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COMING IN THIS WEEK’S BUSINESS PRESS

STATE OF THE BANKS: First-quarter financial reports show the economic downturn is hurting banks. With a few exceptions, state chartered banks in Nevada lost money. However, many of them have large amounts of capital or equity that let them absorb the losses. About half of community banks continued to pump out new loans, more than offsetting loans that were paid off or charged off. And, many community banks attracted new deposits.

SPLASHY, FLASHY: The nightclub vibe has moved into daytime as hotel-casinos have pumped up their pools. With disk jockeys, video-game-equipped cabanas and fancy drinks, the pools encourage the buff and beautiful to swim, splash and party.

EXECUTIVE SNAPSHOT: Bank of George President and Chief Executive Officer Diane Fearon discusses trips to California and her favorite local places to celebrate a deal well done.

THIS WEEK’S LIST: Community banks.

THIS WEEK’S BUSINESS PRESS POLL QUESTION

Log onto the Las Vegas Business Press Web site and let us hear your opinion on this week’s question.

The Nevada Legislature approved a new budget for the next biennium that includes $1 billion in new taxes, including doubling the business license fee to $200 per year and increasing the business payroll tax rate from 0.63 percent to 1.17 percent. The rate for the first $250,000 of payroll would be lowered to 0.5 percent. Although Gov. Jim Gibbons is expected to veto the budget plan, legislators are expected to be able to override the veto and approve the $6.8 billion spending plan because of compromises Democratic and Republican lawmakers agreed to on public employee pensions. The budget bill also included a sunset provision keeping the tax increases in place for only the next two years.

Do you think the Legislature’s budget bill increases business costs too much during a recession?

answer at www.lvbusinesspress.com/poll

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