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EDITORIAL: Voting with their feet

The Las Vegas Valley is regaining its status as a place where a lot of people want to move to live. As reported by the Review-Journal’s Adelaide Chen last week, the number of people moving to Clark County from other places in the United States is at a five-year high, according to U.S. Census data. From July 1, 2014, to July 1, 2015, the net increase was close to 25,000.

It’s a quantum shift from 2010-11, when the region was still struggling in the aftermath of the Great Recession and actually had more than 6,300 people leave the valley than move here. But that’s turned around every year since then, with the July 2014-July 2015 leap about 25 percent higher than the July 2013-July 2014 domestic migration of 20,261.

The influx is a good sign that Nevada is continuing to recover from the recession. What shouldn’t be lost in those numbers is why people move here: opportunity and tax policy. Sure, the region’s great weather can’t be overstated, but a good business environment and the fact that there’s no state income tax are far more important in getting people to vote with their feet. Nowhere is there better proof of that than the fact that, as Ms. Chen pointed out, January data of new Nevada driver’s license applicants showed that a third of them come from California. Some of that could be attributed to being a border state; much of it can surely be attributed to California’s overbearing taxes.

To be sure, states compete against each other for tax climate. As such, for Clark County to continue its recovery and remain an attractive destination to live, government at all levels must continue to promote a good business environment and reasonable tax policy. Keep that in mind at the ballot box for the June primary and the November general election.

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