Missives from the Legislative Front


The 79th Session is starting to warm up. This week, the Libertarian Party worked on a whopping eight bills.

Before I tell you what we were busy with this week, though, you should know what’s coming up! To share your opinion on any of these bills with the legislators and committees reviewing them, go here and type in the relevant bill number. It’ll send your message directly to the sponsors and co-sponsors. As some bills have more than ten sponsors, this is a great time-saver. 

SB201, if passed, would ban gay conversion therapy for those under age 18 in Nevada. As we believe gay conversion therapy - especially when used on minors - is an abusive act attempting to fix something that isn’t broken, we’re pleased about SB201.

SJR3, being heard on Tuesday, amends the Nevada Constitution to safeguard against voter intimidation or voter suppression. It doesn’t alter NRS, but brings the Nevada Constitution into concordance with it. Every Nevadan deserves to vote without harassment, intimidation, or major inconvenience.

AB259 is a great bill - it allows courts to vacate certain marijuana-related convictions from after January 1, 2017, when recreational marijuana usage became technically legal in Nevada. This is a vital step for avoiding ex post facto punishment.

AB138 is simple: It legalizes the collection of rooftop rainwater for domestic use or watering animals. Wait, that wasn’t legal? Nope! But if AB138 passes, it will be. The government will no longer be able to tell us not to collect rain from our rooftops.

SJR11* “proposes to amend the Nevada Constitution by adding a new section to Article 1 to preserve the right to hunt, trap and fish for residents of this State.” While I’m not a hunter myself, other Nevadans have the right to hunt, trap, and fish, as long as they don’t violate anyone else’s property (or other) rights while doing so. If you wish to share your opinion on this amendment, make sure to include the asterisk when typing in the bill number.

In Nevada today, you have to be 21 or older to carry a concealed firearm. AB118 carves out an exception, “authoriz[ing] a person who is at least 18 years of age but less than 21 years of age to be eligible for a permit to carry a concealed firearm” if they’re a member of the Armed Forces, the National Guard, or an honorably-discharged veteran of either group. It’s a good, simple expansion of Second Amendment rights.

SB159 bans sale of dextromethorphan to minors. Like any drug prohibition, it inconveniences legitimate users and creates a black market which is less safe for those affected by the ban.

We testified in favor of…

SB236, a pro-marijuana measure dramatically increasing the areas for recreational use of marijuana. At present, marijuana can only be used recreationally inside a person’s home; this bill, sponsored by Tick Segerblom, would allow businesses to get permits to hold pot festivals - or have permanent lounges, cafes, and any business you can think of with a pot license. Strong support!

AB229, a measure correcting the NRS’s current heteronormative marriage language to be entirely gender-neutral. The wording on this one is great, too: “two persons, regardless of gender” rather than “one man and one woman.” Future-proofing!

AB181, a measure restoring voting rights to certain felons who have served their sentences or been discharged honorably from probation or parole. We believe that permanent disenfranchisement is an injustice, and that those who have paid their debt to society deserve a second chance.

SB222, a bill reducing the power of noncompete agreements in Nevada. Noncompete agreements violate the fundamental right to work for or hire whom you choose, so any reduction in their force is a good thing.

AB162, a measure putting permanent resident cards on par with drivers’ licenses for the purposes of personal identification. It’s a card from the State that has your face and name on it. Why wouldn’t they accept it the same way they would a driver’s license?

AB205, legalizing alkaline hydrolysis, a water-based form of cremation. This green technology is used in at least thirteen other states, and we see no reason why it should be illegal here. A person’s body is theirs to do with as they please, including after death.

We opposed…

AB161, Edgar Flores’s bill requiring leases on single-family rental residences to be notarized. Several property managers also submitted objection letters.

IP1, the initiative petition introducing automatic voter registration at the DMV. While we ordinarily support increases in voting accessibility, our concern here is that a large influx of voters into the “unregistered” category will decrease third-party percentages enough that they risk losing ballot access. Unfortunately, Initiative Petitions can’t be amended, but we have another fiendish plan. Wait and see!

We testified neutrally on AB193, a bill to fluoridate Washoe County’s water by statute. While we believe strongly in the science supporting fluoridation, we would prefer the Truckee Meadows Water Authority’s ratepayers to vote in favor of fluoridation themselves.

That’s it for this week! Unfortunately, I’ll be out of town next week, but I’ll be writing and sending official statements to the sponsors regarding all the upcoming bills I mentioned. 

Until next time,

Wendy Stolyarov
Legislative Director
Libertarian Party of Nevada