Posts Tagged ‘denis’

Many Nevada Lawmaker PACs Show Modest Contributions In First Report Of 2012

By Sean Whaley | 4:14 pm May 23rd, 2012

CARSON CITY – Political Action Committees formed by state lawmakers to help their candidates win seats in the Legislature are off to a slow start in fundraising, according to campaign finance reports filed this week with Secretary of State’s office.

Many of the lawmaker-created PACs reported no contributions in the first campaign contribution and expense report filed Tuesday and reflecting financial activity from Jan. 1 through May 18 of 2012.

More lawmakers are forming their own PACs in an effort to both help their party’s candidates and to wield more influence.

Graphic courtesy of KRNV.

The “A Brighter Nevada” PAC formed by state Sen. Joe Hardy, R-Boulder City, received only $1,000, according to its filing. The “Battle Born Leadership Group” PAC formed by Assemblyman John Hambrick, R-Las Vegas, reported no contributions.

But a few of the committees did report some more significant contributions.

The Assembly Republican Caucus brought in $95,000, including $10,000 from the Keystone Corp., and spent $70,000, including a $5,000 contribution to the Committee to Elect Wes Duncan. Duncan is running for the Assembly District 37 seat in Las Vegas now held by Assembly Majority Leader Marcus Conklin.

Conklin’s Nevada First PAC reported no contributions.

The Senate Majority PAC formed by Sen. Michael Roberson, R-Las Vegas, brought in $34,500, including $5,000 from Station Casinos. It also contributed $10,000 each to GOP Senate candidates Mari Nakashima St. Martin and Mark Hutchison. The PAC also took in $160,000 in 2011.

The Majority 2012 PAC formed by Sen. Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, reported $7,500 in contributions in 2012. It also took in $15,000 in 2011. It contributed $5,000 to each of four Senate Democrat candidates: Sheila Leslie, Joyce Woodhouse, Justin Jones and Benny Yerushalmi.

The two main Senate caucus reports showed bigger numbers in the first report of 2012, with Democrats out-raising Republicans $187,000 to $149,000.

The Nevada Democratic Party also won the fundraising race in the first 2012 report over the Republican Party. The Democratic Party took in $465,000, while the Republican Party brought in only $75,000 in contributions.

All of these numbers will change after the primary as the parties and caucuses gear up for the November general election.

Republicans Lead In Fundraising In Critical State Senate Races But Democrats Argue They Have Broader Support

By Sean Whaley | 3:27 pm May 23rd, 2012

CARSON CITY – Republican candidates have big leads in fundraising in four of five seats considered critical to control of the state Senate in the 2013 legislative session, with a slight monetary advantage in the fifth, according to campaign contribution reports filed this week.

Both Democrat and Republican caucus leaders are fighting hard to win the seats to control the 21-member house where Democrats now lead 11-10.

The first reports of 2012 show contributions through May 18 and were filed Tuesday with the state Secretary of State’s office. Several candidates also raised money in 2011 and these amounts have given the GOP candidates the funding edge early on in the 2012 election season.

Republican caucus leader Sen. Michael Roberson, R-Las Vegas, is optimistic that the GOP can retake control of the Senate in the November general election. Republicans need to win four of the five seats to do so.

Democratic Senate leader Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, is equally confident Democrats will maintain control.

Roberson said he is pleased with where the Senate candidates are right now, but added that it is a long time until November. Roberson also said he is pleased but not surprised at the level of contributions to the candidates and the caucus.

“I know the caliber of the candidates we have,” he said. “The group of candidates that agreed to run this time on the Republican side, our endorsed candidates, are some of the best candidates either party has seen in 20 years.”

But Senate Democrats point out that two of their candidates, Justin Jones and Sheila Leslie, both had larger numbers of individuals contributing to their campaigns than their GOP counterparts in the 2012 reports, suggesting they have a broader base of support. A third candidate, Joyce Woodhouse, also out-raised her opponent in the 2012 report.

The Senate Democratic Caucus also out-raised its Republican counterpart so far in 2012, $187,000 to $149,000.

