U.S. Office of Special Counsel
1730 M Street, N.W., Suite 218
Washington, D.C. 20036-4505
OFFICE OF SPECIAL COUNSEL SEEKS DISCIPLINARY ACTION AGAINST NEVADA STATE
EMPLOYEE IN HATCH ACT CASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - 6/24/04
CONTACT: CATHY DEEDS
The U.S. Office of Special Counsel
(OSC) has filed a complaint for disciplinary action against Richard Perkins,
Deputy Police Chief of the Henderson, Nevada Police Department and Speaker
of the Nevada Assembly. OSC’s complaint filed with the Merit Systems
Protection Board (MSPB) on June 16, 2004, charges Perkins with violating the
Hatch Act’s prohibition against being a candidate for elective office in a
As Deputy Police Chief, Perkins is covered by the Hatch
Act. His primary job duties are in connection with grants issued by the
United States Departments of Justice, Housing and Urban Development, and
OSC’s petition alleges that in 2002, Perkins ran as the
Democratic candidate for re-election to the Nevada Assembly, District 23
(Clark County). This election was partisan within the meaning of the Hatch
Act because representatives of the Democratic and Republican parties, among
others, were candidates in the election.
Following Perkins’ 2002 candidacy, OSC notified him
that he was covered by the Act and that his 2002 candidacy violated the Act.
OSC also warned him that future violations of the Hatch Act could result in
disciplinary action charges being brought against him before the MSPB.
Despite OSC’s warning, Perkins filed for re-election on May 5, 2004, and is
currently the Democratic candidate for the Nevada Assembly, District 23
The Hatch Act strictly prohibits state and local
employees who have duties in connection with federally-funded programs from
being candidates in partisan elections. The penalty for a proven violation
of the Act by a state or local employee is removal of the employee from
his/her position by the state/local agency and debarment from state/local
employment for the following eighteen months, or forfeiture of federal grant
funds by the state/local agency in an amount equal to two years of the
salary of the employee.
The U.S. Office of Special Counsel is an independent investigative and
prosecutorial agency. Its primary mission is to safeguard the merit system
in federal employment by protecting federal employees and applicants from
prohibited personnel practices, especially retaliation for whistleblowing.
It also investigates and prosecutes complaints alleging violations of the
Hatch Act and provides advisory opinions on the Act’s requirements.