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Current Legislative News

NSAA Legislative Briefing

Published Friday, January 24, 2014
by Eric Newmark and Michael Fazio

The Nevada State Apartment Association and its Legislative Committee is putting its finishing touches on its Legislative Policy Manual for Nevada. Stay tuned for the latest developments surrounding our positions and future concerns. The manual should be ready by the 2nd Quarter and will be distributed to all industry leaders via email. Hard copies will NOT be available, as these manuals tend to change rather frequently.

If you have any questions or want to be involved in the decisions surrounding the manual please contact the NSAA at 702.436.7662.



NSAA Legislative Briefing

Published Wednesday, March 13, 2013
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott

The 77th Session of the Nevada Legislature is in Week 15 of 17. May 17th was the most recent administrative deadline for non-exempt bills to pass out the second house committee (Joint Standing Rule No. 14.3.3). This resulted in none of 18 being tracked by the NSAA to expire. The next deadline prior to Sine Die is Friday May 24th that required second house passage. While these deadlines do limit the total number of measures to be considered it is important to note that the legislative body may reinstate a bill at any time following the established rules. Forte, LLP therefore will make every effort to continue to monitor all bills that have stated interested on behalf of the NSAA.

AB284 is currently in the Senate House for a vote. With the amendment being support unanimously from the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee, it is anticipated that the bill will pass unanimously. The amendment requires naming the perpetrator and furthermore; requires the victim to sign the affidavit. Assemblywoman Flores is on the record, to review the statistics next session to discuss abuses.

SB373 is currently being enrolled and forwarded to the Governor’s office for signature. The bill limits further the ability for property owners the ability to garnish wages and receive payment for amounts outstanding. The NSAA is part of the coalition that opposed the bill. The billed passed both houses on a primarily party line vote. The Governor’s office is requesting letters from our members to support a veto.

AB363 is sponsored by Assemblyman Richard Carrillo. The Sponsor agreed to amend the bill when language was deemed harmful to property owners/managers. We are working closely with the Towing lobbyists to insure that the language is not reinserted.

Table 1 represents a summary of measures that are being tracked and lobbied on behalf of the NSAA. While extensive this list is not exhaustive of all efforts as they relate to the NSAA. If any measure has an impact/interest to the NSAA, Forte will send to staff for consideration. Several of these measures have had differing levels of engagement by NSAA staff and/or members that range from review and comment to testimony in front of the respective committees.

Forte is prepared to provide more information during the scheduled teleconference call of the NSAA board. If there is any additional information that would aid in review please do not hesitate to contact us directly.

 

Table 1 Below: Bills that continue to be tracked on behalf of the NSAA.

AB33
Revises provisions governing the partial abatement of certain taxes for certain energy-efficient buildings. (BDR 58-280)

AB370
Revises provisions concerning common-interest communities. (BDR 3-1016)

AB44
Revises provisions governing the storage of trash and recycling containers in certain planned communities. (BDR 10-262)

AB395
Revises provisions regarding common-interest communities. (BDR 10-1013)

AB98
Revises various provisions relating to common-interest communities. (BDR 10-488)

AB404
Revises provisions relating to time shares. (BDR 10-960)

AB194
Clarifies that a person who holds a leasehold interest in the real property of another person may be criminally liable. (BDR 15-654)

SB130
Revises provisions governing common-interest communities. (BDR 10-428)

AB223
Revises provisions governing constables. (BDR 3-15)

SB280
Revises provisions relating to common-interest communities. (BDR 10-863)

AB284
Provides for the early termination of certain rental agreements by victims of domestic violence. (BDR 10-525)

SB321
Enacts a “Homeowner's Bill of Rights.” (BDR 9-748)

AB307
Revises provisions governing victims of crime. (BDR 16-743)

SB373
Makes various changes relating to judgments. (BDR 2-932)

AB320
Revises provisions governing common-interest communities. (BDR 10-737)

SB383
Revises provisions governing time shares. (BDR 10-916)

AB363
Makes various changes relating to abatement of public nuisances and conditions by local governments. (BDR 20-663)

SCR1
Requires the Legislative Commission to conduct an interim study regarding the taxation of services. (BDR R-260)

 


NSAA Legislative Briefing

Published Wednesday, March 13, 2013
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott

It’s the end of week 5 of the Legislative Session and this past week the major focus was education. Improving education by requiring schools/teachers to be accountable and providing adequate resources to fund education is a priority for the Legislators and the Governor. Four education bills were heard last week covering standards for student grade-level promotion, class-size reduction, pre-kindergarten for at risk students, and full-day kindergarten in all public schools. A joint hearing was also held on IP1, the margins tax which is ear-marked to schools.

The political games have begun and interestingly enough the first battle is between the GOP Senators and the GOP Assemblymen. The Senate minority leader -- Michael Roberson -- proposed an alternative ballot question to compete with IP1. This new proposal which would appear on the same ballot as IP1 is an increase in mining taxes. See the summary below.

The NSAA day on Wednesday of this week was very successful. We’ve received positive feedback from both legislators and NSAA members who attended. Thank you all for participating.


