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Governor Steve Sisolak seeking to amplify Nevada’s economy

Craig von Collenberg
Office of Workforce Innovation

Today, Governor Steve Sisolak announced the appointment of Craig von Collenberg of Las Vegas to be the new director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Innovation (OWINN). Von Collenberg’s first day will be April 22, 2019.

“Craig is a visionary leader and passionate advocate for apprenticeship and workforce development,” Gov. Sisolak said. “His dedication to preparing Nevada’s students for success in a 21st-century workforce and his extensive firsthand experience as an apprenticeship graduate who went on to a successful career in sheet metal work make him an excellent choice to lead OWINN as it gives a new generation of Nevadans the skills they need to be competitive in a global economy.”

Von Collenberg has served as the director of apprenticeship studies at College of Southern Nevada (CSN) since 2013, where he oversees CSN’s 17 traditional apprenticeship programs that provide college credits and degree pathways for apprenticeship students. Previously, he oversaw workplace safety at two Las Vegas-based contractors and served as a lead instructor at Sheet Metal Local 88 JATC for five years. Von Collenberg received his certificate of achievement in sheet metal trades with high honors from CSN and holds a Bachelor of Arts in labor education from the National Labor College in Silver Spring, MD and a Master of Science in marriage, family, and child counseling from the University of Phoenix.

OWINN helps drive a skilled, diverse, and aligned workforce in the state of Nevada by promoting cooperation and collaboration among all entities focused on workforce development. Its chief objectives are to prepare all K-12 students for college and career success, increase the number of Nevadans with postsecondary degrees and credentials, and boost employment outcomes in training and credentialing programs.

Pedestrian struck in a crosswalk – SPD still looking for the driver

March 27th at about 7:15 p.m. Sparks Police officers responded to the intersection of Simms Dr. and York for a Hit and Run accident. On scene officers met with the victim, who said he was crossing at this intersection when he was struck by a vehicle. The driver did not stop to assess what happened or to render aid. The driver simply drove off. The vehicle was described as a newer, dark green or black Honda passenger car. The victim was not able to see the license plate of the vehicle or the driver.

The vehicle may have front end damage.

The victim was transported to a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries. If you witnessed the accident or have information about the accident, you are encouraged to contact the Sparks Police or Secret Witness.

Sparks’ new city manager sworn in this week…

Newly appointed City Manager Neil Krutz (bow tie) holding the official record of his promotion awarded to him by the City Council.

Sparks City Council made it official – absolutely in writing – that he has been appointed to be the city’s new City Manager. Neil Krutz has spent much of his adult life working for the City of Sparks in a number of strategically important positions. He succeeds the retiring Steve Driscoll who had been with the city since 1994.

According to a city announcement…Mr. Krutz arrived at the City in July 1997, beginning his Sparks career in the design and construction division of the public works department.

Among his early capital project assignments was the gravel-pit-to-beach project, now lovingly called the Sparks Marina Park. He has served in many roles for the City during his 21+ year tenure including serving as Assistant City Manager from April 2016 to March 2019. Mr. Krutz was appointed City Manager by Mayor Ron Smith and confirmed by the Sparks City Council in February 2019. The promotion was made official Monday.

His 21+ years of local government experience includes 19 years in management of land use, infrastructure, utilities and development. He is experienced in multiple forms of public finance administration including tax increment, local improvement district, sales tax anticipated revenue bonding programs and impact fee program creation and administration.

Mr. Krutz is recognized as a Credentialed Manager through the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and is licensed to practice Civil Engineering in both Nevada and California. He is a three-time graduate of the University of Nevada, Reno having received Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Civil Engineering and Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering degrees. Mr. Krutz joined the city after working for consulting engineering firms in northern Nevada where he completed civil, geotechnical and mining facility design work.

Mr. Krutz’s experience with the City of Sparks is complimented by his commitment to continuing professional development. He has participated in Harvard Law School’s Program on Negotiation continuing education programs, where he honed the values of utilizing interactions as opportunities to meet everyone’s needs while preserving public safety. He continues professional education through Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government where he has studied driving government performance and leadership decision making.

