after celebrating a 35% jump in traffic since 2014, Reno-Tahoe International Airport now faces an outlook that's "extremely difficult" to predict for 2020.

Courtesy Reno-Tahoe International Airport

Two weeks after the coronavirus pandemic shut down businesses in Nevada, Reno-Tahoe International Airport saw passenger counts drop 96%, says airport spokesperson Brian Kulpin.

Monday, June 22

Sisolak: Special legislative session to address Nevada's budget delayed to July

The shortfall caused by the economic shutdown ordered to slow the spread of COVID-19 is costing Nevada more than $800 million in the fiscal year that ends June 30 — and is expected to cut projected revenues by more than $1 billion for 2020-21.

TEDxReno returns June 27 with free virtual event

Emily Jaenson, general manager of the Reno Aces, is among several local celebrities and dignitaries scheduled to present at Saturday's TedXReno event.

Photo: David Calvert / Reno Aces

Emily Jaenson, general manager of the Reno Aces, is among those scheduled to present at Saturday's TedXReno event.

People: Casey Gunther new operations manager at United Construction

Following his service in the U.S. Marine Corps, Casey Gunther, new operations manager at United Construction, completed a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from University of Nevada, Reno.

NNBW Editor – who's ready for 2020: Part Two? (Voices)

I urge you now more than ever to support local journalism. Whether it's through us at the NNBW, via The Nevada Independent, or by way of the Reno Gazette Journal, This Is Reno, or any of the fine publications and media companies across Northern Nevada, your support goes a long way to keeping us in business.

About 79,000 Nevada PUA claimants have been paid unemployment out of estimated 106,000 eligible

The news Friday came a few hours before Gov. Steve Sisolak announced DETR leader Heather Korbulic was leaving her post due to concerns over her personal safety amid social media backlash.

Coffee and COVID: Local roasters trying to stir interest, stay afloat during new era of doing business

"We've been in growth mode for so long and planning on opening up two other locations that we were already pre-funding. So, a lot of our cash flow was going to that. So this hit and we were like, oh my god, what do we do?” Greg Buchheister of Coffeebar told the NNBW.

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel / NNBW

Hunter Kitzmiller prepares to pour creamer in a customer’s drinks at Coffeebar in Reno’s midtown on June 17.

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel / NNBW

While wearing masks, Mickayla Spencer, right, and Mack Peterson prepare drinks at Coffeebar on Mt. Rose Street in Reno’s midtown on June 17.

Sunday, June 21

Jim Valentine: Real estate perspective musings

We’ve said many times in this space that real estate is as much about the reality of the people as it is the real property. The people bring emotion and perspective to the show whereas the real estate is static, it is what it is. People, however, can make it be something greater or lesser than it actually is, especially when measured against their wants and needs.

Saturday, June 20

Kelly Bullis: Owe too much to the IRS?

Well howdy! From time to time, somebody walks into my office with a sad story about how they ended up owing the IRS so much that they feel like they will never be able to pay it off. Believe it or not, there are some ways to settle your tax debt with the IRS for pennies on the dollar. It’s called “Offer In Compromise” or OIC for short.

Friday, June 19

Nevada Gaming Control Board beefs up face mask mandates inside casinos

“Our patrons need to be responsible and respect and follow the guidelines if they want to come back in three or six months or a year,” Gaming Control Board Chair Sandra Douglass Morgan told The Nevada Independent.

Photo: Mikayla Whitmore / The Nevada Independent

A security guard welcomes and hands a few masks to customers at Caesars Palace Las Vegas Hotel & Casino after reopening June 4, 2020.

Sierra Nevada Corporation earns DVEPS production contract for Army aircraft

Per Sierra Nevada Corporation, the "Degraded Visual Environment Pilotage System" on U.S. Special Operations Command and select Army aircraft consists of a multi-sensor system providing real-time situational awareness to aid pilots in maintaining spatial awareness.

Truckee-Tahoe resorts announce summer reopening plans

Several resorts will be requiring guests to wear masks when inside common areas, in lines or on lifts and gondolas. Social distancing practices will also be in place.

Reno's RE/MAX Realty Affiliates ranked among top brokerages in U.S.

