eNEWSLETTER | Spring 2017
Education Committee Looking for New Members
It's your chance to get involved! The Education Committee is looking for new members to join the team. The Committee selects topics and coordinates training sessions for NACE. They typically organize 2-3 webinars and virtual training sessions each year. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in joining.VOLUNTEER NOW!
Ask NACE Launched!
Members of the court community will soon be able to submit questions to NACE to be answered by the NACE team of experts. Questions can be submitted anonymously from our website. The submissions will be referred to a member with subject matter expertise to respond. Answers will be archived to create a knowledge sharing resource for everyone to use!
Digest: Existing law provides that, under certain circumstances, a bail bond posted for an original offense charged must be transferred to the clerk of the court in which a related public offense is later charged and notice of the transfer must be mailed to the surety on the bond and the bail agent who executed the bond. (NRS 178.502) Section 2 of this bill authorizes the electronic transmission of the notice of such a transfer. Existing law provides that, under certain circumstances, if a defendant fails to make a required appearance in court, the court shall direct that each surety and the local agent of each surety or depositor, as applicable, be given notice by certified mail that the defendant failed to appear. (NRS 178.508) Section 3 of this bill authorizes the electronic transmission of the notice of the defendant's failure to appear. Section 3 also provides that, in the case of electronic transmission, notice shall be deemed to have been given when the electronic transmission of the notice is successfully initiated. Existing law requires notice of a motion to enforce liability for a bond to be mailed to the obligor. (NRS 178.514) Section 4 of this bill authorizes the electronic transmission of the notice of such a motion. Section 4 also provides that, in the case of electronic transmission, notice shall be deemed to have been given when the electronic transmission of the notice is successfully initiated. Section 5 of this bill requires every bail agent, bail enforcement agent, bail solicitor, insurer authorized to write surety in this State and every subsidiary corporation of any such insurer to maintain a means of receiving electronic transmissions and to receive electronic transmissions pursuant to sections 2-4 of this bill.Digest: Existing law requires and authorizes the Court Administrator, in consultation with the committee established to advise the Court Administrator regarding adoption of regulations, to adopt various regulations relating to the: (1) certification of court interpreters; and (2) criteria and procedures for the appointment of alternate court interpreters for persons with language barriers who are witnesses, defendants and litigants. (NRS 1.510, 1.520) Sections 1-6 and 8-10 of this bill clarify that a court interpreter is required to obtain a professional certificate. Sections 1, 2 and 8-10 also remove the provisions relating to the appointment of alternate court interpreters. Sections 1 and 7-10 of this bill replace the term “person with a language barrier” with “person with limited English proficiency.” Existing law provides that an interpreter must be provided at public expense for a person with a language barrier who is a defendant or witness in a criminal proceeding. (NRS 50.0545) Section 9 provides that an interpreter must be provided at public expense if the person with limited English proficiency is a defendant, party or witness in a civil or criminal proceeding.
NOTE: Would require interpreters at public expense in all civil cases. The 8th District Court estimates that this would cost ~$2.5 million more each year.Under existing law, a district court is authorized to assign a jury commissioner to select trial jurors. Existing law provides that the jury commissioner assigned to select trial jurors is required to select jurors from qualified electors of the county not exempt from jury duty, whether registered as voters or not. (NRS 6.045) Existing law further requires the Department of Motor Vehicles to provide a list of registered owners of motor vehicles and a list of licensed drivers for use in selecting jurors. (NRS 482.171, 483.225) Certain public utilities are also required to provide a list of customers for use in the selection of jurors. (NRS 704.206) Section 4 of this bill requires the Employment Security Division of the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation to provide a list of persons who receive benefits for use in jury selection. Section 1 of this bill revises the process for selecting trial jurors by requiring the jury commissioner to compile and maintain a list of qualified electors from information provided by: (1) a list of persons who are registered to vote in the county; (2) the Department of Motor Vehicles; (3) the Employment Security Division of the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation; and (4) certain public utilities. Section 1 also requires the jury commissioner to keep a record of the race of each trial juror selected and report this information twice a year to the Office of the Attorney General.
