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NPRI analyst: Nevada Vision Stakeholder Group envisions more government control



LAS VEGAS—A fiscal policy analyst at the Nevada Policy Research Institute today criticized the Preliminary Executive Summary released by the Nevada Vision Stakeholder Group and its consultants at Moody’s Analytics, saying its recommendations would lead to bigger government, higher taxes and more state control over the lives of Nevada citizens.

“The vast majority of the members of the Nevada Vision Stakeholder Group are government officials, union members and others who profit from government largesse,” said Geoffrey Lawrence, the NPRI analyst. “It’s unfortunate, though not surprising, that this group of tax consumers and its facilitators have determined that the road to a better Nevada is paved with yet more government growth, financed by hard-working, taxpaying Silver State citizens.”

The Nevada Vision Stakeholder Group, which has been tasked by the Interim Finance Committee with setting “quality of life” goals for Nevada, will meet tomorrow, Friday, May 14, to discuss and approve its five-, 10- and 20-year “visions” for the Silver State. The group has met twice a month since January and released its Preliminary Executive Summary this week.

“It’s abundantly clear that the sole reason behind the creation of the Nevada Vision Stakeholder Group was to push for more government,” Lawrence said. “It exists to provide big-government legislators, led by Sen. Steven Horsford, political cover when they call for massive tax increases during the 2011 Nevada Legislative Session.”

“What’s worse, this group is hardly representative of Nevada,” Lawrence added. He noted that in addition to being composed mainly of those who profit from government growth, the group is chaired by Dr. Robert Lang, who moved to Nevada only in January of this year and who is a director of Brookings Mountain West, an organization that likely would receive increased public financing were the Stakeholder Group’s recommendations to be enacted.

“While its recommendations are certainly troubling, the truth is that the Nevada Vision Stakeholder Group never should have existed to begin with,” Lawrence said. “No government committee, and especially not an unelected one, has the ability or the right to tell private citizens how to improve their quality of life. In a free society, every individual has the right to determine what constitutes the ideal quality of life for himself. For government to attempt to assume this role is both arrogant and dangerous.

“There is, indeed, a ‘vision’ behind this process,” Lawrence continued. “And it is the one about which F.A. Hayek warned us in The Road to Serfdom.”

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IVGID initially denied Smith’s request outright, asserting that any correspondence between IVGID General Counsel Jason Guinasso and his fellow public employees is automatically exempt from disclosure due to attorney-client privilege.