News and Tribune

November 8, 2012

Clark County Commissioners-elect prepare for transition

Coffman, Stephenson asked about Star Hill Road project

By MATT KOESTERS
matt.koesters@newsandtribune.com

CLARK COUNTY — Signs that the transition on the Clark County Board of Commissioners is under way were already starting to show at the commissioners’ regular meeting Thursday.

After quickly getting through a slow administrative agenda, the current commissioners asked Republican commissioners-elect Jack Coffman and Rick Stephenson what they planned to do concerning the ongoing Star Hill Road project in Starlight. Coffman and Stephenson both said a decision hasn’t been made, because they are in the process of getting up to speed on Clark County’s ongoing road work.

“I have plenty of homework to do on Star Hill Road,” Stephenson said. “One of the things to do would be to see how much money we already have invested in it. If we are beyond the point of no return, then the fiscally responsible part would be to finish it. If we’re not, then it is to be reviewed. But I can’t make any determination until I see facts, figures and progress.”

Coffman agreed.

“I’ve talked to people on both sides and everything, and there are concerns about it,” Coffman said. “But at the same time, how far along is it? If there’s any type of conditions there that we need to change something, maybe we will.”

Commissioner Ed Meyer offered his congratulations to Stephenson during the meeting. Stephenson defeated Meyer in Tuesday’s election to represent District 1 on the board of commissioners.

“I think it was a very classy act,” Stephenson said. “... I thought it was very gracious by Ed. He’s been a great public servant for many years, and I hope to fill some big shoes.”

Meyer said he wanted to make sure that the current board doesn’t create problems for the new commissioners.

“That’s why I congratulated him tonight,” Meyer said. “We’re still the commissioners and we’ll do the work, but hopefully there’s nothing I’ll do to step on their toes.”

Commissioner Les Young and Coffman spoke at length after the meeting. Coffman said he expects Young will help him make the transition a smooth one. Coffman defeated Young in the District 2 election.

Stephenson and Coffman are still assembling an agenda for the beginning of the year.

“The first thing we’ll have to start looking at is we’ll have a lot of appointments to make in January,” Coffman said. “Rick and I will be getting a list together. We’ll be looking at all of those appointments, determining what appointees will be replaced and all those boards and things like that. That’s going to be important to the county, to get that going right away.”

Coffman and Stephenson declined to comment about any changes that might be coming to positions that report directly to the commissioners.

As for the current commissioners, they plan on focusing on the work at hand.

“We’ll continue ’til the first of the year with anything that comes up in front of us,” Meyer said.

“Whatever’s brought, we’ll act on it,” Young added. “That’s it.”

Stephenson and Coffman will join District 3 Commissioner John Perkins on the board Jan. 1.