Saturday, May 25 2013 12:29 PM EDT2013-05-25 16:29:57 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The Vintner Grill banquet facility inside the Fashion Show Mall has been shut down. According to the Southern Nevada Health District website, the facility was closed Friday after an inspectionMore>>
The Vintner Grill banquet facility inside the Fashion Show Mall has been shut down.More>>
Friday, May 24 2013 7:34 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:34:21 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- A family is in awe of how many lives their son touched. The funeral for Marcos Arenas, a 15-year-old boy apparently killed over an iPad was held Friday. Marcos was a freshman at BonanzaMore>>
The funeral for Marcos Arenas, a 15-year-old boy apparently killed over an iPad was held Friday.More>>
Saturday, May 25 2013 8:13 PM EDT2013-05-26 00:13:38 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The Wet 'n' Wild Las Vegas opened its doors to the public, but everyone couldn't get in as the park reached capacity even for gold pass members. Several people expressed their frustrationMore>>
The Wet 'n' Wild Las Vegas opened its doors to the public, but everyone couldn't get in as the park reached capacity even for gold pass members.More>>
Saturday, May 25 2013 12:27 AM EDT2013-05-25 04:27:34 GMT
LAKE MEAD, Nev. -- Thousands of people are expected to go to Lake Mead this weekend, to cool off and relax. While there will be lots of fun on the water, the National Park Service rangers and Nevada DepartmentMore>>
Thousands of people are expected to go to Lake Mead this weekend, to cool off and relax.More>>
Friday, May 24 2013 8:27 PM EDT2013-05-25 00:27:45 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- Federal felony charges were filed against a Las Vegas man for attempting to destroy a local children's autism learning facility by fire and explosive devices, Nevada's U.S. Attorney DanielMore>>
Federal felony charges were filed against a Las Vegas man for attempting to destroy a local children's autism learning facility by fire and explosive devices, Nevada's U.S. Attorney Daniel Bogden said Friday.More>>
Friday, May 24 2013 7:59 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:59:58 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada says the Clark County school board may have opened itself up to legal problems in appointing a new superintendent late Tuesday. A private citizenMore>>
The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada says the Clark County school board may have opened itself up to legal problems in appointing a new superintendent late Tuesday.More>>
Friday, May 24 2013 7:40 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:40:18 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital will maintain its federal funding despite not meeting some of the government's requirements. The hospital came under scrutiny for its discharging procedures.More>>
The Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital will maintain its federal funding despite not meeting some of the government's requirements.More>>
Friday, May 24 2013 5:05 PM EDT2013-05-24 21:05:30 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The Clark County Grand Jury has indicted Michael Smith on murder and assault charges in the shooting death of a man in January. Michael Smith is accused of killing Carlos Bell on Jan. 14,More>>
The Clark County Grand Jury has indicted Michael Smith on murder and assault charges in the shooting death of a man in January.More>>
The debate over a new smoking ban took all day in court Tuesday. Attorneys made arguments for and against the Nevada Clean Indoor Air Act. A ruling is expected when the judge resumes at 3 p.m. Wednesday.
You can watch live streaming video of the hearing on LasVegasNOW.com.
Legal heavyweights battled it out in front of the judge with the state's voter-passed smoking restrictions hanging in the balance.
The question District Court Judge Doug Herndon is trying to answer is whether the new smoking ban unfairly targets some businesses and violates their constitutional rights.
The decision will have a big impact on hundreds of establishments
The hearing began shortly after 9 a.m. Tuesday in front of District Court Judge Doug Herndon who will decide whether the smoking ban is constitutional. Currently, the ban is on hold due to a restraining order.
The deadline for all briefs and motions in this high-profile case was 12 p.m. Monday.
Nevada's Attorney General George Chanos turned in a 40-page document Monday refuting point-by-point claims submitted last week by attorneys for Clark County tavern and bars owners.
They are arguing they will suffer irreparable financial harm if the smoking ban goes into effect. But in its response, the Attorney General says all the potential harm is purely "speculative."
The A.G. Chanos also says that perfectly valid health and safety laws sometimes mean that owners of property may not get the maximum economic return.
Nevada voters approved Question 5 by a margin of 54-to-46 percent in November's election.
It calls for a smoking ban in all public places, except in gaming areas of major casinos and in bars that do not serve food.
Attorneys for bars and taverns claim the law violates both their "due process" and "equal protection" rights under the U.S. Constitution.
UNLV law professor Peter Bayer says an "equal protection" claim needs to be very specific. "The core of an equal protection claim has a strong similarity to due process. It asks fundamentally "has the government treated different groups fairly."
Bayer continued, "The challenger, the plaintiffs will say, I am being treated differently from other groups, which are similarly situated. That is there are no meaningful differences, and yet I have to do something that the other groups don't have to do or they get something that I don't."
The attorney general weighed to the fray with his 40-page brief. It says the culture of Nevada has changed and specifically contradicts the legal claims made by bars and taverns.
Attorney General George Chanos says:
"This fear about the potential economic losses is only speculative."
The "plaintiffs are trying to shoehorn themselves into the casino exemption."
And says "social and economic legislation... carries with it a presumption of validity that can only be overcome by a clear showing of arbitrariness and irrationality."
Law Professor Peter Bayer added, "The courts grant the government extreme leeway. The presumption is that the legislation is lawful and the challenger has an extremely heavy burden to prove that it isn't."
Bayer said the judge may simply "clarify" the law, while careful not to actually rewrite it. "So I would be very hesitant to strike this will of the people as unconstitutional," he said.
The Nevada Resort Association has also weighed into this case. Big hotels and casinos are concerned that the lawsuit filed by the bars and taverns could actually extend the smoking ban to hotel and motel rooms.
All the biggest players and most influential law firms are now involved in the debate.