Anyone who has spent much time in Nevada knows that we’re blessed with some of the most beautiful places in the world, from Red Rock Canyon in the south, to Lake Tahoe in the north to the Ruby Mountains in the east. What some may not be aware of is the fragile balance that holds it together. Nevada is one of the most bio-diverse states in the nation, but it’s also the driest. Many of the laws that govern how we protect the places that we love are dealt with at the Nevada Legislature. Do the trails at Valley of Fire State Park need repair? How do we draw new solar jobs to Las Vegas? How do we ensure angler access to the Walker River? These questions are decided in Carson City.
The 77th session of the Nevada Legislature has now convened. For the third session in a row, the Nevada Conservation League will be fighting for the passage of the Conservation Priorities for Nevada, a collection of four priority pieces of legislation, all critical in advancing the cause of conservation in our state. You can read about them here. In addition, we’ll be working on a number of different issues such as wildlife habitat, water quality and quantity and recycling.
This will be my fourth session leading the lobbying efforts of the environmental community.The Nevada Legislature only meets for 120 days every other year, so each legislative session is a sprint from the start to the finish. We have 19 groups that are members of our coalition and it’s my responsibility to represent their views to the 63 legislators that will be in Carson City until June 4th.
Our state has grown rapidly in the last 20 years, but we are still a small state when it comes to accessibility. Our legislators are “citizen legislators,” they have jobs at home just like everyone else. There’s a lot of cynicism in politics today, but I’m here to tell you that most Nevada legislators take very seriously the thoughts and opinions of their constituents. This is why we need your help. We need lawmakers in Carson City to know that their constituents care about conservation issues. You can help us out by staying on top of the issues and corresponding frequently with your representatives. Make sure to subscribe to our e-mails and follow us on Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date.
Hopefully I’ll see you in Carson City at our Conservation Lobby Day!