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The Legislature passed several significant bills on final reading, including LB305, to begin the process of developing a state meat inspection agency, and this legislation has also been signed by Governor Heineman. The Legislature also passed LB229, authorizing more funding for water resources projects; several bills relating to the biennial budget for the state; and LB84, authorizing sales tax to be used for roads projects beginning in 2013.
There was also considerable movement on bills relating to abortion. The Legislature passed LB22, which affirmatively opts out of allowing qualified health insurance plans that cover abortions to participate in health insurance exchanges within Nebraska and limits the coverage of abortion in all health insurance plans, contracts, or policies delivered or issued for delivery in Nebraska. The Legislature debated and advanced LB521, which limits telemedicine by requiring that drugs used for the purpose of inducing abortions be administered by or in the physical presence of the physician who prescribed, dispensed or provided it. In addition, LB690, which requires written consent by a parent or guardian for anyone under age 18 who is seeking an abortion, was also advanced to the floor by the Judiciary Committee and will be debated by the Legislature soon. I have been supportive of all of these bills and will continue to work with my colleagues to ensure these protections are passed.
The Redistricting Committee also held public hearings throughout the state on the proposed legislative maps. The Legislature has advanced the first of these, LB699, which changes the boundaries of the districts for the Nebraska Supreme Court and Nebraska Court of Appeals. The Legislature will soon debate the remaining redistricting bills. Proposed maps for legislative districts would move Rock, Boyd, and Dixon Counties, as well as the western half of Holt County into District 40 and move Pierce County to District 41. Proposed maps for Congressional districts would put all of District 40 into the Third Congressional District.
Please feel free to contact my office with your questions and comments at (402) 471-2801 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Senator Tyson Larson