Obama chooses Harry Reid’s son, Josh, as TRPA appointee
LAKE TAHOE As the nation awaits President Barack Obamas selection of a nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, word of a presidential appointment closer to home has reached the South Shore.Josh Reid, one of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reids three sons, has been chosen to fill the presidential appointees seat on the Tahoe Regional Planning Agencys Governing Board.Reid, 37, is a resident of Henderson, Nev., and is a partner in the Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck law firm. He works in the firms Las Vegas-based natural resources group focusing on environmental, energy, and land use issues, according to a TRPA statement.Reid was appointed to the 15-member boards lone non-voting seat by Obama in a letter dated April 30. The Governing Board sets policy for the TRPA, which regulates development in the Lake Tahoe Basin.I appreciate your willingness to serve in this capacity and look forward to reports on your work via the Office of Management and Budget, Obama said in his letter to Reid.Although Reid says he still needs to educate himself on some of the issues surrounding Lake Tahoe like clarity loss and the threat wildfire poses to the basin he said his experience on other boards has shown him the value of transparent public processes.I just think its important to let people who are affected by the decisions of the board have a good opportunity for input and that the process is open, Reid said Friday.I dont think boards should be a rubber stamp for what staff does. Even though Im non-voting, I plan on being a big part of the discussions.Reid received a bachelors degree in conservation biology from Brigham Young University in 1995, a masters degree in environmental science from Yale University in 1997 and a law degree from the University of Arizona in 2000.He was previously a partner at Parsons Behle andamp; Latimer in Salt Lake City and has served on the Utah State Board of Regents, the Utah State Board of Education, the Utah Appellate Court Nominating Commission and the Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority, according to the statement.Since entering private practice, Reid said his biggest client has been NV Energy. Reid said he represents several companies developing renewable energy in Nevada.Mr. Reid helps clients develop natural resource, energy, water and other land use projects by advising them on environmental permitting, land use authorization, and (National Environmental Policy Act) issues and strategies, according to the Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck Web site. He also defends projects against permit appeals, enforcement actions and lawsuits involving claims under NEPA, the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water and Air Acts, the public land laws, city and county municipal codes, and other environmental laws.Reid is the seventh presidential appointee to the governing board since the seat was added in 1980. He replaces Stuart Yount of Incline Village, whom President George W. Bush appointed to the board in 2003.Reid said the appointment process included several interviews and an extensive background check by White House staff. He said Obamas staff told him there was little competition for the TRPA seat.Appointees to the governing board do not serve for a specified length of time, and the presidential seat has been left unfilled for more than a year at three times in its history.A Governing Board seat reserved for an appointee from the California governor remains open, Oliver said Friday.That seat was vacated in January by former California State Assemblyman Tim Leslie, and its unknown when Gov. Schwarzenegger will fill the position, Oliver said.
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