Nevada Legislature: Health insurance, body cameras on Week 5 docket

On Wednesday, lawmakers will gather in joint session to hear Chief Justice Michael Cherry’s State of the Judiciary address. The address is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.

It’s one of several addresses lawmakers hear every session following the governor’s State of the State speech.

Future addresses will include speeches from members of Nevada’s congressional delegation.

Two bills requiring Nevada insurance plans and state Medicaid to cover contraception will be heard this week.

The Assembly Health and Human Services Committee will take up Assembly Bill 249 on Monday. That bill would require all health insurance plans to provide contraception benefits at no added cost to the insured. The Senate Health and Human Services Committee will take up Senate Bill 233, which imposes similar requirements, on Monday as well. That same committee is scheduled to vote on SB233 on Wednesday, sending it to the floor for approval.

The Senate Government Affairs Committee on Monday reviews SB176, a bill expanding the requirement that peace officers wear body cameras. Those cameras are already required for Nevada Highway Patrol troopers and authorized for other agencies. The bill would extend that requirement to all police agencies and pay for them with a surcharge on the current 911 telephone system tax. Senate Majority Leader Aaron Ford, D-Las Vegas, said the bill is a priority for the black caucus but also supported not only by civil libertarians but law enforcement.

SB224 is a related measure that would require installation of video cameras in special education classes in public and charter schools. That measure will be heard Tuesday in the Senate Education Committee.

Also on Monday, the Assembly Judiciary takes up AB185, a bill that would keep juvenile defendants out of the adult prison system, requiring they be held in a facility for detention of children unless good cause is shown until they reach age 18.

The Assembly Corrections, Parole and Probation Committee on Tuesday votes on AB181, a bill that would make it easier for convicted felons to get their rights including voting right back after completing their prison and parole terms. AB125 set for a hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday would do much the same.

The money committees take their second shot at the complex proposed K-12 education budgets on Tuesday.

The Assembly Legislative Operations and Elections Committee hears the proposed ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment for women on Tuesday. SJR2 has already passed the Senate and is expected to win approval in the Assembly as well. This is the fourth attempt to pass the ERA through the Nevada Legislature.

That same committee also will review AB143, a bill that would insert the Legislature farther into the economic development process by creating a legislative committee on Tax Expenditures and Incentives. That committee would have the responsibility to review and evaluate all economic development incentives. In addition, AB170 would extend the requirement for the executive branch to submit quarterly reports to the Legislature on the issuance of tax credits to Tesla and Faraday Future until 2032. That requirement is currently set to expire later this year. Some lawmakers have been frustrated with the incentives arguing they don’t have enough information to determine whether those incentives are actually benefitting the state.

On Wednesday, the Assembly Judiciary Committee will review AB142, a bill designed to enable the state to give some protection to Dreamers by declaring them a “special immigrant juvenile” in need of protection under the law.

SB197 extends the authority of the state to issue up to $100 million in bonds for projects to protect and enhance the environment of the Lake Tahoe basin. That authority would otherwise expire in 2020. The measure will be heard Wednesday in the Senate Committee on Government Affairs.

On Thursday, money committees will hear the Department of Taxation’s plans for regulating recreational marijuana, including a discussion of the tax revenue marijuana is expected to generate. The governor’s proposed budget includes a total of $100 million in marijuana tax money over the biennium.

Assembly Legislative Operations and Elections members Thursday will examine AJR7, a resolution that expresses Nevada’s opposition to any cuts to the Medicare and Social Security programs by the Trump administration.

As of Saturday, only one committee meeting was scheduled for Friday — a money committee panel review of the Aging and Disability Services budgets.

Monday is Mining Day at the Legislature. Wednesday are events by the Nevada Justice Association, the Northern Human Resources Association and the Supreme Court’s Legislative reception in the Supreme Court building rotunda.


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