BILLS Heard This Week

GENERAL BUSINESS

SB 180
This bill provides that if a court finds an employee has been injured as the result of certain unlawful employment practices, the court must award to the employee, in addition to any other legal or equitable relief, damages, lost wages and benefits, costs and attorney’s fees to the extent consistent with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The business community and Chambers of Commerce testified against the bill because it will open up the litigation floodgates against employers. It would allow lawyers to collect unlimited attorney fees by filing wrongful termination or discrimination lawsuits. Current law already allows for over two years of back pay. No action was taken.

SB 111
Introduced by Senator Justin Jones, it would allow an attorney to demand an employer turn over any security surveillance video before any lawsuit has been filed. This bill is an invasion of privacy and private property rights. The argument is that a lot of money can be saved if it is discovered that there is nothing on the tape to help a client in court. There is opposition by the business community because this bill would mandate that every business turn over a tape to prove that the business has done nothing wrong.

AB 12
Removes the requirement that an employee notify his or her employer before filing certain complaints with the Division of Industrial Relations of the Department of Business and Industry. The general business community was in opposition. No action was taken.


TAXES

IP 1
Union’s Margin Tax on Business – Requires 2/3rd vote of both Houses At the hearing the Initiative was fully vetted during a 3 hour joint hearing of the Senate and Assembly tax committees. The support was predictable coming from the unions and no others. The only other State in the US with a Margins Tax is Texas and there have been over 180 bills introduced in the past 10 years since the original margins tax bill was passed. This bill also sets up a State IRS to support and assure all businesses pay the tax on all gross profits. The business community, chambers of commerce, and the NV Taxation Association testified against the bill. The Legislature has 2 weeks before they must take action or this initiative will go to the 2014 general ballot.

GOP Senators Mining Tax Plan
This idea, which is a proposal and not an introduced bill, is to counter the Margins Tax by placing a 2nd tax question on the same ballot. Statistically voters generally vote down all tax questions when more than one is on the ballot. The Senators plan is to pass SJR 15 from the 2011 Legislative Session. That bill removes the cap on the Net Proceeds of Minerals tax from the NV Constitution and allows the Legislature to set that tax rate. The Senators were unclear about what the specific tax or rate on the mining industry would be. The GOP Senators are claiming the Gaming industry pays 6% gross revenues while the Mining industry pays 2%. They maintain as the 2 largest industries in the state they should be paying an equal amount. It is unclear when the details of this bill will be brought forward. More to Come.

AB 46
Washoe County School District Proposes to increase the property tax in Washoe County by $0.05/$100 assessed valuation and the sales tax by ¼%. It would raise $2M/year which would be dedicated to repair and retrofitting of school facilities. As originally introduced, passage of this bill would require a 2/3rds vote of both Houses. The WCSD has previously attempted to pass a similar bill without success and placed it on a previous ballot where it lost. For those reasons Senator Debbie Smith worked with LCB to craft an amendment to allow the School District Board to become a taxing authority. The hearing this past week was supported by many organizations including the Chamber of Commerce. Should this bill pass it will only impact Washoe County, however it sets a number of precedents. This would be the first time any government entity other than the Legislature, municipalities, and a few library districts would be considered a taxing authority; it proposes to increase the property tax outside the legislatively mandated caps which has only occurred one other time; and it directly bypasses the mandated 2/3rds vote in order to pass a tax increase. The proposed amendment to allow the School District to become a taxing authority is in trouble because the Governor is likely to veto it. As a result negotiations are ongoing to move the taxing authority back to the County Commission.





Monthly Legislative Briefing

Published Wednesday, March 6, 2013
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott

The first 3 weeks 2013 Legislative Session are now in the book and the pace continues to be fast. A special committee chaired by Majority Leader William Horne has begun to meet and it is expected that a decision on whether to remove Brooks from his seat and appoint a new person will be made quickly. Once a decision is reached a special counsel will be appointed to review the legal aspect of the Committees decision. Although Brooks continues to get press his behavior doesn’t appear to be causing any further problems.


BILLS

GENERAL BUSINESS

SB 96
Misclassification of Employee as Independent Contractor - Administrative Penalty Authorizes the Labor Commissioner to impose an administrative penalty against an employer who misclassifies an employee as an independent contractor if the person is actually an employee of the company. Such a classification might be done to avoid paying overtime or not including the employee in a health care or benefits program. The fines would be as follows: 1st offence $250 to $1,000 for each unintentional misclassification and $5,000 to $15,000 for each willful misclassification. 2nd offence fines are at least $15,000 but not more than $25,000 per misclassification. 3rd offenses carry a $25,000 per person fine and possible suspension of the businesses license for up to 3 years. All posted notices must include prominent definitions of “employee” and “independent contractor.” Persons misrepresenting themselves to an employer or his agent are liable in a civil action for fines of not more than $5,000 for 1st offenses, up to $15,000 for 2nd offenses and not more than $25,000 for a 3rd offense plus three times the amount of reasonable expenses incurred by the State in the enforcement and any money.

SJR 2
Minimum Wage Modification - In light of the attempt by President Obama to increase the National Minimum Wage and the imposition of the Federal Affordable Care Act, this resolution proposes to amend the requirement in Section 16 of Article 315 of the NV Constitution to abolish the requirement that employers who do not provide health benefits to employees pay a minimum wage $1.00 per hour higher than the National rate. The Federal Affordable Care Act already punishes employers who do not offer health insurance so this language is no longer necessary.

