Plaintiffs Ask Court to Invalidate the Energy Choice Initiative
Las Vegas, NV, October 7, 2016– Thursday, several Nevada plaintiffs filed a lawsuit in Carson City to challenge the legality of Q3 on the Nevada ballot.
Attorney Bradley Schrager of Wolf Rifkin Shapiro in Las Vegas remarked: “We respect the rights of Nevadans to engage in the ballot initiative process, but it needs to be done lawfully. There are serious legal issues raised by the form in which Question 3 is presented to the voters.”
The plaintiffs are challenging Question 3 because it “binds the hands” of future legislators by commanding them to enact future legislation during the 2019, 2021, or 2023 Nevada Legislatures. The Initiative states: “Not later than July 1, 2023, the Legislature shall provide by law for provisions consistent with this Act to establish an open, competitive retail electric energy market …” This is unlawful, as no Legislature—especially Legislatures that have not even been elected yet—can be bound to act or vote in certain ways on particular legislation that itself has not been crafted yet.
“The Proponents of Q3 cannot commandeer the prerogatives of future Legislatures any more than the 2017 Legislature can tell the 2021 Legislature what to do,” Schrager said. “Each Legislature is constitutionally entitled to deliberate for itself on all matters that may come before it—that’s what legislatures are elected to do, and that’s what our democratic system demands.”
Plaintiff Gail Tuzzolo said: “This should not be part of our state constitution. If proponents want to enact legislation they should do so through the legislature and not with a misleading and flawed initiative. We urge the court to act quickly to correct these problems.”
CONTACT: Dan Hart, Dan[at]dhart.net (702) 219-5000