Horsford: Nevada needs a broad-based business tax

Victor Joecks

Full quote from Senate Majority Leader Horsford:

“What I would like to do is have a conversation and provide outreach to those stakeholders in the business community. I think it’s time to talk about a broad-based business tax, as difficult as that may be. I don’t see how we balance the budget without broadening our revenue base. We need to talk about a lasting solution.”

In other news, Nevada’s unemployment rate is at 10.4 percent and traffic at McCarran Airport fell by 11.8 percent in March after falling by 15.7 and 15.2 percent in January and February, respectively (compared to the same months in 2008).

So Nevada needs a broad-based business tax like a man dying of dehydration needs a glass of salt water, like an anorexic teenager needs Nicole Richie as a role model, or like the world needs more people to watch this video.

Now, it’s natural to have downturns in the economy. In the private sector, businesses and families prioritize and make the cuts necessary to survive and thrive in the future. But in government, it’s all about the politicians taking your money to solve their problems – like this one facing the majority leader:

“Every one of the decisions that we are making are in public through the subcommittee process. Every day we debate the impact of these cuts. I damn near broke down crying (on Thursday) over the cuts to cultural affairs”.

Funny. The Review-Journal described this process weeks ago.

For months, the bureaucrats and Democratic legislators have been making a show of tearing their hair, weeping and moaning about “cuts,” lambasting Gov. Gibbons for submitting a budget that will supposedly leave schools and hospitals no choice but to close their doors, leave children and old people to starve in the streets, etc.What cuts? Where are the cuts? Most Nevada taxpayers are figuring out how to tighten their belts and live on less. But a 17 percent spending increase — a revenue increase of 37 percent over what’s now flowing in to state coffers, new or increased taxes to generate an extra $2.16 billion, to a new record income level of $7.96 billion — is the minimum lawmakers will consider?

But maybe that doesn’t matter to some people. Maybe what matters is that Sen. Horsford cares. Not about the businesses that are struggling to make ends meet, not about the workers who wouldn’t get hired because of government taxes, and not about the families who will struggle financially for a longer time because the government has created a disincentive to hire workers.

But he cares. He almost cried!

Sen. Horsford may care, but does he care about the right stuff?