HDSP BOOK DRIVE!

ATTENTION: The following are the North and South drop off points for books for the NV-CURE High Desert State Prison (HDSP) soft cover book donation drive.
NORTH: Gale, Reno, NV, telephone 775.335.7773 (9:00 AM until 4:00 PM Only – Weekdays).

SOUTH: Kim, 702-378.1217, call and arrange for drop off or pick up.

Alternatively, drop off at NV-CURE Office, 540 E. St. Louis Ave., Las Vegas, NV (9:00 AM until 4:00 PM ONLY – Weekdays)

We still have not obtained approval from the NDOC for the book donations. However, if you recall, it is a long process. We look to have approval in the very near future.

PLEASE – get the books together and get them dropped off. We are counting on you all to gather at least 1,000 books. GET BUSY. Thanks for the help. The guys inside will appreciate it.
Very Best to All

Bad News: ACLU NV supports AB 74

As a long time supporter of civil rights and liberties, I am bewildered and angered by the ACLU’s support  (under the heading “equality”!) for AB 74, which would establish fees and registration of documents preparers,  who are the often the only access to the legal system for poor communities in Nevada. How is this equality? Why would the ACLU support such a bill?
While attorneys in Nevada are not required to carry malpractice insurance; however, AB 74, if passed as written, will require paralegals to carry a $50,000. 00 bond. As stated in the bill, the bond is to cover any misconduct of the paralegal. If attorneys are not required to carry malpractice insurance, why are they not required to carry at least a $150,000.00 bond? How is the client protected from attorney misconduct when they do not follow the Rules of Professional Conduct?

There is more: registration fees and fees for FBI background check and fingerprinting and –possibly the most absurd and egregious portion —  a provision prohibiting ex-felons from preparing documents. How does that promote equality?

Why are attorneys not required to post notice of their fees for potential clients?  And provide the notice in English and any other language that are native to the majority of the attorney’s clients?
Imagine what would happen if attorneys had to post their fees? We would finally see accountability in the legal profession, or it would be a start anyway, some semblance of social responsibility on the part of Nevada’s legal community. Instead, the ACLU goes after paralegals?
I almost can’t believe I am typing these words.

If the ACLU was worried about equality, it would propose and support legislation to require increased pro bono hours by attorneys, AND not give attorneys an pass by paying a few hundred dollars.  Poor people
do not trust the legal community because the legal community is not trustworthy. This is not about paralegals. This is about attorneys taking people’s money and leaving them high and dry without legal help. These lawyers – and yes, there are many in Nevada – are called dump trucks.

Low income communities need paralegals. We can’t afford attorneys’ outrageous fees. Additionally, how many attorneys in Nevada have EVER done a pro bono case for a prisoner? Prisoners in Nevada are going blind from denial of basic medical care, denied their basic rights in the form of hearing aids and other assistive devices, suffering physical and sexual abuse , retaliation for use of the grievance process and other violations of their constitutional rights. Nevada attorneys, with a VERY few exceptions do not assist prisoners. Now the ACLU would like to take away the paralegals who do help them? Under the heading “equality”? Really?

Please reconsider your support for AB 74. It is bad for poor people and anyone who has been and continues to be denied access to the court system.
N. Smith

NV Legislature: proposed changes in bills

Proposed Amendments to AB 65
Contact Information: John Witherow, President NV Cure
231.313.0059 or Nevadacure@gmail.com

Propose to Amend Bill as follows:
Amend the bill by amending Section 2, page 3 by deleting the words grant, deny,
continue in line 7 and the words or to establish or modify the terms of the parole of a prisoner in lines 8 and 9

(c) Meetings of the State Board of Parole Commissioners
7 when acting to grant, deny, continue or revoke the parole of a
8 prisoner or to establish or modify the terms of the parole of a
9 prisoner.

Purpose of amendment: To bring that section into compliance with current NRS

NRS 213.1214 Evaluation of prisoners by panel before grant or continuation of
parole; panel to adopt standards of assessment; immunity; regulations; duties of
panel; conduct of meetings of panel.
10.  Meetings of a panel pursuant to this section must be conducted in accordance with the provisions of chapter 241 of NRS.

NRS 213.131  Consideration for parole: Duties of Department of Corrections;
use of photographs related to offense during meeting of the State Board of Parole
Commissioners; conduct of meeting; notice of meeting to victim; prisoner’s rights;
notice to prisoner of decision of Board
3.   Meetings to consider prisoners for parole may be held semiannually or more often, on such dates as may be fixed by the Board. All meetings are quasi-judicial and must be open to the public. No rights other than those conferred pursuant to this section or pursuant to specific statute concerning meetings to consider prisoners for parole are available to any person with respect to such meetings.

Explanation:

NV-Cure agrees with and requests that you amend Section 2(d) as requested by Special Deputy Attorney General Brett Kandt and George Taylor (Amendment #1)

NV-CURE adamantly opposes the inclusion of Section 2(c) exempting the Board
of Parole Commissioners when acting to grant, deny, continue or revoke parole of a prisoner or to establish or modify the terms of parole of a prisoner. The Parole Board ONLY ACTS IN A QUASI-JUDICIAL CAPACITY when revoking a parole of a
prisoner (Prisoners are provided minimum required due process procedural protections in a parole REVOCATION hearings) and those hearings, which are open to the public, may be exempted from all OML requirements.

