Weekly Update, Senator Albrecht Notes Which Bills To Watch

WAYNE – The 2020 Legislative Second Session is over halfway complete as Thursday will mark the 36th day for the 106th legislature.

According to a release from the office of Senator Joni Albrecht (District 17), priority bills have been designated, committees have held their final meetings and the legislative body began a full day of floor debate this past Tuesday. State senators are all working hard to review the bills that their colleagues have identified.

Senator Albrecht first started her weekly update by mentioning more visitors from the Wayne and South Sioux City area stopped by the chamber. Be sure to make the legislature one of your stops if visiting Lincoln.

Next, Senator Albrecht stated which bills Nebraskans need to keep on their radar. They include LB974 (Property Tax Relief) and LB720 (Business Incentives for economic development).

Several Senators are working hard to garner the support needed to bring property tax relief over the finish line and to invite continued economic growth to Nebraska.  Senator Albrecht thinks progress is being made and she feels confident the Legislature will get property tax relief accomplished before the end of this Session. It is what Nebraskans want, it is what Nebraskans need.

Following several severe flooding events over the past several years, Senator Julie Slama (District 1) introduced a Legislative Resolution (LR288), urging Congress and the United States Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) to make flood control a top priority for management of water systems under their authority in the Missouri River Mainstream Reservoir System Manual. The preliminary assessment of damage to infrastructure-like roads, bridges and levees caused by the 2019 flooding has reached approximately $450 million.

The Corps has authority over many of the systems in Nebraska as well as management of water flows in the Missouri River Basin using an infrastructure network. Current standards put in place by the Corps for levee design, construction and maintenance have not been updated in over 20 years. Therefore, through LR288, the Legislature states that the Corps should consider the impact of flooding on people, agricultural land, property and economies and prioritize flood control when creating future Water Systems Manuals as well as when updating levee standards to best serve the needs of Nebraska residents living within the affected areas. Senator Albrecht is a co-sponsor of LR288 and reported that the Resolution was adopted by the Legislature on a 43-1 vote.

Senator Albrecht continues to prepare for the time when her Priority Bill, LB1186 comes to the floor for debate. The bill will fill in a pay gap for teachers and staff who are injured by an assault while on the job. Currently, teachers who are assaulted and are unable to work due to injuries from that assault are not paid injury leave to compensate them during the first seven days that is not covered by workers’ compensation when those benefits kick in.

LB1186 requires that teachers or school employees injured by such intentional assaults be paid their usual salary for those seven days without having to sacrifice accumulated sick leave or vacation time.

Senator Albrecht encourages all to contact her office as she looks forward to hearing from her constituents. Contact Senator Albrecht at 402-471-2716 or by email at jalbrecht@leg.ne.gov.