“The recent finance reports show that the Senate Democratic Caucus is a very strong position to expand and protect the majority,” said Mike Luce, executive director of the Nevada Senate Democrats. “We have very strong candidates and the registration in these new districts favors Democrats.

“We have been  saying all along that the Democratic candidates are running strong campaigns and talking about bringing jobs to this state,” he said. “Our message is working, our campaigns are knocking doors and raising the necessary funds to run competitive races.”

In Senate District 5, where former Henderson city councilman Steve Kirk, a Republican, is expected to face Woodhouse, a former state senator, in the November general election, the GOP has the edge in contributions so far. But Kirk has also spent much of his war chest already.

Kirk reports $131,000 in total contributions and expenses of $67,000. Kirk has a primary battle. Kirk received a $5,000 contribution from the Retail Association of Nevada in the first reporting period this year.

Woodhouse reports raising about $96,000 and spending $18,000. She has large contributions from the Nevada State Education Association, $5,000; outgoing state Sen. Mike Schneider, D-Las Vegas, $5,000; and Nevada Senate Democrats, $5,000; in the first reporting period for this year.

The other Republican in the Senate 5 race, Annette Teijeiro, reports about $28,000 in contributions and $15,000 in expenses. The primary is June 12.

Author: David Ball, via Wikimedia Commons.

In Senate District 6, where GOP attorney Mark Hutchison is expected to face businessman and Democrat Benny Yerushalmi, Republicans also have a fundraising advantage.

Hutchison reports $185,000 in contributions and nearly $48,000 expenses. Contributions include $5,000 from the Keystone Corp., $5,000 from the Retail Association of Nevada and $10,000 from the Senate Republican Leadership Conference.

Yerushalmi reports $74,000 in contributions and $10,000 in expenses. He has a primary against Thomas Welsh. Yerushalmi, who ran unsuccessfully for a state Senate seat in 2010, has $4,000 contributions from both the Nevada State Education Association and the Clark County Education Association.

In Senate District 9, where Republican Mari Nakashima St. Martin is expected to face Democrat Justin Jones, the candidates are fairly evenly matched. Both face primary opponents. Brent Jones is also a GOP candidate, and Frederick Conquest has filed as a Democrat.

St. Martin reports nearly $114,000 in contributions and $60,000 in expenses. Contributions include $10,000 from the Senate Majority Political Action Committee, $10,000 from the Jobs First PAC, and $10,000 from the Senate Republican Leadership Conference.

Justin Jones reports nearly $112,000 in contributions and $23,000 in expenses. Contributions include $2,500 from U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s Searchlight Leadership Fund.

GOP candidate Brent Jones has raised nearly $33,000 in contributions.

In the Senate 15 race where incumbent Greg Brower, R-Reno, will face Leslie, who resigned her Senate 13 seat to challenge the attorney who was appointed to fill out the term of the late Sen. Bill Raggio, the Republican is leading in the fund-raising race.

Brower reports $299,000 in contributions and $76,000 in expenditures, with a $7,279 donation from the Las Vegas Sands Corp.

Leslie reports $141,000 in total contributions and $58,000 in expenses. Her contributions include $2,000 from R&R Partners, $5,000 from the Laborers’ Intl Local 169, and $8,700 from the Barbara Buckley Campaign. Buckley is a former Assembly speaker.

In Senate District 18, where Assemblyman Scott Hammond, R-Las Vegas, is likely to face Democrat Kelli Ross in November, Hammond reports $127,000 in contributions and $70,000 in expenses. Contributions include $2,500 from Station Casinos and $5,000 from MGM Resorts International.

Hammond raised $59,000 in the first 2012 reporting period from Jan. 1 through May 18. He also raised $68,000 in 2011.

Hammond, who is endorsed by the GOP Senate Caucus, and who faces a primary challenge from Assemblyman Richard McArthur, R-Las Vegas, is well ahead in contributions. McArthur reports about $16,000 in total donations. Republican Conrad Vergara, has also filed.

