Since it’s the time of year when Nevada’s children are making out their wish lists and sending them to Santa Claus, it might be fitting to make up a list of what we think Nevadans really want this year. Santa may have to forward some of this mail to Carson City so the 2003 Legislature can take care of it. Other wishes will be harder to fulfill, especially since some of the big kids making the lists have been naughty instead of nice. But I don’t want to be the Grinch who spoils anybody’s holiday, so let’s put these lists in the mail and hope for the best.
Gov. Kenny Guinn: A legacy that doesn’t involve being remembered as the guy who raised everybody’s taxes.
Nevada tourism industry: A year of freedom from terrorist attacks on American soil or on airplanes.
Mining industry: An increase in gold prices long enough and stable enough to spur more interest in developing Nevada mines.
Developers: Some relief from spiraling land prices. While we’re asking, how about a speedier process for expediting permits?
Doctors: Meaningful tort reform that brings insurance rates down to a reasonable level.
Insurance Companies: Ditto.
Contractors: Legislation to allow them to perform repairs for homeowners instead of being sued.
Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman: A downtown redevelopment project that’s economically viable.
Nevada’s education system: A return to the basics. Our children would be better served if members of the educational establishment remembered they are here to teach children, not to amass political power.
Attorneys: A new image.
CPAs: Ditto. A year without accounting scandals would also help.
Las Vegas drivers: Roads without orange cones every few feet.
Reno drivers: A speedy end to their Spaghetti Bowl project.
Nevada hospitals: A sudden influx of qualified nurses and medical professionals to staff the growing number of hospitals.
Economic development officials: An end to complaints about the quality of our workforce.
Nevada business owners: Freedom from the gross receipts tax.
Members of the 2003 Legislature: Guidance from Above. They’ll need it to figure out a way to balance the budget, while keeping taxes down and dodging bullets from all sides involved in the emotionally-charged issues scheduled for discussion this session.
Nevada voters: Enough determination to take some time out of their busy schedules to monitor what’s going on in the Legislature. It’s up to us to provide lawmakers with our own version of guidance.
Teachers: A class of 20 kids whose parents are partners in their education.
Parents: The ability to drive their kids to school without subjecting them to a dozen “R” rated messages on the way.
To all of us: A reminder of the reason for the season. If we can keep in mind that we are all God’s children, and ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do?” when we’re confronted with a difficult personal or business decision, we’d have a much happier New Year.