Previous Nevada Journal articles

Mesquite online paper wins legal recognition

Eighth District judges: Citizen Journal is covered by state shield law

Two Judges in Clark County Eighth District Court, Michael Villani and Rob Bare, ruled this week that the Mesquite Citizen Journal is indeed a newspaper and therefore covered by the News Media Shield Law (NMSL). Both Judges also ruled that Barbara Ellestad, editor and publisher of the MCJ is in fact a news reporter who is also covered by the NMSL. In January a third Judge, Abbi Silver deferred a ruling in her court to Judge Bare.

In December, T. Augustus Claus, public defender attorney for former Virgin Valley Water District General Manager Michael Winters, filed six subpoenas against the MCJ and Ellestad asking for all documents, reporter notes, audio and video recordings, published and unpublished articles, and all computer records from 2000 to the present associated with the VVWD. He filed four amended subpoenas in January additionally asking for Ellestad’s phone records and conversations she may have had with investigators or anyone at the Water District. Continue reading at MCJ

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The actual history of Nevada’s ban
on state gifts to private companies

It originated, not in a fear of railroads, but of politicians and crony capitalism

LAS VEGAS — It’s long been agreed in Nevada that the state constitution’s prohibition against state subsidies to private business means just what it says:

The State shall not donate or loan money, or its credit, subscribe to or be, interested in the Stock of any company, association, or corporation, except corporations formed for educational or charitable purposes.

Moreover, Nevada voters have made their own view emphatically clear: Three times — in 1992, 1996 and 2000 — they’ve rejected lawmaker-sponsored ballot measures to change the state constitution and allow such subsidies.

But have Silver State lawmakers and the Sandoval administration now found a successful end-run around the clearly expressed will of the voters?

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Nevada's Catalyst Fund: Millions
pledged without signed contracts

What gives? Corporate subsidy program rife with confusion, lack of procedures

LAS VEGAS — With much ado and fanfare, Nevada public officials have aggressively touted subsidies from the state’s $10 million Catalyst Fund incentive program to numerous companies that say they will expand in or relocate to Nevada.

Despite the publicity, however, signed agreements for nearly $7.1 million in committed Catalyst Fund monies do not yet exist and exactly how the Catalyst Fund money flows remains hidden from public view.

The 2011 Nevada Legislature created the Fund as a discretionary grant program to subsidize private businesses that expand in or relocate to Nevada. It is administered by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, known as “GOED.”

From March to September 2013, the GOED board — chaired by Gov. Brian Sandoval, with members including Lt. Gov. Brian Krolicki, Secretary of State Ross Miller and others —designated nine private companies to receive nearly $5.7 million in state Catalyst Fund grants. Through Jan. 28, 2014, officials insisted to Nevada Journal that signed agreements for those nine awards did not exist. Only when faced with this publication’s deadline did GOED produce one signed agreement for $200,000.

Late in 2013, GOED approved two more subsidy packages totaling more than $1.6 million. Again, no signed agreements exist.

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Health Care

The 'moles' still infest Nevada Obamacare

Long after Nevadans were promised a 'consumer-friendly experience,' it’s still not there

LAS VEGAS — In mid-October, two weeks after the launch of Nevada’s Obamacare website — — its director was comparing all the problems surfacing to the Whac-a-Mole arcade game.

 “We punch one thing down, and another thing pops up,” Jon Hager, executive director of the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Jennifer Robison.

That’s about as negative a statement as has been heard from Hager, a constant cheerleader for Gov. Brian Sandoval’s 2009 decision to sign Nevada up for a state-based Obamacare health insurance exchange.

Months later, numerous indicators suggest that the “moles” have proliferated, and many of them — bigger than ever — are harming Nevadans.

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Health Care

Reid video compilation: 'If you like the coverage you have, you can keep it'

How Harry Reid and Senate Democrats
misrepresented the Affordable Care Act

Destroying your health-insurance plan wasn’t a ‘bug’
in Obamacare — it was an intentional, core feature

Eight times during the summer of 2009, Sen. Reid assured Nevadans and America that "if you like" your current health plan, "you can keep it." Click picture to see text and video on all dates.Barack Obama wasn’t the only high-profile public figure who repeatedly misled Americans about the “health reform” legislation that Democrats were trying to push through Congress in 2009.

Nevada’s Harry Reid, atop the U.S. Senate as majority leader, was also regularly telling the country, “If you like the health care you have, you can keep it.”

That’s what a survey of the Congressional Record — the official journal of the U.S. Congress — shows.

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Summer of 2009: How Reid
misled America from the Senate floor

Excerpts from Congressional Record, C-SPAN video archives tell the tale


Mr. REID…  Democrats are committed to ensuring all Americans can choose their doctors, hospitals, and health plans. No matter what the Republicans claim, this government has no intention of choosing any of these things for you or meddling in any of these relationships. We have said that time and again. If you like the coverage you have, you can choose to keep it or you can change if you desire.



Mr. REID… No matter what Republicans claim, the government has no intention of choosing for you any of these things or meddling in any of your medical relationships ...

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Company makes good on warning
— leaving Colo. over new gun laws

Not the first firm to pull up stakes following state's anti-gun legislation

Employees of an Erie, Colo. Magpul Industries plant assemble 30-round capacity ammunition magazines for high-velocity rifles last February. Magpul, one of the country's largest producers of ammunition magazines for guns, is leaving Colorado and moving operations to Wyoming and Texas because of new state laws that include restrictions on how many cartridges a magazine can hold. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — One of the country's largest producers of ammunition magazines for guns is leaving Colorado and moving operations to Wyoming and Texas because of new state laws that include restrictions on how many cartridges a magazine can hold.

Erie, Colo.-based Magpul Industries Corp. announced Thursday that it was moving its production, distribution and shipping operations to Cheyenne and its headquarters to Texas, making good on a vow it made to leave Colorado during last year's gun control debate.

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Calif. bullet train in limbo after legal setbacks

Despite official 'optimism,' confusion reigns after court rulings

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Officials overseeing California's $68 billion high-speed rail project have taken pains in recent weeks to assure the public that construction plans are moving ahead, characterizing a series of recent setbacks as "a bump in the road."

That optimism comes despite recent court rulings against the project, creating confusion about the bullet train's prospects.

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Legal recreational pot starts up in Colorado

Celebratory mood, spiking prices, expressions of concern mark first day

Employees help customers at the crowded sales counter inside Medicine Man marijuana store, in Denver Wednesday. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)DENVER (AP) — Crowds were serenaded by live music as they waited for the nation's first legal recreational pot shops to open. They ate doughnuts and funnel cakes as a glass-blower made smoking pipes. Some tourists even rode around in a limo, eager to try weed but not so eager to be seen buying it.

And when the sales began, those who bought the drug emerged from the stores, receipt held high and carrying sealed shopping bags, to cheers.

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