Nevada It's Time for Gaming's Fair Share Initiative (2008)

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The It's Time for Gaming's Fair Share Initiative seeks to raise taxes on Nevada's biggest casinos to about 22 percent, directing the new tax revenue to teachers' salaries, road improvements, alternative energy projects, and more.

This measure is a citizen-initiated constitutional amendment. In order to become law, it would have needed to be approved by voters in two consecutive general elections.

The initiative, along with a similar measure, was rejected by the courts Feb. 15, 2008, for violating the single-subject rule. The ruling was in response to a challenge from the Nevada Resort Association.


Details of the proposal

Under the proposal, tax rates on monthly gaming revenue over $1 million would have gone up to equal an average of the maximum gaming tax rates in other states that allow commercial gaming. That would have brought the rate to just over 22%, from the current rate of 6.75%

The proposal instructed that the additional tax revenue be allocated to teachers' pay hikes (20%), highway construction and road improvements (35%), alternative energy projects and water needs (25%), salaries and staff of elected district court and Supreme Court judges (10%), and the state's Millenium Scholarship Program (5%).


Supporters

This initiative was filed by Las Vegas attorney Kermitt Waters.

Opponents

Bill Bible, head of the Nevada Resort Association, praised the court's decision to reject this initiative, saying, "Had this initiative gone forward and become law it would have had disastrous consequences for Nevada's main industry and economic driver."[1]


Status

Carson District Judge Bill Maddox rejected this initiative as well as a similar initiative, also filed by Kermitt Waters, on Feb. 15, 2008. The Nevada Resort Association challenged both initiatives, claiming that they violated the single-subject rule.

Judge Maddox agreed and added that the proposals would have been an improper delegation of lawmakers' authority to tax and spend.[2]


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