Naming the square dance the official state dance, and Pincon Punch the official state drink are two of the unique bills before Nevada lawmakers this year.
Another would ban the Bishop Gorman High School football team, Nevada’s prep sports powerhouse, from participating in future high school football playoffs.
And if you own a bar and like dogs, a bill by Sen. James Settelmeyer, R-Minden, would allow you to bring your dog into the bar while you enjoy a beer.
These are just a few of the hundreds of bill-draft requests for the 2015 Nevada Legislature that begins on Feb. 2.
These so-called novelty bills must get their legal issues correct before the complete bill draft request is published and considered by both the state Assembly and Senate.
Some of these bills may be mocked as not important by lawmakers, but all have certain constituents lobbying for their passage. Supporters argue they all have an economic benefit.
So here is a look at a couple of so-called novelty bills:
Picon Punch, Nevada’s official cocktail?
The bill to make Picon Punch, a quintessential Basque concoction, is sponsored Assemblyman David Bobzien, D-Reno. And is a second attempt to get law makers to approve the cocktail as the state drink in Nevada. In 2013, a measure by former Assemblyman William Horne failed to pass.
Picon Punch is a drink that is closely associated with Basques in Northern Nevada. It’s a cocktail that includes grenadine, club soda, some brandy, and Amer Picon, a bittersweet aperitif made in France with herbs and a peel of orange.
Bishop Gorman Ban
Assemblyman Harvey Munford, D-North Las Vegas, requested a bill draft banning the Bishop Gorman football program because he believes the Catholic school has an unfair advantage over the public schools statewide.
Bishop Gorman recently won its sixth consecutive state title, defeating Reed High School of Sparks 70-28. Munford has said that Gorman’s ability to grant scholarships to athletes across Southern Nevada is unfair, because public schools are usually confined to athletes that live within that school’s boundaries.
For more information on bill-draft requests visit the Nevada Legislature’s website.
John L. Smith, columnist, Las Vegas Review-Journal
Dave Damore, political science professor, UNLV
State Sen. Richard “Tick” Segerblom, D-Las Vegas
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