No, No, My Gov Said No, No He Didn’t Say Yes*
by Vice President Knight Allen
Originally published on July 13, 2017 - reprinted with permission
Let's visit Gubernatorial vetoes. I know. For most of you who pay attention it's just a relief that the
2017 session is over. Best to be done with it. I don't blame you.
Bear with me. The messages that go with the vetoes can be very interesting and with the moderate (RINO?)
Sandoval issuing over forty of them, second only to the right wing Jim Gibbons there are clearly some powerful
political factors at work.
Governor Sandoval's messages, for the most part, are short and to the point and, to his credit, never
mean spirited nor do they add in any way to the vicious political environment we find ourselves wallowing in
these days. For that reason I thought I'd offer you some thoughts on a few of his more interesting vetoes.
Let's start with collective bargaining and AB271 (along with AB290 & SB356 which he also vetoed). These three were
passed by the Democrats with no Republican support at all. In his veto the Governor pointed out that they all sought
to eliminate the reforms passed in 2015 (SB241) with overwhelming bi-partisan support.:
"SB241 enacted reasonable reforms to the laws governing public sector collective bargaining. The negotiations and
consensus behind that bill are an example of legislation done right. Everyone came to the table - labor and management.
Republicans and Democrats, liberals and conservatives. To that end, stakeholders and lawmakers advanced common sense
reforms the had almost on opposition."
For the record, the vote supporting the reforms in SB241 in 2015 was:
Senate Yea 15 Nay 4 Excused 2
Assembly Yea 41 Nay 0 Excused 1
SB384 - This bill sought to seriously restrict the public's right to know the pension information of government employees
under the Public Employee Retirement system. I'll let Governor Sandoval speak for himself:
"...SB384 seeks to achieve its goals by limiting the public's right to access public information upsetting the established
balance between privacy and transparency. In short the dilution of the public's right to know must be accompanied by a
compelling interest or distinct harm to personal information. The proponents of this bill have not demonstrated such a
compelling interest or harm."
There is a faction in Nevada that is determined to make the wall of separation between government and the people bigger
than it already is. If you are just a private citizen outside the privileged world of government this veto should be important to you.
SB469 - Another "wall-builder." This one sought to reduce the 25% ending balance "rainy day fund" which was passed with bi-partisan
support in 2015. Objective: less money to protect against an economic downturn; more money on the table for pay raises. Good veto.
AB382 - Have you or anyone you know ever been hit with "surprise billing"? It happens in an emergency when the patient winds up
in an "out of network" facility. This can be very, very expensive and AB382 was an attempt to provide a solution. Governor Sandoval
pointed out the bill would disrupt the balance in the healthcare market forcing hospitals and physicians to accept below market
payments and could push doctors out of Nevada adding to our already critical doctor shortage. It seemed like every physician and
hospital association opposed the bill.
The Governor stated that even some supporters "expressed worries about the unintended consequences of AB382 and concerns about
the legislation being being the right solution to the problem." The Governor stated he might issue and Executive Order to study
it in the interim. Therefore he vetoed the bill.
We've been given a remarkable political system and the Veto is another example of the brilliance of our republican (small "r") structure.
Vice-President Knight Allen
* Paraphrase of the circa 1931 song “Yes, Yes, My Baby said Yes, Yes
instead of No, No”. -VWP
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