Legislative Update

At the Capitol: Priority Bills Being Designated

Senators and committees continue to designate their legislative priorities, which are due by March 14. We were pleased to see another one of Appleseed’s priority bills make it out of committee: LB285 (Sen. Lynne Walz), which expands the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) to serve free breakfast and lunch to all students in Nebraska schools or districts that serve a certain percentage of students in poverty.

Last week’s highlights

Last week, we testified in front of the Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee on three bills related to voter identification. We supported LB675 (Sen. Jen Day), which presents the least restrictive requirements. We testified in opposition to LB228 (Sen. Steve Erdman), which severely limits eligibility for mail-in voting, and LB230 (Sen. Steve Erdman), which narrowly defines what qualifies as an acceptable photo ID.

We also testified in front of the Health and Human Services Committee in support of several bills, including LB84 (Sen. Jen Day), which eliminates the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)’s upcoming eligibility provision cutoff; LB35 (Sen. Wendy DeBoer), which extends Nebraska’s current child care subsidy eligibility increase; and LB233 (Sen. John Cavanaugh), which ensures that child support goes directly to families receiving Aid to Dependent Children (ADC) benefits, rather than be kept by the state.

This week’s hearings

Our team is at the Capitol for another week of hearings as we continue to fight for all Nebraskans!

YESTERDAY’S HEARINGSThough the deadline for comments to become a part of the official hearing record has passed for these bills, you can still submit an online comment to committees.

Yesterday, we testified in front of the Business and Labor Committee on several bills:

  • LB405 (Sen. Tony Vargas) – SUPPORT – benefits workers in Nebraska’s meat and poultry industries standardizing data collected for the Nebraska’s meatpacking coordinator’s report and requiring referrals where they become aware of a labor dispute. (Submit an online comment.)
  • LB272 (Sen. Tony Vargas) – SUPPORT – extends worker protections by reducing workers compensation waiting periods and retroactive periods. (Submit an online comment.)

We also testified in front of the Education Committee in SUPPORT of LB159 (Sen. Mike McDonnell), which provides grants for education expenses including tuition, fees, room and board and books for qualifying youth with foster care experience. (Submit an online comment.)

TOMORROW’S HEARINGS – Online comments due TODAY by 12:00 PM

Tomorrow, we’ll testify in front of the Health and Human Services Committee in SUPPORT of two important bills that support Nebraska’s lowest income families: 

  • LB290 (Sen. Machaela Cavanaugh) – SUPPORT – increases the eligibility limit for the Aid to Dependent Children (ADC) program, the direct cash assistance program funded by the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Block Grant. (Submit an online comment.)
  • LB310 (Sen. Danielle Conrad) – SUPPORT – increases the amount of aid available to families in need by changing the maximum payment level under the Aid to Dependent Children program (ADC). (Submit an online comment.)

We’ll also testify in front of the Judiciary Committee in SUPPORT of the following tenant protection proposals:

  • LB248 (Sen. Tony Vargas) – SUPPORT – protects families’ ability to rent housing, regardless of how they would pay their rent, by prohibiting discrimination based on lawful Source of Income (SOI). (Submit an online comment.)
  • LB175 (Sen. George Dungan) – SUPPORT – adopts the Residential Tenant Clean Slate Act which allows tenants to obtain clean slate relief when they have faced wrongful eviction actions. (Submit an online comment.)
  • LB187 (Sen. John Cavanaugh) – SUPPORT – requires a court to appoint counsel in an eviction proceeding for any unrepresented tenant unless the tenant waives court-appointed counsel. (Submit an online comment.)

THURSDAY’S HEARINGS – Online comments due Wednesday by 12:00 PM

On Thursday, we’ll testify in front of the Judiciary Committee on the following legislation:

  • LB8 (Sen. Carol Blood) – SUPPORT – strengthens tenant protections within our Mobile Home Landlord Tenant Act by requiring mobile home landlords to have good cause to initiate an eviction proceeding, and amending mobile home lien procedures. (Submit an online comment.)

We’ll wