Poll: Nevadans, by a 4-1 margin, want transparency in collective bargaining
Nevada Policy Research Institute
March 17, 2020
Nearly three out of four likely Nevada voters want more transparency from public employee unions and government agencies, according to a new statewide public opinion poll conducted by OH Predictive Insights on behalf of the Nevada Policy Research Institute.
When asked if labor negotiations between public unions and government employers should be made transparent and open to the public, Nevadans overwhelmingly agreed, with 73 percent of total respondents supporting such a measure.
Support was strong across all demographics, including two-thirds of current union members responding in favor of greater transparency.
“Unfortunately, Nevadans simply aren’t receiving the kind of openness they expect, and are entitled to, when it comes to union negotiations with government agencies,” said Nevada Policy Communications Director Michael Schaus.
While the state’s Open Meetings Law requires that government business be conducted in public view, contract negotiations with government unions are exempt from this requirement — shutting government workers and taxpayers out of the process that determines how their tax dollars will be spent.
“I think most people are probably pretty shocked when they learn that these negotiations over how to spend public dollars happen behind closed doors,” Schaus said. “Such secrecy is directly at odds with what Nevadans expect from their government.
“As this poll demonstrates, making the process more transparent is something Nevadans, including union members themselves, overwhelmingly support.”
The bipartisan support for greater transparency in government also extends to Nevada lawmakers.