NEBRASKA LEGISLATURE
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Sen. Mark Kolterman

Sen. Mark Kolterman

District 24

This will be my last weekly update for the session, as Speaker Scheer announced that the legislature finished its business earlier than expected and we adjourned sine die on Tuesday, May 23rd, the 86th day of the session.  It is not uncommon to adjourn a few days early.  Officially, the only job of the legislature is to pass a budget.  Now we will wait a few months and watch the tax receipts to see if the budget projections are correct.  If they are not, there could be a possibility of returning this fall for a special session to deal with any budget shortfalls that could occur.

I want to thank everyone that called, emailed, wrote, or visited my office this year.  I can never stress enough how valuable it is to me to listen to the views and opinions of those I represent.  We may not agree on every issue, but hearing from you is valuable insight on what issues effect you the most.  Having open and constructive conversations with those you disagree is something that I think helps make me best represent those I serve.

I had a productive session and am pleased with what the legislature accomplished, but I always feel like we could have done more.  We faced many challenges this year, especially with the budget shortfall due to the ailing agricultural industry.

I would like to have seen a comprehensive tax reform package passed, or at the very least, property tax reduction.  It is my hope that the governor can work with the revenue committee to find a solution to relieve some of the tax burden for hard working Nebraska families.

For my personal bills, the legislature passed nine bills that I introduced, including LB323, a bill that is very personal to me since it helps advocate for the use of palliative care, which is a service that is important to people such as my wife who is battling a terminal illness.  I am also pleased that we passed LB18, a dental hygienist bill that has been in the works for close to ten years, and LB92, my personal priority bill, a bill that extends insurance coverage for the use of telehealth in the state.  During the interim, the Health and Human Service Committee will be taking a closer look and examining the use of telehealth in the state through a legislative resolution that I introduced, LR178.

The legislature passed ten of my retirement bills this year.  Eight of those ten bills were included in LB415, a bill which I have commented in this column extensively about for the past couple weeks.  I introduced a few interim resolutions that will deal with retirement issues, including retired substitute teachers.

Besides interim studies, there is plenty to do this summer and fall before we reconvene next January.  Now that session is over, I look forward to having more time to spend in the community and seeing you all at county fairs, church, town halls, BBQs, and the Seward Fourth of July!

Even though we are not in session, my staff is available to 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. David 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.

May 12th – LB415 update

May 12th, 2017

Many educators question why I introduced LB 415. I want to share my reasons with you and explain some of the complexities.  I support defined benefit plans as long as they maintain a healthy funded status. I believe they are a valuable benefit for our public employees and I am committed to protecting these plans.  The State of Nebraska contributes $38 million to the School Plan and an additional $7 million to the Class V (Omaha) School Plan every year. Because of the tremendous state budget deficit, there has been some interest in reducing this annual contribution.  I objected to, and prevented an attempt on the floor to reduce this annual appropriation because I knew it would endanger the healthy funding status of this plan.  I also understand that if we don’t make these annual contributions, the State of Nebraska is liable for the funding.

In addition to keeping the plan well-funded, retirement plans must also be kept in compliance with IRS requirements for qualified plans – which includes ensuring there is a “bona fide separation of service” when a member retires.

Currently in the School Plan, intermittent substitute and voluntary service are allowed during the 180-day separation of service period following retirement.  The Nebraska Public Employees Retirement System (NPERS) advised me they are seeing a trend in retirees providing more and more substitute service during this 180-day period – service that is beyond what can be deemed “intermittent”.  As a result NPERS staff are spending significantly increasing staff time to monitor and investigate “intermittent service” in order to keep the plan in compliance with the IRS.  When NPERS has deemed service has not been intermittent, they had to suspend the retiree’s benefit for a period of time—a result that we all want to avoid.

LB 415 was introduced to eliminate retirees from providing substitute or voluntary service during the 180-day separation of service period in order to create a “bright line” to ensure that the IRS-required bona fide separation of service occurs.

