28 Apr Charlene Bybee
Sparks Ward 4
Campaign Contact Phone: 7757418566
Facebook: Charlene Bybee
Please share briefly what inspired you to run for this office and why you feel you’re qualified for the position.
I’m running for my third term on the Sparks City Council. I’ve lived in Sparks 58 out of my 68
years and raised my 2 sons here- I know my City.
I have 40 years of involvement and volunteering in my community. I want to continue the work I’ve been doing for the past 8 years representing my residents and businesses in Sparks.
How would you improve the City’s resources and assistance for people experiencing homelessness?
The City allocated $3.9M in the 2020/21 budget year for the Cares Campus and another $4.6M for 2021/22. Some of this investment was funded through Cares Act money received from the federal government. We also fund $155,000 annually for the Community Triage Center which serves homeless clients. The responsibility for indigent and social services is the responsibility of Washoe County, taxpayer dollars go to the county for these services. The City is a regional partner and have invested time and resources because it’s important to us. I will continue to work on regional and city solutions to help the homeless.
If elected to this position, how would you help better allocate the city budget to help improve the city school system?
The City is a separate entity and does not fund the Washoe County School District. I do serve on two school district committees. The Capital Funding Protection Committee oversees capital expenditures from our school bond WC-1 and the Safe & Healthy Schools Commission. Both of these give me the opportunity to make a difference in our schools.
Do you support the implementation of a Human Rights Commission to address, study, and mediate possible and actual discrimination in your jurisdiction?
I spearheaded the formation of the newly appointed Equity & Inclusion Advisory Board which will
address equity, inclusion and diversity in the City of Sparks.
What role do you see the city council playing in addressing rising housing costs and rising rent?
By continuing to streamline the permitting process and delaying some fees to accelerate the timeline for builders to build faster and increase inventory- more supply can help level or lower the cost of housing. We have offered housing assistance during COVID and are considering using some of our ARPA funds towards housing assistance or collaborations Sparks is part of the Home at Last program through Nv Rural Housing which offers down payment assistance and affordable mortgages .
Describe your views on supporting electric city vehicles and working towards reducing the city’s carbon footprint whenever possible?
I would support considering it as we replace City vehicles. We already have many RTC electric buses in our city which has been successful.
What policies do you see as valuable to address inequality and to increase social mobility for residents?
As a city our hiring processes and services offered to our residents must ensure equality. Social mobility is not the purview of the city.
Describe your relationship with unions or other labor organizations and how you, if elected, would work to ensure working people have a seat at the table in economic or workforce development projects?
I retired two years ago as an American Airlines Flight Attendant and member of a union for 42 years. I’m a strong supporter of the apprenticeship programs which are important to meeting our workforce needs. Economic development projects are done in our region by both union and non union workgroups.
What do you see as the most important initiative that you would like to see implemented in the community if you were elected to this position?
Mental health would be my top priority. This must be addressed as a region. I see it as a public/private partnership with finding best practices on this issue faced by communities across the country. Mental health affects homelessness, suicide, substance abuse, and crime for our families and residents. A couple of things we are doing are wrap around services and counseling for our homeless at the Cares Campus and our MOST team- mental health counselors who go on calls with our police officers.
If elected, how do you plan to address climate inequity in the city of Las Vegas amid rising temperatures?
I would have no authority in Las Vegas