Francis Allen-Palenske and Bob Beers
Two veteran politicians Francis Allen-Palenske and Bob Beers, are seeking to replace term-limited Stavros Anthony in the Las Vegas City Council’s Ward 4. Anthony is term limited out of the council, and is now running as the Republican nominee for lieutenant governor.
Former two-term Republican state assemblywoman Francis Allen-Palenske said she would bring traditional conservative values to the council. As an owner of a Caprioti’s franchise, she believes she can bring the perspective of “someone who toils in the small-business world.”
One of her top priorities is combating crime and improving public safety, which she says reflects her conservative values. She has been endorsed by numerous police organizations, including the Las Vegas Police Protective Association, the police union representing officers of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and whose president Steve Grammas was on stage in Las Vegas in June when Donald Trump called Nevada a “cesspool of crime.”
Allen-Palenske said she supports increased funding for police and other first responders.
Crime prevention also starts with addressing the root causes of crime, said Allen-Palenske, including homelessness, addiction, and mental health issues.
Allen-Palenske says what drew her to run was the non-partisan nature of the city council.
“The Legislature of course is a partisan body, but the Las Vegas City Council is non-partisan. There are 60 members of the Legislature but only six members on the city council so if you are a member with good intent and do what’s best for Las Vegas you can get a lot done,” Allen-Palenske said.
Water availability is at the top of voters’ minds, said Allen-Palenske. If elected to the city council, she said she would push to be appointed to the board of the Southern Nevada Water Authority. She is an advocate of desalination, the process of removing salt from seawater to obtain fresh water, as a way of supporting growth.
Past experience with domestic violence led the former assemblywoman to be an advocate for other victims of crime.
While running for re-election to the Nevada Assembly, Allen-Palenske was arrested when her then-husband falsely accused her of stabbing him in the arm. In court, her husband recanted his story—admitting his wound was self-inflicted—and the charges were dropped. She later lost her re-election.
“When you’re a victim of domestic violence, you carry that with you for the rest of your life. It’s part of who I am and my perspective,” Allen-Palenske.
Allen-Palenske said people should vote for her over her opponent Bob Beers, a former Las Vegas City Councilman for Ward 2, who she described as a “career politician.”
“He has a very clear 25 year track record of divisiveness and lack of leadership. Voters have a very clear choice in the race, he is a bridge burner and I am a bridge builder. I do my best to work as a consensus builder,” “These are more than just stylistic differences. I believe my focus is positive and my outlook is optimistic and I think that’s what people want to see. Strong leadership and not decisiveness.”
Former Ward 2 Las Vegas City Councilman Bob Beers declined to be interviewed for the Current’s voter guide. In an email exchange, he invited readers to ask direct questions on his cell phone, which is listed on his website. When asked if he would share how he believes city funds should be spent, Beers said “That is a perfect question for a Ward 4 voter to ring me directly to ask.”
Prior to being elected as a member of the city council, Beers served in the Nevada State Assembly and the Nevada State Senate as a Republican legislator. Beers lost his re-election campaign for Ward 2 in 2017. A year later, he lost the general election for Nevada State Treasurer to Democrat Zach Conine, who is serving as the current State Treasurer. In 2006 Beers ran in the Republican primary for governor, finishing second to Jim Gibbons.
On his campaign site, Beers pledges to “stop our government from wasting your money” and “taking your stuff.”
One such waste Beers cites is the drawn-out court battle by the City of Las Vegas to prevent a housing development on the Badlands Golf Course in Summerlin, which has cost the city at least $33 million in court fees. Courts have ruled twice that the city illegally prevented the current owner of the land, Yohan Lowie, from developing the property.
“That’s just not money the city has in its budget,” Beers said. “This comes from the general fund, this comes from the sales tax and property tax we gather from taxpayers every year.”
In an interview with Veterans in Politics in February, Beers said he was against the city’s decision to take back development rights from the current owner, which he said was done to appease wealthy homeowners nearby who didn’t want construction near their homes. Beers said he was pushed out of the council for voting in favor of allowing homes to be built on the former Badlands Golf Course.
Beers said he welcomes new ideas from Nevadans and vowed to bring those ideas back to city hall.
“You have a number of good choices for your Ward 4 council selection this year,” said Beers during his Veterans in Politics interview. “But among all those good choices, I’m the one with experience too.”
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