NEBRASKA LEGISLATURE
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Sen. Kate Bolz

Sen. Kate Bolz

District 29

The content of these pages is developed and maintained by, and is the sole responsibility of, the individual senator's office and may not reflect the views of the Nebraska Legislature. Questions and comments about the content should be directed to the senator's office at kbolz@leg.ne.gov

On Monday, November 12, I’ll be available from 9am to noon for open office hours.

If you have the day off in observance of Veterans Day and would like to meet with me to discuss potential legislation, policy issues, casework or anything else that may be on your mind, you can schedule a time by calling my office at 402-471-2734, or emailing shuppert@leg.ne.gov.

If you’re unavailable on November 12, but would still like to discuss upcoming policy issues, please feel free to email me at kbolz@leg.ne.gov, or call at 402-471-2734.

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Senator Kate Bolz, (402) 802-8312, kbolz@leg.ne.gov

Senator Kate Bolz to Introduce Sexual Assault Survivors Bill of Rights Legislation

October 2, 2018 (Lincoln, NE) — Senator Kate Bolz announced today that she will introduce legislation to establish rights for survivors of sexual assault in Nebraska. The Sexual Assault Survivors Bill of Rights will ensure that survivors of sexual assault are notified of formal and informal supports available to them during medical and law enforcement interactions.

“There are many reasons why survivors of sexual assault choose not to come forward, but we must do all we can to ensure that victims are aware of the rights they hold in our criminal justice system” said Senator Kate Bolz. “This legislation gives survivors of sexual assault the information they need to make informed decisions about the resources that are available to them at the time of reporting. Learning more about what steps to take following sexual violence can help victims in a difficult time.”  Bolz noted that she made the decision after hearing from constituents in recent weeks.

The legislation was developed with the assistance and support of the Nebraska Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence. The legislation requires that survivors be notified of their existing rights under current law when contacting law enforcement or medical personnel. The rights of survivors of sexual assault include:

  • The right to be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect;
  • The right to consult with a sexual assault counselor or victims advocate;
  • The right to be informed;
  • The right to be heard and participate in the criminal justice process;
  • The right to timely disposition of the case;
  • The right to notice about the status of the case; and
  • The right to apply for compensation.

Each day hundreds of Americans are affected by sexual violence. Every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted. And every 8 minutes, that victim is a child. The Sexual Assault Survivors Bill of Rights will give survivors consistent guidelines and information during an uncertain and traumatic time.

Previously, Senator Bolz introduced the Sexual Assault Survivors Bill of Rights Act, LB1126, during the 2018 legislative session.  A new, streamlined version will be introduced in 2019.

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Senator Bolz 10-2-18 Release

I have just returned from China as a part of a delegation with the China-United States Exchange Foundation https://www.cusef.org.hk/ .  I wanted to share with you a few take-aways from this experience and the position of Nebraska in a global economy.

First, China has a large population and a growing middle class.  This represents a significant opportunity to continue to develop a beneficial economic relationship.  China has a great workforce and a thriving manufacturing sector. The United States and Nebraska have strengths in the agricultural industry, innovation and development, and more.  With thoughtful work, we can maximize the strengths of both countries – and create new opportunities for American workers. I give the Nebraska credit for working on this approach: https://journalstar.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/nebraska-aiming-for-greater-trade-opportunities-global-engagement/article_0c0a1d83-275d-55f8-9150-48b337cd7484.html

Second, we have much to learn from China’s approach to being a part of a global, interconnected economy.  Many businesses illustrate a vision for an interconnected, intelligent world. Nebraska should continue to work to update our economic policy to build on opportunities in digital technologies, agribusiness, and more.

Third, China’s businesses are increasingly incorporating the international human development goals and environmental sustainability into their long term plans.  Specifically, they embrace the United Nations Millennium Development Goals: http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/   U.S. businesses may be inspired by the triple bottom line approach used by corporations such as Pingdoudou and others to improve quality of life, protect the environment, and do good business.