The other proposed changes in LB 415 were in response to information provided by the actuary. During last summer’s examination of all the retirement plans, the actuary determined that members are living much longer — which is great news!  But it also means retirement benefits are paid over longer periods than originally assumed. The actuary also informed the Committee that when incentives are offered that encourage plan members to retire early, then benefits are paid over a longer period of time than assumed.  Both of these findings result in increased costs to the plan which is why LB 415 includes the provisions that require future hires to work until at least age 60 and a longer separation of service period for retirees who take a voluntary separation agreement or other form of early retirement inducement.

These issues were studies throughout the interim. I met numerous times with representatives of NPERS, NSEA and NCSA throughout the interim last year to discuss these proposed changes and I also made presentations to NSEA and NCSA groups.

After the hearing on LB 415, I agreed to reduce the originally proposed Rule of 90 to a modified Rule of 85 with a minimum retirement age of 60 and during debate on the bill, I further agreed to reduce the separation of service period from 3 years to 2 years for retirees who take early retirement inducements and allow voluntary service after 180 days.  During debate other alternatives were offered to reduce the 180-day period, but because of the complexity of determining whether or not they would meet IRS requirements, I agreed to eliminate my proposed changes to the 180-day separation of service and to study this issue further over the interim.

I know many educators are concerned about what I proposed in LB 415.  I want to reassure educators, the 180-day separation of service period that allows intermittent substitute and voluntary service remains in effect – there are no changes.

I also want to assure educators that the new Rule of 85 requiring a minimum retirement age of 60 does not apply to any current member or to anyone who is hired prior to July 1, 2018.  Only employees hired on or after July 1, 2018 will need to comply with the minimum retirement age of 60 requirement.  The actuary determined that this change alone is projected to save the School and Class V (Omaha) Plans a little over $100 million over the next 30 years which will help keep the School plan well- funded.

During the interim the Retirement Committee, joined by several other senators, will study these issues under LR 202, and several Education Committee members have introduced LR 130 to study a number of issues raised about substitute teaching.

I appreciate the dedication and commitment of educators and respect the service provided to our communities and our children.  I will continue to work to protect all retirement plans by keeping them in compliance with IRS requirements and making benefit adjustments in order to keep all plans fiscally healthy.  In addition, I will continue to object to any efforts to reduce funding for the School Plan or efforts to convert any of the defined benefit plans to cash balance plans as long as they remain well-funded.  I look forward to working with all educators in these efforts and welcome any questions.

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. David 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.

 

We spent most of the week discussing the state budget.  During the debate there were two main parts of discussion. 1) Title X funding, which is tax dollars that are sent to the states for women’s and low income health services, and 2) the ongoing challenge of how to make up the additional revenue shortfall of around $55 million.

Regarding the first part of the debate, I want to explain why I voted the way I did. There was some language in the budget bill that would have stripped the Title X funding from the budget, even though historically it has been a part of the budget for many, many years. Let me be clear that no Title X money, by federal law, is allowed to go towards abortion services. That being said, however, with the removal of this funding, one traditionally pro-choice health clinic would have lost funding, but so would many low income health clinics that provide services throughout the state. These services are utilized extensively statewide and are sorely needed in some rural areas especially.

In addition to not wanting to see the low income clinics lose their funding, I also had concerns about how this pro-life vs. pro-choice issue was being debated as part of a budget bill, a budget bill that needed to be passed to fund the many programs of our state.

Additionally, I had concerns that if this issue being a part of the budget bill was challenged on its constitutionality, it could cause major issues for us in the future, throwing our budget bill into the courts and tying up the funding of all state programs, possibly shutting down state government.

In an effort to resolve this issue, a motion was made to remove this provision from the state budget bill and move forward with a clean budget, leaving this policy issue to be looked at separately in the future. I voted in support of the motion and also in support of the overall budget. While I understood the premise of those who wanted a certain entity to be defunded, I also didn’t believe this was the right way to go about this.

I have had a few people reach out indicating that they felt I had moved away from my pro-life values. Nothing could be further from the truth. I am pro-life and I will always be pro-life and continue to advocate for pro-life principles. Part of being pro-life is supporting all life, and allowing the low income clinics to continue serve under-privileged clients is one way to support their health and well- being.