Ross, who has a primary against Democrat Donna Schlemmer, reports $47,000 in contributions and $5,500 in expenses. She received $10,000 from the Committee to Elect Steve Ross and $5,000 from the Committee to Elect Tom Collins.

Schlemmer has raised about $7,000.

Democrats have a voter registration edge in three Clark County races: Senate 5 by 40.6 percent to 37.5 percent for Republicans; in Senate 6 by 41.4 percent to 38.2 percent; and in Senate 9 by 39.6 percent to 35.3 percent, based on registration numbers through April.

Republicans lead in Senate 15 in Washoe County, 40 percent to 38 percent, and in Senate District 18 in Clark County, 40.7 percent to 37.6 percent.


Audio clips:

Sen. Michael Roberson says he is pleased with where the Senate candidates are but that it is a long time yet to November:

052312Roberson1 :14 sure we’re successful.”

Roberson says the GOP Senate candidates are some of the best in the past 20 years:

052312Roberson2 :20 in 20 years.”


Nevada Democrats Call On GOP Presidential Candidates To Disclose Major Fundraisers

By Sean Whaley | 6:15 pm July 29th, 2011

CARSON CITY – Nevada state Democrats today called on Republican presidential candidates to disclose the names of their campaigns’ major fundraisers – known as bundlers – in the name of transparency.

President Barack Obama on July 15 released his list of major fundraisers, which he also did in 2008. The disclosure is not required by the Federal Elections Commission.

State Sen. Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, held a brief telephone conference with the media to ask Republican candidates to follow suit. Democrats around the country have made similar requests.

Nevada state Sen. Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas. / Nevada News Bureau file photo

Denis noted that both President Bush and Senator John McCain disclosed major fundraisers during their campaigns for the presidency, but that none of the major Republican candidates seeking the presidency in 2012 have yet done so.

Current GOP candidate Mitt Romney also disclosed the information during the 2008 presidential primary.

An ABC News report dated July 20 said the major GOP candidates are declining to release the information.

Denis said Obama released the information because he “has always believed that sharing the name of major fundraisers is a critical step in making campaigns more transparent and accountable.”

“If the Republican candidates for president aren’t forthcoming about who exactly is helping them to get elected, how can we know for sure that those same people won’t be calling in favors if the candidate wins election (to) the White House,” he said.

Asked for a response, Ryan Mahoney, regional press secretary for the Republican National Committee, said: “If the Democrats insist on distracting Americans from their failure to have a plan to fix the debt crisis, they should look in the mirror and ask themselves why they continue to move the goal posts when it comes to fundraising transparency. This is the same party that gives special access to bundlers at the White House, takes money from state lobbyists, films political videos in the White House and whose president flip-flopped on public financing.”

Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said: “Barack Obama is just trying to distract people from his disastrous record of failure on jobs and the economy. We disclose all of the information about our donors as required by law and anyone who is interested can review it publicly.”

ABC News described the process: “Bundlers are wealthy and well-connected individuals who give the maximum legal contribution to a campaign – $2,500 for the primary – and then get their friends and associates to do the same.  The donations are ‘bundled’ together, often totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

Republicans will be holding an early caucus in Nevada in February as the GOP candidates vie for the nomination and the opportunity to challenge President Obama in the November 2012 general election.

Audio clips:

State Sen. Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, says Republican candidates for president should release information about their fundraisers as President Obama has done:

072911Denis1 :19 transparent and accountable.”

Denis says voters deserve the information:

072911Denis2 :17 the White House.”

Denis says GOP candidates should release the information so voters can make their own judgments:

072911Denis3 :13 Republican candidates accordingly.”

Lawmakers Consider Bill To Improve Efficiency And Transparency Of Government Contracting

By Sean Whaley | 5:49 pm March 25th, 2011

CARSON CITY – The Senate majority leader today advanced a bill intended to make state and local government contracts more efficient and transparent to benefit both taxpayers and consumers was reviewed by a legislative subcommittee on Friday.

