The latest Reid

Josh Reid last week was appointed to a job once held by his father—Henderson city attorney.

And to hear some people tell it, he got the job the same way, with a little pressure on his behalf. Reid is the son of U.S. Sen. Harry Reid, who phoned at least one member of the city council—Mayor Andy Hafen—to argue for his son’s appointment, though Hafen denied that his vote was based on anything but qualifications.

The appointment was preceded by controversy in the community. One letter to the editor read, “Who is Josh Reid? Yes, he is the youngest son of the Democratic Senate majority leader, Harry Reid. That is where his real qualifications end, compared to the other applicants.”

The younger Reid is certainly more qualified than his father was when he got the job. Harry Reid was just out of law school and was appointed to what was then a part time position after his father in law pushed for the appointment. Josh Reid, by contrast, took his law degree in 2000, practices environmental law with the firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, and has served on the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency and the Utah Board of Regents.

Most of the original applicants for the job did not meet the posted qualifications, so they were rewritten, which some critics claimed meant changing the job description for the specific benefit of Reid.