Las Vegas Sun

April 23, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Focus on budgets, not gaming taxes

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Gaye Deen’s letter in Sunday’s Sun, “Gaming can afford to pay more,” misses the mark.

Steve Wynn and Sheldon Adelson’s personal contributions are just that: personal.

Most of their recent profits are from their international operations and not from here on the Strip.

Has anyone noticed the Echelon or Fontainebleau skeletons on Las Vegas Boulevard or Mr. Adelson’s wrap covering an unfinished tower at the Palazzo?

Let’s not kill gaming, the golden goose that built this city.

Let’s instead look at our elected leaders who are looking for higher taxes while the Clark County School District donates $5 million in taxpayer money to the Smith Center and the RTC spends $50 million more than necessary for local bus service.

Fiscal responsibility needs to focus first on a budget and spending before the well goes dry.

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Previous Discussion: 9 comments so far…

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  1. I think we'd all be happier if, instead of bombing us with their propoganda, Adelson used his money to finish that tower at Palazzo and Wynn satisfied his "edifice complex" in Massachusetts or Pennsylvania.

  2. People don't understand budgets and if they do, they don't want to talk about them. Too difficult, too vexing, too non-productive. A simple message like "make the rich pay more" is easy to say and understand. People like easy and simple. Not complicated and thought provoking.

    10 of the MOST wealthy counties in the USA voted for President Obama. Not Romney. Think these voters worry about budgets? Of course not. Raise their taxes. Sky high if necessary. Then maybe they will.

    CarmineD

  3. The writer would have us believe that budgeting is ONLY about spending. Budgeting is about INCOME too! There are three ways to make a budget. One is to fix the income and allocate those resources to spending. Another is to determine spending needs first and then find sufficient income to meet those needs. The third way and the one requiring the most intelligence is a compromise of the first two.

  4. "The writer would have us believe that budgeting is ONLY about spending. " @Jim Weber

    Budgeting is about spending. Budgeting is another word for a spending plan. Trust me on this one, I was a Federal budgeteer for awhile in my career.

    Budgeting is not about how much you earn and take in. It's about how much you spend. You can't "burn" more than you "earn." If you do, consistently, you have to borrow. When you borrow, you have to pay back with interest. When you pay interest, it preempts spending current revenue for more productive uses. There is a proper term for ignoring all these facts. It's called Europe.

    CarmineD

  5. CarmineD -

    If "budgeting is not about how much you earn and take in. It's about how much you spend" what are the meanings of the terms "balanced budget" and "budget deficit (or surplus)"?

  6. "what are the meanings of the terms "balanced budget" and "budget deficit (or surplus)"? @Jim Weber

    Budgets are spending plans/estimates. They are the best estimates before the spending facts happen. You have to constantly adjust the plans/estimates to actual disbursements throughout the fiscal year for Federal budgeting. If you don't, the spending plans [budgets if you will] are absolutely worthless and meaningless.

    I advocate for zero based budgeting. In other words, each year the budget categories get set back to zero and the plans have to "justify" each amount budgeted. Sadly, Federal budgeting doesn't work that way. Since 1974, and really before, the Federal budgets have always been based on the previous years' budgets with growth/inflation factors added for the current year and the next 5 years. This does 2 things to Federal budgets. It makes them useless and grow to infinity. These two factors make budgeting [spending plans if you will] completely a joke with no value in the Federal government.

    At least up until now. If we go over the cliff, we'll get a free ride to Europe. If we take care of government budget business, we'll make Federal budgets what they were meant to be. I'm not optimistic for the latter, but hope springs eternal.

    CarmineD

  7. Focus on the budget: here's a short way around doing the math: Nevada has more than 25,000 illegal students in K-12 costing taxpayers about $12,000 each EVERY YEAR--plus the costs of anchor baby students--born here illegally. We do NOT have a revenue problem, we have a priority problem. Our economy cannot sustain exponential growth to support so many illegals and other people draining our programs--schools, welfare, housing, medical care. Expel the illegals--go after employers so the families leave. More than 12% of employees in Nevada are illegals. (search on LVSun coverage.) Enforce OUR LAWS and save our culture. ALLOW our economy to revive.

  8. K-12 is a waste. Last in graduates. Last in reading, writing, arithmetic. But up there in funding, right in the middle. Even Arizona spends LESS: about $1,000 per student per year. In other words, CCSD is wasting $100,000,000 a year on inefficiency.

  9. Mr. Lyons flatters me by borrowing my phraseology. Thank you. Now how about considering my point that CUTTING employee COMPENSATION down to reasonable levels would free up millions of government revenue. Private sectors WORKERS have taken a 10% hit in household incomes. Many many more are unemployed for extended time frames. WHEN will government employees pay similar sacrifices? Our economy has changed and will not support the inflated salaries that so many "earn." And even with a 10% across the board hit to the salary charts, the current employee comp stays about the same--as they creep up the salary step ladder with longevity raises.