By Allan Litman
It’s been a very interesting and productive 2014. As you know I have been your mayor for the past seven months. As you also know, it was unexpected, at least for me, as I expected to be a councilman for the next five years. I did find the transition fairly easy because of the support and assistance from an outstanding city staff.
As you also may know, there is no mayor 101 class. It’s all OJT. You learn as you go.
I’ll be honest; it’s taken awhile to catch up on the work that had not been done for some month’s prior, but as the New Year starts we should be on schedule to deal with the upcoming issues in a timelier manner.
We have concluded negotiations with our Teamsters local as well as the police union, but as of this article, not the fire union. Hopefully we can resolve some sticking points and move forward soon.
Medical marijuana is moving ahead, and although controversial, will provide many new jobs in Mesquite and considerable revenue is anticipated for the future years, of course, only time will tell, as this is a first for Nevada and our community. I feel comfortable that our police and legal system will keep a close eye on this industry and all will go as planned.
The long anticipated 118 on and off ramps for the I-15 should be started shortly with a completion date around 18-24 months. I am encouraged that this will bring needed business to Mesquite and the surrounding area.
I am also encouraged that our population is growing again after a decline for several years. Last year we grew just over four percent and it should be about the same this year. I don’t foresee the rapid growth years of 2000-2006, but that’s probably a good thing. I’m not sure we were prepared for it.
Awhile back I wrote an article about how I wanted to be upfront about the state of the city and asked for suggestions we could look at to make Mesquite a more prosperous community and provide the needed services we have come to expect. I was amazed when I was told by some of our residents that being honest’ is not the best policy. I will always beg to differ on that one. As I said, I called out to the public for constructive ideas. For those who responded with any ideas I thank you, and am looking carefully at every suggestion.
In January we will be holding two all day planning sessions open to the public. From these sessions I hope we can start to plan better for our future as we grow up. As cities go, we are very young, and to quote an old saying, “Rome was not built in a day.”
In conclusion, I see a very bright future for Mesquite, but we as a community needs to take a hard look at who we are and what we want Mesquite to be, establish attainable goals and devote ourselves to achieving them. I’m looking forward to the challenges of the coming years and with your help becoming the best Small city in America. I know it’s doable. I’m very fortunate to be mayor of Mesquite. I have faith in the residents of this city and know that they too want this to be the best it can be for themselves and their families.