Nevada State Legislature – a look ahead at week 3

by Brian Bahouth

Nevada State Capitol - image - Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

Updated at 07:48 on February 21, 2019.

Reno – The 2019 Legislative Session is in full-swing, and during week 3 we’ll see numerous, important bills, budget considerations and presentations in committees and around the legislative campus.  A perennial measure to implement an automated system of traffic enforcement at select intersections will be heard this week.  Lawmakers will hear a measure regarding collective bargaining, the New Nevada Education Funding Plan, Medicaid coverage for donor breast milk, cannabis drug screening for employment, sexual assault screening, a Working Families rally and lobbying day on Monday and much more.   

Please note, this is by no means a comprehensive list of all meetings and activities at the Nevada State Legislature but a fluid and subjective look ahead at the legislation, presentations and activities of interest to the Nevada Capital News editorial staff.  And be aware, bills are heard and presentations are given at the discretion of committee leadership and are subject to change at any time. We will make updates to this list as we become aware of the need for them.  The latest revision time will be listed at the beginning of the report.

Monday February 18, 2019

09:00 – The Assembly Committee on Government Affairs is scheduled to hear AB103, a bill regarding collective bargaining between public employees and local municipal employers.  The language of this bill is a little confusing, so looking forward to hearing Assemblyman Wheeler present the bill for a clearer picture.  Worth watching.

10:30 – The group Time to Care Nevada will hold an event in front of the Legislature.  Working Families Travel to Carson City to Demand Earned Paid Sick Days Nevada families will visit their legislators to give them “get well soon” cards and share their testimonials.

1:30 – The Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor will consider SB39, a measure that would make Nevada law consistent with the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, a measure relating to appraisers working in Nevada.  Seems like a bit of house-keeping but interesting housekeeping in that the bill would impose many new restrictions on the actions of appraisers, a heretofore unregulated occupation in Nevada.  This bill is intended to ensure appraisals  are conducted independently and  free from inappropriate influence and coercion pursuant to the appraisal independence standards established under 15 U.S.C. § 1639e.

1:30 – The Senate Committee on Education is scheduled to hear SB99, an act relating to education; creating the Task Force on the Creation of a Career Pathway for Teachers to study certain issues relating to the profession of teaching; requiring the Task Force to make recommendations to the Commission on Professional Standards in Education to implement its findings.

4:00 – The Senate Committee on Health and Human Services will hear SB115, a measure that would require the State Plan for Medicaid to include coverage for donor breast milk. 

Tuesday February 19, 2019

8:00 – The Senate Committee on Finance and Assembly Committee on Ways and Means, Subcommittees on K-12/Higher Education/CIP will consider the New Nevada Education Funding Plan and the Distributive School Account.

Factoid from the Nevada Department of Education: The Distributive School Account provides direct state financial aid to school districts and charter schools for K-12 public education in Nevada. The funding formula, identified by NRS 387.121 as the “Nevada Plan,” provides school districts a guaranteed dollar amount of basic state support per student. School districts and charter schools receive either monthly or quarterly apportionments from the DSA on the basis of student enrollment. Each school district is guaranteed a specific amount per student, which is developed through a formula that considers the demographic, economic, and wealth characteristics of the district.

1:30 – The Assembly Committee on Education  is scheduled to hear AB123, a measure that would change the requirements of immunization exemptions for pupils who attend public or charter schools.  The discussion of public immunizations usually makes for entertaining testimony and likely will offer rare insight into the many philosophical and religious belief systems that exist in our communities.

1:30 – The Senate Committee on Growth and infrastructure will hear a seemingly perennial bill that would authorize the installation and use of an automated traffic enforcement system by a governmental entity under certain circumstances, SB43.  Somehow, this bill is kin to a bill that would institute a state lottery. One appears and dies almost every session, but the debate makes for a worthwhile hearing. 

4:00 – A Joint Meeting of the Assembly Committee on Taxation and Senate Committee on Revenue and Economic Development will hear an overview presentation on property taxes in Nevada from Jeff Mitchell, Deputy Director, Department of Taxation.  Not sexy but important.

