Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Nevada pursues definition of ‘crimes of moral turpitude’ – Las Vegas Review-Journal

Nevada pursues definition of ‘crimes of moral turpitude’ – Las Vegas Review-Journal:

Nevada pursues definition of ‘crimes of moral turpitude’

You can’t be a teacher in Nevada if you’ve been convicted of a felony or a “crime of moral turpitude.”
Trouble is, the state has no clear definition of the term “moral turpitude” for state Department of Education officials to use when licensing teachers and other education professionals. A proposed regulation that would specify qualifying crimes aims to change that.
“It’s probably just good common sense a lot of the things that are on there, things we know are wrong,” said Jason Dietrich, the state’s director of educator licensure. “It’s just working the logistics on some of it.”
Moral turpitude, which generally refers to crimes that violate a community’s accepted standards, arises mostly in immigration cases. But even there, case law is unclear, education officials said.
As it stands, defining moral turpitude falls to the state superintendent, Steve Canavero. But the state Education Department began seeking clarity about two years ago, launching the process that led to the draft regulation.
Although not prompted by the rash of recent employee arrests in the Clark County School District — as outlined in the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s recent Broken Trustseries — having a clear definition of moral turpitude is needed to help state and district officials pre-empt improper conduct or punish offenders.
In late June, Department of Education officials presented two dozen examples of crimes that they want included on the list to the Legislative Commission. Under their proposal, convictions for burglary, arson, child endangerment, child abuse and anything sexual would be grounds to deny an initial license or a license renewal or to revoke a current license.
In a given year, the department processes between 12,000 and 15,000 license applications and renewals. In the last three years, about 120 applications have been denied.
Lawmaker concerns
While generally supporting the effort to define moral turpitude, the Legislative Commission declined to approve the regulation as presented and returned it to the department for revision.
Concerns included differences in federal and state laws related to Nevada pursues definition of ‘crimes of moral turpitude’ – Las Vegas Review-Journal:

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