AB 578
This bill was originally introduced in the 2011 Legislative Session and was vetoed by the Governor. It was reintroduced as all previously vetoed bills are, and is on the Secretary’s Desk in the Assembly. It revises the interim committee structure of the Legislature to create Joint Interim Standing Committees that parallel standing committees established by the Legislature during its biennial regular sessions. This is generally considered to be the first step to annual sessions and by-passes the State Constitution which allows for bi-annual sessions only.

SB 171
This bill requires the State Treasurer to establish a program to provide matching grants of money to local governments in this State for the maintenance and repair of public schools, streets, highways and other public works. The State Board of Finance would be required to issue general obligation bonds in an amount not to exceed $325MM. These bonds must be secured by and payable from revenues from the basic governmental services tax (GST) which are deposited in the State General Fund. As currently written this bill would result in a $60MM hole in the Governor’s proposed budget. Such a proposal could result in increased taxes. A hearing was held on 2/21 where no action was taken.


TAXES

IP 1
Union’s Margin Tax on Business – Requires 2/3rd vote of both Houses It was introduced in the Assembly on Friday February 4 and referred to the Taxation Committee on taxation. This is a 53 page bill which deals with definitions of impacted groups, the authority and administration of the tax; the rate of 2% of gross; returns, payments and refunds and how they are handled; and remedies for claims. The initiative also makes appropriations from the General Fund to the Department of Taxation to prepare for imposing the tax and increases the modified business tax on financial institutions to fund the Tax Department until revenues from the tax itself are received. There is much opposition to this proposal. In general initiative petitions is not a good way to budget state revenue. This bill also is intended only to raise revenue and not create jobs, which are what is needed to move the State forward. Perhaps most disconcerting the revenues raised to not take into consideration the ability of a business to pay the tax since it applies to the gross revenues of all businesses. Remember the Legislature only has 40 days to address this initiative or it goes directly to the 2014 General Election ballot. More to come!

AJR 1
Property Tax Depreciation – Legislative Resolutions must be passed by 2 consecutive legislatures and then by the voters in the next general election This Resolution intends to amend Article 10 of the NV Constitution to include a new section as follows: “Sec 11. The Legislature may provide by law for the determination of the value of improvements to real property for the purposes of taxation upon the transfer, sale or other conveyance of the property as the Legislature determines to be appropriate.”

SB 172
This bill is sponsored by Senator Debbie Smith and proposes to give employers a break on their MBT if they hire a person who has been unemployed for longer than 6 months. The employer would have to submit an affidavit claiming that the employee meets the eligibility criteria and that they did not fire someone else in order to hire a tax break.

AB 138
This bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Mike Sprinkle, proposes to give tax abatements to companies who provide monetary resources to our higher education system and agree to hire a certain amount of graduates.

AB 46
Washoe County School District Proposes to increase the property tax in Washoe County by $0.05/$100 assessed valuation and the sales tax by ¼%. It would raise $2M/year which would be dedicated to repair and retrofitting of school facilities. As originally introduced passage of this bill would require a 2/3rds vote of both Houses. The WCSD has previously attempted to pass a similar bill without success and placed it on a previous ballot where it lost. For those reasons Senator Debbie Smith worked with LCB to craft an amendment to allow the School District Board to become a taxing authority. The hearing this past week was supported by many people including the Chamber of Commerce. Should this bill pass it will directly only impact Washoe County, however it sets a number of precedents. This would be the first time any government entity other than the Legislature and municipalities would be considered a taxing authority; it proposes to increase the property tax outside the legislatively mandated caps which has only occurred one other time; and it directly bypasses the mandated 2/3rds vote in order to pass a tax increase.

AB 34
This legislation relates to common-interest communities and authorizes the executive board of an association to take certain actions without a meeting of the HOA members, it provides certification of voting monitors to administer and supervise votes of units’ owners, and makes a number of other changes relative to decisions by a common-interest board. It allows for an ombudsman for the owners, allows for the appointment of referees to rend decisions in certain disputes. In general it attempts to clean up the business operation of a HOA. A hearing was held in Assembly Judiciary on 2/22 and there was considerable discussion both pro and con. Several amendments were proposed. The Committee took no action but this bill will be put in a work subcommittee for further discussion.



Weekly Legislative Briefing

Published Wednesday, February 11, 2013
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott

The 1st week of the 2013 legislative session is over and the Leadership kept their promise to move forward quickly with the business of the people. Much of the past week was impacted by the ongoing saga with Assemblyman Steven Brooks. His very odd behavior preceding the Session continued into the 1st week. He has agreed to take a 3-week leave of absence and the Assembly Leadership appointed a committee to review the issues surrounding his alleged threat to Speaker Kirkpatrick. That special committee will begin its work next week.


TAXES

Assembly Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick and Senate Majority Leader Mo Denis kept their promise and quickly began tax discussions.

