Clark County official named stimulus czar

CARSON CITY -- Assistant Clark County Recorder Charles Harvey was appointed Tuesday by Gov. Jim Gibbons as the state's stimulus czar, whose job will be to watch over the $2.2 billion in federal economic recovery funds coming to Nevada.

Harvey has worked for Clark County for more than 10 years. In his current job, he recorded and archived more than 13 million records that generated $1.2 billion in real property transfer taxes.

But he steps into a hornet's nest. Gibbons issued an executive order Friday that created the $120,000-a-year stimulus czar's job, called the state's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act director, despite the directives of the Legislature's Interim Finance Committee.

Ten days earlier the committee had voted to place the official under the control and within the office of state Controller Kim Wallin. Wallin plans to appoint her own czar.

It remains to be seen whether Harvey will cooperate with Wallin and satisfy concerns of legislators.

But Harvey said he wants cooperation.

"Coordinating the stimulus package in Nevada is a massive undertaking, and I plan to work closely with all parties involved, including the Legislature, department directors and executive branch officers," he said. "We need to work together to make this succeed."

Harvey added he wants to make sure the stimulus money "creates jobs, keeps jobs and helps the people of Nevada who need it the most."

Gibbons said Harvey is the type of public servant Nevada needs at this time.

Harvey, an Air Force veteran, also is the case management coordinator for District Court in Las Vegas.

He is a former businessman who worked for Bechtel Corp. and the U.S. Geological Survey. He has been a volunteer for Toys for Tots, United Way, Habitat for Humanity and the Las Vegas Police Citizens Academy.