Posts in pershing county

November 12th, 2013  |  Filed under News

Burning Man Settles Lawsuit with Pershing County, Nev.


A gavel.

[Editor's Note: The AP has published a retraction and correction of its original story, which incorrectly stated the facts of the case.]

San Francisco, CA. – Black Rock City, LLC and Pershing County have reached a settlement of all issues of the lawsuit brought by BRC last year. Associated court documents were filed in U.S. District Court in Reno, Nevada last week. The parties are now waiting for the federal district to approve the settlement in a hearing scheduled for this coming Monday, November 18th.

“This is a very favorable outcome for all parties,” said Raymond Allen, Government Affairs Representative for BRC. “The terms address all of BRC’s and the County’s concerns.”

The settlement agreement spans ten years and is designed to cover all of Pershing County’s costs and impacts related to the Burning Man event, while also preserving participant freedoms protected by the First Amendment. The agreement is based on integration of operations of the Pershing County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Land Management’s (“BLM”) law enforcement command. Read more »

June 5th, 2013  |  Filed under News

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval signs AB374 – Streamlining permitting process for Burning Man event

Governor Sandoval signing AB374 into law

Governor Sandoval signing AB374 into law. Seated: Gov. Brian Sandoval
Standing from left to right: Adam Belsky, Counsel for BRC LLC; Robert Shirley; Tom Clark, Lobbyist for BRC LLC; Shannon Hogan, Lobbyist for BRC LLC; Jim Shirley, District Attorney for Pershing County; Sen. David Parks; Assemblyman & bill sponsor David Bobzien; Marian Goodell, Founder, BRC LLC; Raymond Allen, Government Affairs Representative for BRC LLC

CARSON CITY, NEV., June 5, 2013 — Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval today signed AB374 into law, a bill sponsored by Assemblyman David Bobzien that streamlines the permitting process for events like Burning Man held on federal lands.

“This is a huge victory for the Burning Man event,” said Raymond Allen, Government Affairs Representative for Black Rock City, LLC. “The law ensures local permitting requirements won’t infringe upon the First Amendment rights of Burning Man participants. It also ensures the continued right of assembly for the entire event.”

The new law gives counties the right to opt out of state permitting requirements for events held on federal land that already undergo a comprehensive federal permitting process. As a result of collaborative negotiations involving Burning Man representatives, Pershing County officials and the Nevada Association of Counties, Pershing County commissioners already passed a resolution exempting Burning Man from county permitting requirements in perpetuity.

“It’s a win-win for everyone and a testament to the benefit of collaboration,” Allen said. “Our goal has always been to adequately compensate Pershing County for the services it provides to our event. This law ensures compensation occurs through a contract with the County per the requirements of our Bureau of Land Management permit.”

The bill passed unanimously in the Nevada Assembly and Senate, and goes into effect on July 1st.


May 1st, 2013  |  Filed under News

Recent Media Coverage of Burning Man Lawsuit

[This post will be updated periodically as new media coverage occurs.]

Photo by Scott Stallard

Judge allows Burning Man lawsuit against Pershing County to move ahead
S.F. Examiner (4/29/13)
A federal judge ruled that a lawsuit against Pershing County, Nev., by the organizers of Burning Man can move forward.


Federal judge in Reno makes rulings in Burning Man lawsuit
Reno Gazette Journal (4/29/13)
Several arguments in the lawsuit filed by Burning Man organizers against Pershing County will get to stand trial after a federal judge also dismissed several of their allegations.


Burning Man’s Lawsuit Against New Fees Moves Ahead
NBC Bay Area (4/30/2013)
The Man does not abide the county’s fee. A lawsuit filed by organizers of Burning Man against Pershing County, Nevada — where Black Rock City sets up every August in the desert — over the local government’s new fees for the event is going forward, according to the San Francisco Examiner.


