KEY POINTS

  • Hotel Owner Don Ahern received a $3,000 fine for hosting an indoor rally for President Trump on Sunday
  • Most rally attendees were not wearing masks or observing social distancing protocols
  • Ahern was previously fined for hosting a faith-based Trump rally in a Las Vegas hotel

The City of Henderson has slapped a $3,000 fine on the Nevada company for hosting an indoor campaign rally for President Donald Trump on Sunday after it defied the state’s coronavirus restriction banning large gatherings. 

Sunday’s rally, which was held inside Xtreme Manufacturing, was attended by an estimated 5,600 people. Attendees at the rally were not required to wear masks, except for those positioned near the stage. There was also little social distancing. 

"During the event, a compliance officer observed six violations of the directives and the City's Business Operations Division has issued a Business License Notice of Violation to Xtreme Manufacturing and assessed a penalty of $3,000," Kathleen Richards, a spokeswoman for the city of Henderson, told CNN

Xtreme Manufacturing was given 30 calendar dates to respond to the notice, pay the fine, or dispute the notice of the violation. 

Don Ahern, a friend of President Trump and owner of Xtreme Manufacturing and the Ahern Hotel, addressed the media about his decision to hold the rally despite the warning of potential penalties. 

During the news conference Monday, Ahern said his goal was to continue to uphold the right to assemble and to free speech. He read a brief prepared statement where he compared the Trump rally to people gathering in casinos, pool parties, and protests. 

“We’re in some legal litigation, and we understand that certain agencies, cities, they’ve got a job to do,” Ahern responded when 8 News Now asked him about the $3,000 fine. He said he believed it was his patriotic duty to support the president by hosting the event and “do what is right for our country.”

The state of Nevada had previously given Ahern a penalty for failing to comply with its coronavirus mitigation measures. The Ahern Hotel and Convention Center received a $10,930 penalty from the state’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Aug. 30 after it hosted a faith-based Trump rally and a beauty pageant. 

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Las Vegas authorities and city employees arrived minutes before the “Evangelicals for Trump Rally” on Aug. 6 and issued Ahern a fine of $250. The event, held at the former Lucky Dragon casino-hotel, continued as a city employee said more than 1,100 people attended the faith-based rally. 

Supporters listen to US President Donald Trump speak during a campaign rally at the Minden-Tahoe airport in Minden, Nevada on September 12, 2020 Supporters listen to US President Donald Trump speak during a campaign rally at the Minden-Tahoe airport in Minden, Nevada on September 12, 2020 Photo: AFP / Brendan Smialowski