Dean Rhoads, the state’s senior senator, became the first Republican lawmaker to publicly break with Gov. Brian Sandoval, saying he thinks the state will need to raise taxes to balance the budget.
Rhoads, who is serving his final year in the Legislature because of term limits, told the Sun that cuts in education and social services in Sandoval’s budget are too deep.
“There will have to be deep cuts like Sandoval proposed, and tax and fee increases,” Rhoads said Tuesday. “We’re going to have to do a combination.” [...]
After a long meeting Tuesday where advocates for the mentally ill warned of service cuts under Sandoval’s budget such as specialty courts for the mentally ill, Rhoads said: “We’re basically taking wheelchairs from senior citizens.”
A 28-year veteran of the state Senate and rancher from Tuscarora, north of Elko, Rhoads said he didn’t mind being the first Republican to break ranks with Sandoval. [...]
Pro-tax forces, which include many of Nevada’s largest businesses, have expressed concern about Sandoval’s budget, but have struggled to find a strategy to override the popular governor’s promise to veto any budget that contains a tax increase.
I know, I know. It's just one, and we need at least two more in The Senate and at least two more in The Assembly to get a sensible budget passed. But hey, at least it's a start.
Hopefully, more Republicans in Carson City will listen to what we the people say and realize that Sandoval's proposed draconian cuts are simply unacceptable. These cuts hurt, and the people of this state don't need any more pain. We need a chance to heal.