Tuesday, March 28Welcome

Leadership Positions Swap When Parliament Convenes – Unicameral Update

Twenty-six legislators were sworn into office on January 4 as the 108th Nebraska Legislature convened for its first 90-day session. That number includes nine re-elected senators, 16 newly elected senators (including two of his senators who previously served in Congress), and one newly appointed senator. It is included.

Lawmakers also elected new presidents and chairmen of the 14 standing committees of parliament.

The Senate selected La Vista Senator John Arch to serve a two-year term as Speaker of Congress. Arch, who was not opposed, will succeed Lincoln’s Senate Speaker Mike Hilgers, who left Congress after being elected Attorney General in November. Among other duties, the chair prepares the daily agenda of the legislature and presides in the absence of the lieutenant governor.

A former chairman of the Health and Human Services Commission, Arch said his competence and his experience as a hospital administrator demonstrate his ability to manage complex relationships and processes. Instead of focusing on their differences, senators have shared the common belief that positive outcomes for Nebraskans, such as quality education, equal justice before the law, and proper administration of the state’s taxes, will be achieved. He said it was necessary to emphasize the aspirations of

“Remembering that we agreed on the ultimate goal gave us a starting point for a healthy relationship,” says Arch.

Several other senators also moved into new leadership positions, as lawmakers elected new chairs for nearly every standing committee in Congress.

Grenville Senator Dave Merman dismissed incumbent Senator Lynn Waltz of Fremont to serve as school board chairman.

Merman, who was elected by a 32-to-17 vote, said Nebraska educators need to “get their foundations firmly in place” and that working with incoming Gov. is the best choice.

“We need to amend our state education funding, TEEOSA, to help more students and more school districts than we currently have,” said Merman, adding that only about 35.5% of all schools in Nebraska is currently receiving state aid and equalization funds, he added.

Senator Suzanne Geist of Lincoln won a three-way contest to chair the Transportation and Communications Commission. Geist won her 29 votes, defeating Plymouth Senator Tom Blunt and Columbus Senator Mike Moser.

After serving six years on the commission and four years as vice-chairman, Mr. Geist spoke to the State Department of Transportation and other stakeholders about broadband issues, aeronautics, and innovative financing options that accelerated the completion of Lincoln’s South Beltway project. He noted his experience working closely with stakeholders.

“The Commission deals with a wide range of issues and I am committed to focusing on each of them. [from] First day,” she said. “I also continue to encourage discussion and out-of-the-box thinking.”

The chairmen elected in uncontested races are: Dunbar Senator Julie Surama to the Banking, Commerce and Insurance Committee. Ralston Senator Merv Riepe to the Business and Labor Committee. Albion Sen. Tom Briese to the Executive Committee. Senator Carney To the General Affairs Committee. Blair Senator Ben Hansen to the Health and Human Services Committee. Omaha Senator Justin Wayne to the Judiciary Committee. Omaha Senator Mike McDonnell to the Nebraska Retirement Plans Commission. Omaha Senator Terrell McKinney to the Committee on Urban Affairs.

The chairs of the four committees remained the same as last year, and the following members were re-elected in uncontested elections. Gordon Senator Tom Brewer to the Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee. Brainerd Senator Bruce Bostelmann to the Natural Resources Committee. and Elkhorn Senator Lou Ann Linehan to the Ways and Means Commission.

Senators have the first 10 days to introduce legislation, or until January 18th.

The legislative session is scheduled for a 90-day legislative period, during which lawmakers will draft a two-year state budget to address reforms to prisons and taxes, how the state will fund schools, and possible further restrictions on abortion. expected to work.

The 2023 session is tentatively scheduled to end on June 9th.

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