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KUNR Today: RHA to buy Bonanza Inn, Study finds Reno faces risk of losing many jobs to automation

An image of four self check-in machines at a hotel/resort in Las Vegas, Nev.
Noah Glick
/
Mountain West News Bureau

Read or listen to the morning news headlines for Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2022.

RHA to purchase Bonanza Inn to offer more affordable housing
By Andrew Méndez

The Reno Housing Authority has submitted an offer to purchase the Bonanza Inn property in downtown Reno. It’s part of the organization’s effort to provide more affordable housing opportunities to the community.

Earlier this week, however, the Reno Gazette Journal reported that the current Bonanza Inn owner says he was forced to list the motel for sale due to unsafe conditions found in city inspections. The four-story building is for sale for $3.6 million.

In a press release, Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve said she is behind the authority’s efforts to purchase this property and others similar to it.

Survey: Westerners worry about finding affordable homes
By Dave Rosenthal, Mountain West News Bureau

Housing prices have been rising across our region, and a new survey shows that westerners worry about finding a home they can afford. The Pew Research Center found that nearly half of Americans see affordable housing as a major problem. That’s a significant jump from just a few years ago.

Housing affordability is especially troubling in the West. Nearly 70 percent of residents call it a major problem – the highest percentage of any region. That’s not surprising. Research from Headwaters Economics says that more than half of the zip codes in Colorado, Idaho and Utah had record price increases last year, and federal data show that wage growth has not kept up.

Nevada County warns of COVID-19 vaccine booster scam
By Kaleb Roedel

The Nevada County Public Health Department says it is seeing an increase in phone scammers offering COVID-19 boosters to residents.

Officials say that callers representing themselves as Nevada County Public Health Department employees are offering to schedule residents for an emergency vaccination clinic. The scammers ask for personal information, such as name, date of birth and health insurance.

Nevada County says it has two state-sponsored testing sites, located in Truckee and Grass Valley.

California moves to dismantle nation's largest death row
By The Associated Press

California Gov. Gavin Newsom is moving to dismantle the nation’s largest death row by moving all condemned inmates to other prisons. Officials intend to turn what is now death row into a "positive, healing environment.”

The plan comes nearly three years after Newsom, a Democrat, imposed a moratorium on executions so long as he is governor. Corrections officials began a voluntary two-year pilot program in January 2020 to move condemned inmates to one of seven prisons. They tell The Associated Press that they intend to submit permanent proposed regulations within weeks that would make the transfers mandatory.

Nearly 50% of workers in Reno are at high risk of automation
By Kaleb Roedel

According to one study, the Reno area has one of the highest percentages of workers in the nation at risk of having their jobs become automated.

In Reno-Sparks, nearly 50% of workers are at high risk of losing their jobs to automation, according to research firm Commodity.com. That’s the second-highest percentage among all midsize cities in the U.S. In all, there are nearly 72,000 workers in the region at high risk of being replaced by technology.

As a state, Nevada also ranks high for automation risk, in part due to its large gambling industry. Nationally, gambling dealers, which earn a median annual wage of less than $24,000, have a 96% probability of becoming automated, though the report did not note how soon this could unfold.

Culinary Union asks SEC to examine Nevada gaming company’s board of directors
By Andrew Méndez

The Culinary Union, based in Las Vegas, is calling on the Security and Exchange Commission to examine a Nevada gaming company’s board of directors.

The union claims the Red Rock Resorts board, which consists of five men, lacks gender and racial diversity and does not align with a diversity proposal from Nasdaq. The SEC requires NASDAQ-listed companies to have a minimum of two board members who classify as diverse by mid-2023.

Red Rock Resorts is the only gaming company in Nevada that is publicly traded.

Some Vegas Strip casinos to get new facades, familiar names
By The Associated Press

Some shuffling among owners has some Las Vegas Strip properties destined in coming months for rebranding, demolition, reconstruction and the addition of familiar names.

Caesars Entertainment plans to rename Bally’s Las Vegas as the Horseshoe and have it host the World Series of Poker. The Tropicana Las Vegas could be demolished or renovated after Bally’s Corp. buys the nearly 1,500-room resort. Company chief Soohyung Kim tells the Las Vegas Review-Journal it's hard to be a national gaming company without a presence in Las Vegas.

The Mirage volcano is destined to be snuffed out once Hard Rock International acquires operations from MGM Resorts International and builds a massive guitar-shaped hotel.

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