The second part of the discussion relating to where to come up with the additional $55 million needed was also challenging. I, like many of my constituents, believe we need to do whatever we can to cut waste and create efficiency in state government. Senator Stinner, chair of appropriations, and his committee have done a great deal of work setting priorities and finding places to reduce spending. Some members of the body strongly believe we need to cut more to make up for the $55 million shortfall. While I agree that we need to continue to look at cuts, I am also concerned that across the board cuts could result in major disruption of critical services. We need to be careful as we proceed and find the right balance of cuts in a prioritized manner, while continuing to fund essential state services. The next few weeks will be challenging, and we will do what we can to make the best decisions we can for our state.

I also want to take a moment to address Senator Linehan’s LB651 and her motion to pull the bill from committee.  I supported Senator Linehan’s motion to pull the bill from committee because I believe LB651 is an issue that needs to be discussed by the legislature.  That being said, I do not support the bill in its current form and do not plan to vote to advance it.  I received many calls and emails regarding this bill, so I wanted to make my position clear.

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. David 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.

 

April 21st – Taxes

April 21st, 2017

This week the legislature debated two tax reform proposals, LB640 and LB461. I  support both pieces of legislation and see LB640 as the first bill to advance from the Revenue Committee in quite some time that can provide significant property tax relief for Nebraskans. If this bill does not pass, most likely no bill will pass with significant property tax relief this year. The bill did not move forward when debated, but it remains on General File and it’s possible it could move forward this year.

Alternatively, other proposals have suggested the solution is to raise sales taxes on hard working Nebraska families, using that revenue to reduce property taxes. I, along with the Governor, do not support this alternative and will support the Governor should that proposal move forward. The Governor has committed to veto a sales tax increase if placed on his desk, and I would uphold a veto.

The major tax reform bill being debated is LB 461.  I have had constituents indicate that LB 461 is not the ideal tax reform package, as it does not provide the level of property tax relief they feel is needed, and because it includes an income tax relief component. In order to move any tax relief packages forward, however, we need to build a coalition of State Senators who have a variety of perspectives and interests represented in their constituencies.  Urban State Senators tend to hear from their constituents in urban areas the importance of income tax relief, and rural State Senators hear from their areas that property tax relief is paramount.  A package that includes components of each has the best chance of advancing and I support working collaboratively on both of these issues to move forward a reform package.  Lowering both property and income taxes is good for the State and creates a climate for economic growth and prosperity.

The Nebraska Chamber of Commerce and Industry supports LB461, stating that Nebraska’s reliance on income taxes has grown too large, as 60% of state revenue comes from income taxes. Taxes in Nebraska are high and we have been paying too much for far too long. This bill will provide tax relief for all Nebraska taxpayers, while not shifting the tax burden from one group of citizens to another. LB461 encourages business expansion and retention, and assists in recruiting qualified workers for our growing state. It also protects agriculture at a time when ag property taxes are too high and commodity prices are too low. Simply, LB461 helps working families keep more of their hard-earned money.

LB461 is the most comprehensive tax relief package that the legislature has seen is several years. Amongst other things, LB461 collapses the number of income tax brackets in Nebraska from 4 to 3, reduces the top tax bracket starting at $29,830 per year from 6.84% to 5.99%, and gives more tax credits to low-income families by increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit by 20 percent.

For agricultural land taxes, LB461 caps aggregate ag land valuation growth at 3.5% annually, changes ag land valuation from market-based to income potential-based, and reduces ag land property taxes by 12% statewide.

Opponents are concerned whether the state will be the next Kansas and won’t have the revenue to pay for core government functions such as education, criminal justice, and road maintenance. However, through the use of revenue “triggers,” LB461 is designed to prevent tax cuts from taking place unless ample revenue is also available to fund government services. If state revenue is not projected to grow by the required amounts, the tax cuts will not take effect that year.

LB461 will attract companies and create jobs, help farmers and manufacturers, and protects K-12 education by investing about $30 million annually into the state aid formula and adding equalization aid to about 40 additional school districts. It is time for the legislature to enact tax reform and make this great state even better.  If you have additional ideas on how we can fix our tax system, please contact me and share them.  We’re always open to ideas on how we can provide tax relief to all areas of our state.

