Brooks says he won't take leave from Nevada Legislature
CARSON CITY, Feb 05, 2013 (Las Vegas Sun - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Troubled Assemblyman Steven Brooks, D-North Las Vegas, intends to serve in the Legislature this session, scuttling a potential deal that would have had him take a leave of absence.
Assembly Democratic leadership made clear in a brief press conference today that they disagreed with his decision, expressing concern for his health.
"He's not the same gentleman we had known," Assembly Majority Leader William Horne, D-Las Vegas, said. But, he added, Brooks said he feels good enough to serve and wants to represent his constituents.
Brooks was arrested Jan. 19 on a count of threatening a public official, Assembly Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick, D-North Las Vegas. He was also committed to a mental facility Jan. 25 after being found in possession of a sword.
Brooks arrived at the Legislature at noon, missing the first Assembly Ways and Means Committee meeting.
He left without talking to the media.
Kirkpatrick said, "I absolutely feel safe."
A committee formed to evaluate the ability of members to serve will continue to move forward.
Horne said he believed that if Brooks missed meetings, it would be factored into the committee's recommendation to the Assembly as a whole. Two-thirds of the members of the Assembly can vote to expel a member.
Horne said leadership had expected Brooks to come into the building to sign documents cementing his leave of absence.
Brooks has been shadowed by a Legislative police officer since his arrest.
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