Capital improvements plan cut by more than $45 million | NevadaAppeal.com

Capital improvements plan cut by more than $45 million

Nevada’s money committees Monday chopped more than $45 million in bonded projects and another $4 million in general fund construction out of the governor’s list of capital improvement projects for the coming biennium.

But they expect to add back at least that much in new projects when they meet Wednesday to finalize the $300 million list.

Most of the savings came from just two projects on the governor’s list of priorities.

The joint subcommittee eliminated the second lease-purchase building between Roop and Stewart streets just north of the Department of Transportation, cutting nearly $22.5 million from the total bonds needed over the next two years.

That structure was supposed to be a match for the Conservation and Natural Resources building nearing completion on South Stewart Street and was to become the new centralized home for the Department of Human Resources in Carson City.

In addition, the lawmakers decided to pay for just two of three housing units planned for High Desert State Prison in Southern Nevada this session. That will cut an estimated $14.3 million out of the $57.8 million construction plan.

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The subcommittee also held off approval at least for now on the $8.6 million project to repair exterior tiles that are falling off the Sawyer Building in Las Vegas.

Ways and Means Chairman Morse Arberry, D-Las Vegas, said the purpose of Monday’s meeting was “to see what we can save on this end so we can put it back on the other.”

Arberry said where that money goes will be the subject of negotiations between now and Wednesday’s meeting.

“We’ve got to go duke it out now,” he said.

In addition to the bonding capacity and general fund made available by Monday’s actions, the committees can look at some of the state’s surplus for what they consider top priorities.

The Economic Forum on May 2 added $85.5 million to one-shot revenues available this year and $180.1 million to the general fund revenue for the next two years.

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