“It's an honor to be listed on these rankings and it's a strong testament to the dedication and hard work of our agents,” says Amy Lessinger, broker/owner of RRA.

Sportsbooks see betting enthusiasm, especially via mobile apps, even as athletic events are slow to return

Like the casino properties they inhabit, Nevada's sportsbooks feature new configurations and signage to meet social-distancing requirements.

Unemployment down in May as Nevada businesses rehire workers

Nevada’s unemployment rate dropped in May as businesses rehired 32,700 furloughed workers as bars and restaurants reopened. That dropped the unemployment rate from 28 percent to 25.3 percent.

Thursday, June 18

Masks required at casino table games in Nevada

LAS VEGAS — Nevada casinos are now requiring gamblers and spectators to wear protective face coverings at table games that have no barriers. The Nevada Gaming Control Board on Wednesday updated its health and safety policy required for the reopening of casinos, tightening rules for gamblers sitting down to play.

Public Utilities Commission issues solar contractor warning

The Public Utilities Commission has issued a warning stating that there have been several incidents this year involving solar contractors damaging natural gas pipelines when installing electrical grounding rods. A spokesman said the contractors did not call the 811 number to have utility officials mark the location of gas lines before installing the grounding rods. While gas pipes are required to be at least 12 inches underground, homeowners often change the final grade of the soil on their property, leaving gas lines closer to the surface than they were when installed.

Nevada's jobless rate dips to 25.3% after April's record high as businesses reopen

“While we expect to see improvement in the months ahead, we are still facing a situation unlike anything the state has ever seen, said Nevada's chief economist, Dave Schmidt.

Graphic: The Nevada Independent

Nevada's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate as of June 17, 2020, with stats courtesy of DETR.

Why Northern Nevada? NOW Foods staff grows from 15 to 300 since 2003 Sparks expansion

When NOW Foods first opened in Sparks in 2003, it fielded 15 local employees. Now, that number is up to 300, and company sales have doubled since expanding to Northern Nevada.

Photo: NOW Foods

NOW Foods, a natural foods and products company, has seen its sales double since expanding its operations to Sparks in 2003.

Top economic development official in Nevada: post-COVID recovery will be ‘long and grinding affair'

Michael Brown says the pandemic has forced GOED to reflect and find ways to adapt to the new economic reality — one that could involve fewer tax breaks for businesses to relocate to the Silver State.

Wells Fargo Foundation provides $10,000 grant to Western Nevada College

The Wells Fargo Foundation recently provided a grant for $10,000 to Western Nevada College to help mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on students and the college.

Campagni Auto Group donates $5,000 in scholarships

Carson City Toyota, part of the Campagni Auto Group, announced a $5,000 donation for WNC scholarships aimed at students seeking careers in auto mechanics.

People: Laura Partridge named to National Small Business Association Leadership Council

Since 1991, Laura Partridge has owned and managed CCMedia Agency. she also serves on the Entrepreneurs Organization Reno-Tahoe Board of Directors.

Wednesday, June 17

Back to fitness: Hard-hit athletic clubs, gyms trying to bounce back amid pandemic

Denise “Dee Dee” Desiderio-Schula says Sports West Athletic Club lost 12% of its members — amounting to $17,000 a month in revenue — due to the pandemic, which will likely continue to limit capacity throughout this summer, if not force gym owners to implement permanent changes.

Memo to Nevada lawmakers highlights thin staffing at agency managing flood of jobless claims

Currently, tens of thousands of Nevadans are still in limbo in an unemployment system that has just a few dozen people equipped to resolve sticking points in claims, reports The Nevada Independent.

People: Filip Geeraert retiring as CEO of Deceuninck North America

As CEO, Filip Geeraert oversaw Deceuninck North America's $22.5 million Western expansion when the company opened its 50,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Fernley in 2016.

Ann Silver: When it comes to equality, businesses must do better (Voices)

"Our future must be grounded in justice for all, inclusive engagement with people of all colors and backgrounds and a commitment to behave differently toward each other," writes Ann Silver of the Reno + Sparks Chamber of Commerce.

