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Letter to the editor

It’s not paranoia when they’re really out to get you

I can’t say I wasn’t warned.

When people realized I was dead serious about running for the Nevada State Assembly and it wasn’t just some “PR stunt,” I was warned of the dangers to my various businesses if the powers-that-be ever decided I was a real threat to actually get elected.

My friends warned me. My employees warned me. My business associates warned me. Some of my customers warned me. My attorney warned me. Heck, even my political consultants warned me!

But I didn’t reach the level of success in business that I’ve enjoyed by giving in to intimidation. I don’t take threats very well. And I sure as heck am no quitter. So I put my proverbial nose to the grindstone and plowed ahead last fall.

For me it was all about getting better representation for our community in Carson City; somebody with real-life experience creating jobs; somebody who understood how government hurts small businesses; somebody who wouldn’t raise your taxes and wasn’t owned lock, stock and barrel by the high-priced lobbyists and special interests - like my opponent.

But those warnings now certainly appear to have been well-founded.

As you may have read, two government inspectors recently cited one of my brothel businesses for infractions that, had they been true, would have been serious. The story of the citations spread not only throughout our state and the country, but around the globe; a story that did serious damage to my longstanding reputation as a responsible, law-abiding businessman in Nevada.

As I hope you also read, those accusations were investigated fully and ultimately dropped. As I said at the time, the inspectors had made a mistake – and they did. But the damage was already done. The stories clearing my name didn’t get anywhere near as much press attention as the original accusations.

Now a new front has opened up in the attacks. Under the guise of “updating” the county’s legal brothel codes, Nye County Commissioner Butch Borasky has inserted language specifically targeting my businesses for a staggering fee hike.

Under the existing ordinance, I pay $7,500 per year for my business license – as opposed to any other non-brothel business in Pahrump that pays a maximum of just $150 per year. But under Commissioner Borasky’s proposal, our basic license fee will almost TRIPLE to $20,000 per year.

In addition, we’ll also be socked $800 per year for every worker we hire, which could jack up our tribute to the government to over $40,000 per year - almost a 500% increase!

Why does Commissioner Borasky want to “fine” employers for hiring people?

But that’s not the worst of it…

Right now, each of the women who work at my business is required to pay $500 per year for their government-issued work card. And the funds from those fees currently go to the county’s “Veterans’ Services Department” to assist our military veterans.

Under Mr. Borasky’s proposed new ordinance, that fee will jump to $600 per year. But the money will no longer go specifically to services for veterans!

Instead, that money will go into the black abyss of the county’s “general fund” where the politicians can do whatever they want with it. It’s outrageous.

Of course, the powers-that-be will boldly and loudly declare that none of this is “payback” for me daring to challenge the established order of things in their political world. And maybe all of this really is just a “coincidence.”

Then again, as the saying goes, it’s not paranoia when they’re really out to get you.

But if they think this is going to get me to back off and back down, they have no idea who they’re dealing with. As Admiral Yamato said of the attack on Pearl Harbor - a quote every veteran in Nye County will immediately recognize - all they’ve done is “awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

Game on.

Dennis Hof

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