Businesses Needed for Scholarship Program: At No Net Cost to Firms, Donations will Improve the Lives of Students

Despite the spin from some, Nevada business people care deeply about education in Nevada and routinely donate millions towards K-12 and higher education. Unfortunately, politicians also routinely force “contributions” by raising taxes, including the largest tax hike in Nevada history during the last legislative session. For decades, business owners and employees have paid … [Read more...]

The Choice Union Members Don’t Know They Have: Why Employee Freedom Scares Union Bosses

Have you ever bought a new washer and dryer only to discover that the store down the street sold the same set for $750 less? It’s a frustrating experience to find out that you had better options than the ones you knew about. This is the situation that tens of thousands of Nevada union members unknowingly find themselves in. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics … [Read more...]

Learning the Minimum Wage Lesson

Nevada doesn’t have to learn the hard way when it comes to raising the minimum wage It’s always better to learn from someone else’s mistakes before being affected by those mistakes personally. Seattle didn’t have this luxury when its city council voted last year to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour, making it the municipality with the highest minimum wage in the … [Read more...]

Death and Taxes: With Some Revision, Sandoval’s Tax Hikes Not Necessary

In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” — Benjamin Franklin Had Benjamin Franklin been living in 21st century Nevada, his famous quote might have read something like this: In Nevada, nothing seems certain, except death and tax increases. It appears that — regardless of who is elected, which party holds the majority, or how hard those in … [Read more...]

Nevada Taxes Reaching Deeper

In total, Governor Brian Sandoval’s plan would raise more than $1 billion in new taxes.

Hall of Fame baseball player Yogi Berra once said it is deja vu all over again. He wasn’t wrong if he was describing Nevada politics and biennial efforts to create a tax code that can better withstand economic recessions. Nevada lawmakers have recently been debating another proposed tax increase geared towards adding funds to the state’s woeful educational system. In total, … [Read more...]

Green Schools Not Right for Nevada

As districts begin to build new schools, they should focus on kids, not environmental activists New school buildings are coming to Nevada, and if recent years are any indication, the push to build those schools to “green” standards will be as strong as the push that led lawmakers to authorize 10 additional years of bonding without voter approval to fund the construction of … [Read more...]

Retiring in the Lap of Taxpayer-Funded Luxury

How pensions in Nevada are often better than paychecks Know a public employee in Nevada who is looking for a pay raise? Tell him to retire. According to a new analysis made possible by the court-ordered release of Nevada’s Public Employee Retirement System payment records, once-public employees in the Silver State are making golden pensions — so generous that their … [Read more...]

What to Expect from Carson City in 2015:Republican Sweep Creates New Opportunities for Policy Reforms

The November wave that swept Republicans to victory not only solidified their control of the governor’s mansion but also saw them capture both chambers of the Nevada Legislature for the first time in 85 years. So now what? In the lifetime since Republicans last controlled the legislative process, liberal policies, decade after decade, have generated many problems for the … [Read more...]

Medicaid Expansion Pressures Nevada’s Poor, Doctors, State Budget

Addition of 281,000 to state dole creating long waits for doctor openings Last year, almost 25,000 Nevadans found their health plans canceled, thanks to the so-called Affordable Care Act. The ACA also caused a dramatic increase in the price of individual insurance plans — with Nevada having the largest premium increases in the entire country, according to a national study … [Read more...]

What Should “Revenue Reform” Look Like?

State Tax system could be Stabilized and Improved with Broader Consumption Tax Calls for “revenue reform” have long emanated from Carson City, where state lawmakers have complained that Nevada’s current tax code is outdated and no longer capable of supporting critical public services. Most often, these calls for “revenue reform” have served as little more than a euphemism for … [Read more...]

Minimum-Wage Hikes: The Path to Poverty for Poor People

Presumably, State Senator Tick Segerblom thinks his proposal to increase the minimum wage to $15-per-hour in Nevada would be beneficial. After all, it sounds appealing to double the pay of fast-food workers and other entry-level workers with one wave of the government’s mandate wand. As businessmen and women know firsthand, however, there’s a big difference between good … [Read more...]

An Educated Workforce Begins with Empowered Parents

Study Offers 33 Ways to Boost Nevada Students’ Achievement with No Net Increase in Spending One of the most dangerous phrases in the English language is, “Because we’ve always done it this way.” It’s a phrase that could cost a company millions of dollars in missed opportunities. But what if someone said it about a child: “She’s not doing well in school, but nothing will … [Read more...]

Downtown Summerlin Job Fair; Three Nonprofits Partner to Help Homeless Youth

Downtown Summerlin Announces Upcoming Job Fair The Howard Hughes Corporation (NYSE: HHC) announced details for the highly-anticipated job fair for Downtown Summerlin. Job seekers will be able to learn about and apply for jobs in the Summerlin Ballroom at Red Rock Resort on Wednesday, August 27 from 11am – 7pm. [Read More...] Three Nonprofits Work Together to Help Homeless … [Read more...]

Northern Nevada Used to be a Boomtown – It Can Be Again

Commentary In early June, one of my clients asked me if it were safe to invest in real estate in northern Nevada. My response: Only if you are sure of two things: 1) If the margins tax on the November ballot would be defeated; 2) If northern Nevada would get the Tesla battery gigafactory. Then, on June 9th, the Reno Gazette Journal (RGJ) posted a story entitled David vs. … [Read more...]

Margin Tax Would Cause Destruction of 3,600+ Private-Sector Jobs

New Dynamic, General-Equilibrium Analysis Simulates Impact of Tax Proposal Although much has been said about the proposed margin tax on businesses that will appear as Question 3 on November’s ballot, there is a shocking lack of clarity about the actual impact of the tax on Nevada’s economy. There isn’t even agreement on an approximate amount of new tax dollars the tax would … [Read more...]

‘Reading Rainbow’ Not Just About Books: One-Time Children’s Show Teaches About Free Markets

Ask people in today’s workforce about “Reading Rainbow” and they’re likely to have either been viewers themselves or raised children who reaped its educative benefits. For over a quarter century, the publicly funded television show worked to instill a love of reading within countless children, but in 2009, the show was abruptly canceled by PBS. While big-government … [Read more...]

Alternative Energy Projects: Who Pays for These Boondoggles?

Not only do these taxpayer-funded projects fail to produce jobs, but the bottom line is that alternative energy is expensive energy.

Work is almost completed on the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project, located near Tonopah. The developers had received a $737 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Energy, so if the project fails like Solyndra did, taxpayers will be on the hook for all that money. Even if we don’t have to ultimately make good on the loan, we’ll still be paying for it in lots of … [Read more...]

A Key Definition in the Margin-Tax Scheme Would Have Catastrophic Impact

Much ado has been made, and will continue to be made, about what is the most important question on Nevada’s 2014 ballot. But one critical aspect of the state teacher union’s proposal to enact a business margin tax has gone virtually unnoticed: the definition of an “affiliated group.” For the non-accountant, this might sound like a tedious and technical detail, but it could … [Read more...]

Why Teachers are Leaving the Teachers Union

It’s easy to lump individuals together in a group based on one specific characteristic. How many people have been cut off in traffic by someone with a California license plate, and then blasted those “California drivers”? Generalizations are especially prevalent in politics. Who’s heard that rural Nevada is conservative, but Las Vegas is liberal? Or that rednecks vote … [Read more...]