NV Energy files long-promised $120 million rate reduction that would slash monthly bills

In an interview with tThe Nevada Independent, NV Energy President and CEO Doug Cannon said the proposed reduction was based on a combination of factors, including a restructuring of the company's debt, changes to the federal tax code in late 2017 and lower operating costs.

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

NV Energy's corporate headquarters is seen on Wednesday, November 22, 2017.

NNBW Editor: With your business, sometimes nothing is more (Voices)

The first rule of business is always to stay in business, right? Sometimes, the easiest way to do that is to simply be quiet.

Tuesday, June 16

340 jobs on tap as 3 more California companies expand to Reno-Sparks

One of the companies, San Francisco-based PlusPlus, plans to hire more than 100 employees over the next five years in Reno with an average annual base salary of $70,000.

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel / NNBW

Marko Gargenta, founder and CEO of peer-learning platform PlusPlus, talks about the reasons the company is expanding to Reno during an EDAWN press conference on June 10.

Customers return as Nevada tavern operators restart their slot machines

“Honestly, in that moment, it was like nobody gave a s**t about coronavirus. There was pent-up demand."

Photo: Howard Stutz

Wahoo’s Fish Tacos bartender Shannon Dunmire cleans one of the Las Vegas tavern’s 15 slot machines after a customer ended a gaming session

Michael Bosma: July 15 is April 15 (this year) – the party is almost over (Voices)

With the new tax deadline of July 15 looming, here are some suggestions from Mike Bosma to reduce your tax bill for 2019 and into the future.

Nevada mining companies donate over $200K to support rural businesses

Kinross and Gemfield Mine each recently donated $100,000 to help small businesses in rural Nevada.

Courtesy Kinross

A look at the Round Mountain Gold Mine operated by Kinross Gold Gorporation.

People: Andy Smith, Jennifer Delaney earn promotions at Sparks-based WETLAB

Andy Smith was promoted to lab manager and Jennifer Delaney now takes on the role of quality assurance manager at Western Environmental Testing Laboratory (WETLAB).

Sisolak: Nevada not ready for Phase 3 of business reopening; special session coming

“We are not ready to go into Phase 3," the governor said late Monday. "The timeline will be dictated by the virus.”

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel

In this file photo, Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak speaks at a Feb. 18, 2020, press conference in Reno about new companies relocating to the region.

Monday, June 15

Thermal scanners, masks and a thinner staff: inside Patagonia's new-look distribution center in Reno

NNBW Reporter Kaleb M. Roedel recently toured Patagonia's massive distribution center in west Reno, which typically employs between 400-500 people, depending on time of year. As of mid-June, the company brought back 225 employees who are navigating a new way of work.

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel / NNBW

Yessica Delgado places an order on a conveyor belt inside the Patagonia distribution center in west Reno, where employees are required to wear masks and gloves and stay at least 10 feet apart.

Despite casinos reopening and tourism activity resuming, many workers remain left behind

Nevada's gaming and tourism-related jobs are expected to return in thirds — the first round of employees were rehired to staff casinos that reopened June 4 with restrictions.

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

Cirque performer RJ Owens on Wednesday, June 10, 2020. (Jeff Scheid/The Nevada Independent)

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

Culinary member Mariza Rocha on Wednesday, June 10, 2020. (Jeff Scheid/The Nevada Independent)

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

Culinary member Donna Kelly-Yu on Wednesday, June 10, 2020. (Jeff Scheid/The Nevada Independent)

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

Culinary member Juston Larsen on Wednesday, June 10, 2020.

Vail Resorts CEO offers preview of a socially distanced ski season

Rob Katz, CEO of the company that owns Northstar California and Heavenly and Kirkwood mountain resorts in the Lake Tahoe region, addressed the topic during a recent call with Wall Street analysts.

Photo: Tanzi Propst

Vail Resorts CEO Rob Katz recently provided an early look at what the ski experience could look like next winter in the era of social distancing.

People: Carol Harriman named president of 2020-21 Assistance League of Reno-Sparks board

Carol Harriman will serve as president of the Assistance League of Reno-Sparks' Board of Directors for fiscal year 2020-2021.

Nevada jobless claims keep declining; 517,925 so far in 2020

The week ending June 6 was the 6th in a row of declines in regular initial claims.