Fundamentally, I found China to be growing and thriving, with rich history and culture to share, welcoming, open people and traditions that are rooted in community values. Many thanks to the China United States Exchange Foundation for an enlightening and productive experience!  

Interim Session

July 27th, 2018

Over the interim, legislators file interim study resolutions to formally study policy areas and issues to better inform legislation next session. Among the topics I’m looking at this interim are how we can reduce violence in our communities and the ways that we can make Nebraska’s business incentives work better for our state economy.

LR390: Office of Violence Prevention

During my time in the Legislature there has been an ongoing discussion of how we can effectively reduce violence in our communities. I consider keeping Lincoln and Nebraska safe to be among my highest priorities, which is why I introduced LR390, which looks at how we can expand the Office of Violence Prevention and improve its effectiveness. Since 2009, Nebraska’s Office of Violence Prevention has offered ways for cities and nonprofits to effectively target violence our communities. This resolution will study how we can build on the success of this program, and expand its impact on the state.

LR388: Evaluating Nebraska Advantage

The largest program designed to grow businesses in our state, the Nebraska Advantage Act, expires in 2020. This gives us the opportunity to look at how effective this program is in creating new jobs in Nebraska, and how we can continue to improve and compete in a global economy. I introduced LR388 to examine the best practices to increasing economic growth in our state and find ways to utilize the Nebraska Advantage Act in a manner that best promotes the creation of good jobs for Nebraskans.

 

District #29 Survey

July 3rd, 2018

As your State Senator, focusing on the priorities that matter most to you is important to me. Let me know what you think by filling out our Legislative District #29 Survey.

Thank you for taking the time to respond. Your suggestions, ideas, and concerns are important to me! You are also welcome to call my office at (402) 471-2743 or email me at kbolz@leg.ne.gov.

Legislative District #29 Survey Link

Kate in the Community

July 2nd, 2018

I’m looking forward to the chance to see you in our community this summer. I’ll be at the Sunday Farmers’ Market at College View (4801 Prescott Ave) on July 15 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, please stop by and say hello!

I’ll also be holding open office hours at the Capitol on Saturday July, 7 and Saturday July 28 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. If there’s anything you would like to meet with me about, you can schedule a time by calling my office at 402-471-2734, or emailing shuppert@leg.ne.gov.

2018 Session Review

June 5th, 2018

Budget

Between the 2017 and 2018 sessions, the state’s revenue came in short of initial projections, which led us to reduce state spending beyond what was initially planned in our original two-year budget cycle. As the vice chair of the Appropriations Committee, it was important to me that we did this while protecting our state’s investments in kids, seniors, education, public safety, and job creation.

The 2018 budget adjustments contained necessary cuts as well as funding for state priorities. Among the priorities in the budget were services in child welfare, property tax relief for seniors and individuals with disabilities through the homestead exemption,  funding to developmental disability providers to make up for lost federal funds, needed resources for school funding, and dollars needed to shore up Medicaid services to respond to changes on the federal level. I’m also pleased that we were able to reduce the significant cuts to higher education that were proposed by the administration.

Medical Surrogacy

I introduced LB104 to establish a process to declare a medical surrogate to make healthcare decisions for those incapable or incapacitated, but who do not have a guardianship in place or medical power of attorney. The current guardianship system will remain in place, but LB104 offers a less restrictive option that allows those with a medical surrogate to maintain their general independence, and avoid the expensive guardianship process, which can often cost up to $5,000. LB104 passed unanimously, and was signed into law by the Governor.

Aging and Disability Resource Centers

Helping seniors and individuals with disabilities find their way to information and services is critical in making sure they receive the care they need. Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRC), connect patients, families, caregivers, and advocates with referral and options counseling services to connect those in need with the correct long-term services and supports. The success of the pilot program led me to introduce LB1004 makes the state’s ADRC program permanent. LB1004 was passed and signed into law.

