Berkley reports wealth at least $8.4 million


WASHINGTON -- The family wealth of Rep. Shelley Berkley topped $8 million last year, according to a report released in Congress.

The Democrat ranks as the wealthiest Nevada lawmaker, and among the wealthier members of the House, due in part to assets held by her husband, Dr. Larry Lehrner, a Las Vegas nephrologist.

Since they married in 1999, Berkley and Lehrner have invested as a couple in real estate, including two properties in Pahrump and two townhouses on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Apart from those, most assets are held in Lehrner's name, including medical offices and dialysis units in Las Vegas, properties in Southern Nevada and extensive stock investments.

Berkley, who is running for U.S. Senate in 2012, reported assets valued at least $8.4 million, and possibly as high as $16.6 million, on an annual personal finance report she filed with the House in May.

Reports for all members of the House and Senate, and top congressional aides, covering 2010 are being released today .

The values in the reports are approximations, as lawmakers are allowed to list their holdings, and their liabilities, in broad ranges that makes it difficult to determine actual worth.

They also do not include the value of personal homes, autos or the lawmaker's salary, which is $174,000.

Berkley's largest investment is the Capitol Hill townhouse in which she lives when Congress is in session, assessed at $1.3 million according to online property records.

Berkley listed she and/or Lehrner owe between $1.3 million and $3 million for mortgages on nine properties.

The couple's net worth is about $4.9 million, based on a calculation formula used by the Center for Responsive Politics.

Using a different calculation, Berkley's office provided an estimate of $6.9 million for the couple's net worth, an increase of about $400,000 over 2009.

Among Lehrner's holdings is a partnership investment in the Quail Park V office complex at Rancho and Alta drives in Las Vegas valued at between $100,000 and $250,000.

Lehrner also holds a stake in Metalast International, a metal finishing business in Minden.

Contact Stephens Washington Bureau Chief Steve Tetreault at stetreault@stephensmedia.com or 202-783-1760.

 

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