Sunday, June 14

Why is my computer soooooo slow?

Computer maintenance, or as we like to call it, Clean and Tune, is important to extend the life of your computer and to improve efficiency – meaning, if your computer is slowing down, you may need to refresh your computer. What is a Clean and Tune and why should I do it?

John Bullis: New IRA rules on distributions

The December 2019 “Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement” (SECURE) Act made some significant changes in the rules for IRA distributions. Now (in 2020 and later) you can make contributions to your traditional (deductible) IRA. The old rule was if you were age 70 ½ or older, you could not do IRA contributions even if you had earned income from wages or self-employment.

Saturday, June 13

Jim Valentine: Why won’t they come down?

We are often asked why a seller won’t come off their asking price when an offer is made. Sometimes it seems as if buyers expect that a seller must agree to sell for something less than it has been offered for. While homes are often listed high such that it is realistic and reasonable that they would accept something less than the asking price, there is nothing that obligates a seller to sell for anything less than what they are asking.

Initial claims for benefits decrease for sixth week

Initial claims for unemployment benefits totaled 10,748 for the week ending June 6. That is the sixth consecutive week claims have decreased. And for the first time, continued claims by workers filing weekly for benefits fell slightly as well. The 334,182 continued claims reported is down 861 from the prior week.

Friday, June 12

On party-line vote, Nevada lawmakers OK first step of $812 million budget shortfall plan

Republican Sen. Ben Kieckhefer was among those against Friday's measure, saying he was frustrated with how the governor's office has addressed the budget shortfall.

File photo

Republican Sen. Ben Kieckhefer was among those against Friday's measure, saying he was frustrated with how the governor's office has addressed the budget shortfall.

Q-and-A: Real estate disruptions, supply chain shifts and other impacts to Nevada's economy

"I think we're in really one of the best places in the world (Northern Nevada) to emerge from the COVID experience better than we went into it," says Dan Oster, a commercial real estate broker at NAI Alliance and adjunct professor at UNR.

Economic shutdown wiped out sales tax gains in Nevada

Not surprisingly, the economic shutdown that began in mid-March wiped out eight months of gains in taxable sales in Nevada.

People: Kirk Allaire joins Western Industrial Nevada (WIN) board

Kirk Allaire, president of Reno-based Gratis Payment Processing, recently joined the board of trustees for Western Industrial Nevada.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: Squeeze In

Squeeze In, with multiple locations across greater Reno-Truckee-Carson, is a breakfast & lunch restaurant serving the Best Omelets on the Planet.

Photo: CDR Photography

Shila Morris and Kay Salerno are co-owners of the Squeeze In franchise.

People: Dr. Pier Paolo Pandolfi joins Renown, Desert Research Institute

Dr. Pier Paolo Pandolfi, PhD, FRCP — a prominent cancer investigator and molecular geneticist — recently joined DRI's faculty of the Renown Institute of Health Innovation and as Director of the Institute of Cancer at Renown Health.

Sisolak: Furloughs, pay freezes on tap to shore up COVID-related budget gap

“It is with a heavy heart I must propose these actions," the governor said Thursday.

Thursday, June 11

'Not a lot of high-end play' so far at Nevada's just-reopened casinos

So far, customers are primarily locals, in addition to nearby Californians who can drive in — meaning big spends from convention business and corporate customers are still lacking.

Photo: Mikayla Whitmore / The Nevada Independent

A view from the casino floor at Caesars Palace Las Vegas Hotel & Casino after reopening its doors to the public on Thursday, June 4.

Delivering with Dignity Reno-Sparks serves over 10,000 meals

“The impact on the community and the local restaurant industry has been incredible."

Photo: Delivering with Dignity

Volunteers with Reno-Tahoe Transportation prepare to deliver meals to people in need across Reno-Sparks as part of Delivering with Dignity.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: Sage Interiors

“Beauty Inspires” is the founding philosophy of Sage Interiors, a premier interior design firm with a mission to unearth a client's vision and make their interior spaces simply magnificent.

City National donates another $37,500 to Northern NV nonprofits

"Now more than ever our community involvement and support is needed to help those families and individuals who find themselves needing assistance during this difficult time,; says Paul Stowell of City National Bank.

