Nebraska imposes 10-person limit on public gatherings

In this Jan. 8 file photo, state lawmakers work in the Legislative Chamber on the opening day of the Nebraska legislative session in Lincoln. The Nebraska Legislature suspended its session on Monday to try to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

After much speculation regarding the future of the Nebraska Legislature, Speaker Jim Scheer announced in a statement Monday morning that the current session will not reconvene Tuesday and is postponed until further notice.

The announcement came after legislative officials hinted last week that senators may not reconvene for the 41st day of the session due to concerns over COVID-19.

Over the weekend, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended organized events with 50 or more people be postponed or canceled for the next eight weeks.

“We have made this decision primarily for the health and safety of the state and to protect the health of the members in the body,” Scheer said in the statement. “We have concluded that suspending the session is in the best interest of the state.”

In an effort to help out with fighting the coronavirus, Scheer said in the statement that the session could reconvene as early as Monday, March 23, for the limited purpose of passing emergency appropriation. Senators and legislative staff would be notified promptly if the session were to reconvene.

Per the request from a number of members, Scheer also said in the statement that he and other officials are trying to figure out how to best sanitize the Legislative Chamber.

“This is a fluid situation and one that changes daily,” he said. “We appreciate your understanding and flexibility.”

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