11 Odd Laws in Nevada
Nevada has some of the most interesting and unique laws in the world. Tourists and locals alike can brush up on their civics by studying the strange laws in Nevada.
Here are 11 odd laws in Nevada and the City of Las Vegas, with actual citations.
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1. May Is Prehistoric Camel Awareness Month
In May, Nevadans stop to pay homage to the prehistoric camel. Nevada law 236.075 declares May as the Prehistoric Camel Awareness Month throughout the state. More specifically, the law makes it Archaeological Awareness and Historic Preservation Month. The governor makes an annual proclamation, each May, calling on both public and private entities to work together to preserve irreplaceable resources.
Among those resources are historical sites, including Tule Springs. Tule Springs is known to have fossils of prehistoric horses and American camels. Nevada law calls on all residents to pause in May and respect the camels.
2. You Can’t Pawn While Intoxicated
Nevada law has an entire chapter devoted to the activities of pawnbrokers. Nevada law 646.060 prohibits a pawnbroker from accepting property from certain classes of persons. One category is people who are intoxicated.
So, after you’ve had a fun night on the town, it’s not the time to pawn your belongings. The pawnbroker has to turn you away until you’ve had time to sober up.
3. There Are Official “Cat Fanciers” in the City of Las Vegas
The City of Las Vegas has an official definition for “cat fancier.” Las Vegas municipal code section 7.04.140 states that a cat fancier owns or keeps no more than six adult cats to be exhibited in recognized cat shows and feline events.
Generally, to be an official cat fancier, you have to participate in one cat show per year, but there are exceptions if the cats are spayed or neutered.
4. There’s No State Lottery in Nevada
People come from all over the world to get lucky in Las Vegas. However, there’s actually no state lottery. In fact, the State of Nevada goes so far as to ban lotteries right in its constitution.
Article IV, Section 24 of the Nevada constitution says that the state may not run a lottery. No political subdivision, like Las Vegas, can run one, either. Private organizations can have charity raffles for their own benefit, but there can be no government-run lotteries in the State of Nevada.
5. What Happens in Vegas May End Up on Your Driving Record
Nevada has some of the most strict traffic laws around. Most states classify the bulk of their traffic offenses as civil infractions. The offender pays a fine and a few points go on their license. That is not the case in Nevada.
Nevada classifies many of their driving offenses as misdemeanors. (See Nevada Revised Statutes 484.999). Even if the same thing would be a civil offense back home, you might end up a convicted criminal just for a traffic offense alone. Your conviction can have serious consequences for your employment or a professional license in your home state.
6. Don’t Try Winning a Hula Hoop Contest on Fremont Street
Las Vegas municipal code section 11.68.100 prohibits hula hoops within the pedestrian mall on Fremont Street. The code specifies that they’re only talking about hula hoops that are more than four feet in diameter. In 2010, the Las Vegas city council claimed that hula hoops were impeding pedestrian traffic.
Otherwise, you’ll have to find other ways to enjoy the Fremont Street Experience.
7. Don’t Unicycle on Fremont Street Either
Love to blow off a little steam by unicycling? Don’t we all. Unfortunately, unicycles are also banned on Fremont Street, according to the same Las Vegas municipal code that prohibits hula hoops.
Along with unicycles, roller skates, skateboards and in-line skates are banned on the Fremont Street pedestrian mall in downtown Las Vegas as well.
8. Don’t Swear on the Las Vegas Strip
It’s illegal to swear on a public street in Las Vegas. City municipal ordinance 10.40.030 says you can’t say anything vile, obscene or profane on a public street, alley or highway in the city.
Luckily, this law has not been enforced in decades, so you’re safe if some of those swear words slip while in Sin City.
9. Toy Cars Are For Sidewalks Only
City of Las Vegas municipal code section 11.22.130 says that you can’t drive a toy car on the road in Las Vegas. You have to stick to the sidewalks. Even then, don’t try it on Fremont Street. You can cross the street in your toy car, but only in posted areas.
In addition, if there are other public places where it’s posted that you can’t use a toy vehicle, you’re going to have to get out and walk.
10. Yes, You Really Can Run Off and Get Married in Vegas
The State of Nevada doesn’t have a waiting period for marriage. In other words, you can get your marriage license and get married right away. That makes Nevada a destination for couples who want to tie the knot ASAP.
Nevada Revised Statutes Chapter 122 has a lot to say about marriages in the state. The legal age for marriage is 18, and there are rules for who can perform the ceremony.
11. Nevada Has Unlawful Drugged Driving Levels
This law is a bit odd, but only because Nevada is one of the first and only states to have actual bright lines for what counts as drugged driving. Nevada has legal limits for the amount of each type of drug that you can have in your system to be considered a drunk driver.
For marijuana, the standard is 2+ ng/ml of the active ingredient or 5 ng/ml of the metabolite. Most states base drugged driving offenses on whether the substance influences your ability to drive.
Nevada’s law stands out because there are quantified legal limits for drugged driving. Nevada Revised Statutes 484C.110 states the legal limit for each substance.
RELATED: What If a Driver Hits Me While High?
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