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. David 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.

 

 

The past few weeks we have been busy at the State Capitol as we have begun work on interim studies.  There are several issues I will be working on over the summer, including a study related to the costs associated with air ambulance service, a variety of studies related to retirement, bills from last year related to the dental industry and surgical assistants.  I also serve on the Inter-generational Poverty Task Force, a committee designed to look at how we can break the cycle of poverty in Nebraska.  Finally, I am following the issues surrounding our state’s correctional system and the state’s tourism commission.  Both of these areas have some challenges that we will need to address in the future and I continue to keep up to date on emerging information in an effort to be prepared for solutions as they come forward next year.

I will be hosting a free program for District 24 residents on Friday, July 15 to help them learn about Medicare basics. The presentation is scheduled from 10:00 –11:00 a.m. at Henderson Health Care, 1621 Front Street in Henderson. The workshop is for people who have Medicare now or will be getting it soon. Participants will learn Medicare fundamentals needed to avoid common pitfalls. Bobbie Kierstead from Nebraska Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) will present the program. The program offers free, unbiased counseling and education about Medicare to older and disabled Nebraskans. SHIIP does not sell or promote any insurance products. For more information about Medicare, contact SHIIP at (800) 234-7119 or go to www.doi.nebraska.gov/shiip.

I wanted to share with you some news about our family.  About a month ago my wife Suzanne began experiencing some back pain.  It was followed a short time later by some stomach pains. Upon visiting our Seward doctor, they performed an ultrasound to look at her gallbladder, and found some notable spots on her pancreas and liver.  A more thorough dye contrast CAT scan revealed both gallstones and other notable spots, and she was referred onto the Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota where she was ultimately diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer.

Pancreatic cancer is a tough one, because most people don’t develop signs of it until it has advanced significantly and has moved to other organs.  This is the case with Suzanne.  We have a really tough fight ahead of us, but if you have met Suzanne, you know that if anyone can fight this, Suzanne can.  There is no cure for pancreatic cancer, but the goal is to keep Suzanne around as long as possible with the best quality of life possible.  We are working with excellent doctors at both Mayo Clinic and the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and she will be undergoing an aggressive form of chemo throughout the summer.

We have been so touched by the outpouring of support we have received from our friends and family.  Although I intend to continue to do my very best in meeting the needs of my constituents and will continue to attend meetings, interim study hearings, and other obligations of the office, I know you understand that right now my priority is Suzanne and being with her as she undergoes treatment to fight this disease.

Our family has a strong faith and we do believe that God is at work in this situation. Even though we don’t understand why, we continue to trust in His plan for our family and ask for your prayers for Suzanne and all of us as we navigate this new journey.   If you would like to drop Suzanne a note, our home address is 2577 Waverly Road, Seward, NE 68434.

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. Joe 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 your concerns, thoughts and needs. Please continue to follow me on Facebook at Kolterman for Legislature and on Twitter at @KoltermanforLegislature.

With only about two weeks left in September, I wanted to post a reminder that the deadline for submitting page applications and letters of recommendation for the 2016 legislative session is Wed., September 30th at 5pm.

Description and duties:

Pages respond to senators’ lights on the legislative floor, answer incoming calls to the chamber, prepare for committee hearings, and perform other duties.

A young constituent interested in becoming a page must fill out and submit an application to the Clerk’s Office, Room 2018, State Capitol. A page applicant also is encouraged to contact his or her home district state senator for a letter of recommendation.

Pages must be high school graduates who are enrolled in a college or trade school with a minimum grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale and be able to work 20 hours a week. It is preferred that they work the same four-hour shift each day

For further information, please contact the Office of the Clerk of the Legislature at 471-2271 or Kitty Kearns at 471-2304.

The deadline for submitting page applications and letters of recommendation for the 2016 legislative session will be Wed., September 30th at 5pm.

Description and duties:

Pages respond to senators’ lights on the legislative floor, answer incoming calls to the chamber, prepare for committee hearings, and perform other duties.

