Top headlines from the Board of County Commissioners meeting
Commissioners approve lease to house hundreds of area’s homeless on one campus.

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Amy Ventetuolo

Reno, Nev. October 9, 2018. The following report highlights several important agenda items from the Washoe County Board of Commissioners meeting:

1. Board of County Commissioners approve lease for future Northern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services campus. The Board of County Commissioners approved a 10-year lease between the State of Nevada and the Washoe County Human Services Agency (HSA) to renovate nearly a dozen buildings at the Northern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services campus (NNAMHS) in Sparks. The purpose for the lease is to shelter and serve hundreds of the region’s homeless and to expand the successful Crossroads program.

nnamhsThe Nevada Department of Health and Human Services will lease the buildings to HSA to significantly expand county programs at the NNAMHS campus, located at 480 Galletti Way in Sparks. Homeless women, children, pregnant women and families that are currently staying at the Community Assistance Center in downtown Reno will move to the new NNAMHS campus early next year, where they will receive shelter, critical services and specialized programming. In addition, the NNAMHS campus programming will result in additional beds becoming available at the downtown Reno shelter on Record St. for homeless males. HSA will begin remodeling the NNAMHS buildings this fall, with plans to open early in 2019.

“Washoe County is extremely appreciative of the State of Nevada, especially Governor Sandoval and his visionary staff for their partnership in furthering our mission to provide a safe, secure and healthy community. Our goal is to confront and address the root causes of homelessness by providing an option that goes beyond a warm meal and bed for a night,” said Director of HSA Amber Howell. “Building on the existing county services at NNAMHS, we are excited to provide additional capacity at this safe and secure campus so that these individuals and families may succeed; we are striving for this to be a national model.”

The NNAMHS lease goes before the State of Nevada Board of Examiner’s Nov. 13, 2018 for final approval.

Why NNAMHS Campus is Needed?

Homelessness in Washoe County has grown dramatically in recent years, due to lack of affordable housing, increased substance abuse, domestic violence and mental health conditions. The Community Assistance Center on Record St. is a regional collaboration between the City of Reno, the City of Sparks and Washoe County; Washoe County pays more than $2 million a year for the Community Assistance Center. From January 2017 through October 2017, the Community Assistance Center saw a 60 percent increase in the number of people served, creating a void in services to our region’s homeless.

Our region wishes to provide additional mental health and substance abuse services for homeless to stabilize the individual and offer a different path. The separation of the populations will provide a youth-friendly space for children, which is required to support a learning environment as well as allowing families to remain together. This will also create additional space for social and recreational opportunities for children and adults by having two campuses.

What Will NNAMHS Campus Offer?

  • Serve 225 people total including 150 homeless
  • Family homeless shelter
  • Shelter for homeless women
  • Shelter for homeless post-partum
  • Homeless shelter and learning center
  • Senior Adult Daycare building (Daybreak)
  • Independent living and substance abuse rehab building
  • Three cottages for young women, funded through Grace Church
  • Mobile pantry and access to a commercial Kitchen
  • Case Managers from Volunteers of America and the Human Services Agency

 “There are defining moments when working on issues such as homelessness, where we need to take a pause and say this is really significant, and this is one of those times,” says County Manager, John Slaughter.

2. Commissioners direct staff to move forward with a Charters of Freedom educational project. An educational project is being proposed by the non-profit organization, Foundation Forward Inc., who seeks to provide easy public access for all to enjoy the Charters of Freedom: the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights, to educate and preserve American history.

Commissioners approved moving forward with the foundation to establish a Charters of Freedom educational project on the north side of the historic courthouse, near the WWII monument in a plaza-like setting.  Once design and funding for the project has been established the project will return to the Board of Commissioners for final approval.

A rendering of the potential project on display:

Courtesy of L.A.Studios, Sparks, Nv

3. Appointments to Boards and Committees. Commissioners approved the following re-appointments for various Boards & Commissions:

4. Commissioners approve Washoe County Treasurer’s Office upcoming delinquent property auction. Commissioners authorized the Washoe County Treasurer, Tammi Davis, to auction all delinquent lands held in trust. Per Nevada law and Washoe County Code, the annual delinquent property tax auction allows all properties held in trust by the Treasurer to be placed for auction. There are 102 total tax delinquent parcels listed, government entities have requested that four parcels be withheld, and after proper notification, the other 98 parcels will be sold on April 24, 2019, if not redeemed.



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Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »