Door opened to hiring retirees as Nevada correctional officers |

Door opened to hiring retirees as Nevada correctional officers

The Board of Examiners on Tuesday voted to expand the prison system's ability to hire retirees beyond just retired correctional officers.

Deputy Director for Operations John Borrowman told the board headed by Gov. Brian Sandoval the change applies to rural institutions where corrections currently has 79 vacancies and extreme trouble finding suitable candidates to hire.

The department has had the ability to hire retired correctional officers under the critical shortage statute — which means they can go back to work without losing their PERS retirement income.

He said they've had some law enforcement retirees show an interest in the jobs but the problem is they retired from municipal or local law enforcement agencies, not from corrections.

"We're interested in hiring anybody willing to come to the department of corrections," he said.

Borrowman said the department can provide the added training those retired law enforcement officers would need to become corrections officers.

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At the request of Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske, the board continued a decision on whether to write off $761,721 in bad debt from the Division of Industrial Relations.

The vast majority of that debt is money owed to the uninsured employer claim account and to workers' compensation administrative fines and premium penalties.

Members were told the agency and the controller's office believe that debt is uncollectable. But Cegavske questioned whether the businesses involved were still doing business in Nevada. She was told upward of 18 businesses on the list and two vendors were still active in Nevada.

"If they owe this debt and we're writing it off, we need to look at the justification for them still doing business here," she said.

Sandoval agreed saying if any of those businesses are still in business in Nevada, "we should be making some effort to collect these fines."

The board voted to ask the agencies to see whether any of that money owed to the state can be collected.

The board approved increasing the planning money to upgrade and refurbish the state Library and Archives building behind the state Capitol to $69,850. Acting Public Works Manager Chris Chimits and Director of Administration Patrick Cates told the board the goal is to turn the 1992 building into a 21st Century state of the art facility to provide training, certification programs and meeting space including for vendor fairs. It would also provide a major upgrade to the state library.

Chimits estimated a large share of the money the project would require would be technology, that the actual construction would be in the range of $300,000.

Finally, the board approved expansion of the state contract with Medical Transportation Management by $39.2 million, raising the total maximum contract to $66.1 million over the coming two years.

MTM provides medical transportation for Medicaid recipients across the state to get to their medical appointments, get prescriptions, get to and from home. Members were told the service provides 120,000 transportation rides each month and both usage and the cost of rides are increasing. Sandoval pointed out the program has "a lot of clients and most clients don't have transportation. The total cost of the program, which has greater than the $66 million, is borne by the federal government.