With the 2013 Legislature fast approaching everyone is talking about what laws should be passed.
As our 63 lawmakers settle in for a chilly winter sojourn in Carson City, I highly recommend they cozy up next to a good fire with a copy of the Nevada Policy Research Institute’s “Solutions 2013: A Sourcebook for Nevada Policymakers.” It is 88 pages of facts and figures and recommendations put together by NPRI’s Deputy Policy Director Geoffrey Lawrence.
I’m partial to those laws on the books that should be undone.
One of the most urgent priorities is to change the Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS) from a defined-benefit system to a defined-contribution system comparable to a 401(k). PERS has a $41 billion unfunded liability when a fair-market valuation is used.
Next is the 1937 state prevailing wage law, which in practice requires all state and local government construction contractors to pay their employees union scale wages. This has resulted in public works projects costing a half a billon dollars a year more than necessary.
My highest priority would be to repeal the renewable portfolio standard (RPS), which by 2025 will demand that all electric utility companies produce or purchase a minimum of 25 percent of their electricity from renewable energy facilities, such as wind, solar, geothermal or biomass. The cost of power from those sources averages three to four times as much as electricity produced by natural gas-fired turbines.
You may download “Solutions 2013” at http://npri.org/docLib/20120229_Solutions_2013.pdf.