Election 2024

Support Us

Tracking Nevada’s 2024 ballot measures: From A’s to abortion rights

The first deadline to gather enough signatures is June 26, and some of the proposals are in legal jeopardy.
Eric Neugeboren
Eric Neugeboren
Election 2024
SHARE

Enshrining abortion rights in the state Constitution.

Requiring ID to vote.

Allowing teachers to strike.

These policies are among the 10 potential ballot questions that may end up before Nevada voters this year or in 2026, many of which are political hot-button issues that, if passed, could have major effects on Nevada’s government and people.

But outside of the five questions guaranteed to appear on the 2024 ballot, at least six groups are seeking signatures to qualify petitions to change Nevada law or amend the state Constitution either by posing questions to voters in November, or by compelling the Legislature to act on the matter next year (or send it to the 2026 ballot).

Legal challenges have been filed against several of the initiatives, with some still pending as the signature-gathering deadline of June 26 ticks closer for petitions seeking a place on the 2024 ballot.

Here is the latest information on the ballot initiatives’ legal statuses, signature-gathering efforts and financial situations.

This page will be updated as circumstances change.

Click below to go to a specific ballot initiative. And click here to scroll down to proposed measures that have been disqualified, or here to view questions that are guaranteed to appear on the November ballot.

Abortion rights

Voter ID

Allowing teachers to strike

Payday loans

Attorney Fees

A potential ballot question can fall into three categories: constitutional amendment, initiative petition or referendum.

Constitutional amendments


Abortion rights

What it would do:

Nevadans for Reproductive Freedom, a PAC focused on enshrining abortion rights in the state Constitution, has filed two separate petitions. Abortion is already legal in Nevada through 24 weeks into a pregnancy because of a 1990 referendum that can only be changed by a vote of the people.

  • Reproductive freedom petition: The first petition would enshrine a “fundamental right to reproductive freedom” in the Nevada Constitution, which would guarantee the right to make decisions related to abortions and procedures such as vasectomies, infertility care and prenatal care. The language mirrors a bill that passed the Legislature last year and would need to pass again in 2025 before reaching voters in 2026.
  • Abortion rights petition: The second, narrower petition would enshrine a “fundamental right to abortion” until fetal viability (generally considered about 23 or 24 weeks into a pregnancy) or when needed to protect the life or health of the pregnant patient.

Legal status:

  • Reproductive freedom petition: A Carson City judge struck down the first petition that focused on reproductive freedom in November, but the Nevada Supreme Court overturned that decision in April, dismissing arguments that the petition was too broad.
  • Abortion rights petition: The same Carson City judge approved the narrower petition in January, and that ruling is being appealed in the state Supreme Court. The appeal is unlikely to succeed because the high court already approved the broader petition.

Signature-gathering status:

Nevadans for Reproductive Freedom is collecting signatures on the more narrowly tailored abortion rights petition because of the legal hurdles that the first petition faced.

The group has collected more than 190,000 signatures as of May 10, but declined to provide the breakdown by congressional district.

Financial status:

Nevadans for Reproductive Freedom raised $1.4 million in the first three months of 2024. The haul included donations from left-leaning “dark money” nonprofits that do not have to disclose their donors, including $500,000 from the Nevada Alliance and $500,000 from the Sixteen Thirty Fund, which spent nearly $800 million on progressive causes from 2020 to 2022.

The group spent more than $2 million last quarter, mostly on consulting.

The PAC also raised $1.8 million last year, which included a $1 million donation from a nonprofit led by Democratic Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

Voter ID

What it would do:

The proposal from the Repair the Vote PAC would require all in-person voters in Nevada to present a valid photo identification — such as a driver’s license, passport, student photo ID card or concealed weapon permit — before voting.

The petition would also require those voting by mail to include part of a personally identifiable number — such as their driver’s license number or Social Security number — alongside their signature.

Legal status:

A Carson City judge rejected a legal challenge filed in February by attorneys who typically represent Democrat-backed causes — saying “it’s probably time for voters of the state of Nevada to decide if they want this or not” — but that ruling has been appealed to the Nevada Supreme Court . Oral arguments were held May 8. 

The appellants argued the proposal was akin to an unconstitutional poll tax because it would require people voting in person to pay to receive a valid form of identification. They also argued that the proposal was unconstitutional because providing a free form of identification would cost state funds, and the petition did not outline a source for that funding, as is required in the Constitution.

