On Oct. 8, former State Sen. Ben Kieckhefer, R-Reno, was appointed to the Nevada Gaming Commission.
Kieckhefer announced his retirement from the Nevada Legislature on Oct. 7, the day before Gov. Steve Sisolak made his appointment.
“I’d like to thank everyone who has helped and supported me over the past decade, particularly my constituents, who trusted me to represent them in their government,” he said in a tweet. “I’m incredibly proud of the work we have done to help move Nevada forward.”
Kieckhefer was first elected in 2010 to the Senate to represent portions of Carson City as well as Washoe Valley. He would not have been eligible for re-election in 2022 under Nevada’s term limits law.
Kieckhefer works as director of client relations at government affairs firm McDonald Carano. He previously served as communications director for Gov. Jim Gibbons and public information officer for the Department of Health and Human Services. He is also a former journalist, working for both the Reno-Gazette Journal and the Associated Press.
Sisolak on Oct. 8 also appointed Judge Jennifer Togliatti to serve as the first chairwoman of the commission, which was formed in 1959 to regulate the state’s casinos.
The primary responsibilities of the commission include acting on the recommendations of the Nevada Gaming Control Board in licensing matters and ruling upon work permit appeal cases. The commission is the final authority on licensing matters, having the ability to approve, restrict, limit, condition, deny, revoke or suspend any gaming license.
The commission is also charged with the responsibility of adopting regulations to implement and enforce the State laws governing gaming.
When the board believes discipline against a gaming licensee is appropriate, the board acts in the prosecutorial capacity, while the Commission acts in the quasi-judicial capacity to determine whether any sanctions should be imposed.