Neil is enthusiastically committed to carrying out the City Council’s vision of Sparks as the city of choice for residents, businesses and visitors. His personal beliefs are capped with two mantras: to always be truthful, and to treat people how you want to be treated. He’s also known to mutter “you can only manage what you measure.”

City Manager Neil Krutz succeeds the former Sparks City Manager Steve Driscoll who served as assistant city manager starting in 2000 and then city manager since 2014.

Late winter storm to roar through this evening, then head off east tomorrow

A winter storm warning is up for Lake Tahoe and the Sierra above 7,000 feet until 11pm Thursday. 1-2 feet of new snow is expected.

Travel in the higher elevations of the Sierra is strongly discouraged.

Valleys will experience gusty winds 30-40mph along with a few rain showers – possibly an isolated thunderstorm. The storm moves eastward tomorrow with greatly improved travel weather by Friday and the weekend.

When drones can out run an ambulance to a heart attack victim…

Drone carrying the re-gifting of life…

Imagine if you will, a Sparks resident way up the valley toward Pyramid Lake, suffers a heart attack and falls to the ground. His wife frantically calls 9-1-1 and REMSA paramedics jump into their ambulance and roar off north on Pyramid Lake Highway. But it’s going to take some time to get to the victim.

Simultaneously a large flying drone is launched towing a heart defibrillator and it’s heading for the victim’s home. It’s flying at 100 mph in a straight line to the victim. It lands 8 minutes ahead of the ambulance which could be the difference between life and death.

Waiting for the ambulance is the wife who may already be performing CPR. She is certified by the Red Cross. But chances are she’s not. So the 9-1-1 dispatcher teaches her CPR over the phone. In a few minutes the drone lands. The wife runs over – picks off the heart defibrillator – and the 9-1-1 dispatcher instructs her how to hook it up to her husband – and turn it on. Six minutes later the ambulance pulls up and takes over. The man’s life is saved.

Such a life-saving service was presented to the Sparks City Council monday. A drone operations company called Flirtey, based in Reno, told the council it is one of ten drone companies nationwide that are certified to set up such a medical drone service in their communities.

Flirtey Government Relations Director Jason Riederer told the council that their drone service is at least 18 months away from start up. But when it’s launched it should increase five-fold the number of heart attack victims who survive thanks to Flirtey.

Here’s a video that Flirtey has produced to give their future customers a sense of how it all comes together. Click here.

Nevada gets $3.7 Million to fight opioid abuse and addiction

Fatal dose of opioid fentanyl – Wikipedia

Federal government awards additional $487 million to states and territories to expand access to effective opioid treatment. Nevada gets $3.7 Million to help fight the surge of opiods abuse and addiction.

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released an additional $487 million to supplement first-year funding through its State Opioid Response (SOR) grant program. The awards to states and territories are part of HHS’s Five-Point Opioid Strategy and the Trump administration’s tireless drive to combat the opioid crisis.

Together with the $933 million in second-year, continuation awards to be provided under this program later this year, the total amount of SOR grants to states and territories this year will total more than $1.4 billion.

This funding will expand access to treatment that works, especially to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) with appropriate social supports.

“One year ago this week, the federal government launched its national opioid initiative, which called for expanding access to compassionate, evidence-based treatment. This week’s funding awards to states were possible because of legislation Congress passed and President Trump signed since then,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “Our strategy is beginning to produce results, thanks to so many Americans working on the ground, in their own communities, to turn the tide on this crisis.”

The State Opioid Response grants aim to address the opioid crisis by increasing access to MAT using the three Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved medications for the treatment of opioid use addiction, reducing unmet treatment need, and reducing opioid overdose-related deaths through the provision of prevention, treatment and recovery activities for opioid addiction.

“Strategies such as employing psychosocial supports, community recovery services and MAT using medicines approved by the FDA constitute the gold standard of treatment for opioid addiction” said Dr. Elinore F. McCance-Katz, Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use.

Last summer, SAMHSA announced the first year of SOR funding. States and territories received funding based on a formula, with a 15 percent set-aside for the 10 states with the highest mortality rates related to drug overdose deaths.