4:00 – The Senate Committee on Natural Resources is scheduled to consider regulations regarding the management of the state forests for fire suppression and forest health, SB56.  This is an important public safety and environmental issue.

Wednesday February 20, 2019

8:30 – The Assembly Committee on Government Affairs is scheduled to hear AB61, a bill that would authorize rather than requires the the Director of the Department of Corrections to assign offenders in a program of treatment to residential confinement; and (2) prohibits the Director from assigning offenders to residential who have failed or refused to comply with the entire program of treatment or any other program related to the classification of the offender.
1:00 – The Senate Committee on Government Affairs is scheduled to hear SB141, a bill that would expand the outreach efforts of the The Nevada Equal Rights Commission .  The bill would mandate that the Commission conduct outreach efforts to educate employers, employees and members of the public regarding the Nevada Equal Rights Commission and its role with respect to the laws relating to sexual harassment;(b)Conduct seminars, training sessions and workshops, including, without limitation, on-site workshops at places of employment, for and provide other educational services to employers, employees and members of the public regarding the laws relating to sexual harassment.
1:30 – The Assembly Committee on Commerce and Labor is expected to hear AB132, a bill that would prohibit the denial of employment because of the presence of marijuana in a screening test taken by a prospective employee; prohibiting an employer from conditioning employment on a test of the personality traits, behavioral traits or character traits of a prospective employee and other matters related to both.
The Assembly Committee on Health and Human Services will convene upon adjournment or recess of Assembly Floor Session, but no sooner than 1.30 p.m.  The committee is scheduled to hear AB124, a bill that would require a hospital or independent center for emergency medical care to adopt a written plan to ensure the performance of certain tasks when treating a female victim of sexual assault to include all forms of emergency contraception and prophylactic antibiotics.
1:30 – The Senate Committee on Education is scheduled to hear SB 147, a bill that would require school officials to take certain actions regarding homeless students.  Unaccompanied pupils and pupils in foster care could receive full or partial credit for coursework in certain circumstances; revising provisions relating to the development of an academic plan for such pupils; revising provisions relating to awarding a high school diploma to such pupils.
will hear SB123, a bill that would authorize a voter to register to vote on election day.

Thursday February 21, 2019

8:00 – The Assembly Committee on Ways and Means and Senate Committee on Finance, Subcommittees on Human Services will consider several Health and Human Services budgets to include Welfare or The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.
Legislative Counsel Bureau factoid: The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program provides cash assistance to low income families with children as the parents work toward becoming self-sufficient. The program’s goal is to reduce the number of families living in poverty, through employment and community resources. TANF is a needs-based program for families with children under age 18 (or under age 19 if the child is in high school) who need financial support because of: death of a parent; parent is absent from the home; physical or mental incapacity; or unemployment of parent. The four purposes of TANF are 1) provide assistance to needy families so children may be cared for in their homes or in the homes of relatives; 2) end the dependence of needy parents on government benefits by promoting job preparation, work, and marriage; 3) prevent and reduce the incidence of out-of-wedlock pregnancies; 4) encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families. TANF is federally funded through a block grant from the Federal Department of Health and Human Services. Under the maintenance of effort (MOE) provision in the federal regulations, states are required to contribute money equal to 80% of the amount spent on Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) and AFDC-related programs during FY 1994. The 80% MOE can be reduced to 75% for each year the work participation rates are met. For Nevada, the total TANF MOE is $27,188,122 of which $24,607,702 is in the TANF budget account. The remaining $2,580,420 is spent in the Child Care budget (3267), which is counted as MOE for both TANF and Child Care. If TANF contingency funds are received, a 100% MOE match is required. The TANF program mandates the state to participate in a Child Support Enforcement Program. Statutory Authority: NRS Chapter 422A.
The committee will hear testimony on a bill that would change the Nevada Lobbying Control Act and the way gifts are recorded, AB121.
The committee will hear a presentation from the Nevada Department of Taxation on state and local sales taxes and marijuana tax revenue.

Friday February 22, 2019

This committee is scheduled to hear AB90, a measure that would enable workers to take sick leave to tend to sick relatives.