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Stadium, Trafficking and Awards

1 Thanks to the time-bending effect of magazine lead time, we’re writing this stadium-story update precisely as the hastily assembled Legislature in Carson City pretends to debate the merits of public financing for the Sheldome. But you’re reading it after lawmakers have gently applied the preordained rubber stamp. You know a grim finality we have yet to experience. Envy us! Envy our not-yet-entirely-crushed hope that reason will triumph! Our hope that the project will be kicked back to Vegas for the scrutiny it should get. Because, as noted by folks we’ll call “experts,” quoted in Alan Snel’s deft analysis of the stadium-approval process in our October issue, this has unfolded on an extraordinarily speedy timeline — almost as if Nevada officials had to meet a deadline for deliverables. *Adelson glances at watch.* Snel’s piece was an attempt to wedge some useful perspective into what’s been a fairly closed, echo-chamberish “process.”

Some readers appreciated Snel’s effort, and their frustration percolated on social media: “With all these Casino Moguls, I don’t understand why the public needs to pay a dime, so annoying!” “Wonder if the Raiders will stay for more than 5 years ... what will we do with that stadium?”

Good question! Maybe the Property Brothers could renovate and flip it?

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Reader Craig A. Ruark posted on “If the Raiders want to play football in Vegas, and if Adelson and Majestic want to pay for the stadium, then let them pay for it. ...
If it makes money, good for them and their investment. If it loses money like most stadiums, then, OH WELL, it was their money to lose.

“Don’t put this elephant on the backs of the public.”

Oh, such magical thinking! The willful conflation of a mogul’s personal desire with “the public good” — that, Mr. Ruark, is Nevada politics at its most Nevada.

Anyway, it’s too late. The Legislature just voted. Here comes the elephant!


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2 Also in the October issue, Heidi Kyser looked at efforts to prevent child sex-trafficking, such as nonprofits that teach kids to recognize predators. It’s a topic that is both urgently of the moment and sadly timeless. “Really powerful piece,” Christa Eagleton wrote on Facebook. “The Wish List” — a sidebar on child-protection measures experts say are needed immediately — “was painful to read. I never knew that some of the teachers took on that responsibility. Wow.”

“Good story!” Corbet Campbell wrote. “A problem that is too complex to ‘solve’ by arresting the woman.”


3 Department of Aw-Shucks Self-Congratulation: In September, at the annual gathering of the Nevada Press Association, Desert Companion was recognized with a first-place award for Explanatory Journalism in the Magazine category, for Hugh Jackson’s forward-looking essay examining Nevada’s economic outlook, “About those exciting jobs of tomorrow.” (His conclusion: not good.) Editor Andrew Kiraly took third-place honors in the same category for his look at the ramifications of Sheldon Adelson buying the Review-Journal. (His conclusion: not good.) And the moving report by contributor Kimberly McGee, titled “I’m a real boy,” about raising a transgender child, won second place in the “Best Nonstaff Story” and was singled out for praise by judges. Congratulations to all three! You can sit in our stadium skybox anytime.