Nye County Commissioner Dan Schinhofen is in the pursuit of his third term as the representative of District 5 but he will have to stave off three other Republicans in the June 12 primary in order to retain his seat. As there are no Democrats or third party candidates in this race, the commission District 5 election will be determined by the primary.
As a Nye County Commissioner for the past seven and a half years, Schinhofen has watched as a variety of long-sought-after projects come ever closer to fruition and he said he wants another four-year term in which to continue pushing forward with such progress. A family man with children and grandchildren in the Pahrump Valley, he noted that he desires a positive future for the valley so his family can be proud of the community they call home.
“Finally, we might get hearings on Yucca Mountain to determine the science. I have worked to improve many roads in the south and there are more slated, such as Homestead to Thousandaire. We’re looking toward Kellogg Park. All these things are now starting to break ground and I want to be here to help shepherd them through,” Schinhofen said. “But the biggest reason is my family. I want my grandkids to be able to grow up and have good jobs here, make sure they have water and they can live in a community they want to live in, whether it is in a gated community or whether it is on five acres with horses. We have a diversity here and I want to see that continue.”
As for one of the biggest hot-button topics of the year, Order #1293, which created new restrictions on drilling new domestic wells, Schinhofen stated he was not thrilled about it but he did not want the county to pay to pursue a lawsuit when citizens were already stepping forward to do so.
“The courts will decide if the order is legal. But if we do nothing, there will come a time when we will be a critical basin and the state engineer’s only tool then is priority date, curtailment,” Schinhofen said. “That affects everybody and Order #1293 only effects less than 10 percent of the lots here.”
Schinhofen invited voters with any questions or concerns to contact him. “The majority of my job as commissioner is facilitating communication with the public. Residents can always call me, come by the office, stop me in the grocery store,” he encouraged.
Voters can learn more about Schinhofen at www.danschinhofen.com.
Nye County Commission District 5 candidate Debra Strickland has lived in Pahrump since 1973 and is a longtime local business owner, with a contracting company and experience as a real estate broker. With such knowledge under her belt, she said she wants to bring that background to bear at the commission level.
“In my contracting business is my well-drilling business, which has given me a special understanding of what is going on with our water resources currently,” Strickland stated. “And my desire to see us put to bed Order #1293 is one reason I am running.” Strickland said she wants to help the county manage the local water resources but there was a lot more to her goals than just water.
“I would like to be able to see us acquire and run a Nye County shooting facility. I would like to see us free up our lands from the BLM so we can use them at a state level. I would like to see the bridle paths and ATV routes move forward, which will provide a resource for visitors,” Strickland explained. “And a big deal for me is to incentivize the new businesses that come to Pahrump, by helping them get through the system of planning, so it’s streamlined. Of course, I have been working with the planning department since its inception, so I think I am uniquely qualified in that area.”
To ensure the county is utilizing its resources, she said she wanted to breathe new life into the county’s many advisory boards as well. “A lot of the advisory groups have become disenchanted, disenfranchised. They are going out and doing all this work but they are not being heard so I want that to change,” she said.
“Our commission needs to work diligently together… I realize that we are not always going to agree on every line item that is up for discussion but I’d like us to be more cohesive than we are currently and it’s going to take leadership to get that done. My experience level sets me apart. My longevity of being in the valley has given me unique opportunity to see where some things need improvement.”
Voters can learn more about Strickland by visiting her on Facebook, Debra Strickland Nye County Commissioner District 5.
Commission District 5 candidate Leo Marchetti is on a mission to elevate the voices of the people of Nye County, remarking that he may have his own ideas for the office he seeks but his real direction will be determined by voters.
“The voters need to know that I plan on exercising their voice on what they want to see going on. I am all for being their employee and there are some people who don’t think that is the way it works,” Marchetti declared. “There is someone running in this race who has actually quoted Harry Reid, who when asked if he listens to his constituents responded that the people voted him in so he will do what he wants and somebody in this race has said that too. That is not the way a public office runs. And that is why I am running, first to represent the people, they will be my boss. And I do not have any self-serving interests, unlike my three opponents.”
Marchetti described a long history of volunteerism as a lifetime VFW Auxiliary member, ham radio operator and examiner, instructor of a free Italian language course, genealogy consultant, and a member of the team that organizes the Silver State Classic Challenge. In addition, he speaks, reads and writes four languages and has studied a total of 14 languages. His career background includes stints as a CEO and corporate treasurer for both non-profit and a for-profit companies. He also has a bachelor’s degree from Pepperdine University and is a world traveler.
“Not having any preconceived, selfish interests, I would be very good for the commission,” Marchetti said. “I am very candid, very outspoken, like President Trump. I say what is on my mind and I honestly don’t care if I offend someone because you can only please some of the people some of the time, not all the people all the time. But as for my goals, I have some that I would like to see set but I am not going to make campaign promises… So my goals, if they are to be accomplished, will have to be approved by the people first. It’s important for them to have their say.”
Voters can learn more about Marchetti at www.leo4nyecounty.com.
Also eyeing the Nye County Commission District 5 seat is Dwight Lilly, who characterized himself as a 15-year Pahrump resident with the skills and knowledge to get things done in Nye County.
“The reason people should vote for me is, I have decades of experience in business. I have had four businesses in my life and all of them were a success,” Lilly stated. “One of the skills I have is my ability to work with a whole variety of government officials because every one of these businesses I ran had to work with government entities. One of the things I have noticed working with government is, it’s too big, it interferes with our lives and we need less government.”
Lilly said he is frustrated by the county continually drafting new regulations that restrict the freedom of the community. “There is no requirement for creating regulations,” Lilly asserted. As an example, he honed in on a proposal from the county to disallow the placement of manufactured homes that are beyond a certain age, something he said he was staunchly against because of his support of a rural lifestyle.
Lilly noted he is also very interested in the county’s finances as well as the local water situation. As a charter member of the Private Well Owners Cooperative of Nye County, Lilly remarked that he has been on the forefront of the water issues since he originally learned about them and has even testified at the legislative level on water-related bills. “We are being sold down the river with Order #1293. The next one is going to be an order coming after existing well owners,” Lilly stated. “And with the county budget, we need to keep that under control. We have money, it’s how you spend the money that is important.”
Nepotism was yet another subject Lilly said he was focused on, stating, “I have labeled Nye County the family business.” Lilly detailed that a major goal for him would be elimination of nepotism within county government.
Voters can learn more about Lilly at www.votedwightlilly.com