Thursday, May 26, 2011

Game Change! Reality Check!

Gov. Brian Sandoval will include taxes set to expire next month in a revised budget he will unveil Friday, according to a source. The move, which would run counter to his pledge not to raise taxes, comes thanks to a Supreme Court ruling today that prohibits the Legislature from taking local tax dollars to fund the state.

In a statement this afternoon, Sandoval said he would present a revised spending plan on Friday that takes into account the lost funds. "The ruling raises questions about certain assumptions in the proposed executive budget," the statement said. "As governor, I am forced to deal with their ramifications and I am responding by reworking the state budget."

It looks like reality is hitting home for Brian Sandoval now that The Nevada Supreme Court ruled the 2009 Clean Water Coalition money grab unconstitutional and threw a giant legal monkey wrench into Sandoval's previously proposed gimmicks to move money from other state and local funds into the state general fund. And already, The R-J is reporting Sandoval will support extending the entire set of taxes enacted in 2009.

Bill Raggio must be smiling somewhere. For now, his legacy remains intact.

And at least for now, Nevada will get some sort of reprieve. It's funny that it took The Nevada Supreme Court ruling out the Clean Water Coalition gimmick to get us here. But hey, we're now here and at least Nevada government won't be completely dismantled... Just woefully underfunded yet again.

And that gets us back to the heart of the problem. We're not finished yet. Yes, we have this reprieve. However, progressives need to keep organizing and keep working for long-term solutions to this constant budget crisis. We can't continue to underfund our schools, our parks, our roads, and our health care indefinitely. At some point, we need a more sustainable solution... And if The Legislature can't agree on one, then maybe we the people need to solve it ourselves after all.

But in the mean time, Sandoval finally paid attention to the reality check.

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