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 email@example.com
The second week of this unusual session is in the books. While the perception might be that not much has been accomplished, there were nearly 50 bills on the agenda for Final Reading on Friday, which indicates many senators were able to move their priorities through the process for the sake of their districts and the state.
The three major issues which garner the most attention are still pending. Each one came to a standstill in our first week back in session, but the conversations, negotiations, clarifications and refinements are going full bore behind the scenes. I am still hopeful that we will take up these issues – property tax relief and school funding assurances, business incentives, and the UNMC project, early next week. All three of these issues have been complicated by Covid-19, the current and future costs resulting from the virus, and federal funds flowing into the state. I cannot yet say consensus has been reached, or that any of these measures will survive a gubernatorial veto, but we continue to do the work necessary to try to make it happen.
Two important hearings were added to the schedule that deal directly with current events in our state and nation. The first was held Friday afternoon in response to the introduction of LB 1222 by Senator Wayne of Omaha. LB 1222 would adopt the Municipal Police Oversight Act. Under the Act, each city which employs full-time police officers would be required to appoint a Citizen Police Oversight Board to monitor, investigate, and evaluate police standards and practices.That board would have seven members of the public appointed by the mayor with the approval of the city council. Several hours of testimony from both proponents and opponents was heard by the Urban Affairs Committee on Friday afternoon.
The second hearing was called in response to conditions in the meatpacking industry and an amendment, AM 3238 to LB 667. The Business and Labor Committee wants to provide a forum and speaking opportunities for everyone involved in the industry, from beef producers to those working on the meat packing lines, safety and health officials to those who have been infected with Covid-19. That hearing will be on Thursday, August 6th at 1:30 at the Capitol.
LB 814, introduced by Sen. Geist to ban dismemberment abortions, was debated at length earlier in the week. After three hours, debate was stopped and the introducer will need to show the Speaker that she has the 33 votes for cloture. We have just seven days remaining, with all the aforementioned issues still to be acted upon. As one of the co-sponsors of this bill, I am confident it will return in January if time prevents us from taking up LB 814 again in this session.
I appreciate your emails and calls to the office during these busy days at the Capitol. As always, you can contact me at any time by calling 402-471-2620 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.