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The Elephant in the Room in Nevada: Property Taxes

Despite an anticipated political showdown over the issues raised by the state's property taxes, the Nevada State Legislature failed to take up the issue this year.
May 28, 2019, 9am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"With eight days until the end of the legislative session, there is one issue that has gone unmentioned beyond quiet murmurs in hallways and in caucus rooms," writes Megan Messerly.

"One lobbyist called it the 'elephant in the room' this session. Some were gearing up for a fight, confident that it could not only help solve some of the state’s budget problems but fix an antiquated system. Others were praying it would meet a swift end, concerned about its impacts on residents and the logistics of putting it into action."

Despite all that anticipation, no major legislative effort, or a resulting political battle, ever materialized.

Meanwhile, according to Messerly, the state ranks low on the list of states in terms of how much it collects in property taxes collected per capita, forcing it to rely on sales and use taxes.

There is a specific bill that has languished at the state as evidence of the legislature's reluctance to act on the matter, SJR14, which "passed on near-party lines in 2017."

Messerly explains what has come of that bill:

But, in order to change the Constitution, such a proposal needs to be twice approved by the Legislature before heading to a vote of the people for a final stamp of approval. Members of the business community, local governments and other observers fully expected the proposal to move forward to a second vote this session. Yet, with only about a week left, the proposal and an accompanying piece of legislation, SB419, have yet to receive so much as a committee hearing and are considered all but dead.

Full Story:
Published on Sunday, May 26, 2019 in The Nevada Independent
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