April 29th, 2013  |  Filed under News

U.S. District Judge Denies Pershing County Attempt to Block Burning Man Lawsuit

San Francisco, April 29, 2013 — U.S. District Judge Robert C. Jones issued an order Friday denying Pershing County’s attempt to dismiss a lawsuit filed by Black Rock City, LLC challenging the County’s unconstitutional festival permitting process.

Burning Man organizers sued Pershing County in August 2012 after the County breached a series of agreements it had previously entered into with Black Rock City, LLC, and enacted an unconstitutional ordinance that singles out the Burning Man event.

“The ordinance is nothing more than the county’s thinly veiled attempt to exact more fees or drive the internationally-renowned art event out of Nevada,” said Raymond Allen, Government Relations Manager for Black Rock City, LLC. “Both actions are violations of the First Amendment.” Read more »

August 26th, 2012  |  Filed under News

Taking the High Road with Pershing County

Pershing County Courthouse, Lovelock, NV, Photo by Nathan Aaron Heller

Last week, Burning Man filed a lawsuit against Pershing County, Nev., to stop the county’s attempt to impose drastic fee increases on our event.

Many of you have been very vocal about your support for the legal actions we’ve taken in response to Pershing County’s unreasonable fee hikes and attempts at regulating our event.  Others have generated lots of ideas and suggestions, which we appreciate and will continue to read and listen to.

We are tremendously grateful for your support and our intention is to work through the legal system to reach a satisfactory outcome for our event and our community. As we do, we’d like to remind our fellow Burners that while the actions taken by Pershing County officials might ignite passionate responses, and we’re grateful for your engagement in the community, it’s important to remain civil and respectful as this process plays out – this goes for online communications as well as participants right here at Burning Man.

Importantly, the Pershing County deputies patrolling the event are not party to this lawsuit, and are also completely independent and different from the BLM officers onsite. These are the same deputies who worked the event last year, and Black Rock City staff members are very pleased with the service and professionalism of the Pershing County Sheriff’s Office. We ask that you please treat these officers with the respect and kindness they’ve earned.  Pershing County deputies are a trusted and valuable component of our community – they contribute daily to the safety and well-being of all citzens of Black Rock City!

Just as your actions reflect on our entire community as you make your way through nearby towns en route to and from Black Rock City, your response to this situation reflects on Burning Man as well. Let’s keep to the high road as this lawsuit works its way through the judicial system. Please set the vitriol aside and help us demonstrate that Burning Man is home to a community of givers and doers, with the best of intentions and a lot to offer our neighbors in Pershing, Washoe and Humboldt Counties.

For more information about the Pershing lawsuit, please visit:

Thanks all, and if you’re en route to BRC, we’ll see you very soon!





August 17th, 2012  |  Filed under News

Burning Man Files Lawsuit Against Pershing County, NV

Fee Increases Violate Federal Law, Threaten Ability To Do Business In State

For more information, please visit

RENO, Nev. — Today the organizers of Burning Man filed a lawsuit against Pershing County, Nev., to stop the county’s attempt to impose a drastic increase in fees on the annual weeklong event, which is held on public land managed by the U.S. government. This action will not affect the 2012 event.

“For more than 20 years, the Burning Man community has proudly made northern Nevada its home, providing millions of dollars annually to the local economy,” said Larry Harvey, the founder of Burning Man. “We love Nevada. Unfortunately, Pershing County is making it difficult to continue doing business here. We intend to resolve this matter through reasonable means and work collaboratively with Nevadans to keep our business in the state.”

Black Rock City, LLC, is the company that organizes the Burning Man event each year in the Black Rock Desert. Pursuant to requirements of the Bureau of Land Management, which manages federal land, BRC has annually compensated Pershing County for all documented, event-related costs since 2005. As part of a separate agreement negotiated with Pershing County over disagreements about the applicability of the county’s festival ordinance, BRC has additionally contributed a total of $395,600 to Pershing County and local charitable organizations that serve its residents. Read more »