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Things are picking up at the Capitol in the second week of session as we began floor debate and continued introduction of new legislation. So far over 350 new bills have been introduced, and more will be expected until the deadline for new bill introduction on January 20th.
The Legislature debated a few carryover priority bills from last session. LB310, introduced by Senator Clements, would reduce inheritance tax rates and increase exemptions. This bill passed the first round of debate and was advanced to Select File.
I co-sponsored LB364 introduced by Senator Linehan, which would have created a state income tax credit for donations to organizations that create private school scholarships for low-income students. LB364 was filibustered once again by opposing senators and failed to advance.
Governor Ricketts delivered his State of the State address to the Legislature last Thursday, detailing his priorities for the 2022 session. One priority continues to be tax relief. For the next two fiscal years, $548 million in annual property tax relief will be delivered through LB1107 passed in 2020.
Another priority is securing Nebraska’s water supply and investing in Nebraska’s water resources. $500 million is being requested to construct a canal system in Western Nebraska and reservoir system along the Platte River between Lincoln and Omaha, $60 million to restore drinking water systems in rural areas of the state, and $200 million is being requested for other water projects presented by the STAR WARS (Statewide Tourism and Recreational Water Access and Resource Sustainability) Special committee, which I am a member of.
One of the proposals specifically affects District 23 and involves flood control measures along the lower Platte River near Schuyler and in the Wahoo Creek watershed. These proposed projects will be discussed further during the legislative session and require approval.
If you are interested in following the legislative process or want an in-depth look on what is happening in the Legislature, the Unicameral Update Newsletter provides sections and information for every bill heard on the floor of the legislature each day as well as information on each bill heard in committee. This newsletter is a useful tool to gain additional knowledge about the introducer, sponsors, intent and language of the bills proposed and debated. Should you wish to receive a print edition of the newsletter call 402-471-2788 or email email@example.com. The Unicameral Update is also published online at update.legislature.ne.gov.
I appreciate hearing from constituents on issues affecting District 23 and encourage you to contact my office on legislation at 402-471-2719 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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