Commission on Services for Persons with Disabilities (CSPD) By-laws


6.1 Article I Definitions

1. The term “Commission” refers to the {Nevada Disability Services} Nevada Commission on Services for Persons with Disabilities.

2. The term “Director” refers to the Director, Department of Health and Human Services.

3. The term “Chief” refers to the Chief of the Disability Services Unit, within the Aging and Disability Services Division.

4. The term “Division” refers to the State of Nevada, Aging and Disability Services Division.

5. The term “fiscal staff” refers to the Aging and Disability Services Division fiscal staff in the Carson City office.

6. The term “NRS” refers to the Nevada Revised Statutes.

7. The term “persons with disabilities” includes both children and adults with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of the person.

8. The term “Department” refers to the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services.

    6.2 Article II Creation

    1. The Commission is created by NRS Chapter 426.

      6.3 Article III Duties

      1. The Commission is required to:

      A. Determine and evaluate the needs of children and adults with disabilities in this State;

      B. Seek ways to avoid unnecessary duplication of services for persons with disabilities by public and private organizations in this State;

      C. Establish priorities for the work of the Disability Services Unit of the Division according to the most pressing needs of persons with disabilities as determined by the Commission; and

      D. Promote programs that provide community-based services necessary to enable a person with a disability, to the fullest extent possible, to remain in his home and be an integral part of his family and community.

      2. The Commission may:

      A. Review and make recommendations regarding plans for services for persons with disabilities;

      B. Gather and disseminate information relating to persons with disabilities;

      C. Conduct hearings, conferences and special studies on the problems of persons with disabilities and on programs that serve persons with disabilities;

      D. Evaluate existing programs for persons with disabilities, recommend changes in those programs and propose new programs that would more effectively and economically serve the needs of persons with disabilities;

      E. Evaluate any proposed legislation that would affect persons with disabilities;

      F. Carry out the provisions of the Strategic Plan for Persons with Disabilities developed by the Department pursuant to paragraph (c) of subsection 1 of section 1 of chapter 541, Statutes of Nevada 2001;

      G. Recommend to the Legislature any appropriate legislation concerning persons with disabilities; and

      H. Coordinate and assist the efforts of public and private organizations that serve the needs of persons with disabilities, especially in the areas of education, employment, health, housing, welfare and recreation.

        6.4 Article IV Membership

        1. Voting Members:

        A. The Director shall appoint as voting members of the Commission, 11 persons who have experience with or an interest in and knowledge of the problems of and services for persons with disabilities.

         B. The majority of the voting members of the Commission must be persons with disabilities or the parents or family members of persons with disabilities.

        2.  Non-Voting Members:

        A. The Director and the Chief shall serve as nonvoting, ex officio members of the Commission and each may designate an alternate within his office to attend any meeting of the Commission in his place.

        B. The Director may appoint as nonvoting members of the Commission such other representatives of State Government as the Director deems appropriate.

        3. Term of Appointment  

        A. The Director shall appoint voting members to a term of three years.

         B. Each voting member may serve not more than two terms.

        C. An appointed member serving more than one year of a term to which another person was appointed, may serve only one additional full term as an appointed member.

        4. Removal of a Member

          A. Malfeasance in office or neglect of duty.

          B. Unexcused absence from two consecutive meetings of the Commission constitutes good and sufficient cause.

        5. Election of a Commission Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson

        Election of a Commission Chairperson and a Vice-Chairperson shall occur at the regularly scheduled Commission meeting immediately prior to July 1st of each year.

        A. All Commission members attending this meeting shall be permitted to nominate and vote for Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson.

        B. The Commission Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson shall be elected by a majority vote of all Commission members present. 

        6. Subcommittees

        A. The Chairperson of the Commission may appoint Commission members to subcommittees for consideration of specific issues within the scope of the functions of the Commission.

        B. Subcommittee membership will not exceed five (5) members.

        C. Commission subcommittees are not the statutorily created subcommittees set out in NRS Chapter 426.

          6.5 Article V Meetings

          1. The Commission will meet at least once each calendar quarter and at other times on the call of the Director, the Chairperson or a majority of its members.

          2. The Chairperson of the Commission will approve the date and place of the meetings.

          3. The meetings, including subcommittee meetings, are open to the public and subject to the requirements of the Nevada Open Meeting Law.

          4. The Commission Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson will collaborate with the Chief and Division staff to develop the agenda for each Commission meeting.

          5. A Commission member may request that an item be placed on the agenda by contacting the Chairperson or Vice-Chairperson no later than 14 days prior to the posting of the meeting notice as required by Nevada’s Open Meetings Law set out in NRS Chapter 241.

            6.6 Article VI Minutes

            1. The Chief will designate a Division support staff to act as the recording secretary.

             2. Preparation of Minutes – Minutes of the previous meeting will be transcribed and made available for inspection by the public within 30-working days after the adjournment of the meeting.

             A. The recording secretary will transcribe minutes from tape recording, notes taken at meeting and from agenda exhibits.

             B. After a draft of minutes is prepared, they will be transmitted to members of the Commission for review prior to the next meeting.

            C. Final approval of the minutes will be made at the next Commission meeting.

            3. Minutes of each meeting of the Commission are considered public record and will be maintained in the Administrative Office of the Division.

              6.7 Article VII Financial Reimbursement

              1. Each voting member of the Commission is entitled to receive a salary of not more than $80 per day, as fixed by the Commission, while engaged in the business of the Commission, if funding is available for this purpose.

