A pessimist sees a dark tunnel;
An optimist sees the light at the end of the tunnel;
A realist sees a freight train;
The engineer sees three idiots standing on the tracks.
Entering Week 5 of the 2019 Nevada Legislative Session, the capitol has eased back into a familiar rhythm; bill introduction… legislator meetings… committee… support… opposition… neutral… more legislator meetings… work session… As the first bill deadlines approach and we get closer to the deadlines (March 18 for legislator bill introductions) than we are to convening of the Session, we become acutely aware of the progress the Legislature has made in the past 30 days as the revelation hits that the 80th Session is 25% complete. As of the date of this missive, 483 bills have been introduced – a sizeable figure until you realize this represents just more than 33% of bills traditionally introduced in a Nevada legislative session. There are still 800 more bills coming. That Carson City and the Sierra Nevada mountains have seen snow nearly every day of the 2019 Session could not be more ironic, as we stand in the Carson valley awaiting an avalanche – in one way or another.
The legislation introduced thus far touches several areas of policy interest; workforce development, apprenticeships, and prevailing wage bills have all been introduced and some have even been heard. That said, legislation NOT introduced has been the buzz of Carson City in the first 5 weeks. Understanding that somewhere in the remaining 800 bill draft requests are bills addressing real property taxation, construction defects, and other fees and costs which could be used to fill budget gaps, the Nevada business community prepares for the other shoe to drop, hoping the shoe is not an ACME anvil. Blind faith never worked out well for the Coyote. However, true preparation is difficult without language, and given the diminishing timeframe until the upcoming deadline, an element of nervousness has entered day-to-day conversation in Carson City.
A policy bill immediately identified as problematic is SB 151, legislation aimed at softening the blow of summary eviction proceedings on tenants – both residential and commercial. The bill proposes to double the time a tenant who is delinquent in rent has to pay or quit, from 5 to 10 days. The bill also doubles the time a tenant may remain on the premises from 24 to 48 hours following issuance of a court order for the constable to remove the tenant. Always amenable to discussion, Sen. Ratti, the Sponsor of SB 151, has begun stakeholder meetings and aimed at providing a forum for reasonable discussion regarding alternative language for this bill.
Odds & Ends
Facts regarding Hoover Dam are common knowledge in Southern Nevada, making residents coveted assets for trivia night at the local pub. But, did you know the hard hat, a staple of construction sites second only to the crane, was devised and used for the first time at Hoover Dam? Here’s to seeing more hard hats and cranes in Nevada!