Court hearing delayed for ex-Nevada lawmaker
LAS VEGAS (AP) — A court hearing in California has been postponed to next month for a former Las Vegas-area lawmaker jailed on felony charges following a freeway chase and violent struggle with police the same day he was expelled from the Nevada state Assembly.
A San Bernardino County district attorney spokesman said Tuesday that a judge in Barstow set a May 7 date for Steven Brooks to appear in court, and a May 9 date for a preliminary hearing.
Brooks’ attorney in Nevada, Mitchell Posin, says the delay allows time to get Brooks into a court-ordered psychiatric counseling program.
Brooks pleaded not guilty a week ago to charges including resisting an officer, felony evading and assault on a police animal stemming from his March 28 arrest on Interstate 15 near Victorville.
Nevada committee passes major sex trafficking bill
(AP) — Nevada lawmakers continue their drive for anti-sex trafficking legislation by passing the session’s most comprehensive bill on the subject.
Members of the Assembly Judiciary Committee voted AB67 out of committee unanimously Tuesday, just days before the deadline for bills to clear committee.
The bill defines sex trafficking, stiffens criminal penalties, provides tools for victims and law enforcement officers and includes customers of trafficked persons in the same criminal class as the traffickers in some cases.
Nevada Attorney General Catherine Masto is the lead proponent for AB67.
The committee also passed AB146, which increases the penalties for holding a minor against their will and forcing them to do acts of service or committing other crimes.
The bills now awaits a full Assembly vote.
Sandoval administration pushes school choice plan
(AP) — Gov. Brian Sandoval wants to give businesses tax breaks for donating money to fund school choice scholarships for disadvantaged youth.
Sandoval’s legal counsel, tax chief and interim school superintendent presented SB445 Tuesday to the Senate Revenue Committee. No action was taken.
Administration officials say 14 states have adopted similar legislation.
The bill would give businesses a dollar-for-dollar tax credit for money donated to a scholarship organization. The organization would then make grants to disadvantaged youth to attend private schools or receive homeschooling materials.
Total tax breaks for the program would be capped at $5 million a year, and officials say it would not reduce money for K-12 education.
But others say the money would still come out of the state general fund and somebody’s budget.
Senate bill changes teacher layoff procedures
(AP) — A Nevada senator is trying to convince his colleagues that school districts should be required to consider teacher performance when deciding who to fire when layoffs are necessary.
Republican Sen. Greg Brower of Reno presented SB193 to the Senate committee on education Monday night.
The measure would require school boards or districts to include teacher evaluations in the criteria they consider when deciding which teachers should be fired when there are layoffs. Current law allows evaluations to be a factor in the decision making process, but it is not required.
Opponents say the process for determining the best course of action during layoffs should be decided on the local level rather than state statute.
No action was taken on the bill Monday.