Carson tourism officials brace for 22% drop in room tax revenues

David Peterson, executive director of Visit Carson City, said he doesn't expect to see positive growth until March 2021, with double-digit drops expected each month through the end of 2020.

Nevada now paying out $300 million a week in jobless benefits

Nevada's chief economist told members of the state's Economic Forum Wednesday that while most businesses have reopened, albeit at reduced levels, he won't really know how well the economy is bouncing back until June jobless numbers are available.

Wednesday, June 10

Casinos doing better than expected, state officials told

Members of the Economic Forum were told Wednesday that customers are returning to newly opened casinos in greater numbers than originally expected. The resorts were allowed to open at 50 percent capacity effective June 4. But Gaming Control Board Analyst Mike Lawton said the customers are primarily locals and Californians who can drive to Nevada’s gaming markets.

Sisolak releases plan to address Nevada's $812 million budget shortfall

“While Nevada is on the road to recovery and gradually reopening our economy, we are working diligently with our state agencies to identify the reductions necessary for fiscal responsibility..." Gov. Steve Sisolak said Tuesday.

Basin Street Properties: See you at the office – returning from the offseason of stay-at-home (Thought Leaders)

The priority of our physical health and safety understandably takes precedence. Like most businesses, this is where Basin Street Properties' focus is right now for our tenants and employees.

Working Together: Planning for workforce resiliency (Voices)

"By better understanding and developing a more resilient workforce, companies can increase flexibility and strengthen their ability to be better prepared for future industry and economic challenges," writes Amy Fleming of EDAWN.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: Miles Construction

Miles Construction has been on the leading edge of Northern Nevada's commercial building scene since 1986.

People: Mason Marino hired as project engineer at Agate Construction

Marino earned his Master of Science in construction management from San Diego State University and a B.S. in environment policy and management from the University of Redlands.

Custom Ink, iCelerate partner to donate 1,100 face coverings

While endeavors like partnering with Custom Ink have helped, due to the pandemic's impact on regional companies, iCelerate has lost roughly $2 million to $3 million out of its $8 million annual gross.

Tuesday, June 9

Michael Bosma: Business owners can relax with PPP forgiveness (Voices)

Under the extended PPP legislation, borrowers can use the 24-week period to restore their workforce levels and wages to the pre-pandemic levels required for full forgiveness, writes Mike Bosma.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: LA Bakery Café & Eatery

LA Bakery Café & Eatery offers a bakery, café, lunch, breakfast and catering, in addition to gluten-free, vegan and sugar-free items.

People: NCJFCJ's Joey Orduña Hastings appointed to two legal committee positions

Orduña Hastings — who is CEO of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges — is a graduate of Gonzaga University School of Law and the University of Nevada, Reno.

Nevada farmers, ranchers can apply for piece of $16 billion in COVID assistance

USDA is making available $16 billion for "vital financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a 5-percent-or-greater price decline due to COVID-19."

Reno-area lawn care, tree service businesses blooming amid pandemic

Tailored Lawn Care, which launched in 2014, had its best April ever, generating $63,118 in revenue — nearly a 100% increase from last year ($32,324).

Photo: Arbor Pros

Arbor Pros, a Reno-based tree service company, has seen a significant increase in business since the coronavirus pandemic hit the area, said owner Chayce Cassani.

$120 million Nevada solar project to break ground soon

WINNEMUCCA — Consolidated Edison (Con Edison) is expected to break ground on its $120 million Battle Mountain Solar Project in rural Northern Nevada in either June or July. “Con Ed is getting ready to break ground on their project over off the Mote and Valmy area,” Jan Morrison, Economic Development Officer for Northern Nevada Rural Development Authority and Humboldt Development Authority, announced at HDA’s May 20 meeting. “If you remember, that’s called the Battle Mountain Solar Project, although it is all in Humboldt County.”

Monday, June 8

Reno-Sparks median home price dips to $399,900 in May

After record-setting months in March and April across greater Reno-Sparks, the region's median home price dipped 3.6% in May to $399,900. Reno alone saw an 8.3% decrease from April 2020's record-high of $439,500, down to $400,000.

