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Commissioner pans Formula 1 negotiations, wants county included in major event decisions

Carly Sauvageau
Carly Sauvageau
Formula 1Local GovernmentSouthern Nevada
Clark County Commissioner Marilyn Kirkpatrick during a commission meeting on Tuesday, June 6, 2023. (Jeff Scheid/The Nevada Independent).

Clark County Commissioner Marilyn Kirkpatrick said she’s concerned about the county creating a private-public partnership with Formula 1’s Las Vegas Grand Prix Inc., arguing that international spectacles such as the race happening this fall can create headaches for residents and are often too expensive for her constituents to enjoy.

Kirkpatrick made her comments at Tuesday’s commission meeting, bringing up concerns about shutting down Las Vegas Boulevard along the Strip for the event and an increase in traffic for locals, affecting her constituents' commute to work. 

“I’m not coming to the table first,” Kirkpatrick said. “This has been brewing for a while and my constituents have been feeling the pain this entire time. Nobody has shown us what the plan is … my constituents are tired of not knowing what’s going on.”

This proposed partnership would involve the county helping with $40 million to fund a circuit for the Formula 1 race coming in November to the Strip, an area where many people in District B — which Kirkpatrick represents — work. 

Though representatives from Las Vegas Grand Prix Inc. and Commission Chair Jim Gibson said the circuit would provide improvements to county roads and allow the circuit to be used for future events, Kirkpatrick said she wanted the county to be included in more discussions around large events coming to the area.

“I’m not going forward at this time unless I see what everyone else is bringing to the table,” Kirkpatrick said.

Gibson said that all the agenda item Kirkpatrick was concerned about does is open the process to sit down and talk, and that the Las Vegas Grand Prix Inc. has already come to the table so negotiations should begin. 

“There's no way to get to the end of it unless we at least authorize the negotiation,” Gibson said. “It's more of a matter of process and what you're willing to do, what you have to hear from them in order to get a negotiation going.”

Kirkpatrick said regardless of the negotiations, she felt her concerns weren’t heard by people putting on the large events such as Formula 1 and the Super Bowl, which is set to take place in Las Vegas in February 2024

“Commissioner, in all fairness, I've been to a few negotiations in the last couple years and the truth is, the county puts an offer out, we do it, and that shit changes,” Kirkpatrick said.

Gibson said the $40 million in negotiation is a brand-new number, but he is willing to talk it over with the Las Vegas Grand Prix Inc. He made a motion to approve, which narrowly passed with Kirkpatrick, Commissioner Michael Naft and Commissioner Justin Jones in opposition.


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