We recently shared our frustrations with Storey County Administration in what we considered to be stonewalling our request for information about the zoning of Mustang Ranch (which you can read here). Additionally, we question the residency status of two public officials; County Commissioner Lance Gilman and Planning Commissioner Kris Thompson.
Our investigation seeks information and answers to issues posed below:
The actual residence of Mr. Gilman and Mr. Thompson
- In documents provided to County Clerk Vanessa Stephens, Gilman and Thompson list 5 Wild Horse Canyon and 56 Wild Horse Canyon Drive as their legal residences.
- According to Assessor Jana Seddon, these addresses are associated with two sides of a doublewide trailer on blocks behind the swimming pool of The Mustang Ranch Brothel.
- According to Mr. Thompson and Mr. Gilman, they are bunkmates in the doublewide
- If Mr. Thompson indeed lives in the doublewide, according to Storey County Ordinance, he needs a work card. Our sniffing around suggests such a work card does not exist. As Brothel owner, if Mr. Gilman actually lives on site, he doesn’t need a work card.
- According to common sense combined with functioning neural synapses, one of the wealthiest men in Northern Nevada doesn’t put head to pillow within earshot of the transactional action going down near his alleged, less than 1000 square foot half doublewide.
- According to everyone and their mothers, Mr. Gilman lives in Reno
- If these moms are to be believed, Mr. Gilman can’t legally hold office as Storey County Commissioner.
The Zoning of Mustang Ranch
- If the Ranch is zoned residential, then it is legal to claim it as their legal residence.
- If the Ranch is zoned anything other than residential, it is illegal to claim it as a legal residence.
- If the Ranch is zoned anything other than residential, people may be able to “sleep” with each other for 20-30 minutes, but not overnight.
- If the zoning ordinances are ignored by impotent people, why should the rest of us pay any attention to them?
The Criminal Complaint of Cheating and Lying
- If Gilman and Thompson live there, they are in violation of county ordinance and subject to misdemeanor criminal conduct (cheating).
- If Gilman and Thompson don’t live there, they are guilty of perjury when they filled out proof of residency forms (lying)
- If Gilman and Thompson exist in a parallel universe of Storey County immune from the trivial annoyances of law, code and ordinance compliance, why can’t the rest of us teleport to that universe so we can chill with them and ignore the rules too?
Stonewalling and Restricting the Free Flow of Public Information
Earlier this month I sent Assistant County Manager, Human Resources Manager, Planning Director, Master Plan Point Man and Man of Mystery Austin Osborne an email asking why it has taken him six months past the five days required by Nevada Revised Statute (NRS) to respond to my innocuous question, “What is the zoning for 5 and 56 Wild Horse Canyon Drive?”
He referred me to the email response made within the five-day time frame prescribed by NRS telling me he and Kathy Canfield were looking into the matter. I reminded him that telling me he was busy and that he would get back to me may technically satisfy NRS, but it didn’t actually answer the question.
I advised him that I was still waiting for an official reply.
I shared that in May I wandered into the Community Development Department and walked out with a printout saying Mustang Ranch was zoned industrial.
I sent him, DA Langer and Battle Born Consuting LLC principal Gary Hames the email below which finally produced an (amazing) answer to my super simple question “What is the zoning on the Mustang Ranch?”.
This is the only response to the above email full of questions posed in part by conversations with you, gentle reader.
Storey County District Attorney and Nevada Attorney General, the enforcement arms of criminal charges, are church mouse quiet.
Battle Born Consulting’s Gary Hames, Chief Enforcement Officer of Storey County code violations (but not an actual Storey County employee), drools asleep at the wheel.
Mr. Osborne includes two incredible, mind-blowing six-word sentences scribbled into his grudged email:
- The subject property is zoned Agriculture.
- The matter is being addressed otherwise.
Whisky. Tango. Foxtrot.
The Mustang Ranch is zoned “Agriculture”. What does that even mean?
Astonished, I called two other jurisdictions who license brothels; Lyon and Nye Counties. The Community Development Office in Lyon County (operated by actual county employees and not empty suited, unqualified crony “consultants”) advised me that the 4 licensed brothels operate under a strict and carefully constructed county zoning ordinance; Ordinance X. Additionally these brothels function under an equally strict Special Use Permit (SUP) that is regularly reviewed and is reviewed regularly.
Nye County regulates brothels under similar sober-minded and careful attention. They take their jobs seriously and construct an ordinance that serves the constituents of the county carefully.
What these two counties don’t have is the owner of any of these brothels seated as County Commissioner.
But not here in Storey County. No Sir. We zone our brothels “Agriculture”
If this doesn’t plop the reality that the self-serving self-interests of the Owner of the Mustang Ranch and County Commissioner Lance Gilman trump the interests of the residents and taxpayers of Storey County smack dab into the broadest of dazzling daylight, what does?
Keep walking, people. There’s nothing to see here…
The Next Sentence Is Just As Bizzare; “The matter is being addressed otherwise.”
What in God’s Green Earth does this mean? Austin “The Master of Opacity” Osborne could not be less clear.
Sounds like they plan on “fixing” the matter in some happy quiet little way under the cloak of invisibility.
- Are they going to rezone the property?
- Are they going to give the County Commissioner and his boy wonder an exclusion?
- Are they going to approve a friendly little SUP?
- Are they going to look the other way?
- Will everyone else get to have their trivial infractions fixed with expensive county employee labor?
- Are they going to stand on their heads while consulting the Magic 8-Ball?
- All of the above?
Nothing would surprise me.
The Double Standard is Alive and Well For County Commissioner Gilman and Planning Commissioner Thompson
People tell me that Storey County maintains two standards separating the people who think they own this county from the ones who actually do.
People also tell me this fact doesn’t sit well with them.
It doesn’t sit well with me.
It shouldn’t sit well with you, either.
As the countdown to the next election cycle ticks off, it’s stuff like this that makes us take inventory of our leadership.
I suggest you ask the simple question; Are our leaders conducting Storey County Business with your and my interest or self-interest at heart?
Next November I guess we’ll know our answer.