(Chantal Lovell of NPRI) – Carson City — The Nevada Policy Research Institute praised Controller Ron Knecht, Assemblyman Jim Wheeler and Assistant Controller Geoffrey Lawrence for creating an alternative budget that eliminates the supposed need for tax hikes.
The Balanced Plan for Growth, a line-by-line alternative budget, more than funds the state’s needs without raising taxes, including allowing the “sunset” taxes to sunset. In response to the proposal, NPRI Executive Vice President Victor Joecks released the following comments:
Nevada taxpayers should be grateful to Controller Ron Knecht and Assemblyman Jim Wheeler for proposing an alternative budget plan for lawmakers’ consideration. Thus far, the Legislature has considered plans that would significantly raise taxes on Nevada’s families and businesses, but the Balanced Plan for Growth shows these tax hikes are unnecessary.
The Controller’s plan reduces the massive expansion of government proposed by Gov. Brian Sandoval while still providing more than enough money for the government to function and even grow.
Joecks added that the budget is innovative in the way it proposes funding programs like class-size reduction through block grants, allowing districts to pick the programs that are most effective for their students, rather than spending haphazardly.
Rather than increasing the burden on taxpayers, the plan calls on local governments to contribute more to the state by trimming their most wasteful expenditures: salaries. Local governments may consider asking employees to contribute a larger share of the cost of their retirement plans.
The Balanced Plan for Growth represents a true compromise between those who wish to increase government spending and those who want to keep taxes low, Joecks said.
Earlier this year, NPRI presented a line-by-line alternative budget with General Fund spending levels at $6.3 billion. With Sandoval desiring $7.4 billion in spending, the $6.9 billion spending suggested in the Controller’s plan is a natural compromise. This plan would generously fund Nevada’s public sector, while also protecting Nevada taxpayers.
All taxpayers and Nevadans should call on Gov. Sandoval and their Legislators to support it.
Ms. Lovell oversees the NPRI’s publications, coordinates staff media appearances and manages NPRI’s new media efforts. NPRI is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank that produces and shares ideas and information that empowers people. For more information, please visit www.NPRI.org.