Jenna Waltho was agitated over how native commissioners in a populous a part of Nevada would steamroll decrease advisory boards on key development selections when she declared her candidacy for one of many seats. Now, she is alleging comparable knavery directed her manner for daring to problem her previous boss’s colleague in an election.
Democratic Clark County District A Commissioner Michael Naft appointed Waltho as his planning commissioner final 12 months however efficiently moved to oust her from the submit final month after she knowledgeable him in September about her intent to run in opposition to his Democratic colleague, District F Commissioner Justin Jones.
“They needed to make it arduous for me and decelerate my marketing campaign,” she informed the Washington Examiner. “However that is simply not the case. It is not slowing me down. It is not maintaining me quiet. If something, it is the alternative. And I am nonetheless a voice for the neighbors and [I still] go to city board conferences to be there to help them.”
Clark County, house to Las Vegas and greater than 2 million individuals, is the biggest county in Nevada when it comes to inhabitants. The county has a complete of seven commissioners that oversee county authorities operations. Waltho lives in District F however had been appointed by Naft, who represents District A.
Naft asserted he moved as well Waltho from her function as a result of she has injected politics into the submit. Waltho had been registered as an impartial when he appointed her planning commissioner however grew to become a Republican shortly earlier than she introduced her candidacy final September. All seven of the county’s commissioners are Democrats.
“From my view, I feel she has tried to make use of that function politically, and that’s actually the place that needed to finish for me,” Naft mentioned, according to the Las Vegas Overview-Journal.
Waltho’s time period as planning commissioner, which makes suggestions on land use zoning insurance policies, had been slated to final till January 2025. She was changed by Liane Lee. Waltho mentioned she is unaware of Lee having any prior land use or zoning expertise. The Washington Examiner reached out to the Clark County Planning Division for remark.
Waltho mentioned she had initially been chosen for the planning commissioner function due to her time on the Enterprise City Advisory Board.
In March, the Clark County Fee greenlit an ordinance to make clear that planning commissioners serve on the pleasure of the county’s commissioners, paving the way in which for her ouster. Prior guidelines required a public listening to and a majority vote from the board of commissioners to take away a planning commissioner.
“It appears fairly widespread sense that should you rent someone, it’s best to have the ability to hearth someone,” Naft mentioned in April, according to the Las Vegas Overview-Journal.
Waltho mentioned she was by no means personally given a purpose for her ouster.
“We have seen some issues, however to me personally, he mentioned that ‘this can be no shock to you, however I am shifting in a special route with my planning commissioner,’ and that was all that was mentioned to me,” she recalled.
“I’ve by no means missed a gathering or a briefing, which is essential as a result of, you recognize, there was no purpose to have me eliminated — it was solely completed as a political transfer,” she added.
In an effort to face off in opposition to Jones within the fall, Waltho should first defeat three main main challengers to lock down the Republican nod on June 14.
“There is not any different particular person sitting on that board that is a Republican. There is not any checks and balances of energy. Then, it results in abuse of energy, which we have seen right here with me getting eliminated, however there was no person else to nominate me to the planning fee,” she mentioned.
Waltho cited a number of causes for her resolution to run in opposition to Jones. She believes he has not completed a great job guaranteeing that native infrastructure retains up with new growth initiatives and has failed on public questions of safety.
“There’s lots of points with development occurring too quick in our infrastructure not occurring, after which our transportation options are usually not occurring as properly to maintain up with that,” she mentioned. “We completely need to be a supporter of Metro. We now have to get in there and assist them make their job simpler. They should really feel the help from their elected officers.”
The Washington Examiner repeatedly reached out to Naft and Jones for remark.
Jones was beforehand engulfed in controversy for allegedly orchestrating a “quid professional quo” with Gov. Steve Sisolak (D), who was Naft’s predecessor as District A commissioner. Jones was accused by a growth agency of providing to drop a lawsuit in opposition to the county from his consumer, the environmental group Save Purple Rock, in 2018 in alternate for Sisolak agreeing to delay a vote on a growth challenge, per the Las Vegas Overview-Journal. Sisolak was serving as a county commissioner, although Jones was not a commissioner on the time. The vote was subsequently delayed, and litigation is pending over the matter.