CARSON CITY — The 75th Nevada Legislature was gaveled into session about 12:20 p.m. today in the worst recession in generations, with legislative leaders promising not to cut essential state services.
"When we face a crisis, it often brings people together," said Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley, D-Las Vegas.
But Senate Majority Leader Steven Horsford, D-Las Vegas, came out swinging in his opening speech to the Senate.
"It is not enough to simply recognize the challenges — the people of Nevada are looking to us to solve them as well. They do not want to see their university system dismantled. They do not want us to balance the budget on the backs of teachers. And they do not want children and seniors to pay the price of the economic turmoil by having this Legislature and Nevada’s governor tear down everything that has been built up over the years."
With tax revenues declining because of the recession, Gov. Jim Gibbons has asked legislators to adopt a $6.17 billion general fund budget, 9.3 percent less than the one approved two years ago,
Horsford indicated that while the Legislature will change Gibbons’ plan, there still will be cuts and some programs might be eliminated.
Legislators are expected to introduce 250 bills today and begin hearings Tuesday.
Contact Capital Bureau Chief Ed Vogel at email@example.com or 775-687-3901.Senate Majority Leader Steven Horsford’s opening remarks Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley’s opening remarks