Pershing County broadband internet in the works

Pershing County IT Department Director Justin Abbott recently conducted site visits with an AT&T official to plan a broadband internet project for county buildings. Conduit repairs for the underground fiber optic cable to reach the county courthouse may require a street closure. 

“AT&T is going to bring out a vacuum truck to try and clean out that conduit,” Abbott told the county commission last week. “Otherwise, they might have to dig up that street (Central Avenue) to repair the conduit.”

Abbott said only one person has applied so far for the IT technician job. He has told the board that a technician is needed to assist him with the county’s many computer and phone service calls. The application deadline is February 18. See the county website for the job description.

To test the cyber security awareness of county employees, a phishing email has been sent to employees by a Homeland Security agency that passes on the results to Abbott, he said.

“They give me a report on how many people opened it, how many opened the link in it so we can continue to make our employees cyber security aware,” he said. “If you are not sure, ask.”


District Attorney Bryce Shields explained why the county commission needed to sign settlement documents that could result in future allocation to Pershing County of a portion of the settlement funds awarded to the state as a result of the opioid epidemic litigation. 

My recommendation to the board would be to sign those documents so that the state of Nevada and the participating litigants can continue to negotiate in a broader scope with the most culpable parties of the opioid epidemic while at the same time reaching a settlement with other perpetrators so that the county can avail itself of whatever funds are available for treating the opioid epidemic in Pershing County.”


According to Mike Heidemann of the Lovelock Volunteer Fire Department, CPR training centers could be available throughout Pershing County courtesy of a possible new state grant program.

“I was contacted by POOL/PACT in regards to having central CPR training centers in each county, maybe at the fire departments. It looks like they are going to develop a grant program for CPR to supply the current mannequins with recording devices to each of the areas they insure to help the counties that need it for certain departments, the schools and things like that.”


Rye Patch Volunteer Fire Department Chief Stacey Bristow explained why the department has been unable to respond to emergency fire and ambulance calls.

“Rye Patch was hit hard in January by COVID. Three members tested positive and one member was in the hospital for four days. Four members are out of state and one is out of the country. That left the department with one member able to respond to calls and unfortunately our department is unable to respond with only one member.”

The department was called to a house fire in Rye Patch but it was ten minutes after the Lovelock Volunteer Fire Department had been called and was already on the way. 

“By the time the department was called, the fire was out and Lovelock had canceled the call,” Bristow reported to the county board. “Two volunteers are doing EMS training to renew their EMT licenses and all members have updated their physicals.”


The board approved an auction of hundreds of “overflow” items no longer needed at the Marzen House Museum. Auction proceeds will be used for museum projects.

“The profits would go into our donation gift fund,” Museum Board Chairman Bonnie Skoglie told the board. “We’d like to have more money to start building on that 1930’s railroad house.”

The county commission also approved the museum advisory board’s request to hire a person to manage social media and billboards for the museum using a reallocated state tourism grant with matching funds to be covered by volunteer hours and the museum budget.

A historic plaque project to be installed at the museum by E Clampus Vitus was also approved. The plaque will be dedicated to Mazuma, an old mining town, and it will be installed in March.


Pershing County 4-H Club Director Colby Burke said the organization now has 130 youth members, 16 clubs and 25 adult leaders. She also announced upcoming events.

“In March, we have a livestock judging. It’s going to open to other counties and it’s going to have a horse group for FFA,” she said. “We’ll also have a showmanship clinic at that time. In April, we’ll have a butcher clinic for those kids that want to learn how to process an animal.”

The Pershing County 4-H Club Livestock Show is scheduled for May 1 this year.

Burke said expanded activities have attracted youth from outside the normal 4-H membership.

“There are 15 new ones this year. Even though we had 189 members last year, I’m excited that we are touching base with kids that don’t normally do it,” she told the board. “Every club, even baseball/softball, has elected officers so they are learning a leadership aspect. They are doing their project book, doing some record keeping and demonstrations. Every club is doing all of those things. So, hopefully, if they ever sit on one of your boards, they will have the skills.”

Burke has gone above and beyond her 4-H duties by leading bingo games and physical fitness classes for senior citizens at the Pershing County Senior Center. 

Two people have applied so far for a part-time administrative clerk position at the Pershing County Extension Service, Burke said. 


The county board approved use of the Courthouse Park by organizers of the Street Fever Car Club Show and Shine. The annual car show is scheduled for June 3, June 4 and June 5. 

“We all look forward to it,” Commissioner Carol Shank said. “It’s a great event.”



Planning workshops are tentatively scheduled for February 18, February 25 and March 4. The purpose of the meetings is to itemize the county commission’s goals for the future of the county.