Governor Sandoval Signs Smoking Bill

June 28, 2011

Assembly Bill 571 was signed into law by Governor Sandoval (R) Nv. allowing stand alone bars with restaurants smoking where no one under the age of 21 are permitted.  With the signing of this bill citizens are up in arms about it since the no smoking ban was voted on by the people back in 2006 and passed with 72% of the citizens in favor of the ban.

As I talk to people across the State they could not understand how a bill voted on by the people could be overturned by the Nevada Legislature just 5 years after the bill was passed without going to the public once again for a vote.  Many of these individuals stated they will not vote for Mr. Sandoval in the next election because of this overturning of the “Nevada Clean Indoor Air Act”.  What they don’t understand is the bill was not replaced and thrown out but changed to offer the smoking in stand alone bars, saloons, or taverns where minors are not allow as stated above.

The patrons of  restaurants in Nevada can still go to eat without fear of someone lighting up during their meal.  The law is still intact for many of the areas in the original bill.  The schools, restaurants, office buildings, malls, child care facilities, movie theaters, video arcades alone with a host of other settings will remain smoke free. The only change to the law pertains to the stand alone bars with restaurants, again as stated above.

I have not talked with anyone who goes into a bar without the understanding there will be drinking and smoking within the establishment.  It is what is expected when in a drinking establishment just as gambling is expected in a gaming establishment.  Hopefully those upset with the new section added to the existing law will realize it did not eradicate the law with one swoop of the pen at the Governors Mansion. Read the bill here.

Texting While Driving, Is That A Good Thing?

June 7, 2011

In Nevada the House Assembly and Senate both passed SB 140 which would ban texting while driving. My4News website put out a poll asking if Governor Sandoval should sign the bill into law.  Amazingly 21.9% of those taking the poll stated “NO” while the overwhelming majority, 78.1% voted “YES” to the question. So I have to ask, texting while driving, is that a good thing?

You have to wonder after seeing the statistics on accidents caused by texting while driving what the individuals who voted NO are thinking.  According to government data 6% of all accidents are caused by cell phone distractions which lead to injuries and death.

With close to 450 thousand injuries each year and 995 deaths caused by cell phone texting you would hope more individuals would be concerned for their safety? Or do they think “I never thought this could happen to me” as victims of crime seem to always say in their interviews with investigators after the fact.

These are alarming statistics when you look at the total picture.  Families are crushed by loss of loved ones, which no monetary figure could replace.  If texting accident victims are lucky enough to sustain injuries the financial lose could be huge along with the mental duress. Maybe the vehicle damaged is not too severe and can be repaired, however now a rental vehicle may be needed while the damaged vehicle is being repaired or rely on others to one to where they need to be.

Worst case scenario is the insurance company decides to total the vehicle, costing the owner much more unneeded stress in an already stressful situation. Along with all that has occurred now factor in the property damage costing billions of dollars a year that could be easily eliminated by having laws such as this on the books in every state.

The DMV website for Nevada has a page called “How to drive distraction free” giving individuals several options on what to do to remain alert and responsive to avoid accidents and injury.  One main theme discussed is remaining attentive and not day dreaming or becoming distracted with particular items such as adjusting the radio, looking for CD’s and adjusting the mirrors.  These issues take your focus off the road and are a recipe for disaster.

Let’s hope the Governor puts ink to paper and passes this law which will help to save lives and physical damages. Our tendencies are not to focus on the positive aspects of the law but the negative which some would say can be an infringement on our personal freedoms given to us by our Constitution, Bill or Rights and the Declaration of Independence.  However a State has the right to pass laws that regulates a privilege such as driving a motor vehicle.

Las Vegas Housing Market Is Not Where It Should Be!

June 6, 2011

In Las Vegas the housing market is not where it should be according to those home owners upside down after the crash of 07.  Recently housing prices have been listing around 74 dollars a square foot up to 95 dollars a square foot on resales.  Before the crash the prices were hovering around 118 dollars a square foot for most homes unless in the newer gated communities.

The Greater Las Vegas Realtor Association (MLS) currently have close to 23,000 resale homes listed of which over 11,000 have not had an offer on them.  Many of the homes that are selling in this market are being bought up by investors once again with CASH.  With cash these investors can pick up homes that sold for 500 thousand during the peak of the Las Vegas housing market for close to 200 thousand dollars right now.

Our belief is the market will start to pick up within the next 4 to 6 months with small increasing in equity for a few years until our economy straightens out.  We have seen houses listed for 265 thousand 8 months ago with no offers on them.  So the owners drop the price three or four times still having no interest in the property. So the owners ends up dropping the price below 200 thousand because no one is offering what they feel their house is worth.

The market is still below where it should be, however there is light at the end of the tunnel for those who can hang on. Once we get businesses open and expanding again our housing market will return to bring stability back to the area.  Home prices won’t skyrocket as in the past with over inflated pricing but they will start to increase modestly.