NEBRASKA LEGISLATURE

The official site of the Nebraska Unicameral Legislature

Sen. Dave Murman

Sen. Dave Murman

District 38

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 dmurman@leg.ne.gov

Welcome
January 8th, 2020

Thank you for visiting my website. It is an honor to represent the people of the 38th legislative district in the Nebraska Unicameral Legislature.

You’ll find my contact information on the right side of this page, as well as a list of the bills I’ve introduced this session and the committees on which I serve. Please feel free to contact me and my staff about proposed legislation or any other issues you would like to address.

Sincerely,
Sen. Dave Murman

COVID-19
April 30th, 2020

In response to COVID-19 our office is closed for precautionary reasons. We are working remotely and can still help. If you need help please call (402)471-2732 or email dmurman@leg.ne.gov with any questions or concerns.

Weekly Article – 4/27/2020
April 30th, 2020

When the coronavirus began to spread around the world there were many unknowns. How does it spread? How contagious is it? What populations are most vulnerable? How many will be hospitalized? How many will die? How much immunity results? How long will immunity last? Will there be more than one wave? Etc.

President Trump and Governor Ricketts have responded well with the information they originally had. We know much more about the virus now than we did a few weeks ago. As President Trump has said, ”One death is too many.“ In many ways the effects of the virus have not been as severe as earlier feared. The time has come with proper precautions that the vast majority of Nebraskans that are not working can go back to work and get our economy moving again. To continue with the extreme precautionary guidelines will cause irreversible damage to many businesses and more importantly to the whole economy. The cure cannot be worse than the disease.

Unfortunately, a recession is most harmful to the poor and underprivileged. When the economy is good there are jobs for everyone and more social, educational, and health programs are available and can be funded. Also, if we don’t return the economy to better form we cannot be as prepared for a possible second wave of the virus.

We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the local health departments, first responders, law- enforcement, hospital personnel, grocery stores, healthcare workers, and all essential services, for their tireless work and dedication often risking their own health during this crisis. I would like to thank Nebraskans for following the healthcare directives from the Governor and the President. I know Nebraskans will continue to follow the directives even as they are greatly relaxed in the coming days.

Finally I would like to thank God for answering the prayer of Vice President Pence in the
unfolding days of the pandemic and giving our leaders guidance on how to respond. The United States has avoided the predicted tremendous number of deaths and hospitals from being overrun. With common sense guidelines all of us that are able need to return to work. Those with underlying health conditions or living with someone with underlying health conditions should still continue to work remotely and their paychecks need to be protected as long as there is a health threat. May God continue to bless America!

4/3 update
April 3rd, 2020

This past week the Legislature returned to session for three days for the sole purpose of providing emergency funding for health departments and the state to combat the COVID-19 virus. The importance of the bill was evident so the bill passed unanimously with no debate. I am proud that we were able to come together and get this done quickly for the people in this state. The proposal totaled $83,619,600 and included emergency appropriations to allow for COVID-19 testing, lab equipment, healthcare staffing to cover response needs, and a cash reserve if needed. 

 

The coronavirus outbreak has led to economic havoc across our country. From falling ethanol, Grain, and livestock markets, household goods flying off the shelves, cancellation of travel and school, and the fear of getting sick and having to quarantine for an extended time. The best advice that we’ve been given is to do your best to wash your hands, sanitize surfaces that are used frequently, self-distance and if you do experience the symptoms to call your local Health Department. The two Health Districts that cover District 38 are South Heartland District Health Department in Hastings and Two Rivers Public Health Department in Holdrege. South Heartland District Health in Hastings can be reached at (402)462-6211. Two Rivers Public Health Department can be reached at (308)995-4778. 

 

The Department of Labor is instituting some changes to help those who may be out of work during this crisis. First is a short-time compensation program. This program allows employers to reduce affected workers’ hours by 10 to 60 percent while still allowing those workers to receive a prorated unemployment benefit. Employers can apply for this program at https://dol.nebraska.gov/stc.

 

The second change is a temporary change to unemployment benefits. For those of you who are not able to work and not collecting a paycheck during this period, you may want to check out these changes. From March 22nd through May 2nd:

  • The waiting week for benefits has been waived. You will start receiving benefits immediately instead of needing to wait a week.
  • The work search requirements have been waived. You will not be required to apply to jobs to receive benefits.
  • For employers, benefits will not be charged against your individual accounts.

