May 21, 2019
21 May 2019

Political Update – May 21, 2019

 

When bureaucrats decide a tax increase isn’t actually an increase… 

Nevada Policy Research Institute

May 10, 2019

In order to fund Governor Sisolak’s proposed budget, Democrats want to change current law, and keep in place a temporary tax increase from 2015. That increase to the Modified Business Tax was originally set to expire this year.

Most people had assumed that such a move would require at least two-thirds support from the legislature — meaning at least one Republican in the Senate would need to join Democrats in voting to extend the tax.

However, the Legislative Council Bureau apparently had a different opinion, telling Democrats this week that no such “supermajority” is needed.

Apparently, the LCB has a different definition of the word “increase” than the rest of us.

*NEW*

Quote of
the week

 


Quote:

“I’m grateful to the Legislative Counsel Bureau for their work to issue this opinion and am pleased that they’ve concluded that a two-thirds vote is not required to pass my recommended budget.”

Governor Steve Sisolak

Details missing from new education funding bill

Victor Joecks
Las Vegas Review-Journal 

May 16, 2019

The long-awaited bill creating a new education funding formula is here. Many key details, however, are yet to be determined.

On Monday, Senate Education Committee chair Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, released the blueprint for a new school funding plan, Senate Bill 543. For years, many Democratic politicians have criticized the current formula, called the Nevada Plan. They claim it’s old and outdated. Their biggest beef is that it doesn’t allocate more money for students who lack English prociency or live in poverty. The theory is that it’s harder to educate those students, so they need additional services, which costs additional money.

Keystone’s Mission:

To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.

Keystone’s Mission:

• To focus on candidate support on state legislative races and the governor’s office.
• To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.
• Support limiting Nevada state government spending to the rate of population growth.

P.O. Box 93596 | Las Vegas, NV 89193-3596

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May 14, 2019
14 May 2019

Political Update – May 14, 2019

 

EDITORIAL: Sisolak, Democrats wrong to seek shortcut to tax hikes 

Las Vegas Review-Journal

May 11, 2019

Forget Washington. If you’re looking for an impending constitutional crisis, head to Carson City.

Nevada’s constitution requires that tax increases pass the Legislature with a two-thirds majority in both houses. That provision — approved by voters in 1994 and 1996 — has frequently frustrated big-government politicians. They’ve either had to do the hard work of securing broad support for new taxes or abandon their plans.

Gov. Steve Sisolak wants a third option — ignoring the constitution. On Thursday, the Review-Journal obtained copy of a nonbinding legal opinion from the Legislative Counsel Bureau saying he could do just that.

Sisolak’s budget relies on receiving around $100 million by extending the current rate of the Modified Business Tax, which is scheduled to decline slightly. Democrats have a two-thirds majority in the Assembly, but are one vote short of two-thirds in the Senate. Sisolak and legislative Democrats sought the LCB’s opinion, because they didn’t want to have to negotiate with Republicans.

While LCB claims to be nonpartisan, it serves as the majority party’s lawyers. If Democratic leaders insist on reaching a certain conclusion, LCB’s lawyers will come up with whatever twisted argument they can to justify it.

Which is exactly what LCB did in this opinion. Nevada’s constitution requires a two-thirds vote “to pass a bill or joint resolution which creates, generates, or increases any public revenue in any form.” Legislators can a pass a tax increase with a simple majority only by sending it out for a vote of the people.

To determine whether a bill “increases any public revenue in any form,” you don’t need a legal opinion, just a calculator. Without the proposed bill, look at what public revenues will be. If the proposed bill passes, see if public revenue will be higher than before. If yes, that’s an increase of public revenue.

Raising revenue is the entire reason Sisolak wants this bill to start with. He needs the nearly $100 million to balance his budget.

*NEW*

Quote of
the week

 


Quote:

“With 11% revenue growth Democrat leaders have many options to fund NV and get us out of the legislative session without triggering a constitutional crisis.”

Senate Minority Leader James Settelmeyer
on Twitter

EDITORIAL: CCSD needs to prepare to prevent teachers from striking

Victor Joecks
Las Vegas Review-Journal 

May 12, 2019

A dispute between adults shouldn’t hinder the amount of time students spend in the classroom. Yet that could be the ramification for the Clark County Education Association’s irresponsible strike threats.

On Sunday, the union announced that 78 percent of the more than 5,000 members voting authorized a strike at the start of next school year if it doesn’t get its way at the Legislature. It’s all about “the children,” right? Sure.

Keystone’s Mission:

To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.

Keystone’s Mission:

• To focus on candidate support on state legislative races and the governor’s office.
• To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.
• Support limiting Nevada state government spending to the rate of population growth.