Courtesy RSAR

This graph shows the three-year trend in number of units sold across greater Reno-Sparks. For May 2020, the 396 units sold represents a 41.9% decrease from the 682 units sold in May 2019.

Number of Nevada PUA jobless payouts picking up, should jump significantly this week

As of Friday, 26,876 PUA claimants in Nevada been paid, representing 27 percent of all claims filed. That number is expected to increase significantly by Tuesday.

Jim Valentine: Why all the forms and clauses?

The Nevada residential home sale contract today consists of at least 50 pages, and is often longer. The residential contract when we started our careers was one page. What happened? The obvious answer for most of the additional transaction documentation is litigation. So many lawsuits, some warranted, others not, have created the need for specific protection for Buyers, Sellers and Agents.

Richard Karpel: Targeting of journalists by police must end (Voices)

"The government should be protecting journalists, not persecuting them. The U.S. Constitution — and the promise of a free society — demand nothing less."

People: Kurt Thigpen elected to board of AAF-Reno Foundation

Thigpen is the CEO of Reno-based marketing and creative agency Ace Studios, as well as the immediate past president of AAF Reno.

The revolution will be teleconferenced: Local companies shifting to a work-from-home future

For some Northern Nevada companies, the pros outweigh the cons when it comes to shifting to a more permanent WFH mindset.

Sunday, June 7

Kelly Bullis: Is your business really just a ‘hobby’?

Now how many folks, who are spending more time in their business than they ever would just being somebody else’s employee, would call that business “just a hobby?” Well the IRS just might want to call your business a “hobby.” Why would they do that? Simple, by doing so, it disqualifies ALL related expenses and only the GROSS income is taxed.

Grocery Outlet opens in Dayton

Grocery Outlet opened its newest location June 4 at 7 Dayton Village Parkway in Dayton. The store, independently operated by Daniel and Kathleen Knight, created 33 jobs, according to a press release from the Emeryville, California-based grocery chain.

Saturday, June 6

Western Nevada College students benefit from Campagni Auto Group's efforts

Conditions in Northern Nevada have changed dramatically over the past few months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But, one thing has remained consistent: Carson City Toyota and the Campagni Auto Group’s commitment to this community including students and higher education at Western Nevada College. Annually, Carson City Toyota, part of the Campagni Auto Group, provides scholarships to area high school students to attend Western Nevada College. This financial boost helps students pursue their associate degree of choice and careers in auto mechanics.

Friday, June 5

Decline in travel spending could have 'devastating' impact on Truckee

With projections of roughly 50% lost in visitor spending this summer season, Truckee is likely to see a significant impact in revenues moving forward, officials said.

Photo: Kevin MacMillan

Donner Lake in Truckee is a popular summer tourist destination.

Grocery Outlet opens new location in Dayton

The Dayton Grocery Outlet store, independently operated by Daniel and Kathleen Knight, opened June 4, creating 33 new jobs.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: StartUpNV

StartUpNV, co-founded by Jeff Saling, is a 501(c)3 non-profit state-wide business incubator and accelerator for scalable Nevada start-ups.

Biz & Books review: Negotiate like a boss after reading ‘Ask for More'

The art of negotiation involves stating what you want, then fighting to get it, writes author Alexandra Carter.

Photo: Nick Onken

The art of negotiation involves stating what you want, then fighting to get it, writes author Alexandra Carter.

Midtown Reno businesses to host inaugural celebratory event July 18

“We want to invite the community to South Virginia Plaza to experience one big day of family, music, food and socializing,” says JeNes Carter, event organizer and owner of Beautiful Nails in Midtown.

Event logo

The "South Virginia Plaza in Midtown Celebration" is set for 3-9 p.m. on July 18.

Thursday, June 4

Carson City farmers market starts Saturday

The Carson Farmers Market is kicking off the 2020 season COVID style. There will be modifications to the market to comply with all state and local laws and requirements to allow them to remain operating. The Carson Farmers Market will begin Saturday and runs every Saturday through the last weekend on Sept. 26 from 8:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. in the parking lot at the corner of the 3rd and Curry Street.