However, the Parole Board is NOT ACTING in a quasi-judicial capacity when acting to grant, deny, continue parole or when acting to establish or modify the terms of a parole and those procedures are currently under the OML as evidenced in NRS 213.1214 and NRS 213.131.

Without changes to the provisions of Section 2(c) reflecting the position of NV-
CURE and the elimination of Section 2(d), in our opinion the bill needs to die in
committee as those sections are not in compliance with the current NRS.

Las Vegas: Prison Labor Used to Beat the Odds

This research article comes from the weblog: Voters Legislative Transparency Project. We are glad that they have investigated this:

Jan. 11th 2013, by Bob Sloan

Thousands of tourists, businessmen, CEO’s and executives from all over the world mix with citizens of Nevada in the luxury and splendor of Las Vegas’ many hotels and casinos. Most come to this beautiful city for the gambling and incredible shows found everywhere one turns. Inside the cool confines of casinos visitors can trust that every slot machine, roulette table and blackjack shoe is checked and monitored to guarantee fair play – no magnets under the roulette table, no dealer manipulating the cards or slots rigged to never pay out. Those trying to shave the odds are not welcome and at the first hint of cheating, find themselves on the sidewalk, banned or worse.

Each casino has a multitude of surveillance cameras to guarantee play is fair and the odds are understood by all who play the quarter slots or sit down at the high roller poker table. To ensure such fairness, the Nevada Gaming Commission regulates every aspect of gambling in the entire state. Strict penalties for violation of gaming regulations by casino operators keep each in line and playing by the rules.

Outside the casinos, locals find the guarantees of fair play and manipulation of odds are not so well regulated. State agencies responsible for overseeing and enforcing specific state laws and regulations have lost their vigilance. In at least one case a state regulation involving the Nevada Department of Corrections is providing one company an unfair advantage over competitors. The prize sought isn’t a hundred dollar hit on quarter slots, its millions in profits. An important aspect of this advantage provided to a single company, is an increase in Nevada’s already high 10.8% unemployment rate.

The issue is an ongoing battle being waged over the use of inmate labor by a private company, Alpine Steel operating out of Las Vegas, NV. Alpine is competing directly against other Nevada companies in the field of structural steel fabrication. Alpine’s competitors pay fair wages, benefits, provide unemployment insurance and vacation pay, while Alpine avoids all those costs.

It is not illegal for companies to be allowed to use prison labor under current laws but there are strict state and federal regulations involved that must be met before allowing direct competition with prison made products:

Mandatory Criteria for Program Participation Corrections departments that apply to participate in PIECP must meet all nine of the following criteria:

1. Eligibility. Authority to involve the private sector in the production and sale of inmate-made goods on the open market.
2. Wages. Authority to pay wages at a rate not less than that paid for work of a similar nature in the locality in which the work is performed.
3. Non-inmate worker displacement. Written assurances that PIECP will not result in the displacement of employed workers; be applied in skills, crafts, or trades in which there is a surplus of available gainful labor in the locality; or significantly impair existing contracts.
4. Benefits. Authority to provide inmate workers with benefits comparable to those made available by the federal or state government to similarly situated private-sector employees, including workers’ compensation and, in some circumstances, Social Security.
5. Deductions. Corrections departments may opt to take deductions from inmate worker wages. Permissible deductions are limited to taxes, room and board, family support, and victims’ compensation. If victims’ compensation deductions are taken, written assurances that the deductions will be not less than 5 percent and not more than 20 percent of gross wages and that all deductions will not total more than 80 percent of gross wages.
6. Voluntary participation. Written assurances that inmate participation is voluntary.
7. Consultation with organized labor. Written proof of consultation with organized labor prior to program startup.
8. Consultation with local private industry. Written proof of consultation with local private industry prior to program startup.
9. National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Written proof of compliance with NEPA requirements prior to program startup. (emphasis mine, source BJA PIECP program overview) In the instant case, most of the above mandatory regulations are being ignored – entirely. Prevailing wages paid by most in the steel fabrication industry in Las Vegas are in excess of $17.00 per hour. The inmates manufacturing components for Alpine are paid less than half that scale at minimum wage or less.

By having access to and using inmate labor provided by Nevada’s Silver State Industries (SSI), Alpine Steel, is able to underbid competitors for structural steel construction projects. This company is just one of several businesses in Nevada (and 150 others nationwide) enjoying increased benefits and profits derived from inmate labor. Other Nevada companies enjoying similar access to inmate labor include; Vinyl Products, Inc., (vinyl waterbeds), Thomson Equipment Company (Silver Line Industries trailer manufacture and remanufacturing) and Jacobs Trading Company (repackaging).

Alpine Steel is currently manufacturing and installing prison made structural steel components at three locations in Las Vegas; the SkyVue (Ferris Wheel developed by Howard Bulloch), Staluppi Automotive Group’s Planet Mazda and Wet ‘n’ Wild Las Vegas (financed by Andre Agassi; his wife, Steffi Graf; Dr. Steven and Karen Thomas, members of the Thomas family of Thomas & Mack Center fame; and Roger and Scott Bulloch, of SPB Capital Partners). Companies competing with Alpine Steel for these contracts, were totally unaware they were competing against a company with such a distinct and hidden advantage.

While the Staluppi and water park projects are actively being constructed, the Sky Vue job appears to be abandoned, though developer Howard Bulloch assures the absence of activity is due to plan revisions – and not a lack of funding.

Unfortunately the original post was removed, so part 2 and 3 are also not found. Until we find these…