The Vegas Valley is a rapidly-growing area which attracts many types of people. While these new residents vary dramatically in age, class and ethnicities, one thing is universal. People need money to survive in the city and most store that money in a financial institution, such as a bank or credit union. Before moving to Nevada, individuals should check to see if their financial institution has branches in the area.
In Business Las Vegas ranked Clark County banks according to their deposits for the Book of Business Lists 2007. Washington Mutual ranked with the most deposits. However, with 25 branches in Clark County as of June 30, 2007, they are not the most accessible bank. Bank of America, number two in deposits, is listed with 52 branches. Wells Fargo ranks third on the list. In January 2008, they announced the opening of their 80th bank branch in the area. Two state banks, Nevada State Bank and Bank of Nevada, round out the top five largest banks in Nevada.
Other federal banks found in Nevada include U.S. Bank, Citibank West, World Savings Bank and Colonial Bank. Other popular state banks include Silver State Bank, Bank of the West and Community Bank of Nevada.
Clark County is also home to numerous credit unions. Credit unions differ from banks in that they are owned by the members holding accounts, versus traditional owners. Typically, members with savings accounts at credit unions are paid higher dividends on their shares than those at banks. Credit unions in the United States also traditionally give lower interest rates on loans than banks. While most credit unions have restrictions on who can join the credit union, most are available to the majority of Nevada residents.
Credit Unions Online, a free online resource listing credit unions by each state, lists a dozen available credit unions new residents may want to consider as an alternative to traditional banks. These credit unions include Clark County Credit Union, Nevada Federal Credit Union and Silver State Schools Credit Union.
The Las Vegas Sun and the Las Vegas Review-Journal, which are delivered together each day under a joint operating agreement, are Nevada's largest newspapers, with circulations of 175,000 daily and 200,000 Sunday.
The Sun's news and editorial pages, as well as the Sun's online department, are run completely independently of the Review-Journal. The Sun’s news staff competes with the R-J news staff. The two papers have very different editorial philosophies. The Sun is locally owned by the Greenspun family of Las Vegas and has been a separate voice in the community since 1950. The Sun’s Web site contains the Sun-produced news and information from the daily edition, as well as breaking news blogs, video and audio clips, archives, special in-depth stories and industry-leading interactive features and multimedia content.
Residents living in the greater Las Vegas metropolitan area, including Henderson, Boulder City and North Las Vegas, may get home delivery of the Sun and the Review-Journal for $4 per week. Online sign-up specials are available.
The Greenspun Media Group also publishes eight free weekly newspapers, the Home News Community Newspapers of Nevada, which serve more than 200,000 households in the Las Vegas Valley.
The weekly newspapers are:
- Summerlin Home News (two separate issues, one that serves the north and east communities of Summerlin and one that serves the south and west communities of Summerlin) and the West Valley Home News (serving the Lakes and Spring Valley communities)
- Three Henderson editions: the Henderson Home News (serving East Henderson, Mission Hills and Lake Las Vegas), Green Valley Home News (serving Green Valley and Whitney Ranch) and South Valley Home News (serving Green Valley Ranch, MacDonald Ranch, Anthem and Seven Hills)
- Silverado Home News (serving Silverado, Enterprise and Paradise)
- Boulder City News (serving Boulder City)
For delivery information, call 990-8999 or e-mail [email protected].
Registering to vote
To be eligible to register to vote, individuals must be U.S. citizens, be at least 18-years-old by the next Election Day, have continuously lived in Clark County for more than 30 days and in their individual precinct for more than 10 days without claiming another state as a legal residence and have no felony convictions declaring it unlawful to vote.
Individuals can register to vote in person at any city clerk's office, DMV, Nevada State Welfare Agency or WIC office. In-person registration is also available at the Clark County Election Center Offices at 965 Trade Drive in North Las Vegas or 500 South Grand Central Parkway in Las Vegas.
Mail-in voter registration is also an option. Applications for voter registration may be picked up at public libraries, political party offices, the Chambers of Commerce and many utility companies. Individuals can request an application be sent to them by filling out a form or calling 455-VOTE.
Applications to register or update your voter registration form are due by the fifth Saturday before Election day. After this date, individuals wishing to register can do so in the election department's office. This in-office registration form ends the third Tuesday before Election Day. For the 2008 presidential primaries, the last day to register to vote is July 12, 2008. The in-office registration period will run July 13 through 22.
General home repair/maintenance (plumbers, electricians, pest control, appliance maintenance)
For home improvement needs, many nationally recognized stores have branches in Southern Nevada, including Lowes and Home Depot. These do-it-yourself stores provide building materials for indoor and outdoor projects around the home. Each year, CitySearch compiles "best of" lists for plumbers, carpet cleaners, pool cleaners and shoe repair, among others, as chosen by user votes. Referral Web sites such as SuperPages and Kudzu also list reviews and rankings of various service providers.
Private, non-profit corporation Clark County Legal Services provides free legal services to eligible residents. Eligibility is based off a person's household income to number of residents in household ratio. Consumer fraud claims, special education issues, restoration of Social Security benefits and neglected children cases are all issues tackled by CCLS. The organization also offers free classes to dispense legal information regarding small claims, family law, guardianship and bankruptcy issues.
For a list of free classes, eligibility guidelines and other information, interested individuals can call (702) 386-1070, visit the organization's Web site or travel to CCLS' office, 800 S. Eighth Street.
The Clark County Family Court Self Help Center provides assistance for individuals representing themselves in Clark County Family Court. Although the center cannot dispense legal advice, they are a valuable resource for instructing people on court paperwork and procedures. "Ask a Lawyer" is a program hosted by the center every Thursday 2 to 5 p.m. which offers free, 15-minute consultations with lawyers specializing in family law. Registration for the event begins at noon each Thursday and is on a first come, first served basis for the first 30 people to sign up.
The Self-Help Center is located at 601 N. Pecos in the Family Court building. Excluding holidays, the center is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Fridays. The Self-Help Center can be reached at (702) 455-1500.
The American Bar Association maintains a consumer's guide to legal help in Nevada. Individuals can obtain lawyer referrals, search for free legal help, check the licensing of a lawyer and consult a list of self-help resources on their website.
In Nevada, sales tax varies by county. At 7.75 percent, Clark County's sales tax is currently the highest in the state. In neighboring counties Nye and Lincoln, sales tax is 6.75 percent.
Nevada is one of a handful of states that does not impose a corporate or personal income tax. Therefore, residents are not required to file.
Property taxes are handled through each individual Nevada county. In Clark County, the county assessor's office values all property subject to taxation. Properties are assessed at 35 percent of their current appraised value. The county treasurer's office bills and collects the taxes on all properties valued by the assessor's office. The Clark County Assessor's Office can be reached through their Web site, and the Clark County Treasuer's Office can be reached through their Web site.
Other information on Nevada taxes, including annual reports, a full Web site directory of county assessors and treasurers offices and the taxpayer bill of rights, visit the Nevada Taxation Homepage.