The Mesquite City Council only has two Administrative items on its Technical Review agenda for Tuesday, Apr. 17; consideration of approval of a liquor license conversion for Walgreens and a discussion and revisit of Resolution No. 669 that supports the designation of the Gold Butte Complex as a National Conservation Area.
The Gold Butte Resolution discussion comes on the heels of last week's uproar over Bunkerville rancher Cliven Bundy's clash with federal officials over his right to graze cattle in the Gold Butte range.
Even though the two situations are not directly related to each other, it does show the complexity of the issues surrounding the Gold Butte subject.
Bundy received a letter from Bureau of Land Management (BLM) officials notifying him that the federal agency intended to round up all the cattle grazing within the designated Gold Butte area based on a permanent injunction against him issued by a District Court of Nevada in 1998. The seizure was scheduled to begin the morning of Apr. 11.
In an interview with the Mesquite Citizen Journal, Bundy explained that "they have no legal seizure order signed by a judge" to remove his cattle from land his family has ranched since 1877.
Ultimately the cattle grab was called off by government officials in Washington D.C. citing safety concerns. Bundy issued a statement that he would do whatever it took to protect his property, his rights, and the liberty and freedoms of "we, the people of Clark County."
The Mesquite Citizen Journal will begin a series of articles this week delving more into the Bundy situation and other concerns in the Gold Butte area.
The resolution issue that the Mesquite City Council has on its Technical Review agenda goes back to May 2010 and even beyond.
According to the minutes of the City council meeting from May 11, 2010 when the resolution was adopted, then Mayor Susan Holecheck and Council members were reacting to a request from Clark County Commissioners "to stand with them." The County had recently passed its own resolution regarding a designation of Gold Butte as a National Conservation Area with Multiple Use Areas and Wilderness..
"The resolution is what the county has done. If we are going to be a unified force then we should adopt the county's resolution with small changes made to it," Holecheck
said according to the minutes.
Then Council member Donna Fairchild replied that, "Mesquite needs to speak with her own voice. Even though Mesquite's resolution mirrors some of what Clark County has done, Council needs to add what is best for Mesquite into our resolution. That way we stand on our own two feet as well as represent our needs as a community."
The May 2010 issue was to "revisit Resolution No. 649 on Gold Butte, including the possible amendment, alteration or replacement language" that the Council had passed in 2009.
The May 2010 meeting minutes also reflect that Kraig Hafen, now a sitting Council member, spoke in favor of the resolution saying that, "the City incorporated years ago so it would not be an advisory board to the County." He apparently was not in favor of mirroring the Clark County resolution. The minutes go on to reflect Hafen's comments as he "referred to Council member [Karl] Gustaveson's remarks asking for solutions for Gold Butte; those recommendations are not being heard. Resolution No. 669 addresses all of the concerns that the community has had. The community has discussed the issues along with Council, and because Clark County said they will take care of us, the City is allowing it to occur. He asked Council to adopt Resolution No. 669 and send a message to Clark County that Mesquite has its own mind, heart and vision."
Gustaveson had said earlier in the meeting that he had concerns "about the large amount of wilderness in Gold Butte which can be problematic." He had also remarked that "In reading the County's resolution, it reads: Clark County has also defined these priorities for the national conservation. Although Mesquite cannot make those decisions, nor can the Clark County Commissioners, unfortunately, it is within their resolution which begs that Mesquite make some minor adjustment to align to Clark County resolution to include language that suggests a permanent Steering Committee," to guide other government officials regarding the scope of the Gold Butte designation.
Interestingly, Gustaveson is the only Council member who voted against Resolution 669 when it was passed.
Click here for a copy of Resolution 669
Click here for a copy of Resolution 649
Click here for a copy of the May 11, 2010 Minutes
Click here for a copy of the Clark County Resolution