Attorneys for Repair the Vote have argued that it is constitutional because it does not explicitly ask the Legislature to allocate funding for free identification, and that people voting by mail would not have to pay for ID cards.

The court did not say when it would issue an opinion.

Signature-gathering status:

Petition supporters have gathered about 60,000 signatures, making it more than halfway to the number it needs to land on the ballot, according to David Gibbs, the head of Repair the Vote and a former Clark County GOP chair.

Financial status:

Repair the Vote received $100,000 in the first quarter of 2024, all from Henderson resident Allen Knudson, the president of a mortgage banking company.

The political apparatus of Gov. Joe Lombardo, who pushed for a voter ID bill last year that stalled in the Democrat-controlled Legislature, has also connected the group to a benefactor who will help fund the campaign and pay signature gatherers, Gibbs said. The group plans to have more than 100 paid signature gatherers.

Faten Alkulifi, left, gathers signatures on March 6, 2024, for a petition by the Clark County teachers union that seeks to change the state’s anti-strike law. (Rocio Hernandez/The Nevada Independent)

Initiative petitions


Allowing teachers to strike

What it would do:

The petition, led by a PAC affiliated with the Clark County Education Association (CCEA), would give licensed public school educators in Nevada the legal right to strike, which is currently illegal for all government employees under state law.

Legal status:

There are no active legal challenges, CCEA Executive Director John Vellardita told The Indy on May 7, and the deadline has passed for any lawsuit to be filed.

Signature-gathering status:

Vellardita said that the group is “well on our way to have enough signatures by early summer.” He declined to provide an exact total on the number of signatures gathered.

Financial status:

CCEA contributed $2 million to the PAC supporting the petition in the first quarter, by far the union’s largest donations related to a ballot initiative.

Payday loans

What it would do:

Stop Predatory Lending NV, a nonprofit formed this year by Democratic strategists, has filed two separate petitions to rein in the use of high-interest lending in Nevada.

Both petitions called for imposing a 36 percent cap on the interest rates for certain types of high-interest loans, including title loans and payday loans, which are short-term loans where individuals typically receive immediate cash and agree to pay back the loan (typically with a high rate of interest) within a short period of time.

The first petition also included language to increase how much money from a person’s bank account and weekly wages is protected from a seizure for an unpaid debt, but the second petition does not include that language.

Legal status:

In March, a Carson City judge approved the narrower petition, while ruling the first petition was unconstitutional because it was too broad. Both of those decisions are being appealed in the Nevada Supreme Court.

Nevadans for Financial Choice, a PAC formed to oppose the petition that is funded by high-interest loan companies, filed an appeal in April of the petition’s approval alongside DailyPay, a nationwide lending company. No briefs have been filed, and oral arguments have not been scheduled

Meanwhile, Stop Predatory Lending is appealing the judge’s rejection of the group’s broader petition, arguing that the proposal’s topics are all related to one another and not in violation of the “single-subject” rule for these petitions. Oral arguments in that case are set for June 5.

Signature-gathering status:

Peter Koltak, a spokesperson for Stop Predatory Lending, would not disclose on May 9 how many signatures have been gathered, or which petition version the group is focusing on during signature-gathering, but said the group did not have any concerns about meeting the Nov. 20 deadline.

Financial status:

Stop Predatory Lending raised $260,000 in the first quarter of 2024, all from left-leaning “dark money” groups.

Nevadans for Financial Choice raised $290,000 in the first quarter, with donations from lending companies including Dollar Loan Center ($50,000), Checksmart Financial ($50,000) and Moneytree ($25,000). 

Capping attorney fees

What it would do:

The petition, which is backed by Uber, seeks to cap attorney fees in civil cases at 20 percent of all settlements and awards beginning in 2027. The initiative would not place a limit on how much money plaintiffs can recover from lawsuits.

Attorney fees in civil cases are largely unregulated in Nevada, except that they must be considered reasonable, and fees in medical malpractice cases are capped at 35 percent of the total recovery. Only two other states have adopted similar caps on attorney fees in civil cases: Oklahoma and Michigan, though both are less stringent than the Nevada petition.

Legal status:

A Nevada trial lawyers group sued to block the petition in April, arguing that the petition fails to inform supporters of its full implications. A judge dismissed the lawsuit on May 10.

The suit argued that the petition is designed to stymie sexual misconduct lawsuits that Uber is facing, and contends that the cap on attorney fees would make it harder for Nevadans to find the best lawyers to take on their cases.

The ruling is expected to be appealed.

