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Planning to consider animal sanctuary, billboards and water conservation

Nye County will consider permitting an additional animal sanctuary to the list of 35 facilities currently operating at a meeting of the Pahrump Regional Planning Commission meeting tonight.

The request comes from Joseph Restivo of the Happy Acre Sanctuary, located at 4210 W. Jesse St., who is requesting a conditional grandfathered use permit on his rural estates zoned property.

Nye County Animal Control Supervisor Tim McCarty said that a permit for an animal sanctuary or rescue, under certain conditions, must be sought for residents who care for five or more animals on their property. The permit system is tiered, he said, requiring different permits for between five and nine animals and 10 or more.

Dogs and cats are the most common animal found in a Nye County sanctuary, although rabbits have also become popular residents, according to McCarty. Though he did not have exact figures available, McCarty said there are upward of 2,400 animals being cared for in permitted sanctuaries or rescues throughout the county.

That number, he said, does not include animals being cared for in animal shelters. There are approximately 85 dogs in animal shelters located in Pahrump, he said, and four dogs and one cat in the shelter located in Tonopah.

A sanctuary differs from a shelter, McCarty said, in that sanctuary animals are not available for adoption. The number of sanctuaries operating in Nye County has been “stable” he said, with no increased demand for permits in the past several years.

“The road to getting a permit is not a simple one,” he cautions. “There are standards that you have to meet.” One of those standards is an annual inspection. “Care and condition is our primary concern,” he said.

Also to be considered for action is the the appeal of a promise to remove a billboard located at 3370 S. Highway 160. The issue of the billboard removal was addressed at a planning commission meeting on Jan. 14, which was tabled in order to gather statistics to determine the number of other possible billboard sign violators and to allow time for a proposed ordinance to be drafted “to treat the issue globally.”

While considering the imposition of rules prohibiting current billboards, the planning commission will also consider allowing new billboards to be placed “off-site.” The matter will be considered upon the request of Barry Goff, Service Manager for Fusion Sign and Design, with offices located in Las Vegas and Utah. In support of his request, Goff said that the county can expect to raise revenue through permitting fees.

Also scheduled to be heard:

• Clarification of the definition of a “body of water” and consideration of a zoning ordiannce to amend regulations pertaining to open space zones and water conservation regulations.

• A zone change request for Artesia at Hafen Ranch subdivision.

• Revision of planning commission bylaws.

• A set-back waiver for the construction of a garage at 4800 E. Westmont Drive.

The meeting will take place tonight, Wednesday, March 11 at 6 p.m. at the Nye County Commission Chambers located at 2100 E. Walt Williams Dr., Pahrump.

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