Posts Tagged ‘2012 election’

State Sen. Greg Brower Criticizes His Opponent For ‘Quitting’ On Her Constituents

By Sean Whaley | 2:21 pm March 19th, 2012

CARSON CITY – State Sen. Greg Brower, R-Reno, today criticized his Democratic challenger for “quitting” on her constituents when she resigned her Senate seat in mid-term and then filed to run against him.

Brower is running for election to a full four-year term in what is now Washoe District 15 after the state’s legislative districts were redrawn following the 2010 census. Former state Sen. Sheila Leslie, D-Reno, who was in the middle of a four-year term in what is now Senate District 13, formerly Washoe Senate 1, resigned from office when she moved into District 15. She then filed for election to the Senate 15 seat.

Filing for public office ended Friday and it didn’t take long for the campaign season to begin.

In an interview on the Nevada NewsMakers television program, Brower said: “It was a little surprising; I guess they couldn’t find a candidate to run against me and so partisan politics, I guess, prevails once again and so an incumbent moves to make sure I have a tough race.”

State Sen. Greg Brower, R-Reno. / Nevada News Bureau file photo.

But it is a strong Republican district, one that GOP Gov. Brian Sandoval won by almost 20 points two years ago, he said.

The district has 28,002 Republican and 26,511 Democrat active voters as of February. There are also 10,957 nonpartisan voters.

The race is viewed as one of five state Senate contests that could determine whether Democrats or Republicans control the 21-member Senate in 2013. Democrats currently have an 11-10 edge.

Brower said Leslie was serving on several important committees in this interim period before the 2013 legislative session, including the Interim Finance Committee, the Legislative Commission and the Legislative Commission’s Audit Subcommittee.

“It’s a strange way to do public service by resigning and basically quitting on the folks you represent,” he said. “But the interim, as you know, has a lot of activity with respect to interim committees, and Sheila, frankly, served on a couple of important committees that she no longer serves on now because of her resignation. And that’s not good for Washoe County.”

Brower said he has worked well with Leslie on Washoe County issues.

“And the fact that she has just taken herself away from all of that interim activity, the Interim Finance Committee, the Legislative Commission, and other important committees, I don’t think speaks well to her commitment to the folks in Washoe County.”

Former Sen. Sheila Leslie, D-Reno. / Nevada News Bureau file photo.

Leslie, asked to respond to his comments, said by email: “I understand Senator Brower’s frustration that I moved and am going to give him a competitive race when he was hoping for an easy election. I resigned my seat in Senate District 1 because I believed it was required when I moved out of that district by about a mile. I followed the rules. It was not an easy decision, but I believe it was the ethical decision.

“Now that we both live in Senate District 15, we’ll be able to present our constituents with a clear choice between someone who is committed to funding education and essential services and someone who chose to vote the extreme Tea Party-line to ensure he had the right kind of record for a Congressional primary,” Leslie said. “I think the voters will know who is really committed to the citizens of Washoe County.”

Brower was appointed to the Senate seat to replace the late Sen. Bill Raggio, R-Reno, who resigned before the start of the 2011 session. Brower refused to speculate on his political future beyond 2012 when asked if he was considering a run for Nevada attorney general. Democrat Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto will be termed out of office in 2014.

“I am 100 percent focused on getting elected to this Senate seat,” he said.

When asked by host Sam Shad if he would commit to a full four-year term in the Senate, Brower said: “I can’t predict the future, Sam, I just don’t know what is going to happen. I’m just not even going to think beyond 2012.”

Brower also defended Sandoval for his announcement last week that he would continue a package of expiring tax increases into the 2013-15 budget to avoid any further budget cuts to education. Brower voted against continuing the 2009 taxes in the 2011 session even though Sandoval supported the decision as a compromise to finalize the current budget.

“I think what the governor is trying to do is move this state forward,” he said. “And that means leadership on real issues like the budget. And I think that’s what we saw last week and that’s what we’re going to continue to see. And to the extent this governor is going to take a leadership role in moving this state forward, I stand solidly behind him.”

