weather icon Clear

When Las Vegas is healthy, Boulder City is healthy as well

While we all consider our small community to be a world away from the neon lights and casino floors, Boulder City needs a vibrant Vegas to keep our economic engine running.

Last month, I had the chance to attend two great, forward-thinking events focused on our regional economy. The region’s largest economic development event, the 43rd annual Las Vegas Perspective, was held June 15. Hosted by the Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance (LVGEA), more than 850 participants learned more about steps being taken to be a global leader in conservation and sustainability initiatives across the region.

Jeremy Aguero, principal analyst with Applied Analysis, told the group that Nevada leads the nation in employment growth at 4.1%. He said $32.3 billion in development projects are currently underway in the Las Vegas area. He credited diversification for building a stronger, more resilient economy in our region.

The second event, the United States Conference of Mayors Small Business Roundtable, was held June 27. The participants focused on the struggles that small business owners have faced in recent years: access to financial resources, addressing worker shortages and more. The mayors of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Mesquite and the mayor pro tem of Henderson sat with the leaders of the region’s Chambers of Commerce, including BC’s Jill Lagan. The group discussed their concerns, including education, training, and affordable housing. When I left the roundtable, it reaffirmed my drive to make sure our young adults come into the workforce prepared, and that they can afford to stay in the Las Vegas region.

Add to the mix the growing pro sports industry in our region. The UNLV Center for Business and Economic Research released a report on the impact of sports on our regional economy. Researchers found that those visiting Las Vegas for sporting events spent $1.8 billion last year. Vegas just wrapped up the Stanley Cup finals, and will host Formula 1 racing in November and the Super Bowl next year. “Researchers conservatively forecast a 12.4% increase in employment within performing arts, spectator sports, and related industries from 2022 to 2030. This equates to approximately 2,944 permanent jobs, indicating a promising future for job seekers and individuals interested in career paths in the sports economy.”

Boulder City does not benefit from casino revenue, because gaming is illegal here. We don’t have any college or professional sports teams here. You are probably saying, “So, Joe, this seems fine for the folks over the hill. I don’t want growth, so why should I care?”

First, Boulder City gets about 40% of its revenue from Nevada’s Consolidated Tax, often called C-Tax, mostly collected on the sales of cigarettes and alcohol. The tax is collected statewide, then distributed based on population. Another 35% of our revenues come from solar leases. These two revenue streams have helped keep Boulder City property taxes the lowest in the state. We haven’t had a tax increase in decades.

As we watch Las Vegas diversify, we should look at how we can improve our economy. Tourism spending is back to pre-COVID levels. The energy sector continues to be strong. Hoover Dam helped us develop into the great community that we are today. Less than 20 years ago, the solar industry started leasing land on undeveloped property. Today, businesses are expressing interest in building battery storage facilities for solar power.

So when I say “When Las Vegas is healthy, Boulder City is healthy,” we should all be hoping for the continued success of our neighbors. What benefits them, benefits us.

Joe Hardy is mayor of Boulder City. He previously served in the state Assembly and Senate.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
You can’t put the toothpaste back into the tube

A topic that’s been on the minds of several as of late, including city staff and council, has been short-term vacation rentals and whether or not to allow their existence in Boulder City.

The Consciousness of Love

Where did love go? The kindness in our world seems to have dissipated. When I go into a coffee shop, I witness almost everyone distracted from other human beings by their cell phone or computer.

Just call me Ron-Boy

As some of you know, I grew up here in Boulder City having started school in sixth grade at Garrett Junior High.

Keeping our waters safe

Lake Mead National Recreation Area prioritizes the safety of its visitors by conducting regular water testing at beaches and hot springs.

It’s just a piece of paper, right?

I’m not sure if it is because the Spousal Unit and I are now empty-nesters or if it is leftover influence from that Netflix show called “Swedish Death Cleaning,” but a substantial portion of my weekends for the past few months has been trying to sort through and eliminate some of the “stuff” that has taken over the house.

Can a song help reduce military, veteran suicides?

For too many years now, the growing problem of military personnel and veterans (as well as civilians), taking their own lives has been seemingly unsolvable.

Fighting the fentanyl epidemic

You can’t see it, smell it or taste it, but there is a dangerous drug killing about 150 people every day in the U.S.: fentanyl. Right here in Boulder City, three people died from fentanyl overdoses in 2022. This year, that number has nearly doubled – five deaths, and we still have two more months before the year ends.

Be Like Coke

In the late 60s, Cheryl, my future mother-in-law, received a surprise telephone call that changed her life forever.

Many reasons for giving thanks

In just three weeks, millions of families will gather around the table to celebrate Thanksgiving, a time for reflection and for recognizing what is special to you and your family. The past year has been full of challenges and changes for me, and I am sure you have encountered the same. This year, I’ve been thinking about all of the reasons that I am thankful.