In case you missed it…

John Tsarpalas

Nevada Policy Anniversary Dinner

We’re about to celebrate another year of defending free-market principles, limited government and individual liberty in the Silver State! And you’re invited! To join the celebrations at the Nevada Policy Anniversary Dinner on September 17th, register today, as these tickets are sure to sell out fast! Read more.

 

Crony Capitalism

You know those justifications politicians offer when handing out tax breaks, subsidies and abatements? They rarely come true. A new report by the Reno Gazette-Journal once again shows why government shouldn’t attempt to pick business winners and losers. Since 2011, the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) has given big corporations billions of dollars in subsidies and tax breaks. But when GOED was audited, however, the companies had generated only 80 percent of the jobs promised and invested a mere 30 percent of the capital promised. A glaring example is EBay: Allowed up to $13.6 million in abatements, it created just two Las Vegas jobs. Since 2009, the GOED gave up $393 million in future sales and property taxes in exchange for 19,900 high paying jobs and $7.1 billion in capital investments. Only 15,732 jobs were created, however, and $1.9 billion was invested. Read more.

 

National Education Association

We know that union membership has been in decline in Nevada, but it’s not only in the Silver State that teachers are opting out of membership. Nationally, local unions are also bailing out of the National Education Association (NEA). In the last five years, eleven locals have left the NEA and their state affiliates. While opting out is relatively straightforward for teachers and support staff in Nevada, union locals themselves have much more difficulty. The NEA requires local affiliates to give 60 days’ notice, speaking time at membership meetings and a two-thirds majority vote. Recently, the Clark County Education Association — the largest local union in the nation to disaffiliate — slipped through the NEA’s grasp. “The NEA’s corporate executives, like any monopoly, fear competition above all else. But their attempt to lock in their revenue streams may prove too little, too late to stop the local revolution.” Read more.

 

Infrastructure

It seems that most Americans agree that our infrastructure — items such as bridges, roads and airports — need attention. Although we may think of ourselves as “more free-wheeling and less-regulated” than Europeans and Asians, when it comes to infrastructure it just isn’t the case. So why does the United States fall so far behind other counties? The reason, according to PragerU’s Kyle Smith, is environmental activists and labor unions. Environmental reviews are why a routine drudging project in Oakland harbor took nearly 25 years to complete. Labor unions are the reason why a task that would take nine workers in Madrid takes 24 workers in New York City. So why can’t America build like it is in the 21st century? It’s simple, “the unions and environmentalists won’t let us.” Watch the YouTube video.

 

Nevada Constitution

Last Friday, Nevada Senate Republicans filed a constitutional lawsuit against Senate Democrats over their certifying passage of Senate Bill 551 without a two-thirds majority. The Nevada State Constitution requires a two-thirds majority to pass bills that increase revenue “in any form.” SB551, however, eliminated a partial sunset provision to the Modified Business Tax (MBT) and thereby increasing state revenue by an additional $100 million. Senate Democrats and the Legislative Counsel Bureau (LCB) reasoned that two-thirds majority wasn’t necessary since the bill rates of the MBT stayed the same. However, this particular provision in the constitution was enacted precisely to keep politicians from using such schemes to circumvent the law. As the Las Vegas Review-Journal Editorial Board notes: “Nevada is about to find out if its judges are more beholden to the constitution or political pressure.” 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.