Granted that the questions aren’t in Farm Bureau’s policy book in regard to the Nevada Legislature operating in their own virtual world and preventing anyone but Legislators, staff and selected media to be in the Legislative Building…but, working to engage in the Legislative process is a very limited opportunity for everyone. Even legislators aren’t allowed to meet in person, beyond floor sessions, participating in committee meetings from their offices (or wherever they might be logging in from) by Zoom connections.
Being part of the process has continued to be the 2-minute opportunity that has become a hallmark of what the majority party has allowed for. Most frequently that is through a phone call and possible chance to express those 2-minutes of thoughts when you are called on in favor, opposition or in neutral during bill hearings. A frequently occurring instance is also that when properly registered (24-hours in advance of a scheduled hearing) you might not be given the actual correct phone call to call in on to wait in the que for your time to speak…(several advocates – even those we don’t agree with – have registered complaints about having the wrong phone number sent to them for calling in).
Never-the-less, AB 110 came before the Assembly Committee on Legislative Operations, Tuesday afternoon, February 16th. The proposed legislation addresses the issue of getting lobbyists to register, pay their fees for the registration and fall under the requirements of filing their required monthly reports. Under the current law, the definition for someone who is considered a “lobbyist” includes being in the Legislative Building. Since the majority party has decided to exclude people from being in the Legislative Building, they haven’t been able to have anyone “register” to be a lobbyist.
Looking down the road, given the likelihood that this will be enacted into law, the doors to the Nevada Legislature could continue to be conveniently closed (for “safety” we might want to believe), plus everyone who might be in touch with legislators in the future, whether they are in the building or not could be required to register for making those contacts… Welcome again to our “New World!”