Top headlines from today’s Board of County Commissioners meeting
Commissioners provide direction and next steps for Downtown Master Plan

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Amy Ventetuolo

Reno, Nev. July 23, 2019. The following report highlights several important agenda items from the Washoe County Board of Commissioners meeting:

1. Board of County Commissioners heard a presentation on the Washoe County Downtown Master Plan. Commissioners heard a presentation from Peter Sangiorgio from Arrington Watkins Architects and Chloe Jaco, with CGL, both with expertise in judicial planning and design. The presentation identified the long-term needs of Washoe County services that are provided at our facilities in downtown Reno.

The Downtown Master Plan is a dynamic long-term plan to be used to increase efficiency within the Washoe County system, address future growth needs and provide guidance for future improvements into 2040. The plan provided this analysis for the Alternate Public Defender (APD), Public Defender (PD), Human Services Agency (HSA), Second Judicial District Court, Reno Justice Court, District Attorney (DA), and the Washoe County Sheriff's Office (WCSO). Current needs to be addressed with the plan include work environment and access to services, population growth, increase in new court case files, staff growth, physical space and parking needs.  

“I really want the public to understand this is not a full plan or a final plan, rather this is the beginning of the discussion on how we move forward,” says Vice-Chair Lucey. “In my opinion this is the most important Master Plan as this lies within an opportunity zone and the clock is ticking. We’re looking at a number of things to combat the siloed approach to create new efficiencies and bring us to a new avenue of doing business here.  If we put funds toward a good project that will take us into the foreseeable future, that is taxpayer dollars wisely spent.”

Commissioners unanimously provided direction to staff to bring back potential steps for entertaining proposals, potential timelines and needs necessary to option 4 as it pertains to the Washoe County Opportunity Zone project. In addition, Commissioners asked staff to bring back potential financing strategies for option 4 including possible current revenue structures, potential public-private partnership and other strategies to bring option 4 to fruition.

“From my perspective, we have to address the future, and the future to me is option 4, which will protect our court system and protect our citizens,” said Commissioner Berkbigler.

2. Washoe County Juvenile Services Department receives Community Corrections Partnership Block Grant. Commissioners approved a Community Corrections Partnership Block Grant from the State of Nevada Department of Health and Human Services to the Washoe County Juvenile Justice Programs Office in the amount of $317,101.36. The grant funds will provide treatment and programming including counseling, mental health care and substance abuse treatment.

The Washoe County Department of Juvenile Services provides treatment, programming, board and care to referred Washoe County youth.

3. Update on the County Manager recruitment process. Ms. Heather Renschler from Ralph Anderson and Associates, the search firm contracted for the position recruitment, provided an update on the County Manager recruitment process. The recruitment is currently underway and Commissioners approved the request to keep the position open until August 15, 2019.

Ralph Anderson & Associates has been contracted to conduct the recruitment for a new Washoe County Manager with formal appointment by the Board expected in fall of 2019.


Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »
Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »