NEBRASKA LEGISLATURE

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Sen. Mark Kolterman

Sen. Mark Kolterman

District 24

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As we approach the end of the legislative session, there have been two issues that have dominated discussion.  One of those issues is property tax relief.  The other issue is tax incentives.

I have shared previously that both issues have been a high priority for me. As a member of the Revenue Committee, I have sat through numerous hearings on issues related to taxes and revenue and the message we have heard has been overwhelmingly consistent – the state needs property tax relief and they need it soon.  Similarly, we have heard consistently that growing our state’s economy and creating opportunities to keep our young people here is critical to our state’s future.

Unfortunately, neither issue will be moving forward this year.  I wish I could articulate the specifics of why this is not the case, but unfortunately, it seems that the Nebraska legislature has moved more in the direction of the federal government, having moved away from collaboration and cooperation, and more towards polarization.

Our state is at a crossroads and these two issues must be addressed if we are to continue to grow and thrive as a state.  Agriculture is in a world of hurt.  Commodity prices are down.  The cost of inputs is going up. Our farmers are facing an uncertain future due to tariffs and a potential trade war. On top of that we have high property taxes.

I would contend, however, that our business growth that we have seen in this state has been helpful in offsetting some of the negative trends we have going on in agriculture.  In some ways – our business community is thriving, and as someone who has invested much time in recruiting businesses and promoting business development locally, I was working to move forward LB 720, the business incentive tax legislation, so that we can keep on that track for growing and thriving.

I am committed to continuing work next year on both the property tax issue and the business incentive issue.  Our property owners need property tax relief.  Incentive plans have created over 850 business expansions, resulting in over $30 billion capitol investment and 100,000 new jobs.  Both of these issues are important and need to be addressed.

It’s easy for me to connect these two issues right here in our district.  As we were debating the legislation, a local farm family from Seward County was hosting an open house for their new poultry facility.  Their partner in their operation is Lincoln Premium Poultry who was brought to Nebraska through the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, and local economic development partners, and weighed our incentive packages as part of their considerations.  The new poultry farm in my district creates an opportunity for the family to diversify their operation, creates jobs, and provides a steady income stream through their contract with Lincoln Premium Poultry for the next 15 years.

I believe these two issues are intricately intertwined and that’s why I am committed to working on them throughout the interim with my colleagues.

As always, if we can be of assistance to you in any way, please do not hesitate to contact my office. My door is open and I have made it a goal to be accessible to the constituents of our district. Please stop by any time. My e-mail address is mkolterman@leg.ne.gov, and the office phone number is 402-471-2756. Tyler and Katie are always available to assist you with your needs. If I am not immediately available, please do not hesitate to work with them to address any issues that you may need assistance. Please continue to follow me on Facebook at Kolterman for Legislature and on Twitter at @KoltermanforLegislature.

Sen. Mark Kolterman

District 24
Room #2004
P.O. Box 94604
Lincoln, NE 68509
Phone: (402) 471-2756
Email: mkolterman@leg.ne.gov
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