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AGO Opinion 83001

January 6, 1983
Senator Rex Haberman
Member of the Legislature
State Capitol Building
Lincoln, Nebraska 68509



Dear Senator Haberman:

You have inquired whether a bill containing the following language would relieve-counties and. municipalities of liability due to the negligent or intentional acts of their prisoners assigned to a community service projects during their incarceration. "No prisoner who works on a community service related project shall be deemed an agent, employee, or servant of the city, county, or court having jurisdiction over the prisoner." At the outset we must note that there are numerous potential theories of political subdivision liability which come to, mind which would not be avoided by the language you-propose, e.g., negligent supervision of Prisoners, federal civil rights liability for acts of prisoners. There may well be other theories of potential liability which do not occur to us absent a specific set of facts and we do not presume to encompass,them in his opinion.

It is our opinion however, that the language you propose,
if incorporated as a part of the Political Subdivisions Tort
Claims Act, Neb. Rev.Stat./232401 et. seq. (Reissue 1977),
could protect political subdivisions from portion Of their potential labile under.Correctional program such as~ you have described. He cannot however based on the information presented before us, we give. You all, comprehensive assurance that political subdivision liability can be avoided by the enactment of the language you propose.


Very truly yours,

PAUL L. DOUGLAS
Attorney General