NEBRASKA LEGISLATURE

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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 5th, 2022

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

Pink Postcards

In 2021, the Nebraska Legislature adopted LB 644, titled the Property Tax Request Act and more commonly dubbed the Truth in Taxation Act. The bill requires counties to inform their citizens of an increase in property tax from the year prior of 2.0% or more. The legislation also requires the counties to hold a public hearing where citizens can ask questions, express discontent, or air grievances about any increases.

Over the last few weeks, my office has been contacted by constituents asking questions about this process. Truth in Taxation was a major step toward transparency for Nebraska property owners and accountability for local taxing entities. As is common with any new law, there are pieces of LB 644 that need to be retooled and worked out. But overall, this law is a positive first step and guarantees citizens will be heard. If a subdivision raises property taxes by more than 2%, a notice of a public hearing will be mailed to the taxpayer. The hearing will take place in one location per county.

Unfortunately, a lot more pink paper was used in the first year of the Truth in Taxation law than was expected. Why is that? Put simply, inflation. The federal government has irresponsibly decided to deficit spend and then print money to make up for it. In Legislative District 38, several counties did not raise their property tax levy but your property taxes still rose. Recent reports from Washington D.C. indicate that the consumer price index (CPI), a metric that details the overall cost of goods and services, is up about 9% from 2021. You can see it when you go to fuel up at the pump, go to buy groceries, or go to the hardware store to purchase a 2×4. Even if you have made no renovations or upgrades to your property, inflation is still raising the value of your home. As your valuation increases, the amount of taxes you will owe will increase unless the levy decreases in a corresponding amount. Additionally, counties still have the same resource demands and needs for essential services, with inflation driving up these costs as well.

Truth in Taxation has revealed several effects that were already obvious to so many Nebraskans about our unfair property tax system. Showing transparency in our taxation process is putting pressure on Lincoln to rid Nebraskans of these often-hidden property tax increases. With the help of my colleagues, I hope to implement a broader-based or more consumption-based tax system.

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue.  Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

Become a Legislative Page
September 26th, 2022

Are you a Nebraska college student interested in becoming a page for the Nebraska Legislature for the 2023 Legislative session? Details from the Clerk of the Legislature’s office are at the following link:

https://nebraskalegislature.gov/unicampages/

The deadline to apply is 5:00 PM on Friday, October 7th. Please have reference requests to my office by Wednesday, October 5th.

For reference consideration, please submit a letter of request to my office at:

Senator Dave Murman
PO Box 94604
Lincoln NE 68509-4604

Over the last few years, communities across Legislative District 38 (LD-38) have been recognized by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development and the Nebraska Diplomats for achievements in growth, modernization, business expansion, retention, leadership, agri-business, and preparation to succeed in competitive environments. Today, I’m recognizing some of those achievements and putting the great success across our district into context.

Last month, Governor Ricketts presented Holdrege with the Nebraska Diplomats’ “Community of the Year” award. Holdrege was recognized by the Nebraska Diplomats for being on a path forward for economic development, including a $100 million investment in Becton Dickinson’s Holdrege plant, an $8 million expansion by Allmand Inc./Briggs & Stratton, a new Cobblestone Hotel, and a $2 million dollar expansion of the VA Clinic in Holdrege.

Additionally, the Nebraska Department of Economic Development has two different designations for communities that are working to improve their status in leadership and economic development. I am pleased to report that as of September 2022, five LD-38 communities are on the Leadership Certified Community (LCC) list, making up over 15% of the entire list of communities. Blue Hill, Cambridge, Franklin, Red Cloud, and Superior have all demonstrated a strong sense of community, fostered collaboration between community leaders and organizations, and developed a strategic plan for solving community needs.

The Economic Development Certified Communities (EDCC) program by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development has recognized two communities in LD-38. McCook and Holdrege have been recognized for being equipped for growth and ready to meet the needs of employees and firms that need new locations.
None of this would be possible without the efforts of several leaders working on ways to best serve their neighbors. All of these achievements highlight a will to succeed and tremendous optimism across LD-38. Congratulations to all of these communities for their awards and designations.

