County commissioners debate timeline for Brooks replacement

Clark County commissioners disagree about how quickly to move forward on appointing a replacement for Steven Brooks, who was expelled from the Assembly on Thursday.

Commissioner Tom Collins said they could get applicants and make a decision as early as Wednesday and send someone up to work the rest of the legislative session representing Assembly District 17, which lies in North Las Vegas.

Collins is upset that commission Chairman Steve Sisolak won’t add that decision to the agenda as an emergency provision and have a new legislator in place on Wednesday.

“If they wanted to make this a quick appointment, they could use the emergency provision in this,” Collins said.

The Legislature is nearing the midpoint of its 120-day session and must adjourn by June 3.

Sisolak said taht it’s not an emergency and that the process cannot be rushed. Instead, it needs to be open and fair, with potential applicants getting enough time to talk about the decision with their spouse and employers before putting in for the job.

“In my understanding in talking with our legal counsel, this is not an emergency item,” he said.

Sisolak said commissioners had talked about the importance of going through an open, fair process following its appointment of Lesley Cohen on Dec. 18 to a seat in Assembly District 29 after Democratic Assemblywoman April Mastroluca resigned on Nov. 30. Commissioners had discussed the issue on Feb. 19.

“It’s going to be open and it’s going to transparent and it’s going to be inclusive,” he said.

Sisolak, noting it’s a holiday weekend with Passover and Easter, said it’s crucial that potential applicants aren’t rushed into a decision.

County officials don’t plan to open the application process until they get the go-ahead from the commission.

The next step toward getting a timeline for the replacement in place will be a discussion at Tuesday’s commission meeting, Sisolak said.

It won’t be until sometime after that discussion that applications will be made available.

Brooks’ replacement must live in the district and be a Democrat.

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