Top headlines from the Board of County Commissioners Meeting

by | May 10, 2023

The following are highlights from today’s Washoe County Board of County Commissioners meeting:    

1. Board introduces code amendment to expand availability of daycares: In response to the pressing need for daycare options in our community, the Board introduced a first reading of code amendments related to daycare facilities in Washoe County. County staff developed the amendments after holding a community workshop and presenting them to the Planning Commission. The amendments include:

  • Provide clarity on single-family accessory uses;  
  • Allow Child Care, Family Daycare use type within the General Rural and Neighborhood Commercial regulatory zones;  
  • Allow Large-Family Daycare use type with an Administrative Permit instead of a Special Use Permit in the Neighborhood Commercial Regulatory Zone;  
  • Allow Personal Services use type within the Industrial and Public and Semi-Public Facilities regulatory zones;  
  • Include information technology services within the definition of the Administrative Offices use type;  
  • Include contractors’ office with or without an equipment yard as an example of the Construction Sales and Services use type;  
  • Create a definition for “security fence” and provide standards for allowing security fencing on parcels of land that do not have an established main use;  
  • Allow for tall specialty fencing for uses such as ballparks and sports fields; and  
  • Place Communication Facilities in the “Civic” rather than the “Commercial” use table.

“I think staff has done an amazing job of listening to the direction of the Board to make daycare easier, and that is one portion of this,” Chair Alexis Hill said. “And with Mother’s Day coming up, that’s just an added bonus.” 

A public hearing and second reading will be set for June 13, 2023.  

2. Board approves District Special Funds for District 3: Commissioner Mariluz Garcia recommended $15,000 in District 3 Special Funds for three local nonprofit organizations:

  • $5,000 for Soulful Seeds to support the cost of construction at the community garden at Our Place, the county’s women’s and family’s homeless campus.  

“Our purpose is to teach people to grow, cultivate, harvest, and cook what is grown at that site, and we’re able to do that, thanks for support from Washoe County,” Soulful Seeds President and Cofounder Earstin Whitten said. “That garden has already had a tremendous impact. Almost 15,000 pounds of food was delivered last year, and we had 870 hours of volunteer time, almost a quarter of which was from individuals living at Our Place.” 

  • $5,000 for Shades of Queening, to support upcoming workshops that promote mental health awareness and intergenerational dialogue. Shades of Queening is focused on uplifting, empowering, and supporting Black women of all ages in northern Nevada.  

“This money is going to help us expand to reach more people, and there is such a need in the community for our Black women and girls,” Shades of Queening Cofounder KaPreace Young said. “This is everyone coming together, and I understand the need to create spaces for women who look like me.” 

  • $5,000 for Upstate Nevada, a fully functioning CrossFit gym that provides reduce or free memberships for adults and children with physical or cognitive disabilities and their family members, as well as “Everyday Heroes,” the first-responders in our community.  

“I can’t thank you enough for honoring us with a donation of this amount,” Upstate Nevada Board Member Tom Jameson said. “We currently have group classes for Everyday Heroes, and we have a WCSD program that offers free weekly CrossFit classes for kids with cognitive and physical impairments.”  

3. Board reappoints member to Planning Commission: The Board of County Commissioners approved the reappointment of Kathryn S. Nelson to the Washoe County Planning Commission representing District 2. Her four-year term will begin July 1 and end June 30, 2027.

“I recommended her, based on her track record and people who worked with her on the Planning Commission, they were pleased with her work, so I recommended her,” Commissioner Mike Clark said.