A brief note to those of you in District 38 who have been affected by the shortage of Driver’s License Examiners at local courthouses. I have been assured by the State Department of Motor Vehicles that there are no plans to close any DMV offices in rural counties. The eastern edge of the district has been especially affected, because examiners are being pulled to staff larger counties, such as Lancaster. I would advise calling ahead before you make a long trip to be sure your local DMV office is staffed. With the exception of those turning 21, you are allowed to renew your driver’s license up to 90 days before your birthday, and you may do so at any DMV office in the state, regardless of your county of residence. There are also online options available. I will continue advocating to keep DMV offices open and staffed.

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue. Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

Constitution Day 2022
September 9th, 2022

Friends,

During my time in the Nebraska Unicameral, I’ve had the opportunity to serve on the Education Committee. During this time, I’ve strongly advocated for teaching American exceptionalism in the classroom, so that students may foster an appreciation for the God-given freedoms our country protects and defends. This is largely thanks to our founders’ foresight when drafting the United States Constitution, broadly considered to be the world’s longest surviving governing document.

On Saturday, September 17th, we have an opportunity to celebrate that achievement on Constitution Day. It serves as a reminder to all of us, as citizens, to recognize the value of the American experiment, and to celebrate the success of free people who have inalienable rights and liberties that come from God.

Including the bill of rights, our Constitution has been amended 27 times. The first amendment, which came in 1791, protects our right to freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, and the right to peacefully assemble and petition. The last time the United States amended the Constitution was 1992. The 27th amendment limited the ability for members of congress to receive a pay raise until an election of representatives shall have intervened.

In America, we have always been able to find consensus while sticking to our principles. Our Constitution embodies this. Therefore, our United States and our founding document have stood the test of time. This Constitution Day, let’s come together to be better citizens by celebrating all of the great freedoms our country has to offer. Support teaching about the constitution in our schools. Give time and resources to public service. Support our military and law enforcement. Most important of all, vote in the upcoming election. These are just a few of the ways we can defend the freedoms as enumerated in our U.S. Constitution.

God bless,
Senator Dave Murman

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue. Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

From the office of Governor Pete Ricketts:

LINCOLN – Wednesday morning, Governor Pete Ricketts hosted a press conference at the State Capitol to raise awareness of the new 988 phone number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. After two years of planning and preparation, the new three-digit suicide prevention line—988—will go live on Saturday, July 16. Callers will be able to use 988 around the clock to make a direct connection to trained crisis counselors. All calls are free and confidential.

“The new 988 phone number provides a 24/7 connection to trained, compassionate counselors for anyone experiencing thoughts of suicide,” said Gov. Ricketts. “It’s imperative that we look after the mental well-being of our loved ones and provide immediate help to those who need it. The State has been proactive in ensuring that Nebraskans have access to mental health resources. As we launch 988, we’re also adding capacity to mental health facilities and investing in the education of additional behavioral healthcare providers.”

In 2020, Congress designated the new 988 dialing code to operate through the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the lead federal agency, in partnership with the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Veterans Affairs and Vibrant Health.

The Lifeline, 988, is an easy-to-remember number that provides direct access to compassionate care and support for anyone experiencing mental health-related distress or thoughts of suicide. 988 will provide easier access to the Lifeline network and related crisis resources, which are distinct from 911 (where the focus is on dispatching Emergency Medical Services, fire, and police as needed). Callers to 911 talk with a person who answers the phone. With 988, the caller experience will be different. Lifeline centers utilize the Vibrant Emotional Health Lifeline technology, which means callers to 988 will hear some automated prompts before hearing a counselor’s voice.

Moving to 988 does not mean the existing suicide prevention lifeline (1-800-273-8255) will go away. After July 16, 2022, both it and 988 will get callers to the same services.

“We know that it can be hard to start conversations about mental health, but they are very important conversations and could save a life,” said Sheri Dawson, Behavioral Health Director for the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. “It is never too early to talk about mental health, and we don’t want the conversation to be too late. Use your eyes, ears, heart, and mind to reach out and offer help if someone is suicidal. If you’re unsure if someone is thinking of ending his/her life, ask, or now you can say, ‘let’s call 988 and talk to someone.’ People can also dial 988 if they are worried about a loved one who may need crisis support.”