A young constituent interested in becoming a page must fill out and submit an application to the Clerk’s Office, Room 2018, State Capitol. A page applicant also is encouraged to contact his or her home district state senator for a letter of recommendation.

Pages must be high school graduates who are enrolled in a college or trade school with a minimum grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale and be able to work 20 hours a week. It is preferred that they work the same four-hour shift each day

For further information, please contact the Office of the Clerk of the Legislature at 471-2271 or Kitty Kearns at 471-2304.

There are hundreds of bills introduced during each legislative session. Each of these bills addresses unique issues that are complex in their own ways. In this article, I would like to give you some insight into how I review bills and formulate an opinion on them. First, I focus on both the bills that I will introduce and the ones that will be heard in committees on which I serve. Currently, those committees include Health and Human Services, General Affairs, Agriculture, and Retirement Systems. Second, I study bills that have advanced out of committees that I do not serve on and are scheduled to be heard on the floor by the full legislature. Finally, I look at bills that have not yet made it out of the committees that I do not serve on. I make it a point to cautiously maintain an open mind about these bills, due to the fact that they could take on a different meaning if the committee chooses to make significant amendments.

During this process, it is very important for you to provide your input concerning these bills by either writing to me, calling my office, or attending the town hall meetings that I have in the district. Your input has a real impact on my decision making process. For example, while researching and considering the gas tax bill, I waited to make a firm decision and give my commitment until I had received ample input from constituents. After I received input via mail, phone, email, and town halls, it became apparent that constituents were overwhelmingly in favor of raising the gas tax (by a 2 to 1 margin). I went through a similar process to arrive at a decision for the death penalty bill. Although I was morally opposed to the death penalty, my stance was reaffirmed by the support of the majority of constituents that contact my office. In our representative democracy, politically active citizenship is essential. Your input is one ofthe most important factors that I rely on when I am preforming my job as your representative.

As always, I am honored by the faith that you, the voters of District 24, have placed in me. My door is open and I have made it a goal to be accessible to the constituents of our district. You may continue to follow me on Facebook at Kolterman For Legislature and on Twitter at @KoltermanforLegislature. My office in the State Capitol is Room 1115, which I share with my colleague Senator Bob Hilkemann from Omaha. Stop by anytime. My e-mail address is mkolterman@leg.ne.gov and the office phone number is 402-471-2756. Kenny Zoeller, my Legislative Aide, and Katie Quintero, my Administrative Aide, 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 your concerns, thoughts, and needs.

Thank you,

Senator Mark Kolterman
District 24

The 2015 legislative session has now come to a close.  During the session, the legislature  addressed and fixed number of key issues facing our state. Though progress was made, we still have a lot of work to do in order to continue moving Nebraska forward. I would like to use this article as an opportunity to give a synopsis of this year’s session.

The legislature increased the property tax relief credit fund by $60 million per year. It now totals over $400 million over the state’s biennium – our two year budget, but we have still not reached a long term solution to fix our state’s high property taxes. I believe the key to fixing this problem is that Nebraska needs to reform the way it funds K-12 education, shifting away from the increased reliance on Ag land, which is currently increasing 15% or more in their valuations every year. The legislature is going to study this issue during the interim, but I still need your help providing input about this problem. You, the taxpayer, are the most knowledgeable about the impact of high taxes and property valuations, let me know your thoughts on how we can help fix this problem.

Prison reform was another major accomplishment of this session. It was absolutely necessary to address the issue, considering the state’s problem with overcrowded prisons. LB605 was passed and signed by the Governor. This bill was a compromise and joint effort established by the Legislature, Governor, Attorney General, county attorneys, and law enforcement officials. It creates a path toward a more cost-effective way to handle nonviolent criminals with alternatives such as drug court and probation. By doing so, we avoid creating an environment where violent repeat offenders share living space with nonviolent criminals, this greatly limits their influence. By doing so, we avoid creating an environment where violent repeat offenders share living space with nonviolent criminals, greatly limiting their influence.