Corrections Reform Package

The Legislature also took steps to address Nebraska’s prison overcrowding and safety issues by passing a corrections reform package that included a number of pieces of legislation, including LB852 legislation I brought forward to establish a protocol for parole of terminally ill offenders that no longer pose a threat to the public, as well as policy changes to promote access to employment and mental health treatment through the parole administration. The corrections reform package includes legislation that requires the Department of Corrections to outline how they will respond to a prison overcrowding emergency, conduct a staffing analysis and authorize the department to utilize additional substance abuse evaluations and treatments. These reforms will help the Department safely and responsibly make prisons safer, while reducing recidivism.

Join us at our South Central Lincoln town hall!

On May 16, I’ll be joining fellow Lincoln elected officials at a town where you can hear our priorities for the community, and we can get your input on what you would like to see moving forward. Join myself, Lincoln School Board Member Don Mayhew, and City Councilman Jon Camp on Wednesday, May 16 at 6:00 at the Union College Lang Amphitheater to discuss how we can build a strong future for South Lincoln.

The program will include brief remarks from the elected representatives and time for a question and answer session. A campus map of Union College can be found here. The Lang Amphitheater is located in the Krueger Center, which is building #9 on the map.

You can let us know you’re attending by filling out this RSVP form.

For more information about the event, email shuppert@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2734.

Thank you for your interest!

Nebraska Budget Summary

March 29th, 2018
LB 944 passed select file debate on to final reading on March 28, 2018.  The bill contains important funding for child welfare, property tax relief, funding for developmental disabilities, higher education, and much more.

Important funding priorities were included in the budget this year.  $55 million dollars in funding for services to meet demand in child welfare are appropriated.  The budget provides funding for property tax relief for seniors and individuals with disabilities through the homestead exemption.  The bill provides funding to developmental disability providers to make up for lost federal funds, needed resources for school funding, and dollars needed to shore up Medicaid services to respond to changes on the federal level.

Moreover, the budget bill pulls back significant cuts to higher education proposed by the Administration.  While I would have liked to avoid cuts to higher education entirely, the changes made by the Appropriations Committee help to protect the missions of our University system, State College system, and community colleges into the future.

The bill passed after considerable debate on Title X federal family planning funds.  A compromise was negotiated to move the important budget package forward. Title X funds provide important services to 28,000 Nebraskans including preventative health care, cancer screenings, and prenatal care.  LB 944 contains changes to the distribution of these funds.  Some existing providers will have to change to comply with these changes which require legal, financial, and physical separation between organizations providing abortions and those providing Title X services.  Other providers, including Federally Qualified Health Centers, will continue to be able to provide services in the same manner they have previously.

In my work on the budget, I have done by best to balance the important priorities in the budget, the interests of multiple constituents, the value of higher education, the importance of ensuring that Title X services will be able to continue in Nebraska, and the long term fiscal sustainability of the state, and I appreciate the constituent correspondence on all of these issues.

March 26, 2018

CONTACT: Senator Kate Bolz, kbolz@leg.ne.gov

Senator Kate Bolz Statement on Violence Prevention

It is heartbreaking any time violence occurs.  As a State Senator, I take my responsibility to promote community safety seriously.  In light of the recent national conversation about school violence and the tragic event in my own neighborhood today, I feel compelled to continue our work to prevent violence in our communities.

Tomorrow, I will introduce an interim study to examine opportunities for expansion of Nebraska’s Office of Violence Prevention as well as ways in which we can provide additional funding to this important purpose.  My sincere condolences to those who have lost friends and family members, especially my neighbors today. Too many families have felt this pain, this action is only one step we must take toward working together to build safer communities.

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Sen. Kate Bolz

District 29
Room #1015
P.O. Box 94604
Lincoln, NE 68509
Phone: (402) 471-2734
Email: kbolz@leg.ne.gov
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