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Steve Sisolak: Transition in 'great shape'

Steve Sisolak

It's already been more than a month since Steve Sisolak became the first Democrat to soon be heading state government in 20 years. His election on Nov. 6 over Republican Adam Laxalt left him a big challenge: putting together an administration that now has to hit the ground running on Jan. 7, Inauguration Day.

Sisolak will replace the outgoing and term-limited Republican Brian Sandoval.

News 3 spoke with the governor-elect himself to ask him how his transition effort it going.

“We're in great shape. My transition team has been absolutely incredible,” Sisolak said outside his Las Vegas transition office.

He's been meeting with his transition team, 31 people strong, to help build his administration.

Headed-up by heavyweights in state government, his team is chaired by Rep. Dina Titus, a former minority leader in the Nevada State Senate, and co-chaired by Barbara Buckley, the former Speaker of the Nevada Assembly. The other co-chair is Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve, which gives the incoming Sisolak administration some serious heft in Northern Nevada.

The transition team is rounded-out by representatives of local government, education, labor, business, and law enforcement.

Sisolak is already hiring, picking state government veterans for key positions in the handover from Republican to Democrat. His transition also now has a website: Home Means Nevada, which is online at homemeansnevadapac.org.

Want a job in the Sisolak Administration? Apply here.

I asked him how many jobs would be available. The Governor-elect did not know an exact number, but told me it’s “significant.”

“I know there's a lot of jobs, a lot of boards and commissions that need an appointment that are going to be available,” Sisolak says.

He has no time to waste: Sisolak will take office in 26 days. His State of the State address will be nine days later on Jan. 16 at the State Capitol. It is where he will lay out his vision for Nevada.

It's also when he will roll out the proposed state budget, which will be built on the back of the budget outgoing Republican Brian Sandoval will leave at Sisolak's desk.

“We're reviewing the document. I don't want to say I'm happy or unhappy with it. I mean, they put a lot of work into it and clearly reflected Governor Sandoval's priorities, and I respect that,” he says.

However, Sisolak will have his own priorities which the state will see mid-January.

In the meantime, Nevada is about to change government.

“Within a couple weeks we're about to go inaugural address, State of the State, legislature. I mean, it happens fast, and you have to be ready for it to happen fast,” says UNLV Associate Professor of History Michael Green.

Sisolak says he is.

“You're gonna hear a lot more in the days and weeks ahead,” he says.

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