(NN&V Staff) – Clark County Commissioner Ross Miller (D) faced severe criticism from shop owners in the Historic Commercial Center in Las Vegas regarding his alleged disrespectful comments and lack of consideration for their businesses.
And in the process drew a powerful Republican opponent for his re-election campaign next year.
The shop owners – including JJ and Traci Jones of the Get A Haircut barbershop – expressed frustration with the county’s handling of a concert event over the weekend. They claim Miller dismissed their concerns, stating that their businesses “don’t matter” and even threatened to buy the property and burn it down without consequences.
“I cannot believe Ross Miller would say that to business owners,” said April Becker in announcing her candidacy for Miller’s Commission District C seat. “It’s like he said out loud what all anti-business liberals think; that they can burn businesses down and no one will care.”
The Joneses and other businesses initially found themselves excluded from the concert’s footprint and later faced obstructed visibility due to erected fences behind the stage.
During an interview with News3, Traci Jones recounted her interaction with Miller. She detailed how they were told their barbershop would not be compensated for closing early and were further belittled by being told they were a “waste of resources.”
Commissioner Miller did not deny the encounter but disputed the account provided by the Joneses. However, the Joneses and two other witnesses corroborated their version of events, refuting Miller’s statement. Security camera footage without audio supported their claims.
The shop owners expressed outrage and disbelief at the commissioner’s alleged comments, emphasizing their dedication to their businesses.
“How can someone be like that?” JJ Jones said in the News3 interview. “We survived the pandemic – just barely survived through the pandemic – and to have an official look me in the eyes and say that to me is absolutely outrageous.”
Becker, who’s been mulling a run against Miller for several weeks now, says the News3 report finally pushed her to pull the trigger and announce her challenge.
In her press release, Becker highlighted Miller’s rude and dismissive comments as evidence of his lack of judgment and character. She emphasized her appreciation for small businesses and their contributions to the community, stating that Miller fails to recognize the hard work and sacrifice involved in running a business.
“The Clark County Commission has become a source of constant embarrassment,” said Becker. “Unfortunately, Ross woke up on third base and thought he hit a triple. He doesn’t understand the hard work and sacrifice it takes to succeed and grow a business.”
Becker also noted the ongoing ethics scandal involving Democrat Commissioner Justin Jones and allegations of evidence destruction in a legal proceeding.
Despite calls for Jones to resign and an investigation by the Nevada Bar, Jones remains in office and fellow commissioners, including Miller, have refrained from urging him to step down.
Miller, a former Nevada secretary of state, won his Commission C race in 2020 by a whisker. As Las Vegas Review-Journal editor Steve Sebelius noted today, Miller defeated Republican Stavros Anthony “by just 10 votes in 2020, but a recount added 5 more.”
However, the Clark County Registrar of Voters at the time, Joe Gloria, advised the Commission that the results included 129 “discrepancies” he couldn’t account for – more than enough to affect the outcome of the race.
The Democrat majority on the Commission awarded the seat to Miller anyway. Anthony went on to win the lieutenant governor’s seat last year.
Becker ran a strong challenge to Democrat Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro in another disputed race in 2020. She lost by just 631 votes in a district with a big Democrat registration advantage.
She then ran another surprisingly strong race for Congress against Democrat incumbent Rep. Susie Lee last year in an overwhelmingly Democrat district.
According to the Clark County Election Department’s figures as of this month, Commission District C has just under 5,600 more Democrats than Republicans and more than 64,000 non-partisan voters.
The district is definitely a “swing” district and in play for Republicans next year.
As a working mom with young children, Becker put herself through college and law school at UNLV, eventually becoming a top litigator in Las Vegas. She was inducted into the “100 Hours Club” by the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada for her pro-bono legal aid to those in need and has deep ties to the community, with her and her family owning several businesses.
“I’m running to restore honesty, transparency, and accountability to Clark County’s commission,” Becker concluded. “I look forward to getting results for the people who call our community home and bringing leadership with integrity to our county commission.”
No other credible GOP candidates have announced for this race at this time.