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As we move into the final two months of the session, I want to provide you with a big picture schedule for the next few weeks.
Next Thursday, we will begin debate of the budget bills on general file. I hope to complete the budget with final reading by the following Thursday. My priority for the next two weeks will be the finalization of the state’s biennial budget, our only constitutional responsibility as a Legislature.
Following the adoption of the budget, I will be scheduling taxation and spending measures. This will be the focus for the two weeks following the final reading of the budget.
We will be building on our weekly scheduling rhythms that we have implemented this session. Specifically, on the first day of the week, we will continue our 10:00 am starts with a short consent calendar. After consent calendar we will debate speaker priority bills. The speaker priorities generally were selected in a way as to not include controversial bills, and the combination of consent calendar and speaker priorities will allow us to make for a productive start to our week. The last day of the week will continue to be final reading and Christmas tree bills. The middle of the week I will work to schedule what I anticipate will be the more difficult or intense debates.
My scheduling philosophy has been to try to make consistent progress throughout the session and not to force a large volume of work into the last working days of the session. As part of this effort I am preparing for a different evening schedule than in years past. Rather than a number of very late nights at the end of session—in which it is less likely that we are doing our best work—I intend to have later evenings earlier in session. Accompanying this announcement I have prepared a separate memorandum announcing a schedule for days we may work through the early evening hours and adjourn sometime before 7:45 p.m.
My hope is that this will even out our work. If our progress necessitates a few late nights, I will be revising the schedule to include late nights for some of the days scheduled for an early evening adjournment.
And finally, I want to continue my practice of providing early notice to the body of the bills which will be debated the following week to allow senators time to prepare. A reminder that this list is not necessarily inclusive of all the bills which may be scheduled as more bills may be added if time available warrants the need for additional scheduling. Also, as a reminder, being listed on the agenda for next week is no guarantee that the bill will be taken up on the floor next week.
These bills are listed in numerical order and do not indicate the order they will appear on the agenda or which day of the week each bill will first appear:
LB 2 (Briese) Change the valuation of agricultural land and horticultural land for certain school
LB 17 (Kolterman) Change actuarial valuation and amortization provisions for certain state retirement systems
LB 81 (Hilkemann) Provide authority for sanitary and improvement districts to own, construct, and
maintain public parking facilities
LB 108 (McCollister) Change provisions relating to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
LB 307 (Pansing Brooks) Change provisions relating to appointment of counsel for juveniles
LB 423 (Lathrop) Require registration of home inspectors
LB 497 (DeBoer) Provide for compensation under the Nebraska Crime Victim’s Reparations Act for health care providers examining or treating victims of sexual assault or domestic assault
LB 527 (Walz) Change provisions relating to transition services for students with a developmental
LB 664 (Groene) Change distributions from the Mutual Finance Assistance Fund
My current intent is to schedule LB 17 for Wednesday morning, depending on our progress.