Two political newcomers vying for LV City Council Ward 6

Term limits for an incumbent on the Las Vegas City Council have opened the race for political newcomers seeking to score a four-year term on the board. Nancy Brune and Ray Spencer are seeking to replace the term-limited Michele Fiore, who is running as the Republican candidate for Nevada State Treasurer.

Nancy Brune

As founder and former executive director of the Guinn Center, a nonpartisan, data-driven policy hub, Nancy Brune says she is a proven problem solver.

After the worst of the pandemic, Brune said she left the political center to take a more active role in nonpartisan local government. She realized that many of Nevada’s most pressing problems could be solved at the county and city level.

“We have very big challenges,” Brune said. “Faced with these problems, our local government is not doing its job. We have politicians who spend more time playing with partisan allegiances than developing a plan.

Brune, a registered Democrat, said she used to work across the ideological spectrum to find solutions that work for Nevadans as a researcher and policy expert.

“I seek to govern in the same way that I ran the Guinn Center which identifies the problems we are trying to solve by looking at existing data and research to find solutions,” Brune said.

Housing and public health are among her top priorities, Brune said, adding that if elected, she would push to represent the council with the Southern Nevada Regional Housing Authority and the Southern Nevada Health District.

Brune supports public-private partnerships, which use public funds to minimize risk for private investors and encourage them to invest in low-income communities.

If elected, Brune said she would take the lead in introducing Community Development Corporations to the city, a nonprofit community organization dedicated to revitalizing underserved communities. Various cities of similar size have used these companies to develop affordable housing in rundown neighborhoods, Brune said.

Bringing more dollars into the city through federal grants is another priority, Brune said. Nevada ranks 46th in federal grants per capita. The city needs to improve its ability to successfully attract federal dollars, Brune said. Over the past two years, Brune said she wrote grants that brought in $20 million to Nevada to fund college and career pathways for struggling residents.

Ward 6 residents have expressed concern about the availability of water as the city grows. Brune said there are common sense solutions to conserving water locally. She offered to conduct a water audit for every major public and private project so that residents know in advance what water usage will be and how it might affect water availability.

Research also shows that denser development — like condominiums and townhouses — saves water, Brune said, saying the city needs to have a serious conversation about finding the right place for such developments.

Brune said Ward 6 residents should vote for her over her opponent Ray Spencer, a former Las Vegas Metro Police sergeant, because she has the expertise to create solutions.

“My opponent has a very deep history in one area which is law enforcement, but I would say members of the city council deal with a whole range of issues: housing, land use, education, law enforcement. I have worked and researched all of these areas, including law enforcement.

“The other difference, unfortunately, is that even though it’s a non-partisan race, it plays partisan politics,” Brune said, adding that locals are tired of partisan bickering. “There’s a choice between electing someone who will bring you more of the same, because he’s doing it on the campaign trail, or someone who really wants to put good politics and people before politics. “

Ray Spencer

After several interview requests, Ray Spencer, a former Las Vegas Metro Police sergeant, agreed to an interview but could not be reached in time for publication. “I’m going to reach out in the next few days,” Spencer said in a text, but he didn’t.

On social media, Spencer said public safety was his top priority and pledged to use city funding to place more police officers in Ward 6 neighborhoods.

Spencer, a registered Republican and political newcomer, called himself a “public safety candidate in the race for Ward 6 on the Las Vegas City Council.” Spencer said he will use his 25 years of law enforcement experience to improve community safety.

In May, during an interview on Nevada Week Spencer said he believed there was a tendency for officials to “dominate crime”, which he said leads to an increase in crime.

Prior to running for city council, Spencer was the homicide section commander for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Department. Spencer said his solvency percentage was 93% in 2020.

“The police can’t do much,” Spencer said of the criminal recidivism. “The criminal justice system, in all honesty, is packed.”

Spencer was the incident commander of the Route 91 shooting, the deadliest U.S. mass shooting in modern history for which he was awarded the LVMPD’s “Medal of Valor.”

While Spencer’s campaign page is primarily devoted to public safety and crime, he has also expressed support for small businesses, responsible development and protecting Floyd Lamb Park.

On his campaign site, Spencer also noted that education and transparent government were among his top political priorities and pledged to improve those issues if elected to the seat.

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