Those who need this program can find more information at https://dol.nebraska.gov/uibenefits.

 

I know this is a difficult time for everyone, but I want to thank everyone for their patience, and thank all of our leaders from the federal level down to the city and county level for their leadership during these times. We will get through this. 

 

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me by email at dmurman@leg.ne.gov, by phone at (402)471-2732, or on my Facebook. 

 

I know there are many out there temporarily out of work due to the coronavirus. As stated yesterday at the Governor’s press conference, the Department of Labor is instituting some changes to help those who may be out of work during this crisis.

First is a short-time compensation program. This program allows employers to reduce affected workers’ hours by 10 to 60 percent while still allowing those workers to receive a prorated unemployment benefit. Employers can apply for this program at https://dol.nebraska.gov/stc.

The second change is a temporary change to unemployment benefits. For those of you who are not able to work and not collecting a paycheck during this period, you may want to check out these changes. From March 22nd through May 2nd:
The waiting week for benefits has been waived. You will start receiving benefits immediately instead of needing to wait a week.
The work search requirements have been waived. You will not be required to apply to jobs to receive benefits.
For employers, benefits will not be charged against your individual accounts.
Those who need this program can find more information at https://dol.nebraska.gov/uibenefits.

If you are attempting to contact the Department of Labor for either of these programs or other questions or concerns, please be patient as they are currently handling a high volume of calls. The best thing to do is leave a message with your name, number, and concern, and they will return your call as soon as they are able.

I know this is a difficult time for everyone, but I want to thank everyone for their patience, and thank all of our leaders from the federal level down to the city and county level for their leadership during these times. We will get through this and be back to normal soon.

3/20 Update
March 20th, 2020

It is evident that our state is being faced with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic. The Senators attended a briefing last Tuesday with different health professionals from UNMC and DHHS, University of Nebraska President, Ted Carter, and Matthew Blomstedt from the Nebraska Department of Education. The Senators have been given constant updates on new developments at the State and National level on what is being done to address this outbreak. Many schools across the State have decided to move their classes to online instruction to prevent possible spreading of the virus.

 

Upon guidance from the CDC of discouraging gatherings of more than 50 individuals, the Speaker of the Legislature has made the decision to recess the legislative body at this time. We are in the last third of this second session and still have many things to accomplish but our health is ultimately the most important. Therefore we will recess and reconvene at a later date which is unknown at this time. My staff will be working remotely and will still be able to help with any issues or concerns you may have. We will all be available by telephone and through email. Our office phone number is (402) 471-2732 and my email is dmurman@leg.ne.gov.

 

The coronavirus outbreak has led to economic havoc across our country. From financial markets, household goods flying off the shelves, cancellation of travel, and the fear of getting sick and having to quarantine for an extended time. The best advice that we’ve been given is to do your best to wash your hands, sanitize surfaces that are used frequently, and if you do experience the symptoms to call your local Health Department. The two Health Districts that cover District 38 are South Heartland District Health Department in Hastings and Two Rivers Public Health Department in Holdrege.

 

As we approached the beginning of the shorter session, my colleagues and I knew that we were going to be tasked with two major proposals. Those two major proposals are Property Tax Relief which has presented itself in LB 974 from Senator Linehan, and LB 720 which provides business incentives for Corporations. We have been able to debate LB 974 and Property Tax Relief one time earlier this session, although it was unfortunately filibustered. As the weeks have passed, we haven’t been receiving the most optimistic news about LB 974 coming back up for debate. Thankfully Speaker Scheer, Senator Linehan, and Senator Kolterman (introducer of LB 720) are all understanding that Nebraska Tax Payers need Property Tax Relief before we would provide incentives for businesses.

 

During the sixty day session, the legislature needs to make necessary mid-biennium adjustments for the two-year budget. This last week we were faced with incorrect revenue forecasts and new proposals this year that have fiscal notes. The budget adjustments are something that we have to complete in this session.  Senator LouAnn Linehan, the Revenue Committee Chair, has stayed true to her word and during the budget adjustments filed an amendment to provide money for property tax relief. Unfortunately, the amendment failed but it allowed those who are fighting for property tax relief including myself to voice their thoughts on the Legislative Floor.

