Spokesman: Sandoval budget will be his own | NevadaAppeal.com

Spokesman: Sandoval budget will be his own

A spokesman for Gov.-elect Brian Sandoval said Wednesday the budget plan lawmakers receive in January will be Sandoval’s, not that of the Gibbons administration.

“The budget this governor submits will be the budget he built with his staff,” said senior adviser Dale Erquiaga.

He said that plan will not include tax or fee increases – in most cases even when those paying the fees agree to them. Gibbons was willing to accept increases in fees when those paying supported them.

Erquiaga conceded, as Gibbons Chief of Staff Robin Reedy said on a TV news show this week, that there are differences between what Sandoval and Gibbons see as acceptable ways to look at revenue enhancements.

Referring to rumors of 10 percent cuts and other such plans, Erquiaga said: “Do not assume this budget will include those things.”

He said Sandoval is looking at “other financing measures that are not taxes.” But Erquiaga refused to elaborate on what that might mean, saying it will all be spelled out after the proposed budget goes to the Legislature in January.

He said the incoming governor will work with lawmakers on redistricting but has taken no position yet on whether the size of the Legislature should be increased – a move favored by rural and northern lawmakers who fear without adding legislators, the rural districts would become unreasonably large.

As for the congressional districts, he said the four seats “should be fair and balanced.”

“The goal to see that all seats represent the same number of people is the first priority,” he said.

That requirement is contained in federal law.

Erquiaga emphasized that, while a number of events are scheduled around the inauguration including two balls, no state money will be used. He said the funding is all being raised by the inauguration PAC and that any excess after expenses will be donated to three non-profits dealing with mental health programs that service youths.