              2. While engaged in the business of the Commission, each appointed member of the Commission, each person appointed to serve on a subcommittee or advisory committee of the Commission, and each employee of the Commission is entitled to receive the per diem allowance and travel expenses provided for state officers and employees generally, if funding is available for this purpose.

                6.8 Article VIII Rules of Order

                1. The Commission will generally follow, as a guide, the Roberts Rules of Order where such rules do not conflict with NRS and these Bylaws.

                2. Voting

                A. There are 11-voting members of the Commission with each member having one vote.

                 B. A simple majority of the voting members of the Commission constitutes a quorum for the transaction of all business.

                C. A majority of the quorum present, in any matter within the scope of their duties, is required for the determination of any action to be taken.

                D. Members may abstain from voting.

                 E. The Chairperson will count and announce the results of the vote.

                 F. A vote is not effective until it is announced and may be changed up to the time of the announcement.

                G. If a roll call vote is made, the vote will be recorded by the secretary with an indication of the names and vote of each member present.

                 H. Proxy voting is prohibited.

                3. Amendments to the Bylaws – The Bylaws may be amended or changed at any regular meeting by a majority of the voting members of the Commission, if the proposed amendment or change was submitted, in writing, to members of the Commission and the Chairperson, at least 14-days before the meeting.

                  6.9 Article IX Conflict of Interest

                  1. Personal financial gain and private benefit to a Commission member or his/her spouse, child, step-child, parent or step-parent through the member's participation on the Commission shall be considered conflict of interest.

                  2. The following actions are prohibited:

                  a. No Commission member or immediate family member mentioned in 6.9(1) above shall seek to influence any vote regarding the awarding of a contract, a grant or other business from the Commission when the individual knows that he or she has a direct or indirect financial interest in the awarding of such a contract or grant or other business.

                  1) “Direct financial interest” is a situation that would result in a pecuniary benefit in the form of cash, salary or property to a person or his/her immediate family;
                  2)  “Indirect financial interest” is any situation that will result in a financial advantage to another person or organization with which a person has a relationship or association.

                  b. Except as compensation or reimbursement provided for by NRS Chapter 426 no Commission member or his/her immediate family may directly receive funds, including any portion of his/her salary, from any grant or contract funded by the Commission without first disclosing his or relationship to a person or entity seeking a grant, contract or other business from the Commission.

                  3. Nothing herein shall be construed to prohibit any firm, agency or organization that any Commission member or immediate family member is associated with from appearing before the Commission as part of the normal course business by the firm, agency or organization. Nor shall it be construed that employment in any firm, agency, or organization that any Commission member or immediate family member is associated with prohibit any Commissioner from engaging in discussion of, presentation on, or vote on business that comes before the Commission as part of the normal course of its activities.

                  4. Any Commission member or family member of a Commissioner who is a recipient of services from any division of the Department shall not be construed as having a conflict solely as a result of having a disability, being a recipient of services from any division of the Department or having a familial relationship with an individual with a disability or recipient of services from a division within the Department.

                  5. Any Commission member who is also a consumer of services from any agency, organization or project who receives funds from the Commission or the Division shall not be considered to have a conflict of interest if his or her participation with that agency, organization or project is only as a consumer of services and he or she does not exercise any administrative or decision making authority in that project or organization.

                  6. All Commission members shall disclose conflicts of interest to the Chief and the Commission, including uncertain or potential conflicts, as soon as the conflict becomes apparent. Commission members have an ongoing duty to disclose any conflicts of interest.

                  7. A declaration of a conflict of interest by a Commission member shall be accepted by the Commission when the declaration is made.

                  8. If a Commission member is uncertain whether a conflict may exist in a specific situation, the Commission shall determine if a conflict exists in consultation with the Chief and other Division or Department staff as appropriate.

                  9. Disclosure of any conflicts of interest shall be recorded in the meeting minutes.

                  10. A Commission member who discloses or has been found to have a conflict of interest must not participate in any discussion on any matter related to the subject of the conflict or unduly influence or vote in those areas where a conflict has arisen.

                  11. Any Commission member may bring suspected violations of this policy to the Commission Chairperson.

                  12. Once an allegation of a conflict has been brought to Commission Chairperson’s attention, the Chairperson shall notify the Chief and the Commission member alleged to have violated the conflict interest provisions of the allegation.   Once a conflict has been reported:

                  a. The Chief or his/her designee will gather pertinent information regarding the alleged conflict of interest violation; 

                  b. Provide such information to the Commission.

                  13. Once the pertinent information has been gathered by the Chief or his/her designee, the information will be forwarded to the Commission for a determination of whether a conflict of interest exists at the Commission’s next regularly scheduled meeting.

                  14. Once the Commission determines if an allegation of a conflict of interest violation has been substantiated, the Commission shall determine if the violation is intentional or unintentional.

                  15. If it is determined by a majority vote of the Commission that a violation of the conflict of interest provisions was intentional, the Commission shall vote on the appropriate sanction, up to and including recommendation for removal of the member found to have a conflict of interest to the Director.

                  16. If it is determined by a majority vote of the Commission that a violation of the conflict of interest provisions was unintentional, the Commission, in consultation with the Chief and other Division staff as appropriate, shall define the area of the conflict of interest and instruct the Commission member to refrain from participation or discussion when that area is the subject of any Commission actions.