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January 16, 2018

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Nevada Wonk

Gov. Brian Sandoval’s budget means job, service cuts for Clark County


AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Gov. Brian Sandoval acknowledges the applause of lawmakers and guests after entering the Nevada Assembly chambers to deliver his first State of the State speech before a joint session of the Nevada Legislature in Carson City on Monday, Jan. 24, 2011.

Budget cuts

KSNV coverage of Gov. Brian Sandoval's proposed state budget, Jan. 25, 2011.

Sun Coverage

If the state Legislature adopts the budget Gov. Brian Sandoval proposed, Clark County would lose $150 million in tax revenue over the next two years and inherit $100 million worth of funding responsibilities.

Jobs would be lost, services would be cut and buildings would be shuttered, county officials said.

Preliminary analysis of the proposed cuts paints a scary picture, according to Clark County administrators:

* More than $58 million a year from county property tax revenue would be permanently shifted to the state. The money previously paid for parks and recreational facilities (which created hundreds of construction jobs), and services to abused and neglected children, homeless people and the medically needy.

* An additional $32.5 million, also derived from property tax revenue, would be shifted to the state over the biennium.

* Medicaid reimbursements for University Medical Center would be cuts by 5 percent, shifting more than $2 million in annual costs to the county. That comes on top of the more than $20 million the governor and Legislature already slashed from the public hospital's budget. Maternity, neonatal intensive care and psychiatric care would be hit hardest.

* Pre-sentence investigations would be transferred to district courts from the state Parole and Probation Division at a cost of more than $5 million a year. The change would result in 77 layoffs of state employees, county officials said.

* Elder protective services would be shifted from the state to the county, at a cost of $2 million over the next two years.

* The Community Triage Center, which provides crisis intervention, mental health and substance abuse assessment, drug and alcohol detoxification and homeless outreach (diverting many people from jail or emergency rooms), would likely close. The center is funded through a partnership between the state, county and local hospitals, and the funding sweep would cause that partnership to dissolve.

* Clark County would be responsible for paying for a larger portion of costs for nursing home services for low-income seniors and disabled people. County officials estimate a $24 million bill over two years.

* The county would lose 14 percent of its child welfare budget if funding is converted into a block grant as proposed by the governor. Sandoval also wants to eliminate TANF emergency assistance funding for counties - a $1.6 million, two-year hit statewide.

* Funding for child support enforcement staff in the District Attorney's Office would be eliminated, costing that county between $1.4 million and $2 million over the biennium and resulting in 14 layoffs.

* The Spring Mountain Youth Camp, which rehabilitates troubled youth, could close.

* The Community Corrections block grant would be eliminated, resulting in 11 layoffs of staff who supervise troubled youth to prevent them from being institutionalized.

* Clark County would lose $4.3 million over the next two years to pay for room and board for young people in treatment facilities.

* Funding for the treatment and rehabilitation of juvenile sex offenders would be eliminated.

* The responsibility of providing parole services to young offenders would be shifted from the state to the county, at an estimated $11 million cost over the biennium.

* State funding for Mental Health Court would be eliminated.

* Costs for developmental services for disabled children would be shifted to the county, costing Clark County $6.5 million over two years.

* Clark County would be responsible for paying for tuberculosis and sexually transmitted disease programs. Medical care related to tuberculosis would likely cost the county $1.2 million over the biennium. Costs for care of people with sexually transmitted diseases is estimated at $14,000.

* Funding for consumer health protection and emergency medical services would be shifted from the state to the county.

“It’s very unsettling to see how much the governor’s proposed budget would rely on the citizens of Clark County to solve the state’s deficit,” Commissioner Mary Beth Scow said.

"The services that local government created should be the local governments’ responsibility and those services created by the state should be the state’s responsibility,” Commissioner Tom Collins said. “I would suggest the governor more seriously consider what is the state’s real responsibility.”

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