55°F
weather icon Clear

Court dismisses Nevada background check lawsuit against Sandoval, Laxalt

A judge this week dismissed a lawsuit claiming that Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval and Attorney General Adam Laxalt did not do enough to enforce a law to expand background checks on gun sales.

Known as Question 1, the Background Check Act was approved by voters in 2016 but never implemented because Laxalt determined that the law requiring FBI checks could not be enforced.

“The court’s 22-page decision reaffirms what my office has been saying all along — that the Act ‘is unenforceable as written,’” Laxalt said in a statement. “This is not because of anything that I or other Nevada officials have failed to do; in the words of the Court, we have ‘undertaken a real and substantial effort to implement the law.’ Rather, it is a result of Question 1’s flawed drafting.”

Question 1, which passed by less than 1 percentage point, requires background checks on private-party gun transfers, similar to sales made when someone buys a gun through a federally licensed dealer.

But unlike with retail sales, the initiative states that dealers conducting background checks for private transfers use the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System. The FBI said it would not conduct the background checks because a state cannot enforce how federal resources are used, among other reasons.

Sandoval and Laxalt were sued by Nevada residents Dale Zusi, Vicki Delatorre and Sydney Gordon in Clark County District Court soon after the Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting in October.

Laxalt’s office issued an opinion on Dec. 28, 2016, stating that Question 1 could not be implemented without the FBI’s cooperation. Nevada ballot measures cannot be altered for the first three years after they are approved by voters, so lawmakers could rework the law after November 2019.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Search is on for missing Death Valley area hiker

Harsh winter weather conditions are hampering the search for a missing hiker in Death Valley National Park.

Project at Duck Ponds in Pahrump

The duck ponds at the Nye County and town administration building at the Calvada Eye will be undergoing a thorough cleaning and repair project during the next couple of weeks, town government announced in a Dec. 3 Facebook post.

Storms continue run through Pahrump region

Another in a series of late autumn storms moved through the region this week, prompting a winter weather advisory for mountains near Pahrump and bringing steady rain to the lower elevations in town.

List: Christmas, holiday events in Pahrump region

Here is a look at Christmas and holiday-related events in the community. See full list at pvtimes.com and in the Nov. 27 Pahrump Valley Times newspaper print edition and in upcoming editions of the newspaper.

Pahrump community joins together for Thanksgiving feast

On a chilly day in the Pahrump Valley with the crispness of autumn singing in the air, hundreds gathered together for an afternoon of companionship, camaraderie and good food at the Community Outreach Thanksgiving Dinner.

California Lottery

No one matched all five numbers and the mega number in the Wednesday, Dec. 4 drawing of the California Super Lotto. The next jackpot will be at least $8 million.

Nevada producers reminded to sign up for program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture this week reminded producers in Nevada that the nationwide deadline to sign up for the Market Facilitation Program is today, Dec. 6.

Spring Mountain Medical’s toy drive is underway

The Christmas spirit is alive and well at Pahrump’s Spring Mountain Medical as doctors and staff are coordinating a toy drive once again this year.

Pahrump’s dust problem drawing state attention, again

Though officials insisted it was not intended to be a threat, a warning of sorts was issued to Nye County last month when an air quality specialist explained that the county must keep a tight handle on its dust problem, otherwise outside governmental agencies could come in to enforce dust control restrictions and regulations.