For Your Situational Awareness

Legislation Happening March 13-17, 2023

LR23CA will be heard on Thursday at 1:30 in the Capitol.  LR23CA will eliminate the inheritance tax in Nebraska.  Nebraska is only one of six states that charges this atrocious tax.  This tax is burdensome and complicates (especially in real estate) transferring wealth from one generation to the next.  It is time we leave the 12% club and join the rest of the Union in better tax policy.

Legislative Update Week Ending March 11, 2023

Week in and week out the Unicameral and the ability to legislate is being disrupted by Senators Cavanaugh, Hunt, Day, & Conrad who have become “The Leadership of the Democrats”. The Nebraska Democratic Party has no formal foundation of truth and values, coupled with their Chairwoman who is scrambling to regain control. We continue to experience a slide to the right by all groups outside the radical Dems.
 

This week we had severe medical issues affecting two republican senators and their families.  We encourage you to take some time to pray for the physical healing of our senators and their families. These issues are having a slowing effect on the session as we need their presence in the Capitol for important work. With respect to privacy, we will not discuss the details of the medical updates, but please be in prayer for our senators and their families for healing.   
 

On a brighter note, republicans keep winning big! The first victory occurred against the educational lobbies, who have an iron grip on the purse at the Unicameral.  LB753 passes to the select file with 31 votes allowing citizen and corporate taxpayers to support students with scholarships to attend the school of their choice!  

Agriculture
 

Did you know that the Chinese ownership of agricultural land was just shy of 14k acres in 2010?  In 2020, the number of acres owned by the Chinese has ballooned to over 352k acres!  The NEGOP is extremely concerned about Nebraska’s land going to the Chinese. We are happy to report that after discussions this session, we have a senator that will bring a bill to prohibit the Chinese from ownership of Nebraska land in 2024. This bill will be modeled after other bills finding their stride in other states like South Dakota. 
 

Bicameral or Unicameral?

Senator Erdman had his constitutional amendment heard to change Nebraska to a two-house legislature.  The proposal would seek a second legislative branch based more on geography and less on population (much like the US Senate).  Online feedback was brisk but testifiers to support in attendance were lacking.  
 

The Auditor Comes Down Heavy on the DOT

Mike Foley issued a scathing report of the Department of Transportation for a lack of internal controls and oversight. After being sighted for excessive wages in the past, State Auditor Mike Foley noted that no follow-up action was taken by the department.  The same problems in wage abuse continued to occur with the same employee!   Even worse, the state auditor cited over $15 MILLION in errors that were found in the year-end financial reports from the Department.  This is disturbing for a department that is looking to expand its role with more financial investments coming their way. 

More On Education

Did you know the state spends over $4.4 billion annually on K-12 education?  Nebraskans need to know this fact when they consider fiscal footnotes on education and changes to the system.  
 

Constitutional amendments were heard on eliminating the state board of education.  LR24CA eliminates the state board and lets the governor pick the education commissioner to steer education.  LR28CA would let the governor appoint the state board members.  LR29CA would limit the service of state board members to two terms.  No one testified in favor.  One of the state board members showed up to testify against with other opponents.  Many of the proposals were designed during a frustration with scores, curriculum, and a lack of parental control.

Meanwhile, a Parental Rights bill was introduced in DC while Nebraska’s Parental Bill (LB374) takes arrows at home.  If DC can get a bill right…surely Nebraska can come through.  The core of the Parental Bill of Rights must advance to preserve the rights of parents.  Please call your senator. 

NRD and Utility Boards

The NEGOP is bringing focus to the importance of these boards,  As environmentalist money has come in strong to these races, we see policy that continues to move these institutions to the Left.  We feel these policies will make resources less accessible, less reliable, and more expensive.  