Signature-gathering status:

An official with Nevadans for Fair Recovery (the group behind the petition) declined to provide information on signatures gathered.

Financial status:

In the first quarter, Uber gave $4 million to Nevadans for Fair Recovery, which did not spend any of the money during the quarter. It’s by far the largest single political donation in Nevada by the ride-sharing company, topping its previous high of $25,000 in 2018.

Citizens for Justice — the political arm of the Nevada Justice Association (the trial lawyers group suing to block the petition) — raised more than $330,000 in the first quarter, though it’s unclear how much (if any) related to this petition.

A representative of Schools Over Stadiums, a Nevada State Education Association PAC, seeks to raise money and awareness of the union's effort to block the $380 million in public financing for the planned $1.5 billion Las Vegas ballpark. The PAC had a space in the parking lot of the Oakland Coliseum before opening day on March 28, 2024. (David Calvert/The Nevada Independent)

Disqualified Petitions


A’s Stadium

What it would have done:

The petition — brought by a PAC affiliated with the Nevada State Education Association (NSEA) — sought to overturn the public financing deal approved by the Nevada Legislature in 2023 to help fund construction of a Las Vegas baseball stadium for the relocating Oakland Athletics.

Reason for disqualification:

The Nevada Supreme Court on May 13 affirmed a lower court’s November decision to block the petition. A Carson City judge had ruled it did not meet the state’s requirements for including the petition’s full text on signature-gathering forms and that its description of effect — a 200-word summary of the measure that appears on collection forms — did not fully explain the measure’s implications.

Signature-gathering status:

Alexander Marks, a spokesperson for Schools Over Stadiums, told The Indy on May 7 that no matter the Supreme Court’s ruling, the group will likely try to place a referendum on the 2026 ballot because of the fast-approaching deadline to qualify for this year’s ballot — which now must be through a revised petition because of the high court’s ruling.

Financial status:

Schools over Stadiums reported raising $3,000 in the first quarter of 2024, all from California donors, and spent $23,000 on the law firm representing the PAC before the state Supreme Court.

The group also held a fundraiser on the final day of the first quarter (that included a donor’s commitment to give $100,000 in matching funds), but the PAC did not officially receive the money until the reporting period closed, a PAC representative told The Indy.

PACs are not legally required to report their cash on hand amount or donations less than $1,000. A PAC official said in April that its average donation was $91.67, and that the group had around $161,000 in cash on hand as of the end of March.

Independent redistricting commission

What it would have done:

Fair Maps Nevada, a group that for years has tried to change the state’s redistricting process, filed two petitions in November seeking to create an independent redistricting commission, a proposal opposed by Democrats who currently control the redistricting process.

  • Petition 1: Sought to establish a seven-member commission to draw congressional and legislative district maps, with redrawing to occur in 2031 after the decennial census.
  • Petition 2: Sought to establish the independent commission, with new maps required to be put in place beginning in 2027. 

Reason for disqualification:

The Nevada Supreme Court struck down the effort on May 10, agreeing with a lower court’s ruling that both petitions would create an unconstitutional unfunded mandate by establishing a new commission without creating a mechanism to fund it.

Existing ballot questions

  • Question 1: Proposal to remove the Board of Regents from its status in the state Constitution as the governing board for public higher education.
    • Lawmakers passed SJR7 in the 2021 and 2023 legislative sessions, bringing the question to the 2024 ballot.
    • A similar question narrowly failed in the 2020 election. 
  • Question 2: Proposal to remove and replace the terms insane, blind, deaf and dumb from the state Constitution.
    • Lawmakers passed bills supporting the resolution in 2021 and 2023, shifting the issue to voters in 2024.
  • Question 3: Proposal to amend the Nevada Constitution by making Nevada primaries open to all registered voters, no matter their party affiliation, and allow ranked-choice voting in general elections for state-level positions.
    • The proposal received support from 53 percent of voters in the 2022 election. Another affirmative vote in 2024 would amend the state Constitution.
  • Question 4: Proposal to remove language from the Nevada Constitution that authorizes the use of slavery and involuntary servitude as a form of criminal punishment.
    • Lawmakers passed bills supporting the resolution in 2021 and 2023. The vote in 2024 is the final step to remove the language.
  • Question 5:  Proposal to exempt the sale of diapers from the state sales tax.
    • Lawmakers took the first step to amend the state’s sale tax law by unanimously passing SB428 in 2023.

Updated on 5/13/24 at 10:35 a.m. to add the disqualification of the A’s stadium referendum.

SHARE

Featured Videos