The halls of the Nevada Legislature were relatively silent with about 90 minutes remaining Monday night in the 81st legislative session.
Lobbyists and members of the public had mostly left. All that remained was the clock striking midnight.
There would be no late drama as multiple big-ticket proposals that were expected to be heard until the buzzer each passed earlier in the evening with little pushback.
Bills approved on the final day of the session will enhance voter access, help fund education, and allow marijuana consumption lounges.
The most significant action was the Senate and Assembly approving a proposal for an additional tax on the mining industry that will bring the state more than $20 million in new revenue. The proposal also calls for mining taxes currently sent to the state general fund to instead be sent specifically toward education. In 2019, that tax was about $120 million.
The quiet was broken by the gavel around midnight, and the cheers from lawmakers who, after 120 days in Carson City, could go home.
Here’s a look at the last day:
Mail-in ballot approved
Assembly Bill 321, which would automatically send mail-in ballots to active, registered voters in Nevada, passed through the Senate on a 12-9 party-line vote.
The bill locks in many of the changes put into place during a 2020 special session to make voting more accessible during the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s been generally opposed by Republicans, who in statehouses nationwide are mostly voting for measures designed to limit voting access — especially in communities of color.
Fiscal notes released in May from the secretary of state’s office claimed the bill would create $5.7 million more in cost each fiscal year, though Democratic leadership has disagreed with that price tag.
Assembly Speaker Jason Frierson, D-Las Vegas, said that the inability