For County Commission ...

In Clark County Commission District E, incumbent Chris Giunchigliani is a smart and active commissioner who leaves no one in any doubt as to where she stands.

Ms. Giunchigliani's biggest drawback over the years has been her enthusiasm for handing the public employees everything they want -- and then adding some whipped cream, chopped walnuts and a cherry on top.

Ironically, however -- while it may be too much to hope long-suffering taxpayers will ever find themselves higher in Ms. Giunchigliani's regard than her pampered payroll pets -- these pro-union "bona fides" may actually aid her credibility as the commission now faces the daunting task of explaining to the "I'm entitled" gang on the public payroll that falling tax revenues during a steep recession are not a game of "Let's pretend." Chris Giunchigliani is the obvious choice over Republican challenger Ben Boarman, a security guard at a local hotel who appears to be running no active campaign.

For County Commission District F, the common-sense incumbent, Realtor Susan Brager, is not given to showboating, but does demonstrate competence and common sense. Here, too, the incumbent is the obvious choice over cheerful goofball Mitchell Tracy, a jack-of-all trades insurance adjustor. Mr. Tracy would sell off the county hospital, fire the county manager, and do apparently anything else that pops into his head, on the grounds that "you need to change everything. What they have hasn't worked. ... Let's make it more simpler."

It may indeed be time for change. But Mr. Tracy does not appear to be one to think things through well in advance.

In County Commission District G, Douglas Bell, a 30-year employee of the Clark County Department of Finance, has a master's degree in public administration and knows the problems from the inside. He would like to "get rid of seniority pay" and see county employee pensions changed from a defined-benefit to a defined-contribution basis. He also asks some welcome questions about the Bali Hai Golf Club deal.

Mr. Bell is more of a talker than a listener, but he still has more fresh and welcome ideas than former School Board President Mary Beth Scow, who in effect declared her work done after delivering us the worst schools west of the Pecos, and who now seeks to "balance the interests of the stake­holders" in county land-use decisions, in defiance of our great American tradition of private property rights.

Definition of a "stakeholder": Someone who wants to tell you what to do with your property, but who doesn't want to pay for the privilege.