I will not apologize

by Dan Schwartz, Nevada State Treasurer
Dear Fellow Nevadans,
“Defiant,” “deceptive,” “rogue,” and “misleading”: these are all words that have been used to describe me in the last few weeks. Some say I have a hidden agenda, but my agenda is in the open for anyone and everyone to see.
I seek only to improve programs that benefit Nevada families and the youth of our state; and for that, I will not apologize.
Everything I do and have done as the Nevada State Treasurer, is for you – fellow Nevadans. I was voted into office to represent you, and I will support your interests, needs, and constitutional rights to the best of my ability now and in the future.
A bill was proposed by Assemblyman Anderson that the Nevada State Treasurer should no longer exist as an elected seat. Absurd, after my office has proven time and time again the value of elected leadership in working toward a collective goal. Over the past two years, we have tripled returns on over $3 billion in various government portfolios. We revamped College Savings, returned Unclaimed Property in 20 instead of 120 days, fought for ESAs, and questioned a project that could have cost taxpayers $175 million in defaulted bonds. The people of Nevada are perfectly capable of electing a State Treasurer rather than asking the Governor to appoint the position.
What is important to you? Your job? Your reputation? Or like me, is your family most important? The children of our state have been given short shrift for far too long. We’ve seen our education system failing Nevada students. We must do something to create a culture of learning in Nevada.
Education Savings Accounts are a step in the right direction. A parent should not only have the right to choose where their child goes to school, but be given the means to do so. Nevada parents, don’t you want the best for your children?
I came under fire for implementing College Kick Start incentives to improve the program’s success. If we didn’t take steps to expand the current program, we would’ve come back with the same stale results as the previous year. Instead, those incentives produced an enormous increase in college savings accounts claimed and opened.
For any of this programming to work effectively, I need smart, competent people in my corner. My office has operated under the assumption that it’s “all hands on deck” to implement and operate our legislatively mandated programming. The Public Information Officer position was created out of a need to function effectively. We weren’t required to bring the hiring to vote because the Governor’s Finance Office already approved spending the extra salary savings we accrued. This is an already established legislative process we followed because it was the simple, straightforward route.
I answer only to my fellow Nevadans. I do not seek to serve anyone else. I’m looking out for the best interest of Nevada families, particularly Nevada children. They are our future, so we must do all we can to create a system that allows children to thrive. These same children will someday be our future leaders, and I will not allow the future of Nevada to be held back by a tangled web of bureaucracy.
Featured image: Dan Schwartz at Gov. Sandoval's State of the State address in January 2017. Photo by David Calvert.