Kelly Bullis: If tax passes, say goodbye to influx of businesses

Did you know that the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council has ranked Nevada as the third-best tax system for business in the U.S.? It also ranked California 45th.

Perhaps some folks don’t understand the big difference between Nevada and California. It’s really quite easy. Less regulation and lower taxes. In California, business is treated as the enemy, and in Nevada, business is treated as a partner in helping bring in new jobs, money, growth, etc.

Why have businesses been leaving California and moving to Nevada over the years, bringing many new jobs with them? (Hint: Read the prior paragraph.)

What would it take to kill this great arrangement? Simple, go back to the second paragraph and insert “Nevada” where it says “California” and insert “Utah, or Idaho or Wyoming” where it says “Nevada.”

There is a group of determined folks (maybe they’re former Californians who didn’t learn their lessons before moving to Nevada) who want to do just that — kill our recovery by stopping a big contributor to enticing businesses to leave California for Nevada. It is the Nevada Teachers Union.

How did it do that? Simple, last year it passed around a petition to get innocent folks to sign thinking they were “helping kids,” and in fact they were putting one of THE WORST tax proposals in the history of Nevada onto this upcoming (2014) ballot. If the Gross Margins Tax “Education Initiative” passes next year, Nevada will lose its appeal to businesses leaving California. Make no mistake, they will still leave California, but they will keep going to Utah, or Idaho, or Wyoming. Polls are showing that our great friends to the south (aka Las Vegas) are prepared to vote this tax in next year. If they succeed, I believe that you can kiss our weak-yet-starting-to-grow recovery goodbye.

Want to know what’s wrong with this tax? Go to to get more details.

Who am I to say this is a bad tax? Well, I’m a local CPA who has his finger on the pulse of what is starting to take hold in our community to bring back needed jobs and economic activity. It’s growing businesses, not government. Owners of businesses still in California are telling me that they are waiting before moving to see whether this tax initiative passes. If it does, they will move to another state, NOT Nevada. Did you notice that this petition is already hurting Nevada? These folks want to move out of California and would be doing so right now, but they are waiting until late 2014 before moving. We could use those jobs right now! If you are unemployed, are you getting angry at the teachers union yet?

What can we do to stop this? Get the word out. Tell your friends and neighbors what this tax is really all about. If you’re a teacher who pays dues to the teachers union but don’t agree with this tax, did you know that they just put up more than $5 million of your dues to buy commercials to persuade folks (mostly in Las Vegas) to vote for this? Maybe you should get involved to change the teachers union back into a respected partner for the success of Nevada, rather than its destruction.

Kelly Bullis is a certified public accountant in Carson City. He can be contacted at 775-882-4459, via or on Facebook.


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