Other funding, including $50 million for tribal communities under the Tribal Opioid Response has been awarded separately. These programs are built from the foundations laid in the $1 billion provided to states and territories through SAMHSA’s Opioid State Targeted Response (STR) program.

SAMHSA also operates a 24/7, national Helpline that people can call to find treatment referral resources for mental health or substance use addictions: 800-662-HELP (4357). People can also visit https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/ to locate those resources.

Sparks looking for driver that hit Wedekind road pedestrian

On 3/22/19 at approximately 1600 hours, a 16-year-old juvenile was walking westbound on the north side of Wedekind Rd. near Farrel Ross Dr. in Sparks. The juvenile was walking on the dirt shoulder of the roadway out of the travel lane. The juvenile was struck by a black SUV, also westbound on Wedekind Rd., that had veered away from the travel lane. The juvenile was flung into the dirt and sustained minor non-life threatening injuries. The driver of the black SUV did not stop to render aid and continued westbound on Wedekind Rd. The juvenile was assisted by unidenitified witnesses driving a red SUV, who made sure the juvenile was not seriously injured; then, attempted to follow the suspect vehicle. The identity of the driver of the suspect vehicle, further description of the suspect vehicle, and the identity of the witnesses are unknown.

The Sparks Police Department is asking for the public’s assistance with the identity of the vehicle and driver involved. The good samaritans who stopped to help the juvenile and attempted to locate the suspect vehicle is also encouraged to come forward and contact the Sparks Police Department.

Individuals with information should call Sparks Dispatch at 775-353-2231 or Secret Witness.

Crash kills motorcyclist at Sullivan and Byrd in Sparks

Thursday evening at about 5:46 p.m. Sparks Police Department Communications began to receive numerous calls about a motorcycle v. vehicle accident. When officers arrived they located the accident at the intersection of Sullivan Ln and Byrd. Sparks Fire Department and Remsa also arrived on scene to conduct life saving measures on the rider of the motorcycle. The rider was identified as Stephen Aufdenkamp, 23 year old Reno resident. Stephen was pronounced deceased at the scene. Sparks Police MAIT (Major Accident Investigation Team) is conducting the investigation. This is an ongoing investigation.

The driver of the involved vehicle remained on scene and is cooperating with our investigation. The driver’s name for the involved vehicle is not being released. It is unknown if alcohol or drugs were involved; however, speed may be a factor.

Fire at 1855 El Ranch – Dryer Fire – it’s out…

Report of a fire at a large apartment complex on El Rancho turned out to be a dryer fire. The fire was out by the time the fire department got there. Firefighter are making sure the fire is dead out and that the dryer is taken off line until it’s repaired.

Armed Robbery at CES in Reno

Reno Police say three black females held up CES on the west side of Reno and fled in a Gold Honda Mini-Van…an Odyssey. Unknown direction of travel. The mini-van had a California plate 8GK095 or something close to it. If you see this vehicle call 9-1-1.

Reno Police Officer injured and suspect shot in south Reno

South Meadows Parkway
Sparks PD Investigators

Officer Involved Shooting investigation

Wednesday morning at 8:51am officers with the Reno Police Department responded to the 700 block of South Meadows Parkway for a subject reportedly trespassing. The officer found the suspect a short distance away in the 9800 block of Double R Blvd. The suspect was uncooperative, and an altercation ensued resulting in injuries to the officer and the officer discharging his firearm, the bullet striking the suspect.

Additional officers arrived on scene and took the suspect into custody. Police, Fire and Medics provided medical aid to the officer and the suspect. Both were transported to a local area hospital for treatment.

The officer is in stable condition, while the condition of the suspect is still being evaluated by medical personnel. Police say they appreciate the community support and patience during this ongoing investigation. There are no outstanding suspects or victims.

The Regional Officer Involved Shooting Protocol was enacted, assigning Sparks Police detectives to the investigation along with assistance of detectives of the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office.

At the conclusion of the investigation, a full report will be turned over to the Washoe County District Attorney’s Office for review, all according to the Officer-Involved Shooting Protocol.

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