Farm Bureau Encourages Nevadans To Vote No On Question 3
The Nevada Farm Bureau is a grassroots organization that advocates for the state’s agricultural community and champions public policy positions developed by its farmer/rancher membership. The Nevada Farm Bureau strongly opposes ballot question 3 because it is likely to raise prices, increase risk and does not belong in state constitution. As a result, we encourage our members, and all Nevadans, to vote no on the so-called “Energy Choice Initiative” this fall.
Energy Choice does not belong in the constitution. In principle, the constitution was not intended, and should not be used, as a regulatory tool. On a practical level, achieving energy deregulation via constitutional amendment (which has never been attempted in any other state) would also lock Nevada into an unproven model for an extended period of time. Because it would be in the constitution, any revisions to the amendment would have to gain ballot-approval twice and take a minimum of four to six years to implement. That’s a risk we cannot afford to take.
Perhaps most importantly, question 3 was not written with rural Nevadans in mind. Many of us are served by cooperatives and member-owned utilities that started because the sparsely populated areas we call home were deemed unprofitable by investor-owned utilities. We think it is unlikely that profit-driven utilities will be able to provide affordable rates to our areas if Question 3 passes. Furthermore, decisions currently made in rural Nevada will be made in Carson City, California, and in the boardrooms of corporations, many of which will be out-of- state. The Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) said as much in their findings after spending 10 days talking to representatives on both sides of the issue and industry experts. The PUCN concluded that Question 3 will negatively impact rural Nevadans and the agricultural community and the Nevada Farm Bureau agrees.
As farmers and ranchers, we make important choices on a daily basis that affect our ability to run successful operations and support our families. Question 3 is a choice we simply cannot afford to make. For that reason, and many others, I hope you’ll join the Nevada Farm Bureau by voting no on 3.
Elko County Farm Bureau President