Weekly Editorial Recap

TUESDAY

MINIMUM WAGE

We are no fans of constantly throwing the same ballot initiatives in front of the voters time and again, hoping against hope ballot fatigue will set in and the voters will eventually acquiesce.

But there are exceptions.

It’s certainly not surprising that state union leaders are resisting a proposal to start the repeal process for an initiative approved by voters just four and a half years ago. …

Back when voters approved setting Nevada’s minimum wage at $1 higher than the federal minimum wage and indexing for inflation, the minimum wage was $5.15 an hour and the unemployment rate was 4.4 percent. Today the minimum wage is a healthy $8.25 — well on it’s way to $10 — but the Las Vegas jobless rate is 14.9 percent.

Coincidence?

“Many employers,” we wrote days before the 2006 election, “when confronted with a mandate to boost the wages of their least-productive workers by 60 percent overnight, will simply choose to let some of them go; the numbers won’t justify that great a raise without a commensurate increase in output.”

Maybe it’s time to ask the voters if they believe us now. … Let’s hear the debate and give the voters a chance to reconsider, now that they have been slapped in the face by economic reality.

WEDNESDAY

THE ROAD TO GRADUATION

Ever wonder why, if you happen to be driving by a local high school before lunchtime, you might see dozens of teenagers leaving campus early? It’s because their school day is over. For many seniors who have passed all their coursework over the years, there’s no reason to spend all day in class. …

On the other hand, plenty of high school seniors are enrolled in a full schedule because … they have flunked at least a couple of classes over their first three years and won’t accrue the 22½ credits they need to graduate if they don’t get passing grades across the board. …

Because typical high school students take six classes a year (worth a half-credit each semester), their schedules provide built-in opportunities to make up for multiple failures. …

That’s what makes Assembly Bill 138 such a puzzler. The legislation, which got a hearing Monday before the Education Committee, requires school districts to give flunking students even more chances to obtain credits needed for graduation. The bill says schools must offer “sufficient opportunities” during the school day for these kids.

One and a half credits of wiggle room isn’t “sufficient” enough? To say nothing of summer school and virtual education opportunities? …

AB138 is a waste of the Legislature’s time.

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