The legislative schedule now has senators debating issues in the George Norris Chamber, mornings, 9am-noon. Lunch is noon-1:30 pm. Committee hearings begin at 1:30 pm and wrap-up whenever the gas seeps out of the room.
Little can be written that would make last week’s legislative floor debate interesting. You can cut debate and votes with a partisan blade. Lunches are going well.
Bill introductions are finis at 667 plus five constitutional amendments. Yes, the vast majority of them will rightly be shredded. After the bills are divvied-up among 14 standing committees and a handful of special committees, the bulk of workload is owned by the Judiciary, Revenue and Appropriations Committees. Not that other committees is easy. Take the Health and Human Services Committee. Their issues are tough because they are personal and emotional. Yes there is crying.
Beyond all the process, all the hearings and all the debate, there is one big Lebowski lying squarely on the budget table. Depending on who you believe, the Lebowski is a revenue shortfall for the next biennial budget (2017/18 2018/19) of $600M to $900M. So, when you hear of a senator fighting for a plan for all “hard-working Nebraskans” just remember, if the plan has a cost, it is DOA until the Lebowski is wiped off the table.
Legislative hearings this week are:
- Monday, lights on all vehicles bill, LB 114, will be in the Transportation and Telecommunications Committee. We are watching this, just in case a crazy amendment is offered.
- Friday, Internet sales tax collection bills LB 44, LB 462 and LB 564 will be in the Revenue Committee.
Bills of Interest
LB 44 The Remote Seller Sales Tax Collection Act
LB 67 Adopts the Fair Repair Act
LB 114 Every motor vehicle on a highway shall have headlights and tail lights.
LB 312 Eliminates certain state sales tax exemptions
LB 313 Increases state sales tax from 5½ cents to 6½ cents
LB 462 Provisions relating to the streamlined sales and use tax agreement
LB 563 Impose sales tax on certain services and eliminate certain sales tax exemptions
LB 564 Main Street Fairness Act (Internet vendor sales tax)
LB 570 Eliminates personal property tax in 2019
Click here for all introduced legislation.