AB 68 – Is the revision of the C-Tax. The C-Tax is comprised of six local sales taxes that are collected by each municipal government and provided to the State. The State consolidates all of these tax streams into one sum and redistributes them to the Counties, incorporated cities, and special districts through a complicated formula. There was an interim study that proposes minor changes to the calculation which most local governments have agreed to. Two local governments are in opposition - Fernley has filed suit against Nevada and North Las Vegas offered several amendments which were rejected by the Committee. Both communities believe they have not received a fair calculation from the onset of the C-Tax which was established in 1997.

Margins tax - This initiative petition would implement a 2% gross business tax that was brought to the Legislature by the Nevada State Teachers Union. The Legislature has 40 days to take action or it will be placed on the 2014 general election ballot. Senator Denis has already met with the Business Lobbyist Group to begin discussions of what type of tax the business community will/could support. Since Governor Sandoval stated in his State-of-the-State that he would not support a tax increase on business and the Democrat Leadership in both Houses believes we need additional revenue, it is necessary for them to work with businesses to see what type of tax they can put forward to counter the 2% margins tax. There is ongoing discussion of whether a sales tax on services might be an agreeable form of taxation. Some would like to see this type of tax and lower the overall sales tax percentage. Others believe we need new revenue so are not interested in lowering the existing sales tax percentage. Some are concerned because sales tax is a regressive form of taxation and has the potential to create additional problems in the event of another recession.


BILLS

AB 12 was heard in the assembly Commerce and Labor Committee on Wednesday. The Nevada Division of Industrial Relations brought this bill forward in an effort to be in compliance with federal OSHA requirements. Current Nevada law requires an employee to tell an employer before filing a complaint with the State OSHA. This bill would remove that requirement because of an OSHA audit that claimed that State law is in conflict with Federal OSHA requirements. The real issue with this bill is to assure Nevada State OSHA is required to immediately inform an employer if a complaint is filed against him/her.

SB 60 was heard in Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday. This bill is from the Secretary of State (SOS) and proposes to make a number of changes relating to businesses including a new fine on businesses who fail to obtain or renew a business license, who can serve as a resident agent and allowing the SOS to require certain persons to answer interrogatories in the course of business license investigations, along with multiple other changes relative to obtaining or renewing a business license. The business community has several concerns about the bill but has already begun discussions with the SOS to resolve concerns and hopefully reach agreement on a final bill.

 


State of Nevada Legislative Brief (End of Year 2012) for ALL Potential Multifamily Issues / Concerns

Published Wednesday, January 2, 2013
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott

 

2012 Election Results

Not much has changed at the Legislature post the elections. Both houses continue to be under the control of the Democrats, with 11-10 division in the Senate and 27-15 division in the Assembly. However, new leadership appears to be more willing to work in a bi-partisan manner In the Senate, Senator Mo Dennis has been elected as the new majority leader and Senator Michael Roberson has been elected as the new minority leader. In the Assembly, Assemblywoman Marilyn Kirkpatrick will be the new Speaker, Assemblyman William Horne will be the majority leader and Assemblyman Pat Hickey will be the minority leader. In general this is a group of people who want to resolve issues and will work far more cohesively than we saw in the last session.
 
Perhaps the most interesting outcome from this election cycle is that every tax related initiative/question on the ballots state-wide lost by a surprising large majority. That leaves open the question of whether the Teacher’s Margins Tax Initiative petition has any chance of success in the next election.
 
The most pressing issue now is at the Federal level rather than the State, it is the question of what happens with the reality of the “fiscal cliff”. The general thought is that if we fall over the “fiscal cliff” it will be bad for business and some are predicting the nation will once again face a serious recession. If they reach a decision, it will still have an impact on business. In the event the President is successful in implementing a tax increase on the wealthiest people/businesses in the country and that group is defined as those earning more than $250k, small business which are collectively the largest employers in this state, will be negatively impacted. Add to that the costs/taxes associated with health care reform, repayment of the unemployment trust fund and businesses in Nevada will need to take a careful look at how they operate in the very near future.
 
 
2013 Legislative Session
 
Although there will be many issues to monitor for business during the 2013 Legislative Session the two major issues will be the budget and addressing necessary changes to assure Nevada is in compliance with all requirements of ObamaCare. The new health care law becomes effective in 2014 and this session will be the only opportunity to assure Nevada is in full compliance. The Governor has agreed to support the changes to Medicaid set out under ObamaCare, which is probably the better choice for Nevada. Opting out would have resulted in increased costs for local governments throughout the state and left the door open for the federal health care department to dictate how low income health issues are handled here in Nevada.
 
Although it appears the economy has settled down and financial issues in Nevada are beginning to improve, the Economic Forum forecast did not indicate growth so the Executive Budget will most likely be flat with little or no increases in department budgets. The job of forecasting revenue and budget preparations is becoming more difficult due to the unknowns associated with how Congress addresses the fiscal cliff. It is unlikely the cuts to federal programs such as Medicaid, education, or defense spending will be known before the Governor has to submit his final administrative budget. On the tax side of the fiscal equation, we can expect debate to continue regarding the taxes that are due to sunset on June 30, 2013. The Governor has previously indicated he would extend the sunsets for the upcoming biennium so we can expect that revenue stream to be included in his budget when it is released.
 
