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Mining Association Calls for Revisions and Name Change for New Gold and Silver Tax | Mining

RILEY SNYDER The Nevada Independent

The Nevada Mining Association is asking state officials to change proposed regulations implementing a new tax on gold and silver mining, including changing the title and ensuring it does not not be applied retroactively.

The discussion took place Monday at a workshop hosted by the Department of Revenue, which is responsible for developing regulations to implement the new tax approved in the final hours of the 2021 legislative session.

During the meeting, the president of the Tire Association Gray offered a handful of suggested tax rule changes, including a request to limit tax collections to mid-2021 and beyond (when the law is entry into force) rather than the product of the full calendar year. 2021 as indicated in the draft regulations.

Such a move would prevent the IRS from collecting tens of millions of dollars in revenue, but Gray said the state had never before attempted to collect a tax before the bill’s effective date, and that the concept of advance perception “frankly never came”. up” during the legislative discussions on the measure.

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“It’s a matter of justice and fairness,” Gray said Monday. “To think of tax behavior that happened before the law’s effective date really goes against those ideas about due process.”

In an email, a Department of Taxation spokesperson said the office was unable to calculate the estimated difference in collections for a full calendar year versus a half calendar year. But the revenue expected from the tax is significant – The Economic Forum (a five-member group of economic experts who endorse projections of state tax sources) released projections at its December meeting that the new tax would yield about $83.3 million in fiscal year 2022. , and $81 million in fiscal year 2023.

The tax is an annual assessment on any state-based gold or silver mining business with annual gross revenue in excess of $20 million. The tax rate is 0.75% of all taxable income up to $150 million and 1.1% of all gross income over $150 million. Proceeds from the tax are to be deposited into the state’s general fund for the next two fiscal years and then into an account designated for K-12 education spending beginning in fiscal year 2024.

During the meeting, Tax Commissioner Sharon Byram said she tended to agree with Gray and said she was “surprised it was a retroactive tax because it’s not normally the case. “.

Gray also requested that the tax be renamed to indicate that the proceeds will be earmarked for education, in place of the more generic moniker “gold and silver excise tax” currently proposed in the regulations.

“I would just like to ask if there is a possibility of this happening, so that future generations don’t confuse where these dollars are supposed to go,” he said. “These dollars are for our children.”

He also asked for clarification on parts of the draft regulations, including ensuring that mining operations focused on extracting minerals other than gold or silver that nonetheless encounter gold and money are exempt from payment of the tax. He further requested clarification on the definition of “entity”, saying that the tax was “always intended to operate in some way at the level of the mine” and not at the level of the legal person.

In a statement, Gray called the new levy a “mining education tax” and said the mining association “will continue to work closely with the ministry to iron out any remaining wrinkles” with implementation.

The tax is the end product of a furious backroom negotiation between the Democratic legislative leadership, Gov. Steve Sisolak, and representatives from the mining industry, teachers’ unions and other powerful political players. Legislation passing the tax was introduced just days before the end of the 120-day legislative session, which included a number of sweeteners aimed at getting enough Republicans on board to secure the two-thirds majority required to pass any increase. of tax.

The Department of Taxation has scheduled a hearing to pass the regulations on January 24. If approved, the regulations would then move to the Legislative Committee, a 12-member group of lawmakers tasked with approving regulations made by state agencies.