Among other provisions, Senate Bill 359 would require government contracts to be put out to bid rather than rolled over year after year to the same contractor. It would require all fees charged to the public in government contracts to be disclosed by the contractor. It would also require an annual report to the state on sole source contracting by agencies, which would then be provided to the Legislature’s Interim Finance Committee.

State agencies and local governments would have to report this information to the state Purchasing Division, which would compile the data and forward it to lawmakers.

Senate Majority Leader Steven Horsford, D-Las Vegas, one of the sponsors of the bill, said the measure could result in savings to state and local governments because contracts would be subjected to competition.

“This is a bill that goes to the heart of one of the things that we’ve been trying to accomplish this entire session: good government and government efficiency,” he said. “As we address the critical need for new revenue to support education and vital social services in this state, we also must face head-on the question of whether government is delivering services as efficiently as possible.

“Every dollar we save through efficiency measures is a dollar in new revenue we don’t have to raise,” Horsford said.

In a hearing earlier this session, Horsford expressed concern that recipients of jobless benefits and temporary assistance grants are being charged banking fees to withdraw funds from these government funded programs.

Evidence was also presented of sole-source contracts renewed year after year with no competitive bidding, he said.

Sen. Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, a primary sponsor of the bill, said the legislation would also ensure fairness and opportunity for Nevadans seeking to provide contract services to the state and local governments.

A number of other lawmakers spoke in support of the legislation, as did speakers in both Las Vegas and Carson City.

A section of the bill that received a lot of favorable testimony would require more reporting regarding race, ethnicity and gender on public works projects let to bid by the state and local governments. The information would be made public and reported to the Legislature.

Assemblywoman Dina Neal, D-North Las Vegas, said the data collection required in the bill could provide a foundation to establish contracting opportunities for minorities and women. Neal is pursuing a related measure that was heard today the Government Affairs Committee.

Audio clips:

Sen. Steven Horsford says the bill goes to the heart of good government and government efficiency:

032511Horsford1 :10 and government efficiency.”

Horsford says every dollar saved is a dollar in new revenue that does not have to be raised:

032511Horsford2 :21 have to raise.”

Horsford says the bill is about saving taxpayer dollars, but also about consumer protections:

032511Horsford3 :15 they are charged.”

State Senator Sets Sights on Assembly Due to Term Limits

By Sean Whaley | 3:16 pm October 16th, 2009
CARSON CITY – With term limits taking effect for 17 veteran state lawmakers in 2010, those who want to continue to serve are setting their sights on other elective office. A number of state Assembly candidates are looking to move up into a vacant state Senate seat.

But in at least one case, a lawmaker is doing the opposite.

State Sen. Maggie Carlton, D-Las Vegas, is being forced out of her Clark District 2 seat due to term limits. She has decided to run for the Assembly 14 seat held by Ellen Koivisto, another Democrat who must also vacate her seat because of term limits.

Carlton said she has a lot of unfinished work from her time in the Senate, and serving in the Assembly is the best way to keep involved in public policy issues. Carlton is a resident in Assembly District 14 so the choice was an easy one to make. She has been endorsed by the Assembly Democratic Caucus.

“There has been a time or two when a member of the Senate has run for the Assembly,” she said. “But this will be the first time it has been inspired by term limits.”

Carlton, who works for the nonprofit Great Basin Primary Care Association, said she wants to continue working on the foreclosure crisis and health care reform, among other issues. The association promotes access to affordable health care for Nevada’s underserved populations.

“Health care will be huge,” she said.

Carlton just returned from a visit to Washington, D.C., where health care reform was the topic of discussion. State Legislatures will be involved in implementing any health care reform passed by Congress, she said.

Carlton said her experience dealing with the state budget crisis in the 2009 session will be a benefit in 2011. The 2011 session will be like 2009, part two, she said.

“Hopefully we’ll have turned the corner on the economy,” Carlton said.

But even if the economy is on its way to recovery, the state faces a huge challenge with the budget, she said.

Koivisto could not be reached for comment on her future plans, but she does not reside in Carlton’s Senate district.