 
Nevada Tax Initiative
 
The Nevada State Education Association submitted the necessary number of signatures and the Secretary of State has validated the signatures meet state law requirements for signing an initiative petition. However, Judge Wilson’s order prohibited the Secretary of State from delivering the initiative to the 2013 Legislature for its consideration. As a result, we continue to wait for a ruling from the Supreme Court regarding the validity of the margins tax initiative petition. Should the Supreme Court uphold Judge Wilson’s ruling that the petition is deceptive and therefore invalid under Nevada law, we can expect the unions to begin a concerted effort to pass a business tax during the upcoming session.
 
As you’ll recall, should the Supreme Court find this Initiative to be valid, the 2013 Legislature will have 40 days to take action or it goes to the ballot in the next general election, in 2014. There are several things the Legislature can do in that case. They could approve the petition and enact the 2% margins tax as law. They could approve some other form of tax to replace the margins tax with the requirement that the revenue be applied to funding for the education system. However in the second case the teachers union would have to agree to withdraw their petition and not place it on the ballot in 2014.
 
 
Public Employee Retirement Contribution to Increase (PERS)
 
Based on the statutorily required actuarial study of PERS, the current contribution rates will increase effective July 1, 2013 and be in effect through June 30, 2015. The new contribution rate for police and fire members is 40.50% up from the current rate of 39.75% and for all other employees the rate will be 25.75% up from 23.75%.
 
 
Bill Draft Requests (BDR)
 
The following BDR’s are ones we will include on the list to watch. Just because they are included does not mean they will actually impact the industry but rather as the language is released we need to carefully review to be certain there is not an impact.
 
596 – Senator Hardy – Revises provisions related to the delivery of medical care in NEVADA
 
597 – Assemblyman Wheeler – Establishes a program to provide more funding for NEVADA mortgages and small businesses through NEVADA chartered banks and credit unions.
 
599 – Assemblyman Ellison – Revises provisions governing manufactured housing
 
601 – Senator Segerblom – Revises provisions relating to foreclosures
 
604 – Senator Segerblom – Eliminates deficiency judgments on loans secured by residential property
 
612 – Assembly Eisen – Revises provisions governing ownership of medical practices
 
621 – Senator Atkinson – Makes various changes concerning local government infrastructure projects
 
624 – Assemblyman Kirner – Adjusts the salaries for certain members of state boards and commissions
 
626 – Senator Segerblom and Senator Spearman – SJR: Proposes to amend the NEVADA Constitution to provide for annual sessions of the State Legislature
 
627 – Senator Manendo – Revises provisions relating to manufactured housing
631 – Senator Goicoechea – Includes participation by local governments in monitoring, management and mitigation of water resources
 
636 – Senate Comm on Commerce, Labor & Energy – Revises provisions relating to foreclosures
 
638 – Senator Atkinson – Revises provisions relating to certain housing authorities
 
641 & 642 – Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor and Energy – Revises provisions concerning real property transactions
 
646 – Assemblyman Kirner – Makes various changes relating to PERS
 
647 – Assemblyman Kirner – Revises provisions governing collective bargaining
 
654 – Assemblyman Ellison – Enacts certain penalties for destruction of rental property
 
660 – Assemblyman Daly – Revises provisions governing the assessment of property
 
671 – Senator Cegavske – Revises provisions governing occupational licensing
 
673 – Senator Cegavske – Revises provisions governing regulatory agencies
 
691 – Senator Settlemeyer – Revises provisions governing taxation
 
701 – Senator Hardy – Revises provisions relating to physicians
 
708, 709, & 710 – Senator Spearman – Makes various changes concerning health care
 
713 & 714 – Senator Hardy – Revises provisions relating to health care
 
720 – Assemblyman Hardy – Enacts provisions relating to prevailing wage reform
 
726 – Senate Committee on Government Affairs – Repeals 2011 law which provided for the withdrawal of NEVADA from the TRPA compact
 
727 – Senate Committee on Government Affairs – Revises provisions relating to collective bargaining
 
731 – Assemblywoman Spiegel – Revises provisions governing the billing practices of health care providers
 
737- Assemblyman Stewart – Revises provisions governing the Office of the Ombudsman for Owners in Common-Interest Communities and Condominium Hotels
 
754 – Assembly Committee on Commerce & Labor – Revises various provisions governing workers’ compensation
 
756 – Assemblyman Stewart – Improves measures for the licensure of doctors in NEVADA
 
758 – Assemblyman Duncan – Creates an innovation center that fosters health care transformation by finding new ways to pay for and deliver care in a manner that is designed to lower costs
and improve care
 
761 – Assemblyman Paul Anderson – Revises provisions governing the modified business tax
 
770 – Assemblyman Oscarson – Revises provisions governing the audits of certain state boards
 
772 – Senator Jones (by request) – Makes various changes to allow for the use of the most recent technology in the medical profession
 
784 – Assemblywoman Pierce – Imposes a tax on certain income of business entities engaged in business in this State
 
786 – Assemblywoman Pierce – Enacts provisions relating to municipal internet
 
793 – Assemblyman Neal – Revises provisions relating to contracts with a governmental entity
 
801 – Assemblyman Brooks – Revises provisions governing the regulation of business and industry
 