After historic casino closure, gambling returns to Nevada

LAS VEGAS — The casino coronavirus closure has ended. Cards are being dealt, dice are rolling and slot machines flashed and jingled for the first customers who started gambling again early Thursday in Las Vegas and throughout Nevada.

Twenty Under 40 Q-and-A: High Fives Foundation's Roy Tuscany

"As long as young professionals steward what has been created and then create ways for new growth, new innovation and new technology, then it allows for us to build on what was already put in place," says Roy Tuscany of the High Fives Foundation.

Construction training program set for summer in rural Northern Nevada

The introductory 80-hour program is designed to train Northern Nevada workers 18 years and up in construction, building maintenance and related trades.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: Reno Pain Relief Chiropractic

Reno Pain Relief Chiropractic provides short-term pain relief chiropractic care through safe and cost-effective adjustments and treatments.

About 20 percent of Nevada's PUA jobless claimants have received payment

As of Wednesday, $119 million in unemployment benefits have been paid to Nevadans eligible through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program for independent workers, The Nevada Independent reports.

Nearly 60 businesses sign on for inaugural Reno Restaurant Week

“I felt like it was time for us to have something to celebrate … and give some good news; let's have some good news for a change," says Cheree Boteler, organizer of the inaugural Reno Restaurant Week set for June 17-24.

Photo: Hungry in Reno

An example of food served as Washoe Public House, one of 50-plus restaurants participating in the inaugural Reno Restaurant Week.

Wednesday, June 3

Nevada betting on health safety as casinos reopen

LAS VEGAS — After 58 days of historic quiet, cards will be cut, dice will roll and jackpots can jingle again 12:01 a.m. Thursday at casinos in Las Vegas and Nevada. There will be big splashes — even amid ongoing protests over the death of a man in police custody in Minnesota that resulted in tear gas in recent nights on the neon-lit Las Vegas Strip — and big hopes for recovery from an unprecedented and expensive shutdown prompted by the coronavirus pandemic.

What's Up Downtown: Development going strong, key to recovery (Voices)

While the pandemic will leave scars for a long time, the future still looks bright with more developments in the pipeline than downtown Reno has experienced in decades, says Alex Stettinski of the Downtown Reno Partnership.

$120 million Battle Mountain Solar Project to begin construction soon

Construction on the Humboldt County solar project, a $120 million capital investment, will last 15 months and will require 240 construction workers, 133 of whom will be Nevada residents.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: Reno Forklift

For more than 60 years, Reno Forklift has provided northern Nevada and California with forklifts, storage systems, industrial material handling, large capacity scales and much more.

Reno medical device manufacturer, ortho clinic create 3D-reusable masks

The 3D-printable, reusable mask that's registered with the National Institutes of Health was created through a partnership between Reno-based Orthopaedic Implant Company and Reno Orthopedic Clinic.

Vegas reopening: Big events key in helping Strip casinos ‘pivot to prosperity'

The Strip partially reopens this week following an unprecedented two-a-half-month shutdown to slow the spreading coronavirus pandemic. The Nevada Independent explores what that means — and, importantly, what it doesn't mean.

Photo: Jeff Scheid / The Nevada Independent

Traffic streaks along Las Vegas boulevard on Monday, March 20, 2017.

SNC in Sparks named a ‘Best Managed Company' by Deloitte, Wall Street Journal

Eren Ozmen, co-owner and president of SNC, said the honor "is a testament to the dedication and passion SNC employees bring to our offices around the world."

Tuesday, June 2

Microsoft Reno donates $10,000 to 2 nonprofits for IT Makeover Campaign

Microsoft Reno's 12th Annual IT Makeover Campaign recently awarded $10,000 to JOIN Inc. and Education Alliance of Washoe County.

Pandemic biggest hurdle yet for Reno race company

“The endurance event industry is having a very difficult time,” says Eric Lerude of Race178, the company that puts on the Reno-Tahoe Odyssey that was supposed to run this past weekend.

Photo: Shelby McAuliffe

Runners leave the starting line for the 2018 Reno Tahoe Odyssey, which saw roughly 2,750 runners participate. The 2020 RTO — which would have taken place May 29-30 — was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Michael Bosma: Refunding high tax rate years with new carryback provisions (Voices)

Loss carrybacks present an opportunity to improve cash flow and achieve permanent tax savings, advises Mike Bosma.