This week the governor made an announcement he is seeking applicants for a vacancy on the NPPD Board of Directors (District 5; Western Nebraska).  This is a very important position to hold to continue our goal for affordable and reliable energy.

https://governor.nebraska.gov/press/governor-pillen-seeks-applicants-nppd-board

In addition, there is an opening in the Nemaha NRD in District 4 (Nebraska City).  Please consider and call your neighbors to fill these important roles.   https://www.nemahanrd.org/about/news/director-sought-subdistrict-4
 

Three of the five hearings for bills this week we will be watching relate to resources.  LB534 (Slama) deals with quality water systems in our community.  LB571 (Lippincott) deals with water well standards.  LB541 (Lowe) seeks to move power and irrigation district directors to the partisan ballot.  The differences between the two parties on these issues could not be more clear.  Voters needs to know which party these candidates come from and the platforms they support.  The approaches to resources and irrigation are very different.  

Winner Take All

LB764 will be heard Wednesday at 1:30 with Senator Lippincott’s bill to return the state to a “Winner Take All” situation in the presidential election.  This would eliminate the partitioning of this state in electoral college votes.  Republicans should recall that President Trump did not receive all electoral college votes from Nebraska.  Biden received the electoral college vote in District 2 (Omaha Metro). Many voting models show the same electoral college vote going to Biden again in District 2.  It is time Nebraska operates like 48 other states and our state’s electoral college vote to go in their entirety to the winner.

Taxes

LR23CA will be heard on Thursday at 1:30 in the Capitol.  LR23CA will eliminate the inheritance tax in Nebraska.  Nebraska is only one of six states that charges this atrocious tax.  This tax is burdensome and complicates (especially in real estate) transferring wealth from one generation to the next.  It is time we leave the 12% club and join the rest of the Union in better tax policy.

Life

We have intentionally not focused on too many of the democrat bills this session.   Very few will reach the floor or finish line.  Republicans can pivot their energy & focus on the positive conservative bills being put forward.  With that said, the Democrats are planning a major offensive against life this week at two hearings.  Republicans need to show up and stand for Nebraska babies.  Thursday at 1:30 will be Hunt’s constitutional amendments on “Reproductive Freedom”.  We encourage your opposition online and in person to these amendments.  

In an effort to put focus on “Regional Politics” and stay abreast of what is happening in the surrounding states, we look to include legislation or action from the Midwest.  We highlight Wyoming passing a landmark bill banning abortion on Thursday and redefined that abortion is not healthcare.  Well done, Wyoming!  Nebraska must continue to push for tougher standards to protect innocent life.  The 2nd House needs to continue to stand against bad amendments by Senators Hunt & the other extreme leaders of the Dr Democratic party & continue to push for protection of the innocent. 

2024 Elections Heat Up

Candidates for legislature, UNl Regent, and the State Board of Education are beginning their campaigns and reaching out to the NEGOP for development.  Are you interested in running?  Please email me [email protected].  We want to help guide you to an effective and productive start.  2024 will be a key battle for the future of our state.

The Spending Spree of Congress

Did you know the CBO in congress estimated the spending in 2023 to $6.22 Trillion?  Did you know the national debt has ballooned to over $31 Trillion?  As inflation continues to soar and debt payments continue to skyrocket, the NEGOP continues to watch the spending votes and proposals out of DC.  We are encouraging our federal reps to continue to just say no for the sake of the economy and the next generation.  DC has a big problem and we need less DC and more Nebraska.
 

19 Bills to the floor!

As of Saturday, we have 18 bills that have made it to General File (1 Constitutional Amendment) and one bill that has made it to Select File.  We must stay diligent in our work.  As a senator’s aide stated this week, “The Left Never Gets Tired”.  The citizens, senators, and party will have to continue to keep the foot on the gas pedal into June.  We assure you the staff, senators, and party have put an incredible amount of work into this session with many late nights.  Keep showing up!  Most importantly, we need our full Republican team on the field.  We will end this letter where we began.  Please pray for all our senators, but in particular for the health and well being of two of our senators and their families.  We need them here in the Unicameral and most importantly we care about our senators and their families.  

Until Next Week…

Donate.  Engage.  Work.

Todd Watson

Political Director 

NEGOP

Tools for the Legislative Action Below:
 

Video Tutorial: https://youtu.be/ee2CDnZwdqE  William Feely, Committeeman and Legislative Director

Written Tutorial: https://forwardnebraska.substack.com/p/how-to-comment-on-your-bills?r=rb3iq&utm_medium=ios&utm_campaign=post  Sue Greenwald, Committeewoman

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