In case you missed it…
Fiscal and taxes
Average Americans spent a little less on their total tax bills in 2017 than in 2016. But that doesn’t mean it wasn’t still a burden. In fact, when you add it up for the whole year, the average American’s total tax bill is staggering. In 2017, an average American spent more on income taxes alone than on food and clothing combined. When you add into the mix other forms of taxation, such as property taxes, the amount climbs even higher. (Read more)
Earlier this year, Nevada Policy reported on a Clark County deputy district attorney who tripled his salary to a staggering $475,000 by cashing out unused sick leave before retiring. (Read the story here.) It might have been a shocking payout, but it was far from unique. Taxpayers in Nevada, as it turns out, owe almost $610 million to local government employees thanks to unused paid time off that workers can cash in before retiring. Making matters worse, these payouts for unused hours are based upon an employee’s final salary — not the salary they were paid when they earned the time off in the first place. In practice, this means when public-sector workers decide to cash out, it comes with a staggering price tag for taxpayers. (Read more)
Thanks to a recent ruling from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, California’s government will be permitted, for now, to continue forcing non-profits to reveal their donors. The decision is a major attack on freedom of speech, as it forces individuals and groups who support political reforms to be exposed to attacks from those who hate the idea of the reforms. As we’ve seen in California — as well as other jurisdictions with similar disclosure requirements — allowing government to collect the names of individuals and businesses that support certain causes can easily subject supporters to threats, harassment and intimidation. In fact, it was just that kind of abuse that led the U.S. Supreme Court, in NAACP v. Alabama, to side 60 years ago with the civil rights group when Alabama’s government tried to force it to disclose its supporters’ names during the battle to end segregation. (Read more)
As the saying goes, “no good deed goes unpunished.” As residents fled the Carolina coast ahead of Hurricane Florence, Tammie Hedges took action to protect animals that were left behind by their owners. Hedges, the owner of a donation-based animal rescue center, used the unfinished site of her future animal shelter to house more than two dozen animals left abandoned ahead of the hurricane. Unfortunately for her, the facility she used was not yet registered with local authorities as an official shelter — and as a result, she was arrested shortly after authorities learned of her good deed. Hedges now faces up to 12 counts of “practicing medicine without a veterinary license,” merely because she didn’t seek out the appropriate permission slips from government before saving two-dozen pets during a natural disaster. (Read more)
Thank you again to everyone who was able to make it to our 27th Anniversary Dinner last week featuring the Wall Street Journal’s Kimberley Strassel as the keynote speaker. It was a tremendous time, and we hope to see all of you there again soon!
And thank you, again, to all of our supporters. The work we do wouldn’t be possible without your continued generosity. We are proud to partner with you in the fight to keep Nevada free and prosperous.