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Week 16 of the 2nd session of the 105th Legislature consisted of legislative day 60.
This week’s column marks the end of the 2018 session and adjournment without any other official legislative days on the schedule for the year. I may share columns throughout the interim as issues arise or events of interest occur. As is tradition, on the last day of each session we adjourn “Sine Die”, or “without day” in Latin, to reflect the end of the legislative session. Before adjournment though, we addressed 25 bills on the schedule for Final Reading.
My fellow departing senators and I were given the opportunity to share some final remarks. I thanked my staff, family, and constituents for their support, kindness, conversation, and communication throughout my service as Senator for Legislative District 16.
Our office also hosted 4th graders from Lyons-Decatur at the Capitol on our final day of the session. Unfortunately, I was unable to leave the floor during final reading to personally welcome them. Traditionally, we ask students what ideas they have for future legislation should they become senators. Jacob, in my office took over for me to ask this question. I was surprised and happy these students had an idea to declare every Tuesday as “Taco Tuesday” in Nebraska. So Nebraska, be prepared!
As Agriculture Chairwoman throughout the interim, there will be a few interim studies. LR 371 directs the Agriculture Committee to examine the use of fence dispute filings under the Nebraska fence law and the extent that neighbors have utilized mediation to resolve fencing disputes. The resolution also directs the committee to examine whether reintroducing a fenceviewer system could be a more successful method for handling fence disputes. LR 416 directs the Agriculture Committee to study whether advertising a price of motor fuels at an attractive price but only offering the fuel at a limited number of pumps is a deceptive trade practice and if so, whether it should be considered an unlawful act under the Weights and Measure Act. The Ag Committee considered, and eventually advanced LB 477 which would require that if a station advertised a price for a 10% or less ethanol blend, it was required to offer that fuel at all pumps. That bill was not debated due to the lack of time.
On Saturday, I enjoyed spending time in Wisner at the “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Party: 50 years” with many of our local Vietnam War heroes, their families, and communities. Lt. Governor Foley officially thanked those attending and presented a proclamation signed by Governor Ricketts. The welcome home included a color guard, scouts, folk songs of Vietnam War era were sang and played by a guitarist, a trio sang patriotic songs acapella and more music filled the afternoon into evening.
Our Vietnam War Veterans and their families sacrificed so much for our country, some gave their all and sadly those heroes who returned home with horrific wounds, seen and unseen, did so without a welcome home by celebration, recognition or appreciation rightfully due during that controversial era in our history. A heartfelt special thank you goes to all who have served past and present and their families to make our mighty nation great. “We do not fight to make war, we fight to keep peace.”
The staff and I will continue to work on matters and requests as they arise until January 9, 2019. 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 or watch as various hearings and interim studies are scheduled and televised throughout the interim at http://netnebraska.org/basic-page/television/live-demand.