For many people, the New Year is a time to take a look at their lives and make resolutions to improve themselves, their families and their careers. It’s a time to set goals and it’s a time of the best of intentions. This year, I’d like to take a moment to share my wish list for 2015.
Newly appointed Nevada Legislature, now is your time to show the world and remind the rest of the nation that Nevada is the Battle Born state. Her people are resilient and her lawmakers adhere to a code of ethics. So, while it may seem naive, I’d like to take the time to wish for a world turned upside down to be made right. The following list is a good place for us to start.
- Stop the government-sector from being controlled by union leaders. Doing so would save Nevadans millions annually while returning to the state’s original prohibition on government-sector collective bargaining. The irony here is that, historically, even union advocates were against collective bargaining in the government. It is vital that legislators end the strong-arm tactics of union leaders that allow them to force local governments to execute union contracts.
- Repeal the prevailing wage laws here in the Silver State. They don’t make economic sense and are counter-intuitve to a state that needs to save every taxpayer dollar. Does it make sense to pay one person $20 an hour and another $70 an hour to do the exact same work simply because one job is state sanctioned? There’s simply no way around it, prevailing wage laws are a hindrance to the state moving forward.
- Reform the Public Employees’ Retirement System of Nevada or PERS. The program doesn’t make any mathematical sense. If you take a look at the Nevada Policy Research Institute’s (NPRI) online Transparent Nevada website (www.transparentnevada.com/nvpers) you might be shocked or even, as I was, sickened to see some of the retirement payouts from PERS. When over 10,000 retired government employees are poised to make more than the state’s median working household income, we have a problem. That problem needs to be rooted and replanted with a system that makes sense for Nevadans.
- Create more and better school choices. If legislators remove the current bureaucratic and union ran monopolistic school system and replace it with a system that allows school choice, Nevada’s K-12 education system would be both more effective and accountable.
- Enact real tort reform. When we allow ambulance chasers to run our courts and present lawsuits that even a small child would scoff at, we have some serious problems. While it’s important to take care of the injured, frivolous lawsuits should have no place in Nevada. It is my hope that common sense will lead our legislators to enact laws that limit these harmful practices.
- Impose true government transparency. Our current law barely scratches the surface of what we need, which is to make ALL state and local government meetings open to the public and to comments from the public. How can we call ourselves free with so much hidden from general view? Let’s open up those doors. If you are determined to enact laws and policies that affect my business and my family, I have a right to hear about and comment on the same.
- Cease political correctness. There is a difference between political correctness and intentionally being offensive; somewhere along the way many of us forgot that. Political correctness is leading us down a path that guarantees we see and do nothing while we watch the nation fall apart at our feet. On that same vein, stop being so sensitive. If you’ve never offended someone accidentally by a word or gesture then give me a call, I’d like to meet such a paragon. If you have, however, remember that before you quickly jump to offense because you misunderstand or don’t like the opinions of another. If you’re entitled to your opinions, I’m certainly entitled to mine.
- Draft a fair tax platform. Legislators, we understand that running our state requires funding. When additional tax revenues are actually necessary, seek it through a broader consumption tax rather than attempting to avoid the issue or forcing an unfair tax upon one segment of the state.
- Last, but definitely not least, we must pass a law that no present or future law contradicts God’s Word. As the foundation upon which we built our great Nation, it is imperative that we protect it and the rights of those that live its precepts.
When I take a moment to look over and review my wish list, there is a common thread running through it, government control needs to be limited and our God given ability to use common sense and determine right from wrong needs to be practiced more diligently. Such a list should never have had to be written and it is my hope that 2015 will see a renewing of those values that were at the foundation of our country. My final wish is that God will bless and keep you in this New Year.