NNBW Support Your Local Business Sweepstakes profile: Mari Chuy's Mexican Kitchen

Mari Chuy's Mexican Kitchen provides fresh, healthy meals to the community in Midtown District Reno.

Q-and-A: Nevada Gaming Control Board chair talks safety compliance ahead of casinos reopening

"I'm confident that (casino operators) understand the severity of this and that they will comply. However, we also have a task to enforce strict gaming regulation to allow the industry to be able to operate," Sandra Douglass Morgan told The Nevada Independent.

Washoe Co. sales tax falls 8% in March; auto sales, food & drink see massive decreases

Nevada as a whole saw a nearly 20% decrease in March. As one example, of the poor numbers, Washoe County's "food services & drinking category" tumbled 31.9% ($74,338,664 in March 2020 compared to $109,103,189).

Monday, June 1

Virus could lead more states to OK sports, online betting

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The coronavirus pandemic could lead to a quicker expansion of sports betting and internet gambling in the U.S. as states deal with huge budget deficits and look for new tax revenue wherever they can find it. Most major sports remain shut down due to the virus, but European soccer and Asian baseball have begun play, NASCAR is racing again and PGA Tour golf restarts in two weeks. Major U.S. sports leagues including the NBA and NHL are making plans for resuming their seasons.

Water district agrees to settle eminent domain case for Tahoe Reno Industrial Center pipeline

Once built, the pipeline will deliver treated effluent to the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center, which has attracted investment from big tech companies, including Tesla, Google and Switch.

Photo: David Calvert / The Nevada Independent

Kris Thompson, project manager for the Tahoe Regional Industrial Center on Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018.

Nevada sales tax totals fall nearly 20 percent in March

With non-essential businesses closed for half of the month, Nevada’s taxable sales fell nearly 20 percent in March. Total taxable sales were $4.53 billion, down 19.5 percent. Clark County took the biggest hit at 23.4 percent because of its heavy reliance on the tourism and hospitality industries. With showrooms closed, auto sales fell 37 percent to $412 million.

Carson City area's major casinos geared up and ready to reopen

At businesses like Casino Fandango in Carson City, patrons can expect to see pretty dramatic changes as they return to their favorite restaurants, bars and gaming floors when casinos begin to reopen, with restrictions, this Thursday, says GM Court Cardinal.

Photo: Kaleb M. Roedel

Court Cardinal, general manager of the Casino Fandango (seen here in early January inside the Carson City casino's new Craft 55 bar), said last week that the shutdown was a perfect time to do a lot of deferred maintenance that’s hard to accomplish in a 24/7 business.

From $936.5 million to $3.65 million: Nevada casino win down to near-zero in April

Nevada casinos, which were closed for all of April, reported $3.65 million in win for the month, the result of mobile sports betting and interactive poker.

Photo: Getty Images

The tiny amount of casino win reported in April came from mobile sports better (and interactive poker).

NNBW Editor Column: June is Effective Communications Month (Voices)

Personalize your pitch. Endeavor to tell, not to sell. Empathy, not efficiency. Keep It Simple Stupid. These are a few of the notions I try to live by when it comes to effective communication.

Initial, continuing jobless claims on decline in Nevada

The most recent jobless report shows 343,030 continuing claims for the week ending May 23, a decrease of 26,011 or 7%. Further, initial claims fell 12.5 percent, the fourth consecutive week of declines.

Courtesy DETR

Weekly Claims Breakout, May 23.

Claudia Saavedra: Despite virus, market is still active

The real estate transaction has looked a little different in recent months but the market is still very active. While the number of closed sales in April was lower than last month and last year, home prices have held strong. Buyers holding out for a market decline might be disappointed – pricing is expected to remain stable.

Northern Nevada bike shops see positive pandemic impacts – but for how long?

“Sales have gone through the roof — stuff is just flying off the shelves. And our phone rings off the hook all day. It's mayhem.”

Photo: Reno Bike Project

Reno Bike Project staffers Owen Lattin, left, and Corby Cobb share a socially-distanced laugh while inside the nonprofit’s shop on 4th Street in Reno.