Nevada tax plan would exempt participatory sports

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A panel working on a possible Nevada tax plan says a 6.5 percent levy on "amusements" shouldn't be imposed on golf, bowling and skiing.

The Governor's Task Force on Tax Policy, tentatively reversing an earlier decision, also said water theme park tickets and billiards should be excluded from the tax.

While such participatory sports would be exempted, spectator activities such as movies, video rentals and or professional sports events still would be taxed -- generating an estimate $60 million a year for the state.

Task Force member Brian Greenspun, editor of the Las Vegas Sun, led the move Wednesday to exempt participatory activities from the amusement tax. He maintains the tax might cause families to give up some worthwhile, affordable recreational activities.

To replace the expected $30 million loss in revenue created by the exemption, Task Force Chairman Guy Hobbs said the panel may have to recommend a property tax increase of 5 cents per $100 assessed value.

The task force will finalize its recommendations during its last meeting Nov. 13.

Besides the amusement tax, the task force has tentatively endorsed several other levies in efforts to generate more than $500 million a year in new revenue and help ease a growing state revenue shortfall.

The centerpiece of the plan is a 0.25 percent gross receipts tax on all income received by casinos and other companies. This tax will bring in about $200 million a year, down from earlier estimates of $250 million.


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