811 – Assemblyman Healey – Revises provisions governing economic development
 
812 – Assemblyman Healey – Revises provisions governing the membership of certain regional boards
 
813 – Assemblywoman Pierce – Revises provisions governing the taxation of oil
 
821 – Senator Roberson – Revises provisions related to real property
823 – Senator Roberson (by request) – Makes various changes to economic development
 
831 – Senator Hardy and Senator Denis – Revises provisions relating to medical care in schools
 
834 – Senator Hardy – Makes various changes relating to the practice of chiropractic
 
839 – Senator Kieckhefer – Makes various changes relating to health care
 
840 – Senator Kieckhefer – Revises provisions relating to local governments
 
841 – Senator Kieckhefer – Revises provisions relating to inspections of certain medical facilities and offices
 
847 – Senator Hutchinson – Prohibits certain activities relating to medical expense accounts receivable and medical expense liens
 
848 – Senator Hutchison – Authorizes irrevocable trusts and certain other entities to hold ownership interests in professional entities
 
859 – Senator Kihuen – Makes various changes relating to economic development
 
863 – Senator Kihuen – Revises provisions relating to common-interest communities
864 – Senator Settelmeyer – Revises provisions relating to water
 
866- Assemblywoman Kirkpatrick – Makes various changes relating to the financing for a public project
 
875 – Senator Kihuen – Revises provisions relating to workers’ compensation and occupational diseases
 
 
Reference Legend
  • Health Care related BDR’s
  • Boards & Commissions
  • Economic Diversification
  • Taxation Housing/Real Property Issues
  • General Business

 


State of Nevada Legislative Brief (October | November 2012) for ALL Potential Multifamily Issues / Concerns

Published Wednesday, November 14, 2012
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott


Here is the brief for October | November 2012:

Nevada Tax Initiative

Nevada's teachers union has cleared another hurdle in their bid to create a new business tax to help raise money for education, but it still must wait for a favorable ruling from the State Supreme Court in order to move forward next month.

The Nevada State Education Association on Tuesday submitted to county election officials across the state more than twice the number of signatures needed -- a total of nearly 150,000 -- to require next year's Legislature to consider the 2 percent business margins tax.

Carson District Judge James Wilson ruled last month the 200-word description of what the tax would do was deceptive and therefore invalid. But the association is appealing to the state Supreme Court, which plans to hear the case Dec. 5.

As you’ll recall, if the Supreme Court finds this Initiative to be valid, it will be submitted to the 2013 Legislature who will have 40 days to take action or it goes to the ballot in the next general election, in 2014.

 

2012 Election

As expected the Assembly remains in the hands of the Democrats with a 27-15 lead. The most interesting race was the Marcus Conklin /Wes Duncan race in AD 37. As the heir-apparent for the Speaker’s position, most believed Conklin was unbeatable. They underestimated the impact the of the reapportionment changes in the District and the amount of work Duncan was willing to do to win. The Assembly Democrats elected Marilyn Kirkpatrick as the Caucus leader and she will be Speaker and William Horne will be the Majority Leader. As expected, the Republicans elected Pat Hickey as the Minority Leader. Neither party has made committee assignments yet, but we’ve heard April Mastroluca will most likely be chair of Government Affairs and William Horne will be the Chair of Commerce & Labor. We understand there are also ongoing discussions about committee structure including meeting times/days and number of members.

Despite the efforts of the Republicans, the Senate remains in control of the Democrats with an 11-10 split. This appears to be largely a result of the strong get-out-the-vote efforts by the Democrats. Of the five key Senate races, Republicans Mark Hutchison, Scott Hammond, and Greg Brower and Democrats Joyce Woodhouse and Justin Jones won. Mo Denis will be the Majority Leader and Mike Roberson will be the Minority Leader. Here again the committee chairs have not been selected.

On November 27th the Assembly Democratic Caucus will be holding a fundraiser in the evening at The Artisan Hotel Boutique. The Assembly Republican’s will also hold a fundraiser that day at a lunch with the location TBA. This will be a good opportunity for anyone who wants to meet their new/old Assembly members to attend. I will be attending and will be happy to bring along anyone else who would like to attend.

We can expect all four caucuses to make decisions regarding committee leadership and membership within the next two weeks. As soon as we receive this information we will send an interim update report.

 

Bill Draft Requests (BDR)

The following BDR’s are ones we will include on the list to watch. Just because they are included does not mean they will actually impact the industry but rather as the language is released we need to carefully review to be certain there is not an impact.