Balancing the budget was a major accomplishment this session. We are holding state spending down to a 3.1% growth rate over the next two years. This is one of the lowest non-recession budgets in Nebraska’s history and will set the state up for major tax relief in the near future. If revenues continue to come in as forecasted at roughly 5% to 6% and the state continues to keep growth at 3.1%, the difference between the two figures will serve as tax relief to Nebraska’s citizens.

While these accomplishments are moving the state in the right direction, we still need major reform in state government. Much of this is directed by you, the watchful citizen. Please continue to contact my office with your thoughts and concerns about how to improve our state government. During this interim period, I will be travelling to every corner of the district and trying to connect with as many of you as possible so I can bring your thoughts and concerns to Lincoln.

As always, I am honored by the faith that you, the voters of District 24, have placed in me.  My door is open and I have made it a goal to be accessible to the constituents of our district.  You may continue to follow me on Facebook at Kolterman For Legislature and on Twitter at @KoltermanforLegislature.  My office in the State Capitol is Room 1115, which I share with my colleague Senator Bob Hilkemann from Omaha.  Stop by anytime.  My e-mail address is mkolterman@leg.ne.gov and the office phone number is 402-471-2756.  Kenny Zoeller, my Legislative Aide, and Katie Quintero, my Administrative Aide, 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 your concerns, thoughts, and needs.

Thank you,

Senator Mark Kolterman
District 24

This past week, the Legislature held the final round of debate over one of the toughest issues lawmakers face: the death penalty. While dealing with an issue that involves so much sorrow for many families, lawmakers must take many viewpoints and facts into account when arriving at a decision. Many of you have contacted my office via email, phone, and mail to share heart-felt opinions both against and in support of the death penalty. Thank you for contacting our office. Your input truly has an impact on the decisions that we make in the Legislature.

During my conversations with those who are in support of keeping the death penalty, many people expressed frustration related to the lengthy appeals process that is the norm when dealing with death penalty cases. This is certainly one of the major problems within our broken capital punishment system. Many constituents shared the common opinion that the problem could be fixed by speeding up the appeals process through our judicial system. Though I wish there were a quick fix, this is not a viable solution to our problem. The U.S. Constitution guarantees the right to due process in civil and criminal proceedings. This protects the defendants’ rights to work within the system and appeal court decisions. We can lower Nebraska’s number of lengthy appeals by sentencing criminals to life in prison without the possibility of parole instead of death. Nationally, the average defendant sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole files for an appeal 1.5 times, compared to the 7 appeals for which the average death row inmate files.

I have also heard from many people that support repealing the death penalty. Some of the most important perspectives to consider are those of the victims’ families that have endured this lengthy appeals process. Every time a case is appealed, the families often attend the trial and are forced to face their loved one’s murderer once again. Reliving this past trauma makes it very difficult to finally move on. It is unfair to put them through this decades-long process. This is especially true because the state does not possess the ability to carry out executions, so the criminal will just remain on death row for years. By sentencing criminals to life in prison without the possibility of parole, we are allowing the victims’ families to achieve closure.

As a conservative, I am committed to protecting life and getting rid of government waste. I have always stood as a strong pro-life advocate. I truly believe that life begins at conception and should end at natural death. Also, as I wrote in one of my March editorials, the state has spent approximately $100 million on death penalty related cases since 1976, but has only executed three people. It is evident that the state of Nebraska cannot enforce the death penalty in a prompt manner and it is time to look at other avenues. For all of these reasons, I will continue to support the repeal of the death penalty in the state of Nebraska.

As always, I am honored by the faith that you, the voters of District 24, have placed in me. My door is open and I have made it a goal to be accessible to the constituents of our district. You may continue to follow me on Facebook at Kolterman For Legislature and on Twitter at @KoltermanforLegislature. My office in the State Capitol is Room 1115, which I share with my colleague Senator Bob Hilkemann from Omaha. Stop by anytime. My e-mail address is mkolterman@leg.ne.gov and the office phone number is 402-471-2756. Kenny Zoeller, my Legislative Aide, and Katie Quintero, my Administrative Aide, 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 your concerns, thoughts, and needs.

 

Thank you,
Senator Mark Kolterman

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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