In response to a front page article August 7,  in the Review Journal on Mesquite stating that the recent influx of people as new residents is altering the local ambience, I would like to make my comments regarding the story and set the record straight on some of the information provided, and the misconceptions readers might get about Mesquite, Nevada.

The article hints that we have come of age with a Starbucks and a Wal-Mart, along with some other fast food establishments. Starbucks has been here for years with the same location in a casino. Wal-Mart has been here about eight or nine years. The billboard with the Starbucks sign is nowhere near a, “sea of tile roofs” as stated in the article.

Yes, we experienced growth from 2011 through 2016, and continue growing at a moderate pace, nothing exceptional, but manageable. The author lists our population at 17,900 according to the census. It’s actually around 20,000 not counting seasonal residents of about 3500.

The article goes on to tell us we are,” largely lacking traffic signals and other fixings of a proper city. I don’t know what he means by fixings, but we have plenty of traffic signals and several more planned. I personally don’t find us lacking much here. We are quite balanced for a city our size.

It is a well-known fact that a city that does not have growth will become stagnant and die. It’s happened all over rural America. Of course, there are some that don’t want any growth, but they are mostly elderly, no longer working, and contribute little. Our younger population deserves more as so many see Mesquite as their future. It’s interesting though because those who tell me they don’t want growth complain that we don’t’ have enough business and available services. You can’t have one without the other. You need a customer base large enough for success.

Projecting ahead is always difficult, but the experts tell me we have adequate water for a population of somewhere between 35,000 and 50,000 residents. If we continue to grow around the same average pace of the past decade, we won’t max out for many years to come.

So the question is, are we a “Little Vegas”? I would say no in every measure of a city. Las Vegas is an exciting major city with a population, if you consider Henderson and North Las Vegas, of nearly 2.2 million. Take out Henderson and North Las Vegas and you still have around 1.5 million. They have the traffic, crime, pollution and all the ills of major cities. We don’t compare or want to.

The lady, quoted in the article, that wants to move her family of nine children to Windsor, California will need all the luck she can get. The median home price in Windsor is about five hundred thousand dollars, taxes, out of control and being only nine miles from Santa Rosa and sixty-three miles from San Francisco, well, just imagine the traffic.

So back to, “little Vegas” Having a few casinos does not make us a, ”little Vegas”. If it does, it’s the smallest version I have ever seen. Yes, the Casa Blanca Resort advertises itself with the slogan, “Just like Vegas used to be”. They are promoting what Las Vegas actually used to be, a place to visit without the stress, crime, traffic and pollution of the big city. In other words, a nice place to visit. I certainly don’t believe they are comparing us to the big city.

Allan S. Litman, Mayor of Mesquite, Nevada