453 – Senator Parks – Revises provisions regarding employment practices

462 – Senator Brower – Revises provisions regarding forfeiture of property

473 – Senator Hardy – Revises provisions regarding employment

476 – Senator Cegavske – Revises provisions regarding real property

480 – Senator Roberson – Makes changes to the construction defect laws

481 – Senator Roberson – Provides for oversight and transparency of the Southern Nevada Water Authority

485 – ASB Aizley – Revises provisions governing actions on claims of unlawful employment practices

32-486 – ASB Aizley – Revises provisions governing publication of property tax rolls

10-488 – ASB Aizley – Revises provisions governing audits of HOA’s

32-492 – ASB Munford – Revises provisions regarding exemptions from certain taxes for certain small employers

20-497 – ASB Segerbloom – Provides for the creation of underground utility districts

511 – ASB Munford – Revises provisions governing the rights of members of HOAs

517 – ASB Bobzien – Revises provisions governing energy policy

525 – ASB Flores – Provides for early termination of lease agreements for victims of domestic violence

536 – ASB Smith – Revises provisions governing the Department of taxation

537 – ASB Smith – Revises provisions governing the modified business tax

540 – ASB Goicoechea – Joint Requester with ASB Ellison – Revises provisions relating to arbitration

 


State of Nevada Legislative Brief (August | September 2012) for ALL Potential Multifamily Issues / Concerns

Published Wednesday, September 18, 2012
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott


Here is the brief for August | September 2012:

The Nevada Tax Initiative

Judge James Wilson issued an order on August 3 that the initiative for the margins tax violated the single subject rule by including Section 22 which would require certain taxpayer information to be made public and therefore the initiative could not go forward. 

 

After 2 attempts at rewriting the initiative, the unions (principally the Teachers Union) refilled the petition and are moving forward with gathering signatures.  The changes made include removal of Section 22, and a change in several areas to cover a couple of points made by the opposing side in their filing, including:  (1) language to say “…and requires that the proceeds of the tax be used to fund the operation of the public schools in this State for kindergarten through grade 12”; (2) increases the modified business tax on financial institutions to provide additional revenue to the department of taxation for administration; and (3) adds language that requires money retained by the department of taxation for administrative expenses not to exceed the amount authorized by statue.

 

They will need to collect 72,352 County Clerk qualified signatures to qualify the initiative to appear before the 2013 Legislative Session. Should they gather the necessary signatures (the general consensus is they will) the petition will go before the Legislature and they must take some type of action on the petition in the first 40 days. Legislators may enact the proposal, propose something to replace it that provides the same amount of revenue dedicated to k-12 education, or ignore the measure.  If they ignore it then it goes to the ballot in the 2014 general election.  The Governor has promised to veto it should it manage to get to his desk.

 

The Save Business PAC has again filed with the judge to toss the petition out and Judges Wilson will review their comments and rule on the legality of the petition in the next 2 to 3 weeks.

 


Bill Draft Requests (BDR)

 

The following BDR’s are ones we will include on the list to watch. Just because they are included does not mean they will actually impact the industry but rather as the language is released we need to carefully review to be certain there is not an impact.


BDR 166
Senate Com on Judiciary

                 Makes various changes to provisions governing business entities

 

BDR 176 – Senator Brower

     Revises provisions concerning directors and officers of corporations

 

BDR 215 – Assembly Neal

                 Revises provisions governing common-interest communities

 

BDR 221 – Assembly Mastroluca

                 Revises provisions governing Medicaid

 

BDR 223 – Assembly Mastroluca

                 Revises provisions governing non-profit corporations

 

BDR 234 – Assembly Govt Affairs

                 Makes various changes relating to redevelopment

 

BDR 235 – Assemblyman Kirkpatrick

                 Creates a centralized system for information about non-profit entities

 

BDR 238 – Assembly Govt Affairs

                 Requires benchmarks to be set for economic development

 

BDR 258 – NV League of Cities

     Reduces statutory rate of depreciation of improvements made to real property for
     purposes of determining the assessed valuation upon which property taxes are levied

 

BDR 260 – NV League of Cities

     CR: Provides for legislative interim study of the enactment of a sales tax on services
     in conjunction with a reduction in the tax rate on retail sales on a revenue neutral basis

 

BDR 262 – NV League of Cities

     Requires home owner associations to allow for the use of outdoor storage of trash and
     recycling containers using screening mechanisms or areas out of public view

 

BDR 274 – Assemblyman Daly

                 Revises provisions governing planning and zoning

 

BDR 280 – Energy, Office of the Governor

     Requires partial abatement of property taxes for existing non-residential buildings that
     meet certain “green building” standards upon renovation or retrofitting

 

BDR 296 – Economic Development – office of the Governor

                 Revises provisions governing taxation

 

BDR 298 – Taxation Department

     Makes various changes to provisions governing sales and use taxes to ensure compliance
     with Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement

 

BDR 352 – Industrial Relations, Division of Business and Industry

     Removes the requirement for notification of employer before employee files complaint
     with the Division of Industrial Relations

 

BDR 354 – Real Estate Division – Business and Industry

                 Makes various changes relating to common-interest communities

 

BDR 371 – Employment Security Division

                 Makes various changes relating to unemployment comp benefits

 

BDR 380 – Secretary of State

     Makes various changes to clarify, simplify and standardize provisions governing various
     business associations

 

 


clientuploads/legislative/NAAHotsheetBanner.jpg

Published Friday, August 31, 2012
by National Apartment Association

For more information on state and local legislative issues, CLICK HERE to visit NAA’s State & Local Government Affairs Website. While you’re there be sure to look at our 15 new Issue Almanacs.

Click banner above to read the LATEST HotSheet.

 


HUD Announces Increases in FHA Insurance Premiums

Published Wednesday, August 15, 2012

by NMHC

HUD notice says proposed FHA multifamily mortgage insurance premiums increases will be implemented in FY 2012. It also addresses the public comments addressing the increases.

