Flush with Cash
Our state economic prognosticators met last week. It seems their “wet index finger in the air” formula worked. State tax revenue will be higher than they predicted only four months ago. $462 million higher in fiscal years 20/21 ($204M), 21/22 ($165M), and 22/23 ($93M). $462 MILLION in just four months. It will take another four months for them to explain why.
But for the Judiciary Committee, all committee hearings end on Thursday. Judiciary has nine more bill hearings next week to close out their schedule. And then? Wait for it…All-Day Floor Debate!
About 700 bills were introduced this year. 79 bills advanced from committees to General File (Round 1), and 24 bills moved to Select File (Round 2).
Recent legislators are a kinder, gentler, and more thoughtful lot. They prefer to have a conversation about bills, especially before they cast a no vote. They just feel better. Not that long ago, when a crumby bill was referenced to a committee, they didn’t hold onto the stinker because someone’s feelings would be hurt. They killed the thing to keep it from wasting more time. The procedure is called Indefinitely Postpone (IPP).
It’s refreshing that so far, eleven bills are IPPd by committees. Heck, one senator IPPd his own bill. That’s what stand-up people do, for crying out loud.
There was an IPP conversation during the floor debate last week. A couple of swells felt picked-on and find IPP to be unfriendly.
- LB90 (Halloran) MONITOR – Amends the Nebraska Pesticide Act by reallocating the pesticide registration fee distribution. It further amends the Nebraska Commercial Fertilizer and Soil Conditioner Act by allowing the Director to adjust the inspection fee each July 1.
- LB91 see AM96 (Brandt) MONITOR – Expands the date after germination or viability testing that native flower and grass seeds may continue to be sold or offered for sale without retesting and allowing seed viability testing instead of germination rate testing for certain seeds.
- LB177 (Lindstrom) SUPPORT – Changes provisions relating to liens under the Uniform Commercial Code.
Held In Committee
- LB52 (Lathrop) MONITOR – Immunity for injury or death resulting from COVID-19 exposure.
- LB79 (Briese) MONITOR – Changes the minimum amount of relief provided under the Property Tax Credit Act.
- LB84 (Bostelman) MONITOR – Changes provisions relating to tax incentive performance audits and redefines a term under the ImagiNE Nebraska Act
- LB133 (Erdman) MONITOR – Adopts a consumption tax and eliminates other taxes.
- LB139 (Briese) MONITOR – Provides general safe harbor and premises liability protections on potential COVID-19 lawsuits.
- LB239 (Hilkemann) INDEFINITELY POSTPONED – MONITOR – Restricts phone use to hands-free while driving.
- LB290 (M. Cavanaugh) OPPOSE – Adopts the Paid Family & Medical Leave Insurance Act.
- LB329 (Wayne) MONITOR – The minimum average wholesale price of gasoline to be used to calculate the state gas tax shall be $2.44.
- LB422 (Briese) MONITOR – Reduce state sales tax from 5.5 cents to 5 cents and eliminate some sales tax exemptions.
- LB430 (Revenue) MONITOR – Shell bill.
- LB432 (Revenue) MONITOR – Shell bill.
- LB433 (Revenue) MONITOR – Shell bill.
- LB483 (J Cavanaugh) MONITOR – Creates a $250,000 climate change study and plan.
- LB543 (Brandt) MONITOR – Adopts the Agricultural Equipment Right-To-Repair Act, which would allow farmers to fix their own machinery.
- LB622 (Friesen) MONITOR – Limits real property valuations’ growth and provides adjustments to assessed values.
- LB625 (Vargas) MONITOR – Imposes a surtax on certain taxable income and uses the tax proceeds for early childhood education.
- LB634 (J. Cavanaugh) OPPOSE – Hearing 3/10 – Provides a cause of action for unsafe disposal of treated seed.
- LB644 (B. Hansen) MONITOR – Property Tax Request Act to increase transparency for impacted political subdivisions to raise their property tax levies.
- LB672 (Murman) SUPPORT – Changes the sales and use tax exemption on agricultural machinery and equipment.
- LR5 (Graegert) MONITOR – Recommendations from the Healthy Soils Task Force delivered to the Legislature.
- LR11CA (Erdman) MONITOR – Constitutional Amendment to create a consumption tax and eliminate other taxes.