By SAM METZ AP / Report for America
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada voters decided against changing the way state colleges and universities are governed under the Nevada constitution, voting down a ballot initiative that proposed removing the Board of Regents from the state constitution.
Nevada is the only state that chooses the entirety of the governing body that oversees universities via election rather than a gubernatorial or legislative appointment. The outcome allows the Board of Regents to maintain its unique constitutional status and power over many higher education policy decisions.
The proposal was the only constitutional amendment that Nevada voters rejected in the 2020 Election. The four other ballot questions put in front of the electorate passed decisively:
__The passage of Question 2 enshrines the right to same-sex marriage into the state constitution, removing a ban that voters approved in 2002. It also establishes the rights of religious organizations and clergy members to refuse to perform same-sex marriages.
__The passage of Question 3 amends the constitution to change how Nevada commutes sentences and pardons individuals convicted of most crimes. The amendment will require the board to meet four times annually and remove the governor’s power to veto the majority’s decisions.
__The passage of Question 4 adds to the state constitution a Voters’ Bill of Rights that state lawmakers passed in 2003, guaranteeing voters can have their ballots recorded accurately and can cast votes without intimidation or coercion, among other rights.
__By approving Question 6, voters reaffirmed the Legislature’s push to require the use of renewable sources to generate electricity. Its passage adds a mandate to the state constitution that utilities must generate at least 50% of their power from renewable sources, including solar, wind and geothermal. Its passage further aligns Nevada with neighboring California, which aims to generate 60% of its power from renewables by 2030.
Metz is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on undercovered issues.