This week in the Nevada legislature
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, given that the state’s constitution requires a “supermajority” for revenue-generating bills and resolutions. However, the Legislative Council Bureau apparently had a different understanding of the constitution’s plain language. (Watch our video here.) Given the plain text of Nevada’s Constitution, it seems like a legal battle is unavoidable if Democrats don’t seek out some GOP support for their MBT extension. (Read more) Keep up to date with everything that is happening in Carson City, and visit Nevada Policy’s online Legislative Bill Tracker by clicking here!
Lawmakers are weighing the option of forcing school districts to give all teachers an across-the-board 3 percent pay increase next year. However, these raises aren’t actually included in the governor’s budget, and school districts aren’t sure how to pay for it. (Read more here.) Besides, there are plenty of ways lawmakers could raise teacher pay without busting local school district budgets… Of course, to do so would mean less money for other handouts to organized labor, such as prevailing wage. (Read more)
Yet another state has recently reformed its Civil Asset Forfeiture practices, making it harder for law enforcement to seize and keep people’s property without actually convicting anyone with a crime. Previously, North Dakota was among the worst states for civil asset forfeiture, according to the Institute for Justice. But that all changed last week when the state’s Republican Governor signed a bill that severely limits law enforcement’s use of the practice. (Read more) Nevada lawmakers should take note, and keep reform efforts moving forward here at home.
Democrats in Nevada are poised to raise the state’s minimum wage to $12 per hour. What they seemingly don’t understand, however, is that government diktats never create the kind of economic prosperity that organic economic growth delivers. Walmart, for example, has recently announced that store managers average $175,000 a year and average hourly workers are earning nearly $15 per hour — simply because that’s what it takes to find (and retain) workers in this growing economy. In other words, wages are going up at Walmart because the economy is doing well! Of course, as this article in the Washington Post (accidently) illustrates, even this isn’t enough to satisfy the activists representing organized labor. (Read more)