Interview – Don Gustavson, Republican Senate District 14

CCRW - NV GOP Logo Senate District 14 – Washoe CountyNvFRW Logo

     Gustavson, Don          

Don Gustavson, Incumbent

(vs Joe Hunt)



Senator Don Gustavson is the only State Republican Senate candidate to respond to my request for a General Election interview.  Of the five contested races against a Democrat, not one other Republican Senate candidate with a viable contact address even acknowledged receipt of the interview request.  This series of interviews of Congressional, State Constitutional and Legislative candidates are sponsored by the Nevada Republican Party and Nevada Federation of Republican Women. 

Please submit a short personal resume:

Legislative Service

  • Nevada Assembly 1997-2004 and 2008-2009
  • Nevada Senate, 2011-Current

Other Public Service

  • Board Member, My Journey Home
  • Founding Chair, Northern Nevada Teen Challenge
  • Associate Member, Republican Women of Sparks
  • Former Member, Republican Roundtable
  • Past President, Highland Ranch Homeowners Association
  • Past Vice Chair, Nevada Conservative Assembly
  • Past Member, Executive Committee, Washoe County Republican Central Committee
  • Delegate, Washoe County Republican Convention, 1990-2014
  • Delegate, Nevada State Republican Convention, 1990-2014
  • Republican Nominee, Nevada State Assembly, 1990


  • Carson City Railroad Association
  • Northern Nevada Garden Railroad Society
  • National Rifle Association
  • Gun Owners of America
  • Member, Nevada Republican Central Committee
  • Member, Washoe County Republican Central Committee


  • Culver City High School
  • Santa Monica Junior College
  • Western Nevada College

Explain your positions in regards to:

  • Nevada health care issues

Government meddling and state mandates to enforce certain coverages on recipients have hiked premiums and increased deductibles dramatically over the years, putting the cost of affordable healthcare further out of reach of many Nevadans. Federal & state lawmakers must avoid creating laws that increases the healthcare costs on patients and employers who provide health insurance to their employees. Government intervention manages to thwart the growth in all goods & services, healthcare included.  Free-market reforms are needed to strengthen our healthcare system, not unbridled government intervention.

  • The Education Tax Initiative

The Education Tax Initiative, better known as the Margin Tax Initiative, is poorly written and I do not support it. Implementation of this tax would adversely impact Nevada’s already stressed economy.

  • Nevada mining & gaming tax issues – the efforts to increase both and the initiative to amend the State Constitution to remove the mining tax cap

Nevada’s mining industry directly employs thousands of Nevadans with wages that are more than double the statewide average, while indirectly creating thousands of additional jobs in Nevada that are sustained by providing goods & services to the industry. These direct & indirect jobs created by the mining industry generate billions of dollars in total economic output and add millions of dollars to the general fund. Even though the Nevada Mining Tax Cap Amendment has yet to achieve passage, its threat to do so has already created a negative effect on Nevada’s ability to draw exploration & development into the state in much of the same way that the threat of passage of the Margin Tax Initiative is already persuading potential job creators to look elsewhere besides Nevada. The Nevada Mining Tax Cap Amendment would bring harm in ensuring the long-term economic sustainability of an industry that is free to mine elsewhere; ninety-six percent of the world’s gold mines are outside of Nevada, and we must work conscientiously to encourage rather than discourage exploration companies from investing in the Silver State. Besides gold, Nevada’s resources includes silver, gypsum, diatomite, lime, clay, copper and more, giving us greater potential for additional direct and indirect jobs that Nevada needs now. This is why policy makers should be focusing on ways to bring more jobs to Nevada rather than focusing on ways to penalize the job creators who are already here. Likewise, Nevada’s gaming & resort industry in Nevada is a central industry for our state creating more jobs and producing more economic output than any other sector of the state’s economy and generating billions of dollars annually for state & local governments. Gaming has seen an expansion in other states nationwide while many gaming resorts in Nevada have gone “dark” over the years. Placing additional burdens on this industry is likely to create further harm and would cause more Nevada jobs to erode.

  • The efforts of the Federal government to declare the sage grouse (and other species) an endangered species

Nevada’s job market is one of the worst in the nation, and it will remain that way if policies dictated by the federal government to manage a desert tortoise or a sage grouse chicken are allowed to take precedence over Nevada’s ability to prosper economically. I believe it is an unjustifiable act by the federal government to control title to mass portions of public lands west of Colorado. The federal government guaranteed all newly created states the transference of public lands back to the state at statehood, and the congressional passage of the 1976 Federal Land Policy Management Act does not negate that guarantee as acknowledged by the U.S. Supreme during Hawaii v. OHA 2009. Much of Nevada is rich in natural resources such as mining and grazing and agriculture that can be beneficial to Nevada’s economy, but land-management decisions made by federal bureaucrats has been to the disadvantage of our state and has even brought destruction to our lands as seen by uncontrollable wild fires that brought havoc upon federally controlled lands that were poorly managed.

  • Nevada’s minimum wage

Hiking the minimum wage on employers would have an unfavorable effect that works against increasing economic development. If employers are mandated to pay entry-level workers a higher wage than can be economically justified, it would increase the probability that those jobs would disappear. An elimination of entry-level jobs erases the opportunities for young, unskilled workers to achieve the ability to gain the levels of experience that is required to eventually climb up the income ladder.

As a longtime State Legislator, what have been your greatest accomplishments?

My legislative record proves my willingness to defy the status quo and to fight against poor policies that are detrimental to Nevadans.  I not only make campaign promises, I keep my campaign promises and I have continually demonstrated myself to be a servant who is willing to battle against intrusive government and poor public policies while enduring the labor to preserve and protect our Constitutional rights & freedoms.

Editor’s Note:

All Republican candidates with a viable opponent and contact information were asked to participate in an online interview – Congressional, Statewide & Legislative General Election races. 

The interview responses will be posted in full, unedited as submitted on NewsDesk by Nancy Dallas (, the NvFRW website ( and the State Republican Party (; and, when relevant, the Carson City Central Committee website (, the CCRW website ( and all other GOP associated websites that wish to do so.   Hopefully, the responses will be emailed to the membership of each organization, with reposting of any interview by interested parties strongly encouraged. 

The purpose of these interviews is to allow our Republican candidates the opportunity to state their positions in their own words, describe how they differ from their opponent’s positions and why they would better serve Nevada than their opponent. The Primaries are over.  Our ultimate goal must now be to elect or re-elect Republicans. 

Not all candidates chose to respond.  Following the General election a participation summary will be posted.

Nancy Dallas, Editor/Publisher NewsDesk (Est. January 2003)

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