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Audio clips:

Sen. Greg Brower says Sheila Leslie quit on her constituents:

031912Brower1 :17 for Washoe County.”

Brower says her resignation makes him question her commitment to the residents of Washoe County:

031912Brower2 :20 in Washoe County.”

Brower says he stands behind Gov. Brian Sandoval’s decision to extend a tax package into the next budget to avoid cuts to education:

031912Brower3 :20 solidly behind him.”

 

New Effort Under Way In Nevada To Establish Secret Ballot Requirement In Unionization Votes

By Nevada News Bureau Staff | 3:25 pm July 26th, 2010

CARSON CITY – A group seeking to mandate the use of secret ballots in all elections involving union representation has filed an initiative petition to make such a requirement the law in Nevada.

The proposal to amend Nevada state law was filed July 15 with the Secretary of State’s office and lists Steve Wark of Las Vegas as the state chairman of the Save Our Secret Ballot effort.

The group had filed a similar initiative petition proposal in February seeking to amend the state Constitution to implement the secret ballot requirement, but no signatures of registered voters were turned in to qualify the measure by a June deadline.

The latest effort seeks to amend state law rather than the constitution. If the group can gather just over 97,000 signatures by a Nov. 9 deadline, the proposal would go to the 2011 Legislature for its consideration. If the Legislature failed to enact the change within 40 days, it would go to the voters in 2012.

The description of effect for the initiative says it “would recognize the fundamental right to vote by secret ballot in all elections for employee representation. Secret ballot elections will provide employees the right to vote in privacy to determine majority support for a labor union.”

Under current Nevada law, if the responsible governmental administrative agency has a good faith doubt about the majority support of a labor union in a local government workplace, it can order a secret ballot election.

Under federal law governing private-sector employees, if 30 percent or more of the employees request a secret ballot election, then the responsible federal administrative agency must hold one. This initiative would require a secret ballot election in every case.

Even with Nevada approval, the petition notes that a change in federal law would be required for it to be binding in the private-sector workplace.

Gibbons OPEN Government Initiative Passes Challenge Period, Signature Gathering Begins

By Sean Whaley | 11:03 am June 3rd, 2010

CARSON CITY – Gov. Jim Gibbons has announced his initiative petition to amend state law to subject public employee union negotiations to Nevada’s open meeting law has passed a legal challenge period, allowing the signature gathering process to begin.

“All around Nevada hundreds of hard working public servants are losing their jobs because their union leaders will not re-open their contracts and accept salary reductions and benefits adjustments,” Gibbons said. “We are losing talented government workers to the unemployment rolls. Unions have a stranglehold on local government, and it’s time for that to stop. Collective bargaining involving public funds must be open to the public. Secret backroom deals between public employee unions and state and local governments must stop. The people of Nevada should expect no less from their government.”

The Steering Committee for the OPEN Government Initiative has until Nov. 9 to gather the 97,002 necessary valid signatures from Nevada’s three Congressional districts to place the petition initiative before the 2011 Nevada Legislature. Should the initiative petition not be approved by the Legislature, it will go forward to a vote of the people in the 2012 general election.

“My office has been flooded with calls from people who want to help circulate petitions and enact this initiative into law. Please contact us now as we move quickly forward to gather signatures,” Gibbons said.

Gibbons has set up a special e-mail address to contact the OPEN Government Initiative at NVOPENGovernment@att.net . A web site will follow in the next few weeks. Those without e-mail access can call 775-684-5670 or send a letter to P.O. Box 4807, Carson City, NV 89702.

Gibbons said he twice tried during the 26th Special Session of the Nevada Legislature to amend laws relating to government collective bargaining without success, prompting him to use the initiative process to get the issue before the Legislature and voters.

Assembly Republicans were successful in getting a resolution passed urging the 2011 Legislature to consider ways to make the collective bargaining process more transparent.

“It’s time for the people of Nevada to step up and do what their elected Democrat legislators will not, and that is provide for accountability in public spending,” Gibbons said.