Updated 

Area Briefing


STATEWIDE TELEPHONE SCAM USES LOWER INSURANCE RATES AS LURE

State Insurance Commissioner Scott J. Kipper has issued a warning about an insurance-related telephone scam circulating in Nevada.

The scam is an automated call that tells consumers that their ZIP code has been re-evaluated, qualifying them for lower insurance rates. Consumers are then asked to press a key for more details, triggering a transfer to a voice mail system that asks them for personal information.

The Division of Insurance advises consumers to never accept unsolicited sales calls, especially from toll-free numbers beginning with area codes 800, 877, 866 or 888. Automated calling systems are illegal, and residents are advised to hang up as soon as possible.

Residents can verify the license of an individual or company at doi.nv.gov or by calling 702-486-4009.

Consumers who wish to file a complaint should contact the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov.

Those who have a question or complaint about insurance, email cnsmsvlv@doi.nv.gov, call 702-486-4009 or file a complaint online at doi.nv.gov/scs/complaint.aspx.

POLICE DEPARTMENT SEEKS VOLUNTEERS TO SUPPLEMENT OFFICER MANPOWER

The Metropolitan Police Department is looking for volunteers for a new reserve police officer program to train and work alongside paid officers.

Reserve police must volunteer a minimum of 20 hours monthly and undergo periodic training to remain current on law enforcement and department policies and procedures.

Applications are being accepted until 800 are received or until midnight Feb. 20, whichever occurs first.

To apply, visit the department's employment page at lvmpd.peopleadmin.com.

VOLUNTEERS SOUGHT TO HELP TRAP FERAL CATS

The Community Cat Coalition of Clark County is seeking volunteer assistance trapping feral cats in the valley in order to spay or neuter them before returning them to the site where they were captured.

The group receives 15 to 20 calls almost daily from people requesting help trapping their feral/stray cat colonies.

The organization has 180 trapping projects planned, with additional ones being added all the time. About 40 volunteers help the group fulfill its mission but more are sought.

Those interested in helping can email volunteer@c5-tnr.org or call 702-997-4620.

EVENT TO RAISE AWARENESS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

S.A.F.E. House is scheduled to join activists around the world for One Billion Rising, an event dedicated to ending violence against women and girls.

Organizers plan to host a flash mob dance event at 12:30 p.m. Thursday at the Henderson Events Plaza, 200 S. Water St.

For more information on S.A.F.E. House, an organization dedicated to stopping domestic violence, visit safehousenv.org or call 702-451-4203. For more information about One Billion Rising, visit onebillionrising.org.

THE RAPE CRISIS CENTER MAKES STRIDES WITH ITS ASSISTANCE EFFORTS

The Rape Crisis Center said its volunteer advocates were able to help more victims last year than in 2011, thanks to stepping up its community connections.

Center advocates made 588 hospital visit last year, an increase of 39.6 percent over 2011, when hospital visits totaled 421. Also, volunteer advocates handled 6,084 calls last year, up 1.9 percent over 2011, when volunteers handled 5,968 calls.

The increase in services accessed by rape victims is a result of better and stronger community relationships and community outreach, not necessarily an increase in the number of sexual assaults, said Bill Thomas, chairman of the board for The Rape Crisis Center.

Thomas said that in 2012, the center had an improved relationship with University Medical Center; a more collaborative relationship with the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program, which includes nurses specially trained to collect forensic evidence in sexual assault cases; greater collaboration with law enforcement and other agencies that come in contact with sexual assault victims; and increased public relations and social media efforts.

The center has been working to improve community relationships, including with police, and raise awareness about its services, Thomas said.

Volunteer advocates with The Rape Crisis Center receive 50 hours of training and work a minimum of six-hour shifts each week on a 24/7 rotational basis to answer hot line calls from victims, provide support and information and make hospital visits when requested. The organization has nearly 30 volunteers.

The Rape Crisis Center is at 6375 W. Charleston Blvd., Suite W1B. For more information, visit therapecrisiscenter.org or call 702-385-2153.

TRAFFIC CAMERAS TO STREAM LIVE FOOTAGE OF VALLEY ROADWAYS

Public input is sought regarding 240 cameras being tested on the valley's highways and major arterials to stream live traffic footage.

The 30-day test period was announced Jan. 25 by the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada and the Nevada Department of Transportation. The agencies are collaborating on the project, being funded by the DOT.

The aim is to allow commuters to check traffic conditions before leaving their homes or workplaces. Residents can view the footage at rtcsnv.com/fast-cam-test and post their feedback on the website.

In addition to the cameras throughout the valley, streaming video is available along Interstate 15 between Jean and Primm, benefiting motorists driving to and from Southern California.

