Filers might hear today whether Ross ethics complaint will proceed


The people behind an ethics complaint against Las Vegas City Councilman Steve Ross expect to hear today whether the Nevada Ethics Commission will take up the complaint.

Steve Ross is running for re-election against Jennifer L. Taylor, a local attorney and co-founder of Northwest Residents for Responsible Growth, which has opposed some development projects that Ross has supported.

The complaint reportedly cites three of Ross' votes and alleges a conflict of interest because of his position with the Southern Nevada Building and Construction Trades Council, which works on behalf of union labor. Those votes reportedly are: the Kyle Canyon Gateway casino project, the proposed new city hall and a contract to build an interchange at Horse Drive and U.S. Highway 95.

Steve Hecht and Tyson Wrensch, two of the people who signed the complaint, declined to comment today. Hecht referred questions to Lisa Mayo-DeRiso, who co-founded Northwest Residents with Taylor and has been a longtime critic of Ross.

Mayo-DeRiso did not comment Thursday and could not be reached this morning.

Ross' campaign has dismissed the ethics campaign as a "sham."

"We shouldn't be abusing the system at the last minute so you can say, 'My opponent is under investigation,' " said Gary Gray, Ross' campaign manager.

Ross sought guidance from the Ethics Commission in 2007 when he was seeking the position with the trades council. The commission said holding that position while serving as a councilman is not an automatic conflict, but that Ross would have to be careful to avoid crossing ethical lines.

Contact reporter Alan Choate at achoate@reviewjournal.com or 702-229-6435.