The Legislature has been in session for around a month now, and I thought it would be a good time to let you know of the bills I have introduced this year. These bills are briefly summarized below.
u LB 210: This bill would allow home school students to participate in extracurricular activities offered by public schools in the district in which they live and likely pay property taxes or rent, without requiring class enrollment.
u LB 211: The bill that I introduced is a modified version of a similar bill I introduced last session. It would remove reflexologists from the massage therapy license and create a separate registry for them. Reflexologists should not have to participate in a full massage therapy program just to practice reflexology. Reflexologists would need to complete a certification examination to be on the registry to practice reflexology.
u LB 390: I have introduced this bill at the request of the governor. It would allow holders of certain health care licenses from other states to more easily receive a license to practice in Nebraska. Nearly a year ago, after the start of the pandemic, the governor issued an executive order to make it easier for certain health care professionals currently licensed in other states to practice in Nebraska. The executive order has worked well and this bill builds upon that order. It will help address the health care shortages we have (especially in rural Nebraska) by having an expanded pool of health care talent to draw from.
u LB 418: The Solemn Covenant of States to Award Prizes for Curing Diseases compact would, once six states have adopted the compact, award cash prizes for successful cures of various diseases. This is an innovative approach to incentivize the private sector to find cures for devastating diseases such as types of cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, etc.
u LB 583: This bill essentially requires that prescribers utilize electronic prescription technology to prescribe controlled substances beginning January 1, 2022. As many of you are aware, the opioid crisis in Nebraska (as well as all across this country) has been a real problem adversely affecting many individuals and families. As a result, more than half of the states are requiring or will soon require the utilization of electronic prescriptions for controlled substances. This is an essential step in curtailing abuse of overprescribing opioids and keeping individuals from “shopping” for doctors who would readily write a script. Additionally this bill would bring Nebraska in line with federal law which will mandate the use of e-prescribing for Medicare Part D by January of 2022.
u LB 670: The Department of Transportation has a program to allow a sign near the site of a fatal accident memorializing the victim along with a safety message (e.g. “Don’t Text and Drive”). This bill would give the family the option of adding an emblem of belief to the sign such as a cross or Star of David.
u LB 671: The intent of this bill is to authorize funding for the next two years for the AgrAbility program at the University of Nebraska Extension for needs not covered by the USDA. The program would help fund needed supports such as lifts or modified equipment that would enable physically challenged farmers and ranchers to keep working.
u LB 672: This bill would better define the sales tax exemption for agricultural machinery and equipment and specifically include head haulers, seed tender trailers, livestock fans, and livestock curtains.
u LB 673: The purpose of this bill is to adopt the Education Behavioral Awareness and Support Act. This Act intends to give each school district the opportunity to provide behavioral awareness and intervention training for teachers and other school employees to safely manage inappropriate behavior without allowing that behavior to escalate and to provide legal protection for teachers who take reasonable and appropriate measures. Every student in Nebraska deserves a safe school to foster a better learning environment. Funding for the training would come from the Nebraska Lottery.
Because of COVID-19, our session schedule has already been altered this year.
Instead of splitting up the day between floor debate in the morning and committee hearings in the afternoon like in years past, we are having committee hearings in the morning and afternoon then will switch to all day debate next month.
I would welcome any comments or ideas you may have. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call my office at 402-471-2732.