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This legislative week ended on Thursday. Friday and Monday are legislative recess days that give Senators a chance to get back to our districts and catch up with our families and other jobs. I have a few meetings in the district and the metro area over the recess, but I am spending most of the recess at Creighton and with my family.
By the end of this week we passed 16 bills including the OPS board-restructuring bill. The legislature created the OPS board with 12 members back in 1915. State statutes determine the size of boards of each school classification size. Changing the statute for OPS to 9 in state statute fits within this state legislative role. The Douglas County court case that threatened to trigger special elections added extra impetus to make the change early this session.
Legislative Days/Citizen Receptions
From January to mid-March the Unicameral meets in the chamber to discuss and vote on bills in the morning and meets in hearings to hear citizen testimony on bills in the afternoons. Many groups come to Lincoln for a Legislative Day during this part of the session. Senators get a chance to meet with citizens and organizations from our own district and across the state at receptions held at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Among those who visited last week were the voluntary fire fighters, the Area Agencies on Aging, Papio Valley Preservation Society, bankers, nurses, and CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) volunteers. I appreciate the chance to meet people from the district at these events as well as the opportunity to learn about how policy plays out in other parts of the state. If your group has a Legislative Day – come see me!
Next week I introduce three of my bills in committee hearings. I present LB 321 in front of the Retirement Systems Committee on Wednesday the 20th. LB 321 strikes language in state law that now requires cities to spend down police officers’ sick leave and vacation leave if they are temporarily disabled. An officer hurt on the job could come back to work with no sick leave to take care of herself or someone in her family who gets ill before she has time to accumulate more sick time.
LB 368 and LB 430 will be heard on Thursday the 21st in the Health and Human Services Committee. LB368 creates an employment pilot program to encourage businesses to hire new workers who are struggling to find jobs, while LB 430 streamlines the asset limitation rules for several assistance programs including the child-care subsidy.
Town Hall – Feb. 26th
I hope to see you at our Town Hall Meeting at 7:00 on the 26th of February at the Bellevue Public Library. If you have any questions, please contact my office at (402) 471-2615 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please invite anyone that you think would be interested. All are welcome, and I look forward to answering your questions.