District 42 State Senator Mike Groene resigned last Monday. On Wednesday, Governor Ricketts appointed North Platte’s Mike Jacobson to complete the remainder of Groene’s, now his, term. Jacobson is a banker and filed for election to his new legislative seat immediately before taking office. He became the fourth candidate running for the District 42 seat. Jacobson is the only candidate pleased about his appointment.
Public hearings for bills introduced in this session will mercifully end on Thursday. Full-day floor debate begins Tuesday, March 8. That’s Day 37 of the 60-day session.
Monday, the Nebraska Economic Forecasting Advisory Board meets to deliver their best guess about the future of the State’s economy. Nebraska’s government is absolutely rolling in dough right now. One hopes the board’s prediction will be even doughier!
Priority bills will dominate the remainder of the session. Remember, senators each have one, committees get two, and the Speaker commands 25.
Tomorrow’s agenda is Consent Calendar, Final Reading. It’s the Lightning Round of passing legislation. Each bill had to advance from a committee with no dissenting votes. Senators already approved them on General File and again on Select File. Plus, if anyone chirps in to discuss their cause of the day, the clock stops at 15 minutes, and the vote is taken. Lovin that Consent Calendar.
- LB925 (Gragert Priority) Resilient Soils and Water Quality Act to accelerate the use of best management practices for healthy soil. Appropriates $250,000 per year for five years.
- LB939 (Linehan) (Revenue Committee Priority) – Income tax cuts:
- Corporate income tax: 5.58% under $100,000. Above $100,000: 7.5% in 2022, 7.0% in 2023, 6.5% in 2024, 6.14% in 2025, 5.84% in 2026.
- Personal income tax: Above the top rate of $58,000 (married filing jointly): 6.84% in 2022, 6.34 in 2023, 6.14 in 2024, and 5.84% in 2025.
- LB91 (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.
- AM96 Defines native and nonnative plant species, seed germination, storage, testing, viability, and sales.
- LB290 (M. Cavanaugh) Oppose – Adopts the Paid Family & Medical Leave Insurance Act.
- LB543 (Brandt Priority) Support – Agricultural Equipment Right-To-Repair-Act.
- AM1800 Becomes the bill.
- LB805 (Hughes) (Agriculture Committee Priority) Changes provisions relating to the Noxious Weed Control Act and management of black-tailed prairie dogs.
- LB806 (Bostelman) Provisions relating to land drainage by a landowner.
- AM1979 becomes the bill.” landowner shall not drain such landowner’s land using any pump or powered system if such drainage system would cause injury or harm to any other person.”
- LB986 (Briese Priority) Failed to Advance Limits the property tax request for a school district by its property tax request authority. The limit does not apply to the tax request required to retire bonded indebtedness.
- LR264CA (Erdman Priority) Constitutional amendment prohibits the imposition of taxes other than retail consumption taxes and excise taxes.
Held In Committee
- LB52 (Lathrop) Monitor – Immunity for injury or death from COVID-19 exposure.
- LB79 (Briese) Monitor – Changes the minimum amount of relief provided in the Property Tax Credit Act.
- LB133 (Erdman) Monitor – Adopts a consumption tax and eliminates other taxes.
- LB329 (Wayne) Monitor – The minimum average wholesale gasoline price would be $2.44.
- AM411 Employer tax incentives for hiring felons, including those on parole or probation.
- LB422 (Briese) Monitor – Reduces state sales tax from 5.5 cents to 5 cents and eliminates several sales tax exemptions.
- LB483 (J Cavanaugh) Monitor – Creates a $250,000 climate change study and plan.
- LB622 (Friesen) Monitor – Limits growth in property valuations and provides adjustments to assessed values.
- LB694 (Blood) Provides a statute of limitations for exposure to hazardous or toxic chemicals, prescription drugs, or medical devices.
- LB730 (Lindstrom) Revenue Committee Priority An employer who employs a qualified apprentice or trainee for at least seven months of a taxable year is allowed a $1,000 nonrefundable credit against the income tax paid.
- LB761 (Dorn) The Precision Agriculture Infrastructure Grant Act provides $10 million for agricultural producers to lead the nation in precision ag connectivity, sustainability, traceability, and autonomy. In addition, to provide high-speed internet service to high-cost and remote areas.
- LB941 (Slama) Sales and use tax exemption for net wrap.
- LB987 (Briese) Prohibits school districts from raising property taxes beyond 3% growth.
- LB1023 (Hilgers) McDonnell Priority STARWARS Lower Platte River Lake Development: construction of a combined reservoir within the floodplain that will create a 4,000-acre lake to provide new development, recreation, flood control, and water quality. Lewis and Clark State Recreation Area: marina projects to expand water access and recreational opportunities. Lake McConaughy: marina projects to expand water access and recreation. Niobrara State Park: A new event center and lodge.
- LB1030 (Friesen) Exempts all tangible personal property from property tax.