Assembly panel approves bill banning fees on Burning Man

CARSON CITY — A Nevada legislative panel has narrowly approved a bill to prevent officials in rural Pershing County from imposing its own rules and fees on the Burning Man festival staged annually on the Black Rock Desert.

Assembly Bill 374 now goes the Assembly floor.

It follows a lawsuit filed in the fall by Burning Man organizers challenging a county festival ordinance that seeks to impose a $1.50-per-head fee to cover law enforcement costs.

Organizers say the ordinance also seeks to regulate behavior at the counter-culture festival, which draws more than 50,000 people to the desert 110 miles north of Reno.

The bill before the Legislature prevents a board of county commissioners from regulating or licensing an event if a federal agency has issued a license or permit.

Burning Man receives a permit from the federal Bureau of Land Management.