With more than $63 million dollars spent, Nevada Energy successfully maintained its monopoly status, denying the citizens of Nevada the right, 5 years in the future, to take control of their energy spend and future. Question 3 went down by roughly a 2-1 margin, despite the fact that, 2 years before, it had been approved by a nearly 3-1 margin.
A landmark campaign ended in a landmark defeat on Tuesday as Nevadans voted by more than two-thirds to defeat ballot Question 3. The constitutional amendment, which would have ended NV Energy’s monopoly on the state’s electricity market and created a competitive energy market, had previously passed in 2016, with more than 75 percent of voters approving the measure.
This is the second of a three-part series analyzing some of the critical issues as Nevadans vote on whether to open their retail electricity market to competition or maintain the current monopolistic structure. The first piece looked at the economic benefits, or lack thereof, each side is claiming in trying to make its case. With the variability of fuel costs and demand, the straightforward question of whether competition will result in higher or lower rates cannot be answered with a firm yes or no, despite the claims by both sides. One thing this initial analysis revealed, however, is that the soft economic benefits, e.g. job creation as new market participants enter Nevada, will only be realized if Question 3 is approved.