New Life For NV's Death Chamber And The Other 200 New Laws Taking Effect


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200 new laws take effect Wednesday.

Nevada has more than 80 inmates on death row at the Ely State Prison. These are men and women scheduled to die by lethal injection.

And the governor has signed into law a bill investing some $900,000 in a new death chamber.

Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist Steve Sebelius told KNPR's State of Nevada that even though there is no execution scheduled for the state the new death chamber will go forward.

The Department of Corrections successfully argued that every day they wait will cost the state more money. 

That’s just one new horizon facing Nevada. Wednesday, some 200 laws approved by the state Legislature go into force.

Sebelius said the laws that will have the biggest impact will be ones focused on education.

“I think as a group the school reform bills that are going in effect are going to have the longest term impact,” he said.

Some of the bills in the package include:

Read by Three, which provides support for struggling readers, notifies parents if a child is not meeting grade requirements in reading and holds back children who are not at reading level by third grade. 

Zoom School, which expands the number of Zoom Schools. The program provides extra money and support for schools with a high percentage of English language learners. 

Support comes from

Victory Schools, which provides extra money and resources for in low-income neighborhoods. 

Breakfast After the Bell, which expands the number of schools that provide breakfast for low-income students.

Anti-Bullying, which sets up a 24-hour hotline and requires schools to inform parents if their child was a victim or a perpetrator of bullying with 48 hours of an incident.

Millennial scholarships, which requires students receiving the state scholarship to take more hours and graduate faster.

Private school vouchers, which allows parents to apply the state's per-student payment to private school tuition. 

“As much as some Assembly Republicans wanted to make this the ‘gun session’ this really was the education session,” Sebelius said.

Other new laws will give the public unprecedented views of collective bargaining agreements between government and public employees; allow school buses to travel faster than 55 mph; and give a slight bump in pay for state workers.




Steve Sebelius, political columnist, Las Vegas Review-Journal

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