WAYNE – Late last week, the Nebraska Legislature delivered the most significant tax relief for Nebraskans as District 17 Senator Joni Albrecht provides more information in her weekly update.
According to a release from the office of Senator Albrecht, a $900 million package of tax cuts were approved. Income tax, corporations, property owners and Social Security recipients will benefit.
Along with LB873 tax cuts, the Nebraska Human Life Protection Act; a personal priority bill from Senator Albrecht; LB1014 will highlight shovel-ready projects as well as more information about the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA funds) were all addressed.
The biggest tax cut in over 30 years was LB873. This bill cuts the top income tax rate from 6.84% to 5.84%. It also cuts the corporate income tax rate from 7.81% to 5.84% as both cuts will be phased-in over five years. Nebraska has the highest income and corporate taxes of any state in the central time zone.
This legislation will also phase out income taxes on Social Security payments by 2025.
In addition, LB873 creates another refundable income tax credit for the portion of property taxes paid to community colleges. This is a credit you’ll claim starting next year on your state income taxes.
It has been a long 60 day session, but all 49 Senators worked diligently trying to get their bills passed.
The Nebraska Human Life Protection Act LB933 was made a priority bill by the Speaker but fell two votes short of the 33 needed to end the filibuster and force a vote. The vote was 31-15.
Senator Albrecht said, “those who denied protecting life were Senator Blood, Senator Bostar, Senator J. Cavanaugh, Senator M. Cavanaugh, Senator Day, Senator DeBoer, Senator M. Hansen, Senator Hunt, Senator McCollister, Senator McKinney, Senator Morfeld, Senator Pansing-Brooks, Senator Vargas, Senator Walz and Senator Wishart. Senators that were excused – not voting were Senators Lathrop, Pahls and Wayne.”
This bill would have prohibited the performance of an abortion on a live, unborn child upon the occurrence of one of three events: the overturn of Roe v. Wade, an amendment to the United States Constitution or the passage of enabling legislation by the United States Congress.
Senator Albrecht will continue to fight to protect and promote society’s respect for human life, including the life of the unborn. “We made be called back in June for a special session if Roe v. Wade is overturned. The battle may have been lost this week but the war on the unborn, the voiceless and most vulnerable will be won.”
A personal priority bill, LB1213 by Senator Albrecht would ensure that outside database providers contracted to provide digital and online resources to students in grades K- 12 that make obscene and harmful materials available. This was stopped due to lobbyist interference and will come back next year. In the mean time be aware of what your children are exposed to through their devices provided by tax dollars. “More to come”.
Senator Albrecht would like to thank all who supported the Nebraska Human Life Protection Act, “my office received numerous emails and phone calls. Not all people were in support, but your comments were heard.”
The 107th Second Session Nebraska Legislature will conclude their 60-day session on Wednesday, April 20. Monday, April 11 – Wednesday, April 13 will be meant for Day 57 – 59. Senator Albrecht will report what was achieved during the past 60 days in her final weekly release.
LB1014, introduced by Speaker Hilgers contains appropriations. Among the appropriations are $100 million for “shovel-ready” projects for qualifying sports complexes and nonprofits related to the arts, culture and humanities, $91 million for workforce housing and $20 million for water transportation infrastructure grants.
The bill also contains provisions of more than 20 proposals introduced this session, including:
• LB1089, sponsored by Gering Sen. John Stinner, which appropriates $55 million to the state Department of Health and Human Services for licensed and Medicaid-certified nursing facilities;
• LB1066, sponsored by Stinner, which appropriates $28 million to DHHS and the University of Nebraska for behavioral health care services;
• LB1172, sponsored by Omaha Sen. Robert Hilkemann, which appropriates $55 million for rate increases for certain providers of developmental disabilities services; and
• LB1201, sponsored by Bennington Sen. Wendy DeBoer, which appropriates $20 million to DHHS for grants to nonprofit organizations providing food assistance.
Lawmakers passed LB1014 on a 40-4 vote and the bill took effect immediately.
The bill allocating American Rescue Plan Act dollars would provide funds to some 40 projects and initiatives across the state.
Among them include replacing aging rural ambulances, boosting health and human services provider payment rates, repairing wastewater systems in state parks and funding nonprofit construction projects that were interrupted by the pandemic.
Others include developing rural and urban low-income housing, updating a climate change study, building a rural health complex at the University of Nebraska at Kearney and repairing an irrigation canal that runs from Fort Laramie, Wyoming, to Gering.
Senators also provided for a grant program to start or expand child care centers, expanded mental health treatment, scholarships and loan repayments for health care providers and a program providing education and preventative medication to people at high risk of getting HIV.
Legislative assistant to Senator Albrecht, Lisa Weeks has left and was an asset to the office. Senator Albrecht wishes her well and will miss her.
If you have any comments or concerns, contact District 17 Senator Joni Albrecht at 402-471-2716 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.