 

My biggest priority this session is to achieve property tax relief. Thankfully, many of my colleagues feel the same way and I hope that we can be successful in our endeavors, especially in this uncertain economic climate.

 

 

 

 

2/28 Column
February 28th, 2020

Hello neighbor,

 

We are already halfway done with session this year, and unfortunately, it’s not looking good for property tax relief. LB 974 was debated last week, and opponents of the bill filibustered it for three hours until it was taken off the agenda. Under Speaker Scheer’s rule, Senator Linehan has to come to him with 33 yes votes before it will be put back on the agenda for another three hours. The Speaker requires 33 votes because that is how many it takes to vote to end a filibuster and vote on the bill.

 

If property tax relief does not pass, it endangers projects many people consider important, such as the business tax incentive bill and the University of Nebraska’s NExT project. The NExT project would be a partnership between the University and the state and federal government to cement the University’s status as the center for hazard response and preparedness for infectious diseases and other hazards.

 

The other major topic in the Legislature is the status of the YRTC program. There have been numerous issues with the YRTC facilities, last year at the Geneva facility, and constantly at the Kearney facility. The issues at the Kearney facility were exacerbated when the girls from the Geneva facility were moved to the Kearney facility as well. We need to do more to protect our staff. They are overworked and underpaid, leading to roughly a third of the positions being unfilled and many staff looking for other opportunities. They need more support from the administration, and I hope that CEO Smith will follow through on her promises to give them that support. The sooner we can reduce the number of kids in the Kearney facility, the better. The girls moving back to Geneva would be a good start.

If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me by email at dmurman@leg.ne.gov, by phone at 402-471-2732, or on my Facebook page.

Hello neighbor,

 

Welcome back as we start the second session of the 106th Legislature. This is a short, 60 day session, wrapping up around the end of April. With bill introduction having just ended, I will give you a brief summary of the six bills I have introduced.

 

  1. LB 950 would change eligibility requirements for the Access College Early Scholarship Program. The objective of the ACE program is to encourage well-prepared high school students from low-income families to enroll in college courses for dual-credit. To receive the ACE Scholarship, the student or student’s family must qualify for free or reduced lunch, Supplemental Security Income, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or the Special Supplemental Assistance Program (WIC).
  2. LB 978 would provide for a reimbursement to county, city, and village jails for any costs incurred in holding an incarcerated individual from a Youth Rehabilitation and Treatment Center. The increased cost put on the cities and counties end up in higher property taxes for our landowners.
  3. LB 994 is a bill to adopt the Libby’s Law: The Fair Access to Organ Transplantation Act. This bill would prohibit discrimination against a disabled patient who is in need of an organ transplant.
  4. LB 998 aims to ensure that every student in Nebraska has a safe school environment because every employee at their school will have basic training in behavioral awareness. This is a comprehensive bill that addresses training for behavioral awareness and intervention. This bill has been worked on by multiple groups, including administrators, teachers, school boards, and senators. Most schools already do some level of training in this area but this bill will help strengthen and solidify five different steps of de-escalation before physical intervention only if reasonable and necessary.
  5. LB 1070 would exempt combine head trailers from sales tax. Farm machinery is exempt from sales tax but this is one that is still being taxed. This is important equipment to our state’s number one industry, and we need to make sure it’s more affordable to the farmers who need it.
  6. LB 1094 would change the tax lien law when it comes to child support. Right now, a noncustodial parent has a lien put on their property in a divorce, even up to 10 years after the child turns nineteen. This bill would eliminate the lien once the child turns nineteen if all payments were up to date. If child support is still owed when the child turns nineteen, the lien stays in effect until the support is paid or 10 years have passed, whichever comes first.

 

My main issues in the legislature will of course be property tax relief and Christian family values. I will do everything I can to fight for our property owners, whether they own farmland or a home in the city. Our state needs property tax relief and as legislators we have to work together to achieve that. There are a number of proposals being talked about, and I am waiting to see what the final version will be that comes to the floor. As always, you can sign the property tax initiative petition that would give you a refund of 35% of any property tax you pay.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov, 402-471-2732, or on my Facebook page.

