The continuing campaign for a gross-receipts tax

Steven Miller

Deutsche Bank gaming analyst Bill Lerner made some solid points about the teacher union's gaming tax push on April 24 when he spoke to the North Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce. Unfortunately, he undercut his presentation at the same time by also indiscriminately parroting bogus talking points beloved by Nevada's zealots for "broad-based" tax schemes.

If you attended the Chamber meeting, or can find a hard-copy edition of InBusiness Las Vegas for May 2 with its coverage (presently not available online), be sure to compare Lerner's Chamber remarks with the remarks of MGM-Mirage CEO Terry Lanni on "Face to Face with Jon Ralston" (partial transcript here). Despite the different venues and the different speakers, the arguments presented were virtually precise mirror images of each other.

Indeed, whether the points being made on each occasion were sound or unsound, they remained precisely the same limited set of the same particular arguments. This large degree of identity in the presentations strongly suggests that Lerner has consciously made himself – and implicitly, perhaps, Deutsche Bank itself – a willing footsoldier in Lanni's tireless crusade for higher taxes on other Nevada businesses. I wonder what his Deutsche Bank bosses will say.

Steven Miller

Senior Vice President, Nevada Journal Managing Editor

Steven Miller is Nevada Journal Managing Editor, Emeritus, and has been with the Institute since 1997.

Steven graduated cum laude with a B.A. in Philosophy from Claremont Men’s College (now Claremont McKenna). Before joining NPRI, Steven worked as a news reporter in California and Nevada, and a political cartoonist in Nevada, Hawaii and North Carolina. For 10 years he ran a successful commercial illustration studio in New York City, then for five years worked at First Boston Credit Suisse in New York as a technical analyst. After returning to Nevada in 1991, Steven worked as an investigative reporter before joining NPRI.