January 5, 2018                                                             Legislative Report Archive 

In This Issue


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conveneLegislature Convened on January 3 
The 105th Legislature, Second Session convened on Wednesday for a "short" 60-day session. Senators began bill introductions on the first day and will continue to introduce bills during the first ten days of the session. By the end of the third day, 208 bills and one constitutional amendment had been introduced.
Each bill is assigned to one of the Legislature's standing committees for a public hearing. Because notice of hearings must be given at least seven days in advance, hearings will not begin until after the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on Jan. 15. Committee hearings will be held in the afternoon and floor debate will take place in the morning. Hearings will be completed on February 27.
Until bills are advanced from committees, senators will debate potential changes to the Legislature's rules for operation, 2018 priority bills, and carryover bills. One bill, LB368, has been designated as a 2018 senator priority bill, and is scheduled for debate on Monday, January 8 at 1:30 p.m. The bill would repeal motorcycle helmet laws. The day's full agenda is available here.
Bills that were not passed or killed in 2017 carried over at the same stage of debate. Speaker Jim Scheer has set out a process for determining the order in which 2017 priority bills will be debated based on whether there are enough votes for cloture, if needed, and other factors.
If a committee advances a bill to the full legislature, it is subject to three rounds of debate -- General File, Select File, and Final Reading -- before passage. Bills that pass will be sent to Governor Ricketts for a signature or veto. Adjournment is tentatively scheduled for April 18.
A Iist of senators and their contact information is here. The membership of standing committees and committee meeting information is available here. The membership of some committees has changed since last year due to the resignation of Senator Joni Craighead this fall and the subsequent appointment of Senator Theresa Thibodeau.

The Legislature's website contains information pertinent to legislative activities: daily and session calendars, text of bills and amendments, daily agendas, hearing schedules, transcripts of debate, state laws, and more. Live video streaming of floor debate and committee hearings is provided by Nebraska Educational Television (NET). It is also available as a live mobile app.

NACO Legislative Committee Meeting Set for January 26
NACO's Legislative Committee will meet on January 26 to review and take positions on 2018 legislation. The meeting will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the NACO office at 1335 H Street in Lincoln in the conference room on the second floor at the rear of the building.
After brief introductory remarks, affiliate groups will meet for discussion of bills pertinent to their membership. After the groups have met, the NACO Legislative Committee will reconvene as a whole to review and take positions on the entire list of bills. All county officials are encouraged to attend or discuss areas of concern with their NACO Board representative prior to the meeting. The NACO Board of Directors makes up the NACO Legislative Committee.  
Because lunch will be provided, please notify the NACO office at (402)434-5660 or if you plan to attend. Because the Legislature is in session, parking around the Capitol will be limited. Public parking is not available behind the NACO office or in the MIPS lot. A parking garage is available at The Cornhusker, A Marriott Hotel at 12th and L Streets.
 bilintroBill Introductions Begin
Bills on prison overcrowding, juvenile justice, and property tax relief were introduced during the first three days of the 2018 session. Before bill introductions conclude on January 18, Governor Ricketts will offer his budget proposal to address a nearly $200 million shortfall. Special thanks to county treasurers for responding so quickly to a request for data related to early tax collections that will have an impact on the state budget.
Here are some of the new bills: 

County Operations
  • LB735 (Blood) Provide for interlocal agreements regarding nuisances
  • LB786 (Vargas) Change terminology related to county government
  • LB825 (Brewer) Change provisions relating to budgets and public hearing notice for certain governmental entities
  • LB831 (Wayne) Provide annual salary limitations for elected officials of political subdivisions
  • LB850 (Linehan) Require disclosure of the anticipated cost to a political subdivision to pay off its bonds
Property Tax
  • LB758 (Hughes) Require collaboration between natural resources districts and counties under the Nebraska Ground Water Management and Protection Act
  • LB772 (Walz) Change provisions relating to agricultural land that receives special valuation
  • LB829 (Erdman) Adopt the Property Tax Relief Act
  • LB733 (Thibodeau) Change provisions relating to licenses of county highway and city street superintendents
Motor Vehicles
  • LB740 (Lindstrom) Provide for registration and licensing of metropolitan utilities district motor vehicles and trailers as prescribed
  • LB754 (Brewer) Authorize purchase of state park permits while registering a motor vehicle online
  • LB755 (Brewer) Change rules for operation of all-terrain vehicles and utility-type vehicles.
Tax Increment Financing (TIF)
  • LB846 (Briese) Change provisions relating to findings and the enforceability of certain agreements under the Community Development Law
  • LB874 (Urban Affairs Committee) Change the Community Development Law
Law Enforcement/Courts
  • LB776 (McCollister) Provide requirements for inmate access to telephone or videoconferencing systems in county and city jails
  • LB818 (Chambers) Change powers and duties relating to the Jail Standards Board
  • LB842 (Pansing Brooks) Change provisions relating to certain minimum sentences
  • LB861 (Watermeier) Require that certain prosecution costs be paid by the state

J uvenile Justice
  • LB670 (Krist) Change membership, powers, and duties of the Nebraska Coalition for Juvenile Justice
  • LB673 (Krist) Change procedures for certain hearings for juveniles
  • LB708 (Bolz) Change provisions relating to juvenile court bridge orders
  • LB714 (Howard) Provide a procedure for judicial emancipation of a minor
  • LB869 (Pansing Brooks) Change provisions relating to sealing of juvenile records
  • LB781 (Pansing Brooks) Change penalties for certain felonies committed by persons under nineteen years of age
  • LB869 (Pansing Brooks) Change provisions relating to sealing of juvenile record
  • LB870 (Pansing Brooks) Provide for room confinement for juveniles as prescribed 
  • LB875 (Bolz) Change sentencing provisions for crimes committed by persons under the age of eighteen  

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