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(Neb)-Legislature Ends Session On Mixed Note  Listen

By: John Axtell Posted at: 06/01/2019 07:01 AM
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - The Nebraska completed its 2019 session yesterday, four working days ahead of their original schedule.They passed more than 250 laws and a new state budget during the often-bruising 84day session, but left some major issues unresolved.
 
     The $9.3 billion dollar budget includes a 23% increase in the state's property tax credit fund, bringing it to $275 million annually - which Gov. Pete Ricketts touted in his Sine Die address to the Unicameral as an important step toward lowering taxes, but larger plans for property tax relief and for a new business tax credit program both failed in the session..

      Against that background, lawmakers were subdued during Ricketts' remarks, leading him to call for applause after he praised the response of government, the private sector, civic groups, and individuals to this spring's blizzard and flood.

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Speaker of the Legislature Jim Scheer also praised his colleagues for a long list of accomplishments, but urged them to work together more next year.

    He cautioned the senators to be more civil in their disputes over bills and positions, saying last week's confrontation between supporters of the property tax relief plan and the business incentive program - supporters of the former successfully filibustered the latter following what they felt was betrayal on their proposal - shows why lawmakers need to work together.

      Sheer urged all the senators to use the 7 months between now and the start of the 2020 session to get to know each other better in hopes of achieving big things next year.

     Backers of property tax relief preparing an initiative campaign to put a plan on next year's general election ballot that would cut property taxes 35% while leaving it up to the legislature to decide where the money comes from.


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