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John Tsarpalas

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!

 

Education spending

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)

 

Criminal Justice

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.

 

Minimum wage

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)

John Tsarpalas

John Tsarpalas

President

John Tsarpalas is the President of the Nevada Policy Research Institute, and is deeply committed to spreading limited government ideas and policy to create a better, more prosperous Nevada for all.

For over three decades, John has educated others in the ideals and benefits of limited government. In the 1980s, John joined the Illinois Libertarian Party and served on its State Central Committee. Later in the 90s, he transitioned to the Republican Party, and became active in the Steve Forbes for President Campaign and flat taxes.

In 2005, he was recruited to become the Executive Director of the Illinois Republican Party where he graduated from the Republican National Committee’s Campaign College, the RNC’s Field Management School, and the Leadership Institute’s activist training.

Additionally, John has served as President of the Sam Adams Alliance and Team Sam where he did issue education and advocacy work in over 10 states, with a focus on the web.

John also founded or helped start the following educational not-for-profits: Think Freely Media, the Haym Salomon Center – where he served as Chairman, the Franklin Center for Government & Public Integrity and Midwest Speaking Professionals.

A native of Chicago, John now lives in Las Vegas with his wife of 38 years. They have three daughters, and in his spare time, John enjoys trap shooting (while he still has the right!), fishing and public speaking.