Nevada doesn’t have a revenue problem, it has a spending problem. Our state is one of the worst in the US in spending, welfare dependency, and unemployment. Our PEBP and PERS programs are mismanaged and overbloated. Prevailing wage rates are 60% above the market on a weighted-average basis. Expenditures should never exceed revenues, and I’ll work to make sure wasteful spending isn’t a burden on Nevada taxpayers.
Spending & Accountability
I believe we must enact meaningful spending controls to protect taxpayers. Over the last two decades Nevada lawmakers have more than tripled the size of the state’s general fund. While there’s been considerable population growth in that time period, there’s been no real inspection or accountability on what’s being spent OR implementation of performance-based budgeting.
Nevada public employees have seen their retirement costs soar more than 50 percent since 2007. These increases have all gone towards paying down the system’s multi-billion dollar debt stemming from the underfunded benefits promised to earlier workers — meaning none of this cost increase will benefit the current employee paying today’s all-time high rates.
Consequently, Nevada public employees must now pay the highest PERS rates in the nation, primarily to pay for the much richer benefits received by their veteran colleagues, which were never adequately funded. I believe we need to take a hard look at this as well as PEBP programs, how they are managed, and create solutions to reduce waste.
Nevada law requires governments to pay wildly inflated labor costs on public works projects, which are known as “prevailing wage” rates. State and local government agencies pay more for construction projects than the private sector pays for comparable projects and pay 60% above the market on a weighted-average basis. This is wasteful, unnecessary, and takes revenue away from education and other areas it’s desperately needed.
Speaking of wages, I highly encourage you to head over to https://transparentnevada.com/ and search the salaries and pensions of any Nevada public employee. You’ll see numerous assistants making $200K+ per year.
These are just a few examples of mismanagement and wasteful spending. I would lead a full scale effort to find ways to scale back spending, reduce wastefulness, and protect Nevada’s taxpayers.
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