Over the Fence
A bi-weekly newsletter from Senator Tom Hansen
March 4, 2011
The Session is nearly half over and we have been moving right along, but the heavy work is still to come. Here are some highlights of the past week:
LB 22 – Introduced by Omaha Sen. Beau McCoy, adopts the Mandate Opt-Out and Insurance Coverage Clarification Act which would ban private insurers from paying for abortions unless the customer buys a separate rider for the extra coverage.
LB 81 – Introduced by Bellevue Sen. Abbie Cornett, provides that a city may tax for revenue any person, occupation or business within the limits of the city by ordinance; and that the city council may require a motor vehicle tax on any individual whose primary residence is within the limits of the city. The proceeds are to be credited to a street construction/maintenance fund.
LB 165 – Introduced by Valentine Sen. Deb Fischer, limits the maximum occupation tax on telecommunications services and eliminates those taxes on purchases of telecommunications equipment, like cell phones.
LB 284 – Introduced by Omaha Sen. Bob Krist, changes the distance under the definition of picketing of a funeral, from the current distance of 300 feet to 500 feet.
LB 471 – Introduced by Wilbur Sen. Russ Karpisek, would expand local sources of revenue that may be used under the Local Option Municipal Development Act.
Committee hearings this week:
Appropriations – Agency Budget Hearings for:
Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education
Nebraska State College System
Educational Telecommunications Commission
University of Nebraska
And Several Other Agencies…
LB 145 – Introduced by Lincoln Sen. Ken Haar, provides for school transportation safety committees.
LB 554 – Introduced by Scottsbluff Sen. John Harms, would prohibit persons from having open containers of alcohol on boats and personal watercraft on waters of the state.
Government, Military and Veterans Affairs:
LB 566 – Introduced by Columbus Sen. Paul Schumacher, provides for online petition signatures for recall, initiative and referendum petitions.
LB 610 – Introduced by Omaha Sen. Pete Pirsch, provides for the recall of state elective or appointed officers.
LB 48 – Introduced by Fremont Sen. Charlie Janssen, adopts the Illegal Immigration Enforcement Act, which will require law enforcement to check the immigration status of a person who has been lawfully stopped, detained or arrested when reasonable suspicion exists that the person is unlawfully present in the United States.
LB 276 – Introduced by Omaha Sen. Brenda Council, changes the penalty from death, to life imprisonment without possibility of parole.
LB 569 – Introduced by Lincoln Sen. Colby Coash, requires employers to e-verify the immigration status of new employees.
LB 660 – Introduced by Wilbur Sen. Russ Karpisek, creates an offense of providing a bodily fluid sample containing a controlled substance.
LB 667 – Introduced by Norfolk Sen. Mike Flood, would strengthen DUI-laws including making ignition interlock devices mandatory for 1st and 2nd DUI offenses, criminalizing the act of Intoxicated Transportation of a Child.
LB 675 – Introduced by Omaha Sen. Pete Pirsch, changes penalties and enforcement relating to driving under the influence and the duty to stop at motor vehicles accidents and create an offense for those driving with illegal drugs in their system.
LB 693 – Introduced by Holdrege Sen. Tom Carlson, known as the dram shop bill, which would creates a cause of action against a bartender or licensee who knowingly serves liquor by the drink to an intoxicated person.
LB 655 – Introduced by Imperial Sen. Mark Christensen, allows NRDs a second option for levying an occupation tax upon the activity of irrigation of agricultural land in lieu of the current occupation tax available to eligible NRDs.
LR 40CA – Introduced by Omaha Sen. Pete Pirsch, offers a constitutional protection of all Nebraskans and their right to hunt, fish and trap.
LB 428 – Introduced by Bellevue Sen. Abbie Cornett, creates an income tax credit for property taxes paid on ag-land. The credit would be available to certain owner operators who own ag-land.
LB 439 – Introduced by Elk Creek Sen. Lavon Heidemann, would reduce the valuation of agriculture and horticultural land for school district taxation purposes from 75% to 65%.
LR 9CA – Introduced by Ogallala Sen. Ken Schilz, would allow agricultural and horticultural land to be split into separate and distinct classes of property for purposes of taxation.
Transportation and Telecommunications:
LB 625 – Introduced by Lincoln Sen. Tony Fulton, requires a court to order one convicted of a DUI to obtain an ignition interlock device on his or her vehicle. This clarifies current law. The bill also creates an additional penalty in cases in which a driver is under the influence with a child passenger.
LB 659 – Introduced by Wilbur Sen. Russ Karpisek, would make it unlawful to operate or be in the physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of controlled substances found in bodily fluids.
On Monday, the Transportation and Telecommunications Committee will hear four bills that deal with license plates. LB 182, a bill I introduced, will allow only one license plate instead of two on farm trucks and commercial motor vehicles.