Saying, “This is exactly the type of lawmaking that we need,” the Beatty Town Advisory Board has sent a letter to the county urging the passage of an amendment to Nye County Code requiring companies planning renewable and non-renewable energy projects to obtain a position letter from local governing bodies before beginning the permitting process.
The advisory board notes that the commissioners tabled a similar proposed amendment regarding marijuana establishments over concerns about the delay it would cause for applicants.
The letter addresses this concern by pointing out that the board meets twice a month and can call off-schedule meetings, delayed only by the public posting period required by open meeting law: “Should an applicant, for whatever reason, be unable to attend a regularly scheduled meeting, we would make every attempt to accommodate their preferred date.”
As a result of the proposed Greenlink West energy transmission project, the Beatty area is being swamped with proposals for solar energy generation facilities, and the advisory board has established a subcommittee to study and make recommendations on the issue.
The board promises to “give each energy generation facility, renewable or non-renewable … a fair hearing, giving our support or opposition based on what and how they present themselves, letting the townspeople decide.”
The letter stresses the importance of listening to the desires of the people who live in the community in making decisions that affect them.
Directly addressing the commissioners, the letter reads, “We and you, are public servants. This amendment gives the people an opportunity, with enforcement consequences backing them up, to make their thoughts, concerns, and desires known. It doesn’t happen often that a requirement for doing business is actually knowing, listening to, and taking seriously, the concerns of the people where you want to conduct that business.”
“We are heartened that you are considering this amendment. By adopting it you will show the regular citizen, with your action today, whether you care or not about their opinions and whether you listen and hear them.”
Richard Stephens is a freelance reporter living in Beatty.