The Clark County Commission has authority to seek North Las Vegas Constable Robert Eliason’s ouster from office, according to an opinion issued this month by Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt.
The opinion contradicts an injunction District Court Judge Elissa Cadish issued in July, which stated Eliason could only be unseated if the governor directed the attorney general to remove him through an action known as quo warranto.
Cadish’s ruling came after Eliason sued the county commission for publicly discussing whether to declare his office forfeit and vacant because he never obtained the required law enforcement certification.
The attorney general opinion states that in addition to quo warranto, the county, or anybody for that matter, could request a District Court judge to remove Eliason from office.
“A constable’s failure to become POST certified within the time required by statute is reasonable defined as ‘nonfeasance’ or the ‘total neglect’ of a duty necessary for the position,” the opinion states.
It is unclear how much, if at all, the attorney general opinion will affect Eliason’s tenure in office.
His lawsuit, now in federal court, seeks to nullify the state law requiring certification. Eliason’s attorney claims a “documented neurological condition” prevents the constable from passing the sit-ups test required for certification and, therefore, the law violates the federal Americans with Disabilities Act.
Neither the county nor Eliason’s attorney returned a request for comment.
Eliason can file for re-election from March 5-16.
Gov. Brian Sandoval requested the attorney general opinion in September after the county asked him to seek Eliason’s removal from office.
The opinion states that Eliason’s lawsuit will resolve whether he can stay in office. Action by the governor, it states, would be duplicative and unnecessary.
Contact Michael Scott Davidson at email@example.com or 702-477-3861. Follow @davidsonlvrj on Twitter.