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Week 8 of the 2nd session of the 105th Legislature consisted of legislative days 29 through 32.
Week eight of the 2018 Legislative session began on Tuesday, February 20th after observing President’s Day on February 19th.
Tuesday was also the deadline for Senators and Committee Chairs to identify their priority bills for this session. I named LB1069, a bill to change provisions relating to the committee on Americanism as my priority bill. Though this bill is currently held up in committee short two votes to advance, I am optimistic because of the tremendous support of other Senators and community members who have reached out to our office. It’s critical to the character of our state this bill sees the light of day and is debated on the floor by the full legislature.
The Americanism bill promotes the great Spirit of America. It celebrates and commemorates our long history as a nation and the people who fought to uphold our freedom that is the envy of the globe. It aims to inspire our youth and future generations of patriots, rekindling a love of liberty that characterized our nation since its inception. The original Americanism law has been in state statute since 1949, yet many shared with me or testified at the hearing that Americanism committees are not practiced or recognized and perhaps are thought of as outdated or are forgotten. Not only would the committee review Social Studies curriculum and hold other responsibilities, but it must hold three meetings annually, at least one meeting where public testimony is received, effectively placing more influence into the hands of a school district’s citizens about what and how the subject is taught in Nebraska’s schools.
The bill would also require that school districts administer the civics portion of the naturalization examination taken by immigrants to the United States. Students’ individual scores would be reported to parents while the aggregate district scores are reported to the Nebraska Department of Education. It’s vitally important to the successful future of our great country that our youth understand the challenges Americans have overcome to deliver the freest society and greatest quality of life people have ever known. Social Studies must be taught in a way that reinforces the character of America’s most honorable and the brilliance of our founding fathers. LB1069 seeks to ensure that our youth are given the opportunity to flourish and carry on the exceptional history of Americanism, liberty, and freedom. It’s distressing that the bill faced significant opposition in committee but it now has over 20 cosigners who understand the consequence of the bill’s intent and its many supporters are grateful for their virtue. I will continue to work on bringing this bill to the floor of the legislature.
The Agriculture Committee held its hearing on LB893, a bill introduced to ban the sale of non-rescue cats and dogs in retail pet stores. No immediate action was taken on the bill. Additionally, the Committee selected LB 477 and LB 808 as its priority bills for the session. LB477 would make certain deceptive fuel price advertising practices a violation of the Weights & Measures Act. LB808 would implement recommendations of a task force report regarding community gardens.
The Legislature moved to bills on Final Reading to end the week on Friday, February 23rd, taking action on 13 bills that will be reviewed before being sent to the Governor for final approval. Looking forward, the Legislature will take up full days of debate on Wednesday, February 28th.
Please contact me; my Administrative Aide, Courtney McClellen; my Legislative Aide, Jacob Campbell; or the Agriculture Committee Research Analyst, Rick Leonard, with questions or concerns at (402) 471-2728, or by email at email@example.com. You may also visit my office, Room 1022, in the Capitol. If you would like to follow the Legislature online please visit netnebraska.org and click on the “Live & On Demand” button or simply follow this link http://netnebraska.org/basic-page/television/live-demand-state-government