Hearing Set On Tax Petition Challenge

Former Nevada Supreme Court Justice Miriam Shearing will hear the challenge filed by Nevada casinos against a teachers' union petition to raise gambling taxes to fund education.

A Jan. 18 hearing has been set to review the Nevada Resorts Association suit against the initiative backed by the Nevada State Education Association that would raise $250 million a year for public schools.

The measure seeks to raise by 3 percent the gross gaming revenue tax now paid by casinos making more than $1 million a month.

It would increase their tax rate to 9.75 percent.

Besides the teachers' plan, Las Vegas lawyer Kermitt Waters also has filed two ballot initiatives to raise taxes on Nevada's biggest casinos by about 20 percent.

Backers of each must gather at least 58,628 signatures by May 20.

Voters would then have to approve the measures in the 2008 and 2010 elections.

The one that gets the most voter support in 2010 would take effect.