Please DOWNLOAD the notice to read the document.

 


State of Nevada Legislative Brief (July 2012) for ALL Potential Multifamily Issues / Concerns

Published Wednesday, August 8, 2012
by Marsha Berkbigler and Mendy Elliott


Here is the brief for July 2012:

The Nevada Tax Initiative

The Committee to Protect Nevada Jobs (business PAC opposing the union margins tax) filed suit in Carson City District Court.  Judge James Wilson heard the case and ruled against the Petition because it violates the “single-subject” rule for initiative petitions.  His position is based upon the fact that the Petition proposes both a tax and a requirement for certain taxpayer information to be made public as part of the measure, therefore dealing with two subjects.  The Teacher’s Union is going to refile the petition on Friday August 10.  It is unclear if they will just remove the section requiring the release of taxpayer information but that is the expected plan.  The Committee to Protect Nevada Jos will review the new filing and decide their course of action sometime next week.

Summary of the Initiative - The AFL-CIO and the Teachers Union filed their tax initiative with the Secretary of State’s office in early June.  The initiative proposes a 2% margin tax on businesses with total revenues of over $1 million.  The tax would be applied to the business’ revenue after specific deductions.  The unions are claiming this margins tax is based on AB 582 from the 2011 Legislative session and the Texas margin tax.  Since AB 582 was introduced on the last day of the session it never had the chance for a full vetting so it is unclear if this type of tax might be an acceptable tax reform alternative.  Two polls have already been taken on this type of tax (one by the unions and one by a general business association) and in the event it is earmarked to K-12 education, 70+% of the general population would support it.

There are several issues of concern:

  • The initiative defines “business” as “any activity intended to directly or indirectly benefit any person;
  • Although it is titled “The Education Initiative” the revenue from the tax is not earmarked for education nor is there any language prohibiting other education dollars from being reduced;
  • There are so many problems with the Texas Margin Tax that 45 bills have been introduced in an  effort to fix unintended consequences;
  • It is supposed to exempt small businesses with a $1 million exemption.  However the calculation of total revenue pursuant to the provisions of the initiative will put the income of many small businesses over the $1 million in revenue mark. 
  • Even though there was a medical exemption in previous bills to offset the cost of health care, there is no medical exemption in this petition;
  • It is unclear where the administration funds for the tax department will come from or if the amount acknowledged in the summary will be enough.   Wording in the fiscal note is unclear and it appears the Tax Department may be able to retain some of the funds for their own budget;
  • The tax is not based upon ability to pay and may result in all profits being wiped out;
  • The Texas margins tax has resulted in a substantial increase in costs of compliance for businesses.  Those same compliance costs will apply to NV businesses in addition to the new tax itself;
  • If this initiative is approved by the voters and the tax goes into effect per state law, it will be three years before any changes can be made;
  • It is unclear how and to what extent the Tax Commission will be able to develop regulations.  In order to make new tax law work effectively regulations need to be prepared and under state law applying to initiative petitions it is unclear if they could develop regulations since any drafted regulation might alter the enforcement upon or compliance by businesses;
  • This margins tax would apply to independent ownership businesses and sole proprietor ships resulting in a tax on personal income even though that is prohibited in the State Constitution.

The greater business community in NV, which includes the Chambers of Commerce both north and south, many state-wide business associations, and independent businesses who will be impacted by this margins tax in the event the initiative is passed are forming a coalition to fight the initiative.  The potential cost is $100-$150k.  They are asking for assistance in developing a coalition and PAC that will file a law suit challenging the explanation of initiative due to unclear or clearly misleading explanations of the impact of the initiative.  The coalition will prepare a public information program and develop lobbying points against the initiative.  They are asking for support from all impacted businesses. 


From the IRS

The Form W-2 Reporting of Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage page of IRS.gov has new information including:

  • A chart detailing the types of coverage to report
  • Transition relief for many employers
  • Q&A’s about the reporting requirements

We have included this information just in case you have not already seen or heard of this.  We think it’s important to keep track of the changes from the IRS as well as the Health Department (Federal and State) regarding the Obama Health Care Plan.  Since the Supreme Court upheld the majority of the law, Nevada will need to take any legislative action in 2013 and regulatory plans are already being developed.  Any of these have the potential to impact every business in Nevada.

 

Bill Draft Requests (BDR)

The following BDR’s are ones we will include on the list to watch.  Just because they are included does not mean they will actually impact the industry but rather as the language is released we need to carefully review to be certain there is not an impact.


BDR 7
– Assembly Committee on Commerce and Labor

Authorizes the imposition of an administrative penalty against an employer under certain circumstances


BDR 8
– Assembly Committee on Commerce and Labor

Creates the Task Force on Employee Misclassification (this a union issue but is on the list to assure the language only impacts union shops)


BDR 71 – Senate Judiciary Committee

Revises Provisions relating to graffiti


BDR 102 – Senator Hardy

Proposes changes re Common-Interest communities


BDR 105 – Senator Hardy

Proposes changes to actions of premises liability


BDR 127 – Assemblyman Daly

Proposes changes to various business provisions


BDR 164 – Assemblyman Stewart

Proposes changes to election of members of executive committees for common-interest communities