Legislative Commission approves ballot questions for November
The Legislative Commission on Friday approved the explanations, digests and explanatory information for the four ballot questions that will go before voters in November.
The only real debate was over Question 1 that would remove the Board of Regents from the Nevada Constitution, making it a statutory body. Legislators have long complained that the regents are too autonomous and not accountable to the Legislature.
“No other state agency operates like the regents, shielded from accountability,” said Elliot Anderson, a former member of the Assembly.
But others including members of the Nevada Faculty Alliance expressed concerns the change could allow the state to eliminate elected members of the board, making them appointed.
They were assured by Kevin Powers of the legislative legal division that isn’t the case, that none of the laws including those that provide for election of the regents are repealed by the proposed constitutional amendment.
The second ballot question would repeal Nevada’s constitutional provision marriages can only be legalized if they are between a man and a woman. AJR2 would require recognition of all marriages regardless of the gender of the two people. The vote to support the language explaining that question was unanimous.
Question 3 had no real opposition. It would require the state board of Pardons to meet at least quarterly . More importantly, it would prevent the ability of the governor to block any application for a pardon even if supported by every other member of the board. Finally, it would also allow the other members of the board — the attorney general and seven supreme court justices — to propose matters for the board to consider.
Question 4 would take the voter rights now in state statute and enshrine them in the state constitution including the right to vote in early voting or even on election day and provide equal access to elections without discrimination on any basis.