Technicians will gauge the number of viewers who use the system and determine whether the cameras should be relocated to areas with higher traffic volumes. Once the test period ends and appropriate adjustments are made, the cameras will become a permanent fixture, with footage available on the RTC's and NDOT's websites.

For more information, visit rtcnv.com or nevadadot.com.

COUNTY SEEKS TO HIRE LIFEGUARDS, OTHER WATER-SAFETY POSITIONS

The Clark County Parks and Recreation Department is seeking applicants to fill cashier, lifeguard, water-safety instructor and management positions for the 2013 pool season.

Jobs are available for those 15 or older, with hourly pay ranging from $9 to $15, based on experience and certifications.

Those who hold American Red Cross lifeguard certification or are interested in cashier positions can fill out an application at clarkcountynv.gov/parks.

Those who wish to apply for a lifeguard or other water-related position must complete the training course at the Hollywood Aquatics Center, 1550 S. Hollywood Blvd., or the Desert Breeze Aquatic Facility, 8275 Spring Mountain Road.

The training course costs a reduced rate of $70 if participants sign an employment contract with the county. Otherwise, the cost is $140. The course includes lifesaving skills, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, automated external defibrillator and emergency first aid. The five-day course is held multiple times until the last one, set to start May 2.

Prerequisite skills include the ability to complete a 300-yard continuous swim and retrieve a weighted object from 7 to 10 feet of water. Applicants with no prerequisite skills can attend a lifeguard preparation course at the Hollywood Aquatics Center for $10. The class is set for 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Friday and March 4 and 5 to 6 p.m. March 29 and April 12.

For more information, visit clarkcountynv.gov/parks or call 702-455-8508.

SIDEWALK RAMPS TO BE INSTALLED IN CITY OF LAS VEGAS NEIGHBORHOODS

The city of Las Vegas has implemented a program to construct sidewalk ramps in residential areas to help increase the safety and livability of the neighborhoods.

The program will seek to improve pedestrian routes and the aesthetic appearance of the city's residential areas and provide for compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act.

In-house construction staff members will complete sidewalk ramps in selected areas. Funding for the project will be provided by the city of Las Vegas.

Roughly 150 sidewalk ramps will be constructed, along with upgrades to 25 existing ramps. Workers will also address damaged sidewalk panels.

Work has started in the first two improvement areas, which are the residential neighborhood bounded by Decatur Boulevard, Meadows Lane and Valley View and Charleston boulevards; and the residential area bounded by Marion Street, Charleston Boulevard, Stewart Avenue and the Las Vegas Wash. Work is expected to continue for five months, and minimal traffic and pedestrian impacts are expected during construction, city officials said.

The program is one of several projects the city has undertaken in the last year to help improve older neighborhoods. The city recently constructed sidewalks and other pedestrian improvements in wards 3 and 5 to improve the walkability and quality of life for residents in the downtown Las Vegas and West Las Vegas project areas.

CRIME STOPPERS OF NEVADA GETS NEW CHAIRWOMAN

A new chairwoman recently was named for Crime Stoppers of Nevada, a nonprofit program that provides a way for people to anonymously submit information about crimes.

Caroline Ciocca, community relations director of CashAmerica/SuperPawn, was named to the post.

Ciocca, a member of Crime Stoppers' board since 2008, has worked closely with the Metropolitan Police Department on a number of crime prevention initiatives and serves on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas College of Business Advisory Board.

Since 1979, Crime Stoppers has worked closely with law enforcement to keep the community safe and has helped apprehend more than 10,000 suspects. The organization receives no state or local funding and relies on private sponsors.

Anonymous tips to Crime Stoppers can be made by calling the organization's bilingual hot line at 702-385-5555. Tips also can be submitted at crimestoppersofnv.com. Crime Stoppers offers reward money for information leading to a felony arrest or indictment.

RADON PRESENTATIONS AROUND TOWN TO INCLUDE FREE TEST KITS

The University of Nevada Cooperative Extension plans to offer free radon test kits in February during several planned presentations.

The sessions are set for:

--5 p.m. Wednesday at the Summerlin Library, 1771 Inner Circle Drive.

--11 a.m. Feb. 23 at the Centennial Hills Library, 6711 N. Buffalo Drive.

--5 p.m. Feb. 26 at the Sahara West Library, 9600 W. Sahara Ave.

Radon, a colorless, odorless, radioactive gas, is the leading cause of lung cancer for nonsmokers, according to the Cooperative Extension. It comes from the natural decay of uranium in soil and enters homes through foundation cracks, openings and some of the porous materials used to construct foundations and floors of homes. It can reach harmful levels when trapped indoors, according to the Cooperative Extension.

For more information, contact Southern Area radon program coordinator Laura Au-Yeung at 702-257-5550 or au-yeungl@unce.unr.edu or visit radonnv.com.

 

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