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Recent posts by Johnathan Hladik

Nebraska Unicameral Update - March 24, 2020

On March 16, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Nebraska Legislature postponed its 2020 session until it is safe and necessary to call members back. The Legislature did reconvene on Monday after Speaker Jim Scheer announced last week that senators will meet for three legislative days for the sole purpose of addressing needs arising from the spread of the COVID-19 virus in Nebraska. LB 1198, which was amended to provide $83.6 million in emergency funding, advanced to final reading on a unanimous vote. 

Nebraska Unicameral Update- Feb. 25, 2020

The Nebraska Legislature has hit the half-way mark in its “short,” 60 day session. Lawmakers are tentatively scheduled to adjourn on April 23, 2020. Hearings for 482 new bills introduced during the second year of the biennium will wrap up later this week.

Midlands Voices: Bill can boost rural broadband in Nebraska communities

With strong support from the Nebraska Legislature’s Transportation and Telecommunications Committee and State Sen. Tom Brandt of Plymouth, a bill to improve broadband access in our state is scheduled to be debated on Tuesday.

Legislative Bill 996, Brandt’s priority bill for this session, is a critical step in making our state compatible with a new federal broadband expansion program. In doing so, LB 996 opens the door for a greater share of federal funds directed at financing broadband expansion in unserved areas.

Local View: Small business deserves boost

The Legislature is in full swing. In the coming weeks, Nebraska lawmakers are expected to resume debate on LB720, a bill to create a new batch of business tax incentives for large employers. Major tax incentives are the primary tool we use to attract bigger companies to the state.

Meanwhile, a much different conversation is taking place inside the Revenue Committee. That is where LB879, introduced by Sen. Suzanne Geist, is being debated. This bill, as written, eliminates the only true incentive available to small businesses in the state.