There’s a primary election on June 12, and if you live in Reno and you vote, there will be a lot of choices on there, depending on what part of town you live in. Wards 1, 3, and 5 all have a gaggle of candidates running, plus there is an at-large seat. The City Council is a nonpartisan body, so the top two vote-getters for each seat will advance to the general election, where under current rules, each candidate will have to get a majority of citywide votes to win (which doesn’t make sense, and could change in time for the next election)
There are a lot of candidates running in this race – 27 in total. Some of the candidates are very serious, with professional websites, big signs all over town, name recognition and all that. Some of the candidates have put out only their resume. Some just have their name on the list. A few have put up their own websites with that 1997 look. But there is one thing that matters in this race, as much as personality or name recognition or funding, and that is the issues.
The big thing about issues in a race like this is making sure that the issues the candidates are focused on are issues that they can do something about in the office they’re seeking. A good example is education. Since the school district is at the county level, and the university is at the state level, and the city isn’t exactly rolling in the dough these days, there’s not much the city council can do to improve the quality of education in the area.
On the other hand, the city isn’t exactly rolling in the dough these days. What does the candidate plan to do about that? Where are they on basic things like sidewalks, parks, and neighborhood identity? The relationship between Reno and Washoe County is notoriously toxic. How do they feel about that? The Truckee Meadows has three police departments, multiple fire departments and districts. How do they feel about consolidation?
Patrick Smith sent questions to all the candidates and posted their answers on his site. Brian Duggan has put together a handy-dandy list of the candidates’ websites. We’ll keep watching this race, and report on what we find.