P.O. Box 93596 | Las Vegas, NV 89193-3596

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May 7, 2019
07 May 2019

Political Update – May 7, 2019

 

Senate Republicans Introduce Emergency Legislation to Protect Rainy Day Fund 

Nevada Senate Republicans

May 1, 2019

Today the Senate Republican Caucus introduced emergency legislation to protect The State of Nevada’s “Rainy Day Fund” formally known as the Account to Stabilize the Operation of State Government.

Current law allows for the legislature to spend money from the “Rainy Day Fund” for any purpose without limitations during the 120-day legislative session.  Our emergency legislation will require a 45 day (6.25%) operating balance in the fund before the legislature can access the excess of that amount, unless triggers occur.

The true purpose of the “Rainy Day Fund” is to protect Nevada’s government services when regular revenue is decreased. Nevada used this account during the last recession and still made cuts in government services, including lay-offs and furloughs of state employees. 

“The “Rainy Day Fund” was bankrupt when Governor Sandoval took office, today the fund is at an all-time high, yet still would not cover operating expenses for 30-45 days,” said Senator James Settelmeyer.  “Today’s Economic Forum report makes it clear that we need to protect and grow the fund and not use it for pet projects during the session.”

“A healthy rainy-day fund will allow the legislature to protect our most essential services if the economy continues to slow,” said Senator Ben Kieckhefer.  “Lawmakers must show restraint and enact limitations on when they can and cannot access this important economic safeguard.”

*NEW*

Quote of
the week

 


Quote:

“In its simplest terms, the governor and the Democrats are trying to spend more money than is available. How will Democrats keep their promise to teachers and unions while still balancing the state budget?”

Assembly Minority Leader Jim Wheeler
Las Vegas Review-Journal

New state revenue projections offer little good news for Nevada lawmakers, teachers

James DeHaven
Reno Gazette Journal

May 1, 2019

Nevada lawmakers’ lives just got a lot harder.

That was the takeaway from the Legislature on Wednesday, where a five-member panel of financial experts OK’d an underwhelming batch of revenue projections that will be used to finalize the state’s two-year budget.

Keystone’s Mission:

To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.

Keystone’s Mission:

• To focus on candidate support on state legislative races and the governor’s office.
• To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.
• Support limiting Nevada state government spending to the rate of population growth.

P.O. Box 93596 | Las Vegas, NV 89193-3596

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May 1, 2019
01 May 2019

Political Update – May 1, 2019

 

NV Assembly rolls back prevailing wage changes approved by 2015 legislature 

Geoff Dornan
Nevada Appeal

April 30, 2019

On a party line vote, the Nevada Assembly on Monday, April 29, adopting a bill rolling the changes to state;s prevailing wage statutes made by the Republican-dominated legislature four years ago.

The Republican bill OK’d in 2015 raised the amount of a construction project needed to trigger prevailing wage requirements from $100,000 to $250,000, while cutting the prevailing wage by 10 percent for public school and university projects.

The new legislation, Assembly Bill 136, changed both those standards back to what they were four years ago.

Assemblyman Skip Daly, D-Sparks, said the prevailing wage is designed to protect wages and work conditions and protect against unfair competition.

But Assemblyman Greg Hafen, R-Pahrump, argued AB136 will add millions to the cost of building public and charter schools. He said the fiscal notes put on the bill by school districts total some $35 million.

He was joined by Alexis Hansen, R-Sparks, who said it would add 25 percent to the cost of new schools.

The bill passed 28-12, with two members absent, and ordered to the Senate.

*NEW*

Quote of
the week

 


Quote:

“Needless to say, legislators should not be passing any law — let alone one that makes government less transparent — based on deception and misinformation.” Michael Schaus & ​​​​Robert Fellner,
Nevada Policy Research Institute

Lobbyist’s false testimony crucial in moving anti-transparency bill forward

Michael Schaus &
Robert Fellner
Nevada Policy Research Institute

April 22, 2019

To justify the “PERS secrecy” bill, lobbyist Marlene Lockard relied almost entirely on known falsehoods in her official testimony to lawmakers.

Because state law makes it a crime to knowingly misrepresent any fact when testifying before a legislative committee, Nevada Policy recently filed a legal complaint with Legislative Counsel Bureau Director Rick Combs and the attorney general’s office.

Keystone’s Mission:

To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.

Keystone’s Mission:

• To focus on candidate support on state legislative races and the governor’s office.
• To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.
• Support limiting Nevada state government spending to the rate of population growth.

P.O. Box 93596 | Las Vegas, NV 89193-3596

To ensure that you continue receiving email updates,

please add Info@KeystoneNevada.com to your address book or safe list.
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