Las Vegas Sun

October 19, 2019

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Outgoing Las Vegas council members Tarkanian, Coffin recognized for service

Tark farewell to council

Sun Staff

Mayor Pro Tempore Lois Tarkanian gives a farewell speech during her final Las Vegas City Council meeting. She’s joined by other members of the council, including the retiring Bob Coffin (immediate right).

The city of Las Vegas said goodbye to two longtime elected officials at today's city council meeting.

Two-term Ward 3 Councilman Bob Coffin and three-term Ward 1 Councilwoman and Mayor Pro Tempore Lois Tarkanian received personalized send-offs from Mayor Carolyn Goodman in recognition of their service. Elected in 2011, Coffin opted not to seek reelection for a third and final term, while Tarkanian, who won a special election in 2005, hit her three-term limit.

In honoring Tarkanian, Goodman noted that she previously worked as a teacher and served on the Clark County School District Board of Trustees, reflecting her longtime dedication to residents.

“There aren’t enough words to describe this woman’s commitment to this community and the greater good of its citizens,” Goodman said.

The mayor praised Coffin for his “wise-cracking” humor and devotion to issues of importance to him, such as legalizing and generating revenue from recreational marijuana and addressing homelessness in Ward 3.

In a pre-recorded video message, Goodman even presented a bundle of cannabis to the camera and directed Coffin to continue fighting to bring the revenue generated from local and state marijuana taxes and fees to educational needs.

“You have been the king of pot in my own estimation,” she said.

Tarkanian thanked her family and staff, whom she credited for helping her to develop a new Medical District in her ward and to establish neighborhood associations, among other accomplishments.

“It’s not the paycheck that’s the main thing to most of these people, it’s because they love the city and they take the extra step to do a great job,” Tarkanian said of all city staff.

Coffin thanked his family, staff and supporters, adding that working for the city gave him valuable insight on the value of local government. Coffin served in the Nevada Senate and Assembly prior to joining the council.

“In my 28 years in the legislature I thought I knew it all, but I didn’t, and I learned here how local government works and how it is so critical to the daily needs and problems of everybody,” Coffin said.

He left his fellow councilors and residents with a word of advice: There are no permanent enemies in politics.

“Remember that, because that is how life should be,” he said. “We have to regroup and coalesce and work with people of like-minds.”

Tarkanian and Coffin will be succeeded by former city employee Brian Knudsen and former state assemblywoman Olivia Diaz, respectively. They will be sworn in at the next council meeting July 3.