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Last Chance Park application gets fresh endorsement

Pahrump Town Manager Susan Holecheck picked up the endorsement of Nye County commissioners Tuesday on the town board’s application for a recreation and public purpose lease from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management for the long-proposed Last Chance Park.

The park, at the northern end of Pahrump Valley at the base of the Shadow Mountains, would ultimately include parking lots and trail heads for people and horses.

Town officials considered scaling back the project, as recent BLM changes preclude developing a well at the park, requiring plans to be changed.

Then there were cost estimates of $43,000 to put in infrastructure like a toilet, picnic tables and fencing. The town board request states developing Kellogg Park may better serve the current needs of Pahrump residents.

The Pahrump Town Board Dec. 10 voted to submit a revised application to the BLM for 10 acres to be developed into trail head gateways for equestrian use and hiking.

Holecheck said one member of her board has a lot of expertise in dealing with the BLM. She asked Nye County Public Works Director Dave Fanning to work on the project with the town.

“We also are moving forward on beginning discussions for someplace for the horses to be. We talked about a parking lot. There are several issues we need to work through. Our people have waited a long time for something to happen at Last Chance,” Holecheck said.

Last Chance Park was conceived by Noel Smithers, a resident of the area, who suggested a 600-acre parcel — later increased to 1,500 acres — would be accessed from Bell Vista Avenue and Bannavitch Street.

Federal and state officials held a community meeting in October 2009 at the Pahrump Nugget after which the Pahrump Town Board selected the present site for the proposed state park.

Commissioner Dan Schinhofen said the request considered Tuesday was for a letter to support the town’s lease application, not all the details.

But he added, “I think this board supports withdrawing land from the BLM.”

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