Note: Would change the process for selecting jurors and require new statistics to be kept. This has caused concern that rural courts will lack the software to comply with the proposed requirements.Digest: Existing law requires a law enforcement officer to revoke the driver's license, permit or privilege to drive of a person who has a concentration of alcohol of 0.08 or more in his or her blood or who is found to have a detectable amount of a prohibited substance in his or her blood or urine for which he or she did not have a valid prescription or hold a valid registry identification card. The driver's license, permit or privilege of the person is revoked for 90 days. (NRS 484C.210, 484C.220) Section 3 of this bill requires a person whose license, permit or privilege has been revoked to install, at his or her own expense, an ignition interlock device in each vehicle the person owns or operates as a condition to obtaining a restricted license... Read More Digest: Existing law authorizes a court to issue certain temporary or extended orders for protection. (NRS 33.020, 33.270, 33.400) Sections 2-16 of this bill enact similar provisions to provide for the issuance and enforcement of an emergency, ex parte or extended order for protection against a high-risk offender. Section 3 defines a “high-risk offender” as a person who poses a risk of causing personal injury to himself, herself or another by possessing or having under his or her custody or control, or purchasing or otherwise acquiring, any firearm or ammunition... Read More
Note: Would create an entirely new protective order type for "high-risk" offenders. The bill is vague as to which court(s) would have jurisdiction.
Brick-by-brick, a new courthouse in Las Vegas, took shape over the past year for the Nevada Supreme Court and the Nevada Court of Appeals. Activity on the corner of Fourth Street and Clark Avenue in downtown began before the end of December 2016 with the placement of forms and the installation of the steel mesh to hold up the new structure. Construction followed through the year culminating with a grand opening on March 27, 2017.
The courthouse allows each court to grow in southern Nevada. The 72-seat courtroom on the second floor has been modeled after the first courtroom for the U.S. Supreme Court. The building resembles a traditional Roman courthouse, with columns and a white stone exterior. Icons representing Nevada’s 17 counties wrap the exterior of the building and on top of the copper dome Lady Justice stands to proclaim everyone who enters the building will receive access to justice.
The courthouse meets the LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, Gold Certification level. At night the building showcases its white rock exterior with extensive LED lighting.Feature Article: Las Vegas Courthouse Opens to Public (via nvcourts.gov)
The cold rain did not dampen the enthusiasm for this year's NACM Mid-Year Conference in Portland. Event organizers reported that this was the biggest Mid-Year Conference ever. Oregon Courts were well represented with a surprisingly large contingent of court staff in attendance. NACE was also well represented, with members of the 2nd District Court, Reno Justice Court, Reno Municipal Court, Elko County Courts, and Las Vegas Justice Court attending.
This was my first time attending the Mid-Year conference, and I had heard that it was a much smaller event than the NACM Annual Conference, CTC, or eCourts. Indeed, the conference was modest in comparison to its more well-known counterparts. But, many of those in attendance shared that they preferred this shorter, more focused agenda that traded the distractions of the larger conferences for a concentrated educational program.
The theme of this year's conference was Improving the Public's Trust and Confidence in the Judiciary. Almost all of the plenary and break-out sessions were focused on the theme. The plenary sessions included discussions on community engagement and fines, fees, and bail practices. The break-outs covered topics ranging from NACM Core to how to effectively use Twitter. Several sessions emphasized the change in St. Louis in the aftermath of the Michael Brown shooting and the resulting DOJ report on Ferguson. It seemed like all of the sessions were in high-demand, as almost all of the break-outs were standing room only. At the larger conferences, there is usually a noticeable drop-off in attendance after the first day. That was not the case here, as it was still tough to get a seat in the room on the second day.
