Chuck Muth: Welcome to Taxapalooza Nevada ’13

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Democratic ex-Assemblywoman Sheila Leslie recently delivered what was billed as a Progressive (meaning Liberal) State of the State speech in advance of moderate Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval’s “All’s Well” State of the State speech. Allow me to summarize the uber-liberal’s all-too-predictable “Tax the Rich, Feed the Poor” speech: Raise taxes on Nevada’s biggest job providers and mining. Hire more government employees. More welfare. More Medicaid. More spending on … everything. Oh, and don’t mess with government-run education no matter how bad the public schools are. Just give ‘em mo’ money, honey!In other words, it’s the same warmed-over tax-and-spend liberalism — which Democrats such as Ms. Leslie have been regurgitating since FDR’s Raw Deal — that has so weakened our nation, whittled away at our liberties and put us on a downhill economic pathway to … Greece!But don’t get the idea that Ms. Leslie is the only hyper-active tax-hiker in Nevada. Indeed, here’s a list of three recent tax hikes that appeared on the ballot just this past November, as well as a bevy of new ones being mulled for 2013: • Henderson Library District sought a property tax increase, Clark County School District sought a property tax increase and Carson City Library sought a sales tax increase. Voters rejected all three overwhelmingly.• Nevada is raising its unemployment tax on employers, and the teachers and other unions are seeking a new income tax on businesses.• Gov. Sandoval is seeking a sales tax increase, a business license fee/tax increase, an increase in the “employee head” tax and an increase in vehicle registration fees• Clark County Commissioner Tom Collins wants to “raise the damn property tax,” Clark County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani wants a property tax hike for more funding for UMC, and a Clark County Health District lawsuit could force a property tax increase.• Las Vegas City Councilman Steve Ross has suggested a new tax on services, and Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman has proposed a new $5-per-person annual “recovery” tax.• In rural Nevada, Mineral County Commissioner Cliff Cichowlaz has called for a state income tax and a tattoo tax, and Elko is raising its gasoline tax.• Las Vegas’ Metropolitan Police Department is seeking a sales tax increase, and UNLV may seek a room tax increase to build a new mega-events center.• Washoe County wants a rental car tax increase for its baseball stadium. It’s Taxapalooza time! A quarter-cent here, a quarter-cent there, and pretty soon you’re talking … California!These people just don’t get it. It’s not so much the tax hikes they’re proposing that’s the big problem. It’s the bigger government those “little” tax hikes will buy. Sorry, no sale!• Chuck Muth is president of and blogs at


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