Las Vegas Sun

December 20, 2014

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Planner faces longer wait on fate of promotion

Deputy Planning Director Bob Genzer may have to wait at least two more weeks to find out if the Las Vegas City Council will promote him to the department's top position.

The council was set to discuss and ratify Genzer's promotion to director of planning and development on Wednesday. The top position in the department garners a $97,000 annual salary plus "executive benefits."

But City Manager Virginia Valentine said this morning she will ask the council to hold the item for at least two weeks. Valentine said reports that Genzer is a minority investor with developer Randy Black in a Mesquite land deal sent up a red flag.

"This caused us to take a look at what the policy is in general beyond Mr. Genzer, if this is something we need to do some work on. There are no allegations that Bob has misused his position," Valentine said.

Valentine said her office is looking at current policies, ethics codes and disclosure forms relating to city staff members who have investments. While city policy requires employees to disclose their interests, Valentine said that the forms have not been routinely audited, leaving the potential for conflicts of interest.

"We are trying to determine what kind of clarifications we need, come up with some new policies that will prevent or eliminate any conflicts or potential conflicts," Valentine said.

Genzer has been with the city for 27 years in the planning and development department. He has been deputy director since November 1999.

Genzer said this morning that the city has known about his investments since he "rose through the ranks," and that he has no conflict of interest.

Black has not had any business before the city in recent years, and if he did, Genzer said, he would remove himself from the decision-making process and have another planner review the project.

Genzer said because he has less than a 3 percent interest in the Mesquite project, he has nothing to do with decisions that are made. The investment, he said, was for his retirement.

While he is disappointed that his promotion will be delayed, Genzer said he has no problem with Valentine looking at his investments and a possible new policy.

"I have no problem with that," he said. "I have nothing to hide. If (a review) needs to be done, then that's fine. She's boss."

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