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Possible price tag to change school names, mascots under proposed bill

The Clark County School District Headquarters at Sahara and Decatur in Las Vegas as seen in July 2020
Posted at 10:10 PM, Mar 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-10 09:09:42-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A proposed piece of legislation is looking to remove racially offensive names and logos from Nevada schools, universities and geographic landmarks.

That change may come at a cost for the Clark County School District and UNLV.

“Nevada and our nation have a complicated and conflict-filled racial history,” said Assemblyman Howard Watts.

Watts is spearheading the efforts with Assembly Bill 88.

If passed, the bill would require the board of trustees of each Nevada school district and operators of charter schools and universities to prohibit names, logos, or mascots that are racially offensive.

“AB88 is making history and causes us to take a second look and a deeper look at what we take for granted,” said Watts.

According to the assembly bill’s fiscal notes, the Clark County School District would need to rebrand 20 schools at an estimated cost of $1.4 million.

Rebranding at the University of Las Vegas would also cost millions.

UNLV’s mascot was retired earlier this year due to its confederate roots.

RELATED: UNLV retires Hey Reb! mascot, moves ahead without replacement

“There’s a part of the population that will try to resist it, a lot of times people say you're erasing history as if we want to hold onto things that hurt and traumatize others,” said Assemblywoman Brittney Miller.

Not one person testified against the bill on Tuesday.

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Native American tribes in the state were in full support, as the bill would also rename locations and mascots that make derogatory references to Native Americans.

“We’ve developed a process to re-name some of the improperly named facilities around the state,” said Will Adler, Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe.