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In just over seven weeks, the 104th Legislature will convene with 17 new senators beginning their tenure, along with a newly elected governor, attorney general, and state auditor. I will also be starting my second term representing District 16. The Capitol is once again filled with increased activity preparing for the upcoming session. This interim has been especially busy and challenging, but fulfilling.
I was heartened by our community spirit witnessed when, like countless others, I worked in various capacities following multiple natural disasters. Becoming whole once again to some may have seemed very distant or unachievable from the mounds of broken glass caused by damaging baseball sized hail to twisted metal silos, feedyards relentlessly beaten beyond recognition, countless piles of uprooted trees that once stood tall, and scattered remnants of homes and farmsteads left behind from devastating tornadoes. Yet today, one sees where determination and strong will prevailed as communities are rebuilding ever stronger and more resilient.
Thankfully, most received enough rain over the summer to pull out of prior drought conditions. Despite weather related setbacks a successful harvest has been completed or nears completion as we wait for the snow and frigid temperatures to subside.
As in years before much of my time was spent visiting or working with constituents of District 16. In the 151 work days since adjournment, I attended over 150 district events, including:
In September, I was honored to be chosen among 48 policymakers nationwide to participate in the prestigious Henry Toll Fellowship Program coordinated by the Council of State Governments in Lexington, Kentucky. I learned additional skills to effectively advocate for my constituents and navigate and build sound agency relationships for best results for legislation. I also gained valuable advice and a new network of 47 Fellow leaders from coast to coast.
A number of important issues we responded to include:
I look forward to building upon my work and the privilege to once again serve our district and state. We are scheduling Town Hall meetings on December 4 in each county seat to listen to constituents’ views in considering legislation to introduce, support or oppose prior to session commencing January 7, 2015. We also invited representatives from the Nebraska Department of Roads to join us for an update of district projects underway.
If you have any concerns or questions, please contact me and my office via email at email@example.com or via phone at 402-471-2728; or stop by Room 1016 if you are at the Capitol.
Keeping the Good Life growing in Nebraska,
Senator, District 16