EDITORIAL: Tax hikes would be folly during budget crisis

Las Vegas Review-Journal
June 20, 2020

Gov. Steve Sisolak last week did an about-face and refused to rule out tax hikes during the special legislative session he’ll call to address the state’s gaping budget chasm. That was a colossal mistake. Rather than kowtowing to public-employee unions, the governor needs to dig deep for some fortitude and start doing the job he was elected to do.

Simply put, asking Nevada’s private-sector workers and their employers to reach further into their wallets during this time of economic devastation and uncertainty would be an outrage and should constitute political suicide for elected officials. Neither the state’s business community nor those it sustains are in any position to take a further financial hit, what with the tourism and travel industry on the rack and unemployment at record highs. Particularly when public employees — at both the state and local levels — have been asked to bear so little of the sacrifice.

Let’s keep in mind that, according to U.S. census data, Nevada local government workers in 2017 earned, on average, 31 percent more than the private-sector workers who pay their salaries, the highest disparity in the nation. In 2019, Nevada governments spent more than $2 billion on worker pension contributions alone.

The state’s jobless rate hit 28.2 percent in April, the highest in the nation. The carnage almost exclusively reflects job losses in the private economy, as thousands of workers sit at home and struggle to pay the bills. While the gradual reopening of the economy has eased their burden somewhat, the destruction is likely to continue for many months as beleaguered firms determine whether they can survive in the new reality of limited capacities and lukewarm consumer enthusiasm.

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“Neither the state’s business community nor those it sustains are in any position to take a further financial hit, what with the tourism and travel industry on the rack and unemployment at record highs. Particularly when public employees — at both the state and local levels — have been asked to bear so little of the sacrifice.”

Las Vegas Review-Journal 

EDITORIAL: Pandemic rages, but city, county still flush with cash

Las Vegas Review-Journal
June 17, 2020

Willie Sutton once famously said — perhaps apocryphally — that he robbed banks “because that’s where the money is.” Were the outlaw alive in Southern Nevada today, he might have reset his sights on two different targets: the governments of Clark County and the city of Las Vegas.


 

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To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.

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• To focus on candidate support on state legislative races and the governor's office.
• To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.
• Support limiting Nevada state government spending to the rate of population growth.

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