weather icon Partly Cloudy

2012 Voter Guide: Nevada Senate District 5

With a nearly 3,000-count lead in voter registration, Democrat Joyce Woodhouse would appear to be a sure winner over Republican Steve Kirk in the race for state Senate District 5.

But Woodhouse lost a race for re-election two years ago against then-political unknown Michael Roberson when she also had the registration advantage. And Kirk, a 12-year Henderson City Council member, is a widely candidate to district voters.

"I really don’t have anything to say about my opponent," said Woodhouse, noting her registration advantage is larger than in 2010. "He is very conservative. I consider myself a moderate. We need legislators in Carson City who are looking out for middle-class working families. I think I am that person."

But Kirk considers himself a "centrist" who as a City Council member served as a nonpartisan and strived to represent all Henderson residents.

"I am not a partisan hack," he said. "I am very conservative fiscally and feel we must have a balanced budget, but we also must take care of those who can’t take care of themselves."

What Kirk offers are business and local government perspectives.

"Government works better when we have people with private-sector experience," he said.

Kirk said he won’t talk about Woodhouse "unless she lies about me."

The seat they are seeking was represented by Sen. Shirley Breeden, D-Henderson, who announced a year ago she wouldn’t seek re-election .

Woodhouse said she believes the Legislature faces two major issues: education and the economy, and they are intertwined.

"We have to invest in education and the economy. Good schools are necessary for business, and vice versa. We have to prepare students for the workforce or higher education. And you have to make sure higher education offers the course work to get students high-tech jobs."

Kirk said education performance is "failing," noting a recent study that put Nevada last in the nation.

"We need to put money in the classroom," not on administration, and to curtail the power of the teachers union, he said.

"Why is the union so opposed to doing some things that are so sensible? I talk to teachers privately, and they are in favor of reforms," Kirk said.

Creating jobs is Kirk’s priority. "We have to figure out how to get out of the way and get people back to work."

Kirk said Woodhouse, a former legislative lobbyist for the Nevada State Education Association, favors the union’s 2 percent business margin tax proposal. That tax would immediately kill jobs, including 150 in Henderson’s auto mall, Kirk said.

"It is a bad tax," he said. "There is no way I ever would support the margins tax."

But Woodhouse does not say she supports the margins tax.

"I don’t believe Nevada working families can afford a tax increase," she said. "We have to plan where we go forward. We can’t just kick the can down the road."

She wants the Legislature to look at its taxing system, decide which will hurt business, and look at those that are necessary to fund government.

It will take both sides working together, but the Legislature can come up with a broad-based taxing plan that will fund necessary services and not hurt business development, Woodhouse said.

Contact Capital Bureau Chief Ed Vogel at evogel@reviewjournal.com or 775-687-3901.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Week in Pictures: April 28-May4

Take a look at some eye-catching pictures from Las Vegas Review-Journal photographers in the past week, including Las Vegas Science & Technology Festival, Pirate Fest, weather and Canelo vs. Jacobs. Children play inside a hot air balloon provided by Las Vegas Balloon Rides during the Las Vegas Science & Technology Festival on Saturday, May 4, […]

Week in Pictures: April 21-April 27

Take a look at some eye-catching pictures from Las Vegas Review-Journal photographers in the past week, including Golden Knights playoffs, Raiders draft and WBA lightweight championship bout. The Meadows School third baseman Sam Kaplan looks in a high ground ball during fielding practice, he will play at Cornell University next year on Wednesday, April 24, […]

Week in Pictures: April 14-April 20

Take a look at some eye-catching pictures from Las Vegas Review-Journal photographers in the past week, including Golden Knights playoffs and Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend. The Pink Moon, the nickname for April’s full moon, is not pink at all but yellow and sets in the west behind the Raiders Stadium early on Friday, April […]

Week in Pictures: March 17-March 23

Take a look at some eye-catching pictures from Las Vegas Review-Journal photographers in the past week, including Vegas Golden Knights, Cesar Chavez Day festival, prep baseball and El Cortez shooting. Brooklyn Ruiz, 10, center, of Redlands, Calif., jumps out of the pool while playing with her cousin, Analyce Lopez, 11, of Redlands, Calif., left, and […]

Week in Pictures: March 10-March 16

Take a look at some eye-catching pictures from Las Vegas Review-Journal photographers in the past week, including the West Coast Conference tournament, the Mountain West tournament and the Pac-12 tournament. The Stanford Cardinals celebrate after defeating the Oregon Ducks during a NCAA college basketball game in the final of the Pac-12 women’s tournament at the […]

Week in Pictures: Jan. 14-20

Take a look at some striking pictures from Review-Journal photographers in the past week, including weather features, a boxing match and the super blood wolf moon. Ronald Holmes plays the alto saxophone on The Strip as dark clouds move in on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019, in Las Vegas. Clouds, rain and snow are expected in […]

7 ways autocomplete can get smarter

Autocomplete is one of the best (or depending on how hastily you push ‘send’ – worst) things in the world. We rely on it so much that Google plans to let us autocomplete whole emails. Here are seven ways predictive input can improve. 1. Recognizing names from previous emails Jakub Kokoszka has a tough name to […]

Movie posters might soon be based on your clicks

You may have thought you left Blockbuster behind, but the basic way we browse movies hasn’t changed all that much. We peruse poster after poster, kind of like walking the aisles of a ‘90s-era video store. That one poster image, meant to appeal to as many people as possible, is often all we see before […]

What I’ll be covering at NAB 2018

The National Association of Broadcasters show kicks off this weekend in Las Vegas.  The show focuses on new and emerging technologies and trends in relation to the media and entertainment industries. As it’s not open to the public, I’ll be at the Las Vegas Convention Center on Saturday, Monday and Wednesday to share some of […]