Las Vegas Sun

May 27, 2015

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Governor OKs $19 billion to run state, restores employee pay

Brian Sandoval

Brian Sandoval

CARSON CITY — Governor Brian Sandoval has approved bills to spend $19 billion in the next two years to run state government, conduct an audit on the cost of the death penalty and restore pay to state workers.

They are among 30 bills Sandoval signed Monday.

Assembly Bill 444 permits a legislative audit of the costs of the death penalty including trial, appeals and confinement. Supporters see the review as a step toward abolishing capital punishment in Nevada.

Sandoval two years ago vetoed a similar bill, but he said Tuesday he felt this would be an objective study.

He also signed a bill reversing a 2.5 percent pay cut on state workers that was imposed in 2009. But workers will still have to take six days of unpaid leave every year.

Also approved by the governor was a $688 a month subsidy to help state workers pay their health insurance costs next fiscal year.

Under another bill signed Monday, North Las Vegas, struggling with its finances, could be able to transfer money from its water and sewer accounts to restore police and fire services, operation of libraries, parks and other recreational services. The money could also be used to settle legal claims against the city.

Also, a bill to permit the state Division of Employment Security to issue bonds to pay off an estimated $540 million debt to the federal government was signed by Sandoval Monday. The decision to issue the bonds must be approved by the state Board of Finance.

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