Home / Wabuska Mangler / 2015 Legislature recap

2015 Legislature recap

Nevada Legislative Building. Photo by Barry Smith

Below is a list of bills tracked by Nevada Press Association during the 2015 session that were of particular interest to members.

Each bill is linked to the Legislative Counsel Bureau page with a history of the bill. To read the final version of bills that were approved, click on the ‘Enrolled’ link. We have provided a brief explanation of changes in the bills, mainly as they related to open government or our interest in the bill. For a better summary, read the digest at the top of each bill itself.

Attorney General
Revises provisions governing meetings of public bodies.
It makes some technical changes, defining ‘working day’ and clarifying when minutes are available. It also provides that Attorney General’s Office can keep secret its investigative reports while pursuing a complaint.
Signed by the governor.

BDR 19-157
Attorney General
Revises provisions governing public records.
Withdrawn prior to the session.

Attorney General
Revises provisions governing the unlawful dissemination of an intimate image of another person.
Signed by governor.

Attorney General
Revises provisions governing administrative regulations of state agencies.
Approved by governor.

Internal Audits, Division of Administration
Makes information reported on the state’s fraud hotline confidential.
It closes off this information, which we opposed, but does require a report on the investigation of complaints.
Signed by governor.

Economic Development, Office of the Governor
Revises provisions governing the dissemination of records by the Central Repository for Nevada Records of Criminal History.
Creates an ‘employment screening service.’
Signed by governor.

Commission on Ethics
Revises provisions of the Nevada Ethics in Government Law, in some instances increasing the confidentiality.
Signed by governor.

Department of Corrections
Revises requirements regarding inspection of public records by inmates of facilities of Department of Corrections.
Died in committee.

Gaming Control Board
Revises provisions governing the State Gaming Control Board, exempting certain actions from the Open Meeting Law.
As described in testimony, the board would be able to discuss an investigation before determining whether to file a formal complaint.
Signed by governor.

Department of Transportation
Clarifies confidentiality provisions governing documents in the procurement process of the Department of Transportation.
This bill mainly involves proprietary information and trade secrets submitted to NDOT in the bid process. However, inserted into the bill is a potentially crucial clause, which clarifies “if a public book or record is declared by law to be open to the public, such a declaration does not imply, and must not be construed to mean, that a public book or record is confidential if it is not declared by law to be open to the public and is not otherwise declared by law to be confidential.” Kind of a backstop to the existing interpretation of the Open Records statute.
Signed by governor.

Attorney General
Clarifies provisions governing the requirements for reporting campaign contributions and expenditures.
Signed by governor.

Assembly Committee on Judiciary
Revises provisions governing when juvenile records may be sealed.
Signed by governor.

Secretary of State
Revises provisions relating to elections and campaign finance reporting.
Signed by governor.

Nevada League of Cities and Municipalities
Clarifies provisions governing the fees that may be charged for providing copies of public records.
Died in committee.

Clark County
Revises provisions relating to the public records of county hospitals and meetings of the governing bodies of county hospitals.
Signed by governor.

Nevada Supreme Court
Revises provisions governing the maintenance and release of juvenile justice information by certain agencies.
Signed by governor.

Legislative Commission (NRS 218E.150)
Authorizes training for state employees in administration of records and allows disciplinary action against employee who improperly disposes of official state record.
Signed by governor.

Senator Parks
Revises provisions governing the publication of property tax rolls.
County assessors now have the option of publishing their property assessment rolls on the internet. The law requires a significant public notice in newspapers in 2015, but that notice is reduced for subsequent years.
Signed by governor.

Senator Ford
Requires body cameras for Nevada Highway Patrol officers. Makes them public records, although they must be requested on a per-incident basis and, if they contain confidential information that can’t be redacted, may only be viewed.
Signed by governor.

Assemblyman Flores
Expands the definition of personal information that must be kept confidential to include health-insurance ID numbers and an e-mail address in conjunction with a password.
Signed by governor.

Senator Smith
Waives the requirement for publication of a name-change notice if the reason for the change is gender identity.
Died in committee.

Judiciary Committee
Amends Nevada’s anti-SLAPP statutes, rolling back several of the provisions adopted in 2013 for dismissing SLAPP suits.
Signed by governor.

Legislative Operations and Elections
This is a bill we did not track, and weren’t even aware of until long after the session ended and it came up in a response to a records request. The reason we didn’t know about it: It was introduced at a back-of-the-bar committee meeting and then swept through both houses in the final hours of the session. It removes the Legislature from the provisions of the state’s open-records statutes.

Check Also

Contest judging in February? You betcha.

We’re judging North Dakota’s newspaper contest this year, which means we need volunteers to sign …