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Sisolak the Good & the Bad
by Knight Allen, Director of Legislation
Originally published on Nov 14, 2013 - reprinted with permission

  Hail!, once again to Commissioner Steve Sisolak.

    After blowing the whistle on the firefighters' multimillion dollar vacation/OT/sick leave rip-off of the citizens of Clark County here he comes again, this time uncovering the, shall we say, cozy relationship between the Sheriff and the Police Union in their contract negotiations.

    It was fun watching the Sheriff do his dog-and-pony show of righteous indignation right after Commissioner Sisolak went public. It's hard to remember a more shining example of "the best defense is a good offense." Now the Sheriff's approach seems to be, "Never mind!"

    How this mess happened is not too hard to understand. Although the Sheriff is elected by the people, his true constituency is the institution of Metro itself. He is, like his predecessors, a lifetime police officer and he truly believes, at the very center of who he is, the definition of a safe and secure Clark County and Las Vegas is rooted in the well-being of the employees of Metro. We can't challenge his integrity. His judgment and belief system however are of little to no value at all to the people and, even more importantly, to the rule of law.

    It will be interesting to see if this debacle leads, at long last, to reforming the system. Two basic steps would do the job very nicely: 1. Cut the cancer of arbitration (binding or otherwise) out of the process. 2. Open negotiations to the public so we can see and have reported what is going on.

    It is up to the Legislature to make the changes that are so badly needed and who we elect in 2014 will determine whether or not they happen.

    Speaking of our most esteemed Commissioner; I read the interview he did with the Sun on 10/31. The first question he was asked was, "What are the biggest differences between you and Sandoval?"

    I couldn't believe my eyes when Mr. Sisolak, of all people, pulled out the claptrap about Nevada being at the bottom of every "good" list and at the top of every "bad" list.

    YIKES! It seems our good friend has forgotten it's not "what" lists, it's "whose" lists that count. If a group or faction starts with the assumption that government is good when it is large and activist, with high levels of taxation and maximum authority to direct and control the affairs of the people then Nevada is going to be a very "bad" state.

    Conversely, if a group or faction starts with the assumption that government is good when it is smaller and more passive, with lower levels of taxation and less authority to direct and control the affairs of the people then Nevada is going to be a very "good" state.

    Personally, I don't want to see the best Commissioner we have go out and become a sacrificial lamb for the Democratic party and I really don't want to see him out there preaching about how bad Nevada is and how much better it could be if only we'd give government a little more (of everything).

Contact Director Knight Allen