CARSON CITY, NV – May 19, 2023
Following today’s committee passage deadline, Governor Joe Lombardo’s office reaffirmed his commitment to school safety legislation that protects students and teachers and stated that the legislation passed by the Senate Education Committee today is insufficient and would not be signed without significant changes.
“We expect school safety legislation to actually make schools safer. Governor Lombardo will not sign legislation that allows a student to commit battery against a teacher and have the only mandatory punishment be a meeting with their parents,” said Ben Kieckhefer, Chief of Staff to Governor Lombardo. “This is not good enough. We need to do better for our teachers and children.”
Despite Governor Lombardo’s Safer and Supportive Schools Act (AB 330) not advancing from committee today, Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro and Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager agreed to waive all deadlines on the Governor’s bill, keeping it alive for the remainder of the legislative session and allowing further negotiations on the legislation.
AB 330 was passed out of the Nevada Assembly in April with sweeping bipartisan support. AB 330 is supported by diverse groups across the state, including: all 17 Nevada superintendents, the Clark County Education Association (CCEA), the Clark County Association of School Administrators and Professional-Technical Employees (CCASAPE), the Education Support Employees Association (ESEA), the Nevada Association of School Boards, the Latin Chamber of Commerce, and the Charter School Association of Nevada, among others.
Governor Lombardo drafted and introduced his school safety legislation in response to the growing epidemic of school violence in Nevada. Last year, there were over 6,800 violent incidents reported at Clark County School District (CCSD) schools within a 7-month period. Over 90% of CCSD schools reported at least one violent incident in the last year, and since 2018, there has been a 46% increase in violence and sexual assaults reported within the school district. In Washoe County, there have been over 7,400 violent incidents reported within the Washoe County School District this year alone.
Public polling shows that 71% of Nevadans support Governor Lombardo’s plans to make Nevada schools safer.