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We are now over half way through this short 60-day session and the Legislature has switched gears and began full-day debate of legislation on the floor. The Legislature will focus its time discussing bills designated as a priority by a Senator, Committee, or the Speaker for the remainder of session.

Several Senator Priority Bills were debated this week. LB931 introduced by Senator Howard was discussed on general file. LB931 would create a 7 day duration cap on a prescription for an opiate issued to a person under the age of 19. The bill contained a Judiciary Committee Amendment which inserted portions of LB933 by Senator Lindstrom and LB934 by Senator Kuehn. As amended by Am1841 the bill would require with some exceptions that a person receiving dispensed opiates provide photographic identification. LB931 as amended advanced to select file.

LB158 by Senator Pansing Brooks was also debated on the floor. LB158 is a carryover bill from last session that was reprioritized. The bill would require that all juveniles subject to the jurisdiction of juvenile court be appointed counsel. There was several hours of debate on the bill. A final vote has not been taken on the bill.

LB773 introduced by Senator Clements was also heard on general file. LB773 would change intimidation by telephone call provisions to prohibit intimidation by electronic communication to update the statute with our modern tools of communication. The bill did advance to select file.

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Two Committee Priority Bills LB1078 and LB935 were discussed on general file. LB1078 a bill introduced by Senator Crawford and prioritized by the Executive Board would require the reporting of sexual abuse allegations involving those being served by the Division of Children and Family Services and placed at a residential child-caring agency as well as state wards, juveniles in probation, juveniles in detention or juveniles in a residential child caring agency to be reported to the Inspector General of Nebraska Child Welfare. The bill did advance to select file. LB935 is a bill introduced and prioritized by the Legislative Performance Audit Committee. The bill would authorize the inspection of certain tax return information and change application, reporting and record retention provisions under the Nebraska Advantage Act. The bill did advance.

This week (March 5-10) is National Consumer Protection Week. The legislature has recently passed on final reading LB757, a bill aimed at providing additional consumer protections. I wanted to share this information from the Attorney General’s Office for those who may be interested in learning more about tips on how to keep their information secure. You may find this information at ProtectTheGoodLife.Nebraska.gov. The legislature will reconvene debate of priority legislation on Tuesday March 6 and I look forward to discussion of key issues affecting Nebraska and District 23.

Sen. Bruce Bostelman represents District 23 in the Nebraska Legislature. He can be reached at (402) 471-2719 or bbostelman@leg.ne.gov.

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