Las Vegas Sun

September 25, 2017

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City government:

Council to decide fate of liquor stores, whether it wants its own reality TV show

Alcohol-related issues at the Fremont Street Experience and the Fremont East District downtown have reached a boiling over point in recent months, and on Wednesday, the Las Vegas City Council will weigh in when it considers three applications for new liquor stores in the area.

The council at its regular meeting also will discuss allowing film crews to document city staff for a potential reality television show.

The council meets at 9:15 a.m. Wednesday at City Hall, 495 S. Main St.

Drinking downtown

With concerns of underage drinking and the easy availability of alcohol downtown growing, separate applications to open three new liquor stores under the Fremont Street Experience canopy drew a concerted protest from a coalition of business and casino representatives from the area during a July Planning Commission meeting.

Their opposition and concerns about an “oversaturation” of liquor outlets on Fremont Street led to a split vote from planning commissioners, resulting in a de facto denial.

Council members will make the final decision whether to allow the new liquor stores, but first they’ll have to try to define the concept of how much access is too much.

Ready for a close-up

California-based Discovery Studios wants to partner with the city to create a reality television show documenting the day-to-day workings of City Hall.

The show, tentatively titled “Vegas 24-7,” would be a “behind-the-scenes look at Las Vegas,” according to a city report.

No city employee would be required to participate in the show, but if the council approves the item Wednesday, it will allow crews to begin filming to put together a 10-minute “sizzle reel” to shop to prospective networks.

If the show is picked up, the city would receive $5,000 per episode for the first 13 episodes, with payment escalating for any future productions.

Tee time

Prominent local golf course developer Billy Walters is seeking to extend the 50-year lease his company signed in 1998 to manage Desert Pines Golf Course in east Las Vegas.

The potential lease extension could keep Walters’ company, Nature Golf Inc., in control of the course, built on 98-acres of city-owned land near Bonanza and Pecos roads, through 2088.

The item initially was supposed to be decided in July but was delayed while legal issues were ironed out.

One item complicating the lease extension is the payment for water used to irrigate the course. The water is provided by the city as part of the initial lease agreement. The city spends about $650,000 annually to maintain the reclamation facility to provide that water but is attempting to drive down that cost, in part by renegotiating how much the golf course pays for the water it uses.

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