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KUNR Today: Reno City Council to choose Ward 5 finalists during special meeting Thursday

The entrance to Reno City Hall is glass doors with a sign above that read “Reno City Hall.”
Lucia Starbuck
KUNR Public Radio

Read or listen to news headlines for Thursday, August 25, 2022.

Reno City Council to choose Ward 5 finalists during special meeting Thursday
By Lucia Starbuck

Reno City Council will be selecting finalists for the empty Ward 5 seat during a special meeting Thursday. Ward 5 represents northwest Reno, including UNR, Somersett and Verdi.

The seat became vacant earlier this month after former councilmember Neoma Jardon stepped down to take a new job as head of the Downtown Reno Partnership. It’s a nonprofit business improvement district that aims to beautify the downtown area.

City Council voted to appoint a candidate, instead of holding a special election, because they didn’t want the seat open for too long. City staff is recommending that council members choose three finalists, but that number is flexible. Thirty-six people applied for the seat, which is a two-year term. Council members earn nearly $87,000 per year.

There will be two meet-and-greets open to the public next week after the finalists are chosen. Learn more about the appointment process on the City of Reno’s website here.

Washoe County Health District reports 11 cases of monkeypox
By Lucia Starbuck

The Washoe County Health District is reporting 11 cases of monkeypox in the county. The virus is spread through close person-to-person contact. Symptoms can include a rash that looks like pimples or blisters, fever, headache, muscle aches and exhaustion.

Transmission is primarily occurring among men who have sex with men, though anyone can become infected. Health officials are urging people to avoid high-risk activities.

“It's important, for example, to reduce the number of your sexual partners, reconsidering when considering sex with new partners, especially those that you've not known before,” said Dr. Nancy Diao with the health district. “And maybe exchanging contact details with new partners, so enabling you to follow up if needed. Also asking if your partners do have symptoms.”

Diao also said to avoid close contact if you have symptoms of monkeypox, and seek a medical provider right away. In Washoe County, vaccines are only available for confirmed close contacts.

More information about monkeypox in Washoe County can be found here.

COVID-19 trends remain low in Washoe County
By Lucia Starbuck

Washoe County is experiencing low community transmission of COVID-19 under Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. Washoe County Health District Officer Kevin Dick explained the decrease in daily cases.

“Our cases have declined from about 234 in mid-July, down to 61.7 that we have now for our seven-day average,” he said. “We're not seeing impacts to our hospital system from COVID-19.”

At-home tests are not reported. There are 30 people hospitalized with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 in Washoe County. There were twice as many patients at the beginning of the month.

Learn more aboutCOVID-19 vaccinations in Nevada,COVID-19 testing, or view thestate COVID-19 dashboard.

Teen arraigned as adult in Vegas schoolteacher attack case
By The Associated Press

A Las Vegas teenager has pleaded not guilty as an adult to 10 felony charges including attempted murder and sexual assault stemming from an after-school attack on a teacher last April. The boy also faces kidnapping and battery by strangulation charges that could get him up to life in prison in the attack that authorities say left the female teacher unconscious at Eldorado High School. The defendant was 16 when he was arrested and the teacher was hospitalized with multiple unspecified injuries. He remains jailed on $500,000 bail pending trial. A judge on Wednesday set a Sept. 7 date to appoint a deputy public defender to the case.

National Weather Service issues fire weather watch for Reno
By Shelby Herbert

The National Weather Service has issued a fire weather watch for Reno, Fernley and Fallon, which will go into effect from 1-10 p.m. Saturday. The watch also includes Battle Mountain from noon to 10 p.m. Saturday.

This weekend's projected combination of gusty winds and low humidity can cause fires to grow rapidly in size and intensity before first responders can contain them. Until conditions improve, the agency advises the public to follow local fire restrictions and avoid outdoor activities that can ignite dry vegetation, such as yard work, target shooting, and campfires.

Shelby Herbert is a reporter for KUNR and the Hitchcock Project for Visualizing Science, which is part of the Reynolds School of Journalism.

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