Director Dawson thanked the State’s partners who planned tirelessly for the implementation of 988 and play an active role in behavioral healthcare across Nebraska.

“I want to thank the amazing Nebraskans who collaborated in planning for 988 implementations,” she said. “We are all grateful to those partners who provide behavioral health and 24/7 crisis services every day to individuals with behavioral health challenges. I want to thank our Regions, providers, and behavioral health system partners for their continued partnership in serving Nebraskans. We asked for 988 stakeholder recommendations and we listened to stakeholder feedback, our 988 workgroups, and 988 Advisory Committee. Nebraska is fortunate to have such dedicated partners.”

Need to talk or get immediate help in a crisis? Help is available. If you or a loved one need assistance, please reach out to:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for English, 1-888-628-9454 para Español
As of July 16, 2022, simply dial 988
Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Hotline: In Nebraska, dial 211
Your faith-based leader, your healthcare professional, or student health center on campus
Nebraska Family Helpline – Any question, any time: (888) 866-8660
Rural Response Hotline: (800) 464-0258
Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990 (oprime dos para Español) or text TalkWithUs to 66746
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233 or text LOVEIS to 22522
National Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4AChild (1-800-422-4453)
National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)

Last Wednesday, June 29th, Governor Pete Ricketts proclaimed “Religious Freedom Week” in Nebraska at a ceremony at the State Capitol. He was joined by several faith leaders, including representatives of the Christian, Hindu and Jewish faiths.

“Religious freedom is the first freedom listed in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution,” said the governor.  “That’s no accident.  Religious freedom is the cornerstone of a free society.  Nebraskans exercise this freedom by standing up for the most vulnerable, serving the disadvantaged, and seeking the well-being of their neighbors.  The State of Nebraska affirms the right to religious freedom and is fully committed to protecting it.”

There have been many victories for the faith community recently at the United States Supreme Court. On June 21st, the Court ruled in favor of families who challenged the anti-religious bias of the State of Maine’s school funding system. The 6-3 decision in Carson v Makin says that “once a state decides to subsidize private education it cannot disqualify some private schools because they are religious.”

On June 27th, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Joseph Kennedy, a high school football coach who had been punished by his public school for praying at the 50-yard line after games.  The ruling noted that “The Free Exercise and Free Speech Clauses of the First Amendment protect an individual engaging in a personal religious observance from government reprisal; the Constitution neither mandates nor permits the government to suppress such religious expression.”

Recent victories at the High Court include not only victories for the faith community, but also those who strive to interpret the U.S. Constitution as close to the intent of the founding fathers as possible. In a 6-3 ruling, the Court said that people in New York State could carry handguns without having to provide an explanation for their necessity. In writing for the majority, Justice Clarence Thomas observed that “We know of no other constitutional right that an individual may exercise only after demonstrating to government officers some special need.”

Additionally, of course, I am very elated by the Court’s overturning of Roe vs. Wade in a decision released last Friday. This is a wonderful victory. It is a long-awaited correction of an egregious decision that has cost the lives of over 60 million babies since 1973. While I lament the fact that no trigger bill is in place in Nebraska to go into effect with the high court’s ruling, I am prepared if Governor Pete Ricketts and Speaker of the Legislature Mike Hilgers call a special session to address the issue.

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue.  Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

This Memorial Day 2022, we honor the U.S. military personnel who have died while serving in the United States armed forces.  Community observances of the holiday will be held throughout the state at local cemeteries and memorial gardens with members of local American Legion, VFW and DAV posts paying tribute to the fallen men and women who sacrificed their lives serving our country.

Memorial Day, formerly called “Decoration Day” has its American roots in decorating the graves of and honoring soldiers from the Civil War. It has since evolved to honor all service men and women from all wars. Many of us also lay flowers and mementos on the graves of loved ones that have gone before us.

Quoting a popular expression that rings true, “Freedom is not free”.  I wish to personally thank all of the men and women who have served our country and sacrificed for the many freedoms we enjoy every day.  I would also like to recognize the spouses and families of such service members who participate in this sacrifice.

Wherever you find yourself this Memorial Day, I hope that you are able to take a moment to thank those whose selfless service has helped to keep this country free and make it the bastion of hope it has become for the world.