The vendor show was significantly smaller than any other court conference I have attended. However, I also found it to be the most informational. The crowds were smaller and there was less emphasis on giveaways or gimmicks to attract visitors to the booths. I enjoyed the slower pace and was able to spend more time learning about new products or networking with our existing vendors. This also turned out to be a great time to catch-up with old friends and share ideas with the group from Nevada.
NACM and NCSC continued the popular "The Dr. is In" consultations. This is an opportunity to meet with an NCSC consultant for 30 minutes on any court related topic. I've participated in these sessions several times and it is always helpful to get a different perspective on a challenge or project you may be working on. I've always left the meeting with new ideas or contacts with courts that have already experienced a similar issue.
There are also opportunities to get involved and volunteer at NACM conferences. NACE members shared their time as hosts and reporters at educational sessions and also staffed the NACM information booth on the vendor floor. You can check out my report on A Path Toward Racial Equity and Alexa's summary from the NACM Talks (like TED Talks) interactive session of Professional Development. There are some great tips in her summary, don't skip it!
NACM's next conference is its annual conference in Washington DC. This will be the first time that it is a co-hosted with the International Association of Court Administration (IACA). NACE is offering a group rate for all members interested in attending. You can download the group rate registration form from the link below. Visit www.nacmconference.org for more details. NACM's 2018 mid-year conference will be in Garden Grove, California, just a few blocks from Disneyland. I think they may set another attendance record!
NACM hosts an archive of its past conferences. The archive contains the agenda, slides, handouts, and video of all of the presentations. It is a great resource.
In Reno as elsewhere, the homeless are often unseen and just as often forgotten.
Once a year, Project Homeless Connect sponsors an annual event to extend a helping hand to homeless men, women and children. The event is sponsored by Catholic Charities of Northern Nevada and St. Vincent’s Programs. It gives free, same day services like medical care, social services, mental health services, housing information and more to the homeless and the impoverished.
This year, Project Homeless Connect was held Tuesday, January 31st from 7 a.m. to noon at the Reno Events Center. More than 90 local providers attended. Among those offering help were the Second Judicial District Court Self Help Center and Law Library, the Reno Municipal Court and the Reno Justice Court.
Three of the Second Judicial District Court staff, Julie Wise, Emily Reed and Michelle Purdy, attended. They provided information about how the Law Library and Self-Help Center help with legal problems and provide access to legal information. Court view was made available on site to view District Court cases.
Judge Pearson of the Reno Justice Court, along with 4 staff, Tami Neville, Louella Mansfield, Christine DeArman and Jason Lockhart, were in attendance. They provided information and assistance on criminal, citation and civil cases.
Judges were present who were able to quash pending citations, when appropriate. We can be proud that representatives from the judicial system did their part that day. They, and the many other providers who were present, helped those in Reno who need it the most.
On Dec. 5, 2016, Justice Lidia S. Stiglich took her oath of office, becoming the newest justice to join the Nevada Supreme Court. Governor Brian Sandoval appointed Stiglich on Nov. 10, 2016, following the retirement of former Justice Nancy Saitta. Currently, Stiglich serves as a member of the Nevada Supreme Court’s Indigent Defense Commission and the Commission on Statewide Rules of Criminal Procedure.
Texas is undergoing an ambitious project to provide a public access portal for all courts. Though the end-goal is admirable, the effort has been met with some resistance. The articles linked below provide important insights into the complications and push-back that can occur on projects that enforce standards in a non-unified court system.
An article that explores the intersection of our intuition and evidence based management. This article advocates that we should trust data, and not our instincts, to guide us in making personnel decisions regarding motivation.Read More at HBR.org
An interview with social psychologist Adam Alter that discusses our behavioral addictions to social media and smart devices. He discusses the potential harm that this can have on our productivity and interpersonal relationships.
Upcoming NACE Board Meetings
All members of NACE are encouraged to participate in the monthly board meetings. Board meetings are conducted on the third Wednesday every month from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.Event Information