Nevada justices block three tax-related ballot petitions

By Chris Rizo | Sep 5, 2008

Nevada Supreme Court building

CARSON CITY, Nev. (Legal Newsline)-Three tax proposals cannot appear on Nevada's Nov. 4 ballot because petition gatherers did not follow a signature collection law, the state Supreme Court ruled.

The high court's unanimous decision blocked two petitions that would have given voters a chance to decide whether to divert some hotel room tax money from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority to education, transportation and public safety programs.

The third petition would have let voters decide whether to require a two-thirds vote requirement for ballot questions that raise taxes. The two-thirds threshold is the same requirement the state Legislature must meet to raise taxes.

The signature gathering efforts were bankrolled by Las Vegas casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, chairman and CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corp., the parent company of Venetian Macao Limited, which operates The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino and the Sands Expo and Convention Center.

The justices ruled Thursday that the petition circulators flouted a 2007 state law that requires them to sign affidavits that they personally circulated the petitions and counted the signatures on their petitions.

They must also swear they witnessed people sign in their presence and gave them an opportunity to read each petition completely, under the law.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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