Cutting Services and Raising Taxes

MirrorIt was reported in last week’s Pahrump Mirror that Nye County will have to cut programs and that the Town of Pahrump may be raising property taxes.

As to the County Assistant Nye County Manager Pam Webster for some “direction” from the Nye County Commissioners so that the county staff will know what to do. “Her request was met with stunned silence and floundering questions for the most part,” according to Caitlyn May of the Mirror. It is being contemplated that D.A.R.E. program is in danger of extinction. Additionally under the gun is the “sheriff’s summer games program, animal control, and senior nutrition, along with the veteran’s services program.

The DARE program is a preventive program. Its aim is to equip our youth with the skills to resist peer pressure to experiment with and use harmful drugs and membership in gangs. “One of the unique features of Project D.A.R.E. is the use of specially-trained, uniformed police officers as instructors. The officers visit 5th and/or 6th grade classes,” according to the Nye County Sheriff’s Office website. They also encourage parents to participate along with their children.

Want to continue the DARE program or toss it as an unnecessary public expense? As with most things in our lives there is controversy over the effectiveness of the DARE program. Researchers at Indiana University in 1992 “found that those who completed the D.A.R.E. program subsequently had significantly higher rates of hallucinogenic drug use than those not exposed to the program.” The Department of Education in California issued a report that none of California’s drug education programs, including DARE, did not work. A 10-year study of the DARE program by the American Psychological Association in 2006 concluded, “Although there were some measured effects shortly after the program on the attitudes of the students towards drug use, these effects did not seem to carry on long term.” The U.S. General Accountability Office concluded in 2003 “the program was sometimes counterproductive in some populations, with those who graduate from D.A.R.E. later having higher rates of drug use.”

Makes one wonder whether the Sheriff’s DARE program works any better. Perhaps Sheriff DeMeo might help the Nye County Commissioners with an unbiased analysis of his own DARE program.

I tried to locate some information on whatever the “sheriff’s summer games program” was but wasn’t successful.

As to Animal Control (I found on the Nye County website) it “pertains to animal welfare, public health and safety, rabies control, quarantine, animal cruelty investigations, barking dogs, and animals-at-large.” Animal Control provides enforcement of animal related state statutes and all ordinances under both Title 6 of the Nye County Code and Title 18 of the Pahrump Town Ordinances. Therefore, if Nye County can do without those activities I suppose their budget can be cut, but I doubt it, especially when I read

“It’s a fact: Every time a person is born in the United States so are 15 dogs and 45 cats, too many for the number of available homes.” That is a lot of dogs and cats.

Senior Nutrition is also addressed on the Nye County website. The “Nye County Senior Nutrition Program is committed to provide quality nutrition and transportation services to the elderly clients in Amargosa Valley, Beatty, Gabbs, Smoky Valley, and Tonopah. (Curiously, Pahrump is not mentioned.) Transportation is provided in Beatty, Gabbs, Smoky Valley, Tonopah, Goldfield, Silver Peak and Fish Lake Valley.

“The program also has a long-distance medical trip program to larger cities for medical appointments.”

Cutting the Senior budget sounds politically risky.

Chopping off Veteran’s Services (also on the County website) would also carry political risks. Nothing would seem more unpatriotic in a County that, while waving the American Flag and chanting support for the troops and honor our hero veterans, would defund that very support and honor from those veterans.

Yes, makes one think that the popular mantra of many in Nevada espousing “No New Taxes” just do not understand what the fallout of that path really entails.

Related posts:

  1. Dissolving Pahrump
  2. Ted Holmes sues Nye County and Officials over his arrest
  3. $58,593 spent in failed run for Nye County District Attorney
  4. Census: Pahrump = 36,441
  5. Coffee and the Papers

About Featheriver

Born and raised in Oklahoma. Improved in California. Out to pasture in Nevada. Born in 1933, Korean War Vet in USAF. Occupation: Criminal Law and Torts. Retired California Lawyer. Now live in Pahrump, Nye County, Nevada.
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