Property Taxes
October 2nd, 2019

Hello Neighbor,

 

I think that it’s safe to say that concerns about the property tax crisis that we are facing has become the topic of many conversations. Unfortunately, my colleagues and I were not able to achieve a consensus about how to provide property tax relief to Nebraska property owners this past session. As we slowly approach the upcoming session in January, I thought I’d share a few thoughts. 

 

I believe that LB 289, a comprehensive bill that would have provided full and fair funding to all schools while giving property owners relief that they needed, was the best package that we were going to see this Legislative Session. The bill repealed many sales tax exemptions, raised the sales tax by a half cent, maintained the property tax credit relief fund, etc. Many of the Senators in the body and the Governor all were opposed to the sales tax exemptions and raising the sales tax because they all campaigned on not raising taxes. Although in my opinion, I see that broadening the sales tax base would be beneficial in the future because we are truly in the face of a crisis. Another reason that we couldn’t pass property tax relief is because there was a standstill when it came to voting for a large business incentives bill (LB 720). I couldn’t believe that we were discussing giving large corporations in Nebraska a tax break when our land owners are struggling to even make their property tax payments. 

 

The Revenue committee has been meeting over the interim to try and create another comprehensive proposal to provide property tax relief. The plan is to have something drawn up this interim that we can all agree on so that once the session resumes in January, we will be able to pass it quickly and smoothly. I believe that the members of the Revenue committee have been working diligently to produce a proposal that we can agree on to provide property tax relief for hard working Nebraskans. 

 

If you haven’t already heard, there is a ballot initiative circulating to provide property tax relief. This ballot initiative is the voice of Nebraskans and if it passes, it will put the Nebraska Legislature in a position to create a solution. The legislature will have the incentive it needs to pay a $1.5 billion rebate to the property taxpayers of Nebraska each year. This initiative will show the legislature what the citizens really want and I encourage you to sign this ballot-initiative. You can find out more about this ballot initiative at www.truenebraskans.com

 

If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to call my office at 402-471-2732, email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov, or visit my Facebook page.

Interim Review
September 26th, 2019

After my first legislative session, I have taken the opportunity to sit back this interim and learn from what our state has to offer. I have attended multiple meetings focused on property tax relief, which has been my main priority since I was elected to office last year. The revenue committee is working diligently to compose a comprehensive plan to present to the legislature in January. I am circulating the property tax ballot petition throughout our district. I enjoyed seeing many of you at the county fairs and getting the chance to chat. 

 

I am on the Health and Human Services committee which means that I hear from many organizations across our state that are working daily to keep Nebraska residents healthy and taken care of. This interim I have toured many organizations and facilities across the state.  My tours have included the Nebraska Children’s Home in Grand Island, QLI in Omaha that specializes in Brain and Spinal Cord Injuries, the PACE Program at Immanuel Pathways, the State Developmental Center in Beatrice, and the Lincoln Regional Center. I also had the opportunity to visit the Youth Rehabilitation & Treatment Center in Geneva. I know that DHHS is working very hard to ensure the welfare of the girls during this time. 

 

One special event that my family hosts is a Goodwill Industries tour of our Dairy Farm. Goodwill of Hastings helps individuals with disabilities or barriers grow into more independent lives with effective programming. My Daughter Whitney has Rett Syndrome and we have utilized the services of Goodwill Industries. Our grandson, Carter, was visiting from Texas at the time and he was a great help in giving the tour!

 

As fall approaches, I will be very busy between traveling to the Capitol more often to attend different interim hearings for the committees I sit on and the beginning of harvest. In the HHS committee we will be focusing on funding for rural health providers, drug testing protocol in the child welfare system, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs, the Health Care Cash Fund, waivers under the Medical Assistance Act, and much more. In the Education Committee I will be attending different listening sessions and interim hearings for safe and effective student discipline in the classroom, administrative costs of local school systems, and Educational Service Units. Also fair funding for all schools in the state is the number one priority. 

I’m looking forward to the legislative session in January, but I know there is much to be done before then. If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to call my office at 402-471-2732, email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov, or visit my Facebook page.

Sen. Dave Murman

District 38
Room #1522
P.O. Box 94604
Lincoln, NE 68509
Phone: (402) 471-2732
Email: dmurman@leg.ne.gov
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