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue.  Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

Last Thursday, May 5th, was the National Day of Prayer in the United States. I had the privilege of being the sponsoring senator for the event held in the Capitol rotunda in Lincoln. The prayer gathering was sponsored by Nebraska Family Alliance. Governor Pete Ricketts gave remarks and several ministry, business and community leaders prayed over key prayer focus areas: government, military, media, business, educators and students, the family and the Church. I was asked to pray for government, and here is my prayer from that day:

“Dear Lord, we pray for rulers all over this earth, both righteous and wicked. We pray that wicked rulers may turn from war, aggression, and oppression and instead choose peace and freedom. We pray that these leaders may have a change of heart and follow you. We ask that you guide our own President Biden at the national level and Governor Ricketts at the state level in the way you would have them go. We pray that you would surround President Biden and Governor Ricketts with wise counsel – men and women of integrity who place your agenda and the good of this nation and state above their own.

We pray for the U.S. Congress and the Nebraska State Legislature, that by your power they make laws that are just. We pray that Congress and the Legislature may be motivated more by your hand than by partisan or personal concerns.

We pray for our Supreme Court. We pray that its decrees would be your decrees. We pray that they would make rulings in line with your will. We pray that they would set a standard of justice and balance not only on a national level but for every legal decision in our nation. We know that all judges in the U.S. are appointed by humans. We pray that each new selection will judge rightly according to the Constitution, which is based on biblical values.

Finally, we pray for everyone that serves in local government. From county officials to city officials to school boards and others. Please grant all of them wisdom to act with integrity. Please help them to seek your face and to pursue wise council as they make their decisions.

We pray Father especially for members of the Law Enforcement community in our country. For FBI agents and other federal law enforcement agencies. For sheriff’s departments and police departments across the country. Please protect them, especially during these unsettled times. Please help us to remember that You are the original law giver, and that we should strive to always be respectful of those who enforce our laws.

Finally, we pray that Christians will exercise their privilege to vote. May there arise such a force of righteousness in our electoral system that it would affect every level of government in our nation. May those in government have a profound respect not only for the political strength of the Christian community but for our spiritual influence in our nation as well.

We pray all of this in Jesus’ name and to Him be the Glory! Amen.”

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue.  Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

Former President Barrack Obama famously said shortly after his first inauguration that “Elections have consequences”. That was true back in 2009 and it is certainly true today. Although we are not voting for a United States President this election cycle, a lot of important races will be held next Tuesday, May 10th. These will have important consequences on the national, state and local scene.

Unless you’ve been living in a cave the past few months, you’re well aware of the flood of advertisements and mailings supporting (or opposing) one of a number of campaigns. The primary election for governor has been especially contentious and has received most of the attention, but Nebraskans will also be voting for individuals representing the:
• U.S. House of Representatives;
• Public Service Commissioner;
• University of Nebraska Board of Regents;
• State Board of Education;
• State Legislature;
• State Treasurer;
• Auditor of Public Accounts;
• Secretary of State; and
• Attorney General.

Also, we can’t forget about the races for mayor, county commissioner, sheriff, local school board, NRD, city council and other offices. Many of these candidates will advance to the General Election next November 8th while others will be eliminated.

As a citizen, it is important to take a very close look at all of the candidates and learn where they stand on a variety of issues. Some of the major issues you may wish to consider include:
• The Economy – which candidate’s experience and policies would help the state or community to prosper? What has been their experience with job creation and lowering the unemployment rate?

• Agriculture – this is a key issue for our state and district. Which candidate has supported agricultural interests?

• Sanctity of Human Life, Marriage, and Religious Freedom – for many citizens, these are fundamental and critical issues and you should examine the candidate’s position on these issues.

• Taxes – What is the candidate’s experience and position with regard to lowering or raising taxes?

• Education – Where do the candidates stand on school choice, critical race theory, comprehensive sex education standards and local control?

Upon examining these issues (and others) you will need to decide which candidates are best not only for you; but also, for your family, your community and the state.

I urge all of the citizens of District 38 to vote. This is not only a civic duty but also a privilege that we have in this free country.

I welcome any comments, questions, or ideas you may have on this or any other issue. Please feel free to email me at dmurman@leg.ne.gov or call my office at 402-471-2732.

Sen. Dave Murman

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