Las Vegas Sun

December 20, 2014

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Gibbons says he won’t sign domestic partners bill

Governor also says he’s concerned with the slow pace of the legislative session

CARSON CITY – Gov. Jim Gibbons told reporters today he won’t sign Senate Bill 283 if it passes. The bill would give domestic partners the same legal rights as spouses, such as community property, debts to a third party, financial support after dissolution of a partnership and the rights to ownership of property.

The bill was approved by the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee last Wednesday and should appear on the floor of the Senate this week.

Gibbons also expressed concern at the pace of the 2009 Legislature, noting he has only signed four bills and lawmakers have only 48 days left to complete their work.

“I hope they (the lawmakers) sense the urgency of the public,” said Gibbons, noting the session, limited by the state constitution at 120 days, is costing taxpayers $125,000 a day.

Gibbons said he thinks legislators will wait until the end of the session to pass a tax plan, not giving “the public an opportunity to express concerns.” The public won’t have a chance to understand what taxes will be approved, he said.

If the Legislature doesn’t approve a budget by the end of the regular session and a special session is needed, he said he will continue to oppose any tax increases and not include a tax hike on the agenda for a special session.

During special legislative sessions, lawmakers are restricted to considering only items approved by the governor.

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