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Mid-Year Report from the Legislature  
by Vice President Knight Allen
Originally published on July 14, 2016 - reprinted with permission

    Save the planet!  Kill the birds!
  Whoa! Wait a minute. This is an even numbered year and the legislature isn't in session. How can there be a "report"?

  I realize a lot of people have an inkling that there are things going on during the time between sessions but I don't think too many have a clear understanding of how much is happening and how it all flows into the regular session. For example, there are already over 100 Bill Draft Requests on file for the 2017 session.

    Without going into great detail which would probably bore you here's a quick rundown:
There are 2 Interim Committees - Finance and the Legislative Commission
There are 17 Statutory Committees
There are 2 Interim Studies
 There are 38 non-legislative committees. 
The Nevada Silver Haired Legislative Forum is in this group
    That's a total of 59 Committees and probably 200 or more people all working diligently to get what they want from the 2017 legislative session.

    If you'd like to delve into this deeper it's very easy. Just Google:  nevada state legislature. Click on to the home page. Click on to "Interim" and start scrolling down. If you find something you'd like to know more about just click on to it and see what's going on. I warn you though. It can be addictive.

    For many years my addiction has been the Legislative Commission. This is the group of legislators charged with reviewing and approving the Administrative Regulations among other duties. On the surface the process is simple: the legislature passes laws and the bureaucracy implements them by regulations.

    However, the difference between legislative intent and bureaucratic interpretation can sometimes make for really interesting discussions. It's particularly fun to watch legislators who usually can't agree on what day of the week it is come together to tell the representatives from some Department that they worked very hard to craft a compromise on a (whatever) bill and the proposed regulation doesn't even come close to what the legislature intended. The message is usually clear - go back and fix it.

    Here are a couple of bits of information that came out of the last Legislative Commission meeting on 6/28/16:
Special license plates: 31 groups getting money from their sales have never received an in depth audit by the state.
  Health Exchange: The Exchange paid their various vendors for 17,000 hours of work but the State Auditor could only find 3,000 hours that were accounted for.
  State Dental Board: was created in 1951 and has never received an in depth audit by the state. Auditors discovered over $200 thousand dollars in overpayment of legal fees not a penny of which appeared anywhere on its balance sheet. Also, the Board was overcharging dentists and their assistants for license fees and when this was discovered the Board refused to reimburse the money.
  And the beat goes on.

    Read a blurb in the RJ that our new NHL team may be named after me. Some wag suggested it should be called the NEON KNIGHTS.
Isn't that a perfect description of me? All sparkly, bright and shimmering with neon excitement?
   No?   Hell no!
  Awwww . . . .
    Oh well. It'll still be fun to see my name is the paper almost every day rather than just in the letters to the editor every once in a while.

Contact Vice-President Knight Allen