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IN BRIEF

NORTHERN NEVADA PROPOSAL

Voters reject higher taxes for school repairs

Washoe County voters have rejected a proposal to increase the sales tax and vehicle registration fees to pay for school repairs and technology upgrades.

The school district’s measure was defeated, 55 percent to 45 percent, unofficial returns show.

A committee appointed by the Legislature recommended the increases as a way to fund a $393 million bond issue for the school district.

WASHOE COUNTY VOTERS

Sustainable growth measure supported

Washoe County voters have overwhelmingly approved an initiative tying regional planning to sustainable water resources.

Election results show the initiative was approved by a margin of 73 percent to 27 percent.

Backers of the citizen initiative gathered enough signatures to qualify the binding measure for Tuesday’s ballot after county commissioners earlier denied a request to put it on the ballot as an advisory question.

Supporters say the initiative requires regional planners to plan for 200,000 more people, based on current water-use patterns and the amount of water available in the county.

AGREEING TO TESTIFY

Man takes plea deal in April shooting death

A 30-year-old man accused of killing another man during a shooting at an apartment pleaded guilty Wednesday to a lesser offense.

Vincent Ramos pleaded guilty to being an accomplice in a shooting that killed Josue Bautizta, 29, on April 20. He agreed to testify against his co-defendants, Sergio Valdez, 21, and Michael Estrella, 22.

He could receive one to five years in prison. Sentencing is set for Jan. 6.

Authorities said the trio went to an apartment at 502 Wardelle Street, near Bonanza Road and Eastern Avenue, and shot Bautizta.

NO INJURIES

Police helicopter makes emergency landing

A Metropolitan Police Department helicopter made an emergency landing Wednesday near downtown Las Vegas after an indicator light began flashing while the chopper was patrolling the valley, a department spokesman said.

Officer Chris Johnson said the two pilots landed the helicopter safely in a desert lot at Fremont and Bruce streets at 12:30 p.m.

Mechanics fixed the problem and the helicopter was flown to a hanger, he said. Nobody was injured.

WIFE STABBED

Supreme Court hears Mack divorce appeal

A lawyer of Darren Mack, convicted of killing his wife and shooting their divorce judge, says the divorce settlement cannot be enforced because his wife died before it was finalized.

Mack was convicted of stabbing his wife, Charla, to death in Reno on June 12, 2006, then shooting Judge Chuck Weller.

During arguments Tuesday before the Nevada Supreme Court, lawyer Julia Islas said Charla’s death terminated the divorce proceedings, leaving the court no jurisdiction to complete the settlement.

Egan Walker, representing Charla’s estate, argued it would be wrong to allow Mack to escape the nearly $1 million settlement by killing his wife.

Justices took the case under submission.

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