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Thursday, July 24, 2014
About Clark County
Living in Clark County

Photo courtesy of Ken Paul

Clark County is a dynamic and innovative organization dedicated to providing top-quality service with integrity, respect and accountability. With jurisdiction over the world-famous Las Vegas Strip and covering an area the size of New Jersey, Clark is the nation’s 12th-largest county and provides extensive regional services to more than 2 million citizens and 43 million visitors a year. Included are the nation’s 9th-busiest airport, air quality compliance, social services and the state’s largest public hospital, University Medical Center. The County also provides municipal services that are traditionally provided by cities to about 900,000 residents in the unincorporated area. Those include fire protection, roads and other public works, parks and recreation, and planning and development.
   

 

Photo courtesy of Rudy Yanos

The famed Las Vegas Strip sits at the heart of Clark County featuring unparalleled attractions like dancing fountains, a replica of the renowned Eiffel Tower, an erupting volcano and some of the world's largest and most beautiful resorts. Millions of people visit annually to enjoy our fine restaurants, shop a dazzling array of stores and relax at our luxurious spas. Las Vegas boasts more than 150,000 hotel rooms and is among the world's top convention destinations.

   

 

Photo courtesy of Rudy Yanos

Nevada has no shortage of compelling landscapes, and Clark County is no different. Mt. Charleston and skiing are just 45 minutes away, and Red Rock National Conservation area beckons on the western fringe of the Las Vegas Valley. Lake Mead National Recreation Area, located 30 miles southeast of Las Vegas, caters to boaters, swimmers, fishermen, hikers, wildlife photographers and roadside sightseers. Meanwhile, gambling is offered in the destinations of Mesquite, Primm and Laughlin, located on the fun-filled Colorado River.

Clark County Highlights

Mission

To provide responsible, progressive, and results-oriented government that is responsive, accessible, and accountable to our citizens, ensuring their right to cost-effective and open government.

Tourism Impact

Tourism’s economic impact for 2013 was $45.2 billion, including $9.7 billion spent on gambling in Clark County. In 2013 there were 162,662 hotel and motel rooms in Clark County. The average visitor to Las Vegas was 46 years old, stayed 3.3 nights at an average nightly room rate of $111, spending $141 per visit shopping, $38 per visit for shows, arriving by plane (42 percent), visiting by vehicle (58 percent), has in his party 2.4 people and has a gaming budget of $530, spending an average of 2.9 hours per day gambling. Twenty percent of our tourists visit from other nations, 26 percent come from Southern California and 15 percent are first-time visitors.

Government Structure

Clark County is governed by a seven-member County Commission, elected from geographic districts on a partisan basis for staggered four-year terms. Commissioners biennially elect a chairperson who serves as the Commission's presiding officer. The Commission in turn hires a county manager, who is responsible for administrative operations. The chair is Steve Sisolak (seated in January 2009, elected chair in January 2013). The vice chair is Larry Brown ( seated in January 2009, elected vice chair January 2013). The other commissioners are Tom Collins (January 2005), Chris Giunchigliani (January 2007), Lawrence Weekly (March 2007), Susan Brager (January 2009), and Mary Beth Scow (January 2011). Don Burnette has been county manager since January 2011.

Financial Structure

Clark County employs more than 10,000 in 38 departments. It has a fiscal year general fund budget of $1.35 billion and a total budget of $6.2 billion. The County is known for its strong ending-fund balance, overall financial strength and an investment-quality credit rating. It retains the best bond ratings of any local government in the state with an “Aaa” from Moody’s Investors Service and an “AA+” from Standard & Poor’s. The County has committed to policies supporting these high standards in the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.

Health care

Clark County government operations include management of University Medical Center, the only hospital in the Las Vegas Valley offering a top-rated trauma care unit, state-of-the-art Burn Care Center and a one-of-kind Children's Hospital. With 10 QuickCare facilities around the valley, UMC makes accessing quality health care convenient for Southern Nevada families. The hospital was honored for its cardiac care.

History

Clark County, formed in 1909, is named for Sen. William Andrews Clark (1839-1925), who established the railroad that linked Los Angeles with Salt Lake City. Las Vegas was founded in 1905 after Clark’s railroad, which made stops here, purchased land for a town site and sold lots by auction, creating downtown Las Vegas. Clark County is the most populous of Nevada’s 17 counties with 2 million residents and 70 percent of the state’s population.

Incorporated & Unincorporated Areas 

As a “city” government, Clark County responds to the needs of about 900,000 residents in the urban unincorporated areas. Sahara Avenue, which crosses the Strip on the north side of the Sahara Hotel & Casino, is the municipal boundary for the City of Las Vegas. Those residing south of this line receive their traditional urban services from Clark County rather than from any of the County’s five cities: Las Vegas (pop. 610,000), Henderson (pop. 280,000), North Las Vegas (230,000), Boulder City (pop. 16,000) and Mesquite (pop. 18,000). The services provided there include all those functions normally associated with a city, such as public works, building inspections, fire protection, parks and recreation, etc.