Vote Nevada Update March 20, 2021

Vote Nevada Supporters,

Here are some free online courses that can be completed in 8 hours or less: https://www.coursera.org/collections/free-online-courses-finish-in-a-day

Assemblywoman Natha Anderson’s important bill, ACR5, which creates an interim study on mental and behavioral health workforce development received a hearing on Thursday, March 18th, you can listen to the recording (click on View) and contribute to the Opinion Poll here: https://www.leg.state.nv.us/App/NELIS/REL/81st2021/Meeting/9035?p=1009035

We have additional resources available on mental and behavioral health reform on our Vote Nevada blog for advocacy reference: https://vote-nevada-blog.org/mental-and-behavioral-health/

Part of the responsibility for implementing workforce development plans lay with the Higher Education Board of Regents, so we are encouraging our supporters to also start reaching out to their Regents on this issue. 

Voters can find their Regent through this tool: https://nvlcb.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=9c2cd4575624417fa56fd084a7ee4dd9   We are hoping for a college program that allows mental and behavioral health graduates to have their tuition forgiven if they agree to stay and work in Nevada.

To further ensure access to important services, we are also following the Nevada Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights study of Remote Learning and Education Equity.  The committee hosted one panel on March 3rd to hear from education leaders and the committee is hosting a second panel on March 31st to hear from educators and mental health leaders. 

The public can submit written comments on the topic at afortes@usccr.gov and you can sign-up for the March 31st hearing that will be online through Webex, here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1386405881735143

The Advisory Committee strongly urges members of the public to submit written comments to provide all the information it needs to write comprehensive recommendations at the end of the study.  Vote Nevada is stressing the need for universal access to high quality internet service in our comments.  Right now families lacking internet service are disconnected from both school and from telehealth care.

Our meeting on inclusive workforce and small business/nonprofit development is next Saturday, March 27th, via Zoom, 9-11.  Here is a touching example of the type of inclusive workforce development we hope Nevada can lead the way in creating: https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/16/us/man-autism-linkedin-cover-letter-trnd/index.html

We are hoping Lt. Governor Kate Marshall will also be joining us to discuss her bill AB184, which will restore the resources needed to help Nevadans start small businesses and nonprofits to her office. https://www.leg.state.nv.us/App/NELIS/REL/81st2021/Bill/7569/Overview

In redistricting news, we have a bill!  Our Fair Maps Nevada redistricting amendment is now SJR9 and has been assigned to Senate Legislative Operations and Election for a hearing. https://www.leg.state.nv.us/App/NELIS/REL/81st2021/Bill/7569/Overview

Here is a short clip from former President Obama and former Attorney General Eric Holder about the insidious effects of gerrymandering. https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=980423032394984

To reacquaint everyone with our amendment and how it would change the redistricting process, we are hosting a Zoom meeting on April 3rd, 9-11 am, with One Arizona organizer Victoria Ochoa.  It was the Supreme Court ruling in Arizona Legislature v. Arizona Redistricting Commission (2015) that established the constitutionality of redistricting commissions.  

Victoria will talk about Arizona’s experience and answer questions.  You can RSVP for this meeting here: https://actionnetwork.org/events/redistricting-reform-is-back/

We are also preparing an education initiative to help the public engage in the upcoming redistricting process.  Because the Census Bureau anticipates a September 30th data release date, Nevada’s redistricting will not happen until October or November in a special legislative session. 

We are taking advantage of this delay to host mock redistricting sessions this summer with students and the public.  During these sessions we will offer training on using a new communities of interest mapping tool, called Representable https://representable.org/, and our actual redistricting software, which Utah used in the last redistricting cycle: https://www.esri.com/en-us/arcgis/products/esri-redistricting/overview/redistricting-utah-case-study

With these new technology tools the public will have the exact same ability to produce and evaluate maps as legislators.  You can read more about this here: https://gerrymander.princeton.edu/

Lastly, our April 24th Earth Day meeting will focus on birds, which are literally the canary in the coal mine.  Bird behavior tells us when something is wrong; and when hundreds of birds starve to death in New Mexico, something is very wrong.  We have invited ornithologist Dr. Martha Desmond from New Mexico State University to chat with us about what happened in New Mexico and what this bird die-off can tell us about climate change. https://www.lascrucesbulletin.com/stories/nmsu-researcher-warns-massive-bird-die-off-is-an-alarm,4897

We will also hear from the Red Rock Audubon Society about local birding opportunities.

You can RSVP for that meeting here: https://actionnetwork.org/events/vote-nevada-why-are-the-birds-starving/   

Thanks for being a Nevadan with me!

Sondra  

Mission Statement:

Problem solving with Civics

Vote Nevada is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit civic engagement organization.  Anyone can become a supporter by emailing info@vote-nevada.org, we have no membership dues.  We do, however, accept donations Here

 

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