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NV Energy, developer plan solar projects

Local power provider NV Energy said Tuesday that it has entered a partnership to develop solar power projects in Southern Nevada.

The utility signed a memorandum of understanding with renewable energy developer Solar Millennium and construction and engineering company MAN Ferrostaal to consider building a 250-megawatt thermal-storage plant in Nye County. The plant would be able to produce energy after sundown, helping contribute round-the-clock power during the summer, when local demand for electricity peaks.

The proposal needs state Public Utilities Commission approval and will need more permits and financing. Depending on permitting and funding, the project could open in 2013 or 2014.

Jobless may qualify for extended benefits

Jobless workers who received all their regular state and federal unemployment compensation now may be eligible for state extended benefits, the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation reports.

“Individuals who have exhausted Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation may be eligible for up to 13 weeks of state extended benefits,” said Deputy Director Cynthia Jones.

Requirements for job-searching are more stringent for state extended benefit claims. Claims must be filed by mail.

Visit www.express claim.org for information on state extended benefits.

Mortgage agents surrender licenses

Silvano and Suzy Barragan surrendered their mortgage agent licenses and agreed to pay $1,500 each in fines after the Nevada Mortgage Lending Division accused them of misrepresenting income and employment information that allowed the applicants to qualify for credit extensions.

“It’s important that borrowers feel confident in their mortgage agents and brokers, especially with the current economic challenges we’re facing as a state and a nation,” Mortgage Lending Commissioner Joseph Waltuch said in a statement.

Pinnacle will delay report, gauge charges

Regional casino operator Pinnacle Entertainment said Tuesday it was delaying earnings and its year-end report for about a week to determine the amount of impairment charges that will affect the company’s results.

Las Vegas-based Pinnacle said the noncash impairment charges will range between $275 million to $330 million for the fourth quarter.

However, the company said its net revenues for the quarter ended Dec. 31 will be $259 million, an 18 percent increase from the same period a year earlier.

Slot maker reduces quarterly dividend

International Game Technology sliced the quarterly cash dividend it pays shareholders by 58 percent Tuesday, saying it was part of continued cost-cutting efforts.

The Reno-based slot machine giant IGT said the move, cutting the dividend from 14.5 cents per share to 6 cents per share, will save almost $100 million.

Some home insurance premiums changed

Nevada Insurance Commissioner Scott Kipper announced Tuesday that he changed premiums for some homeowners’ insurance policies from State Farm.

Some policyholders will see no change. Some rates will increase and others will decline, based on policy characteristics and coverage levels.

The maximum rate increase will be less than $50, the Division of Insurance reports. The statewide average rate will not change.

The insurance company provides coverage to 111,000 homeowners, renters and condominium owners.

Unclaimed tax refunds for 2005 held by IRS

The Internal Revenue Service said Tuesday that the federal government holds $17.6 million in unclaimed refunds for Nevadans who haven’t filed federal income-tax returns for 2005.

More than 18,000 state residents are entitled to a share of the money, but taxpayers must mail in a 2005 tax return no later than April 15.

The IRS estimated that half of those in line for unclaimed refunds will receive more than $550.

The law allows a three-year window to file for a refund. After April 15, unclaimed refunds will become property of the U.S. Treasury. Checks will be held for taxpayers who haven’t filed tax returns for 2006 and 2007.


Treasury prices mixed amid economic doubts

Treasury prices ended mixed Tuesday as investors worried about the economy’s prospects.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell 0.13 points to 98.81. Its yield rose to 2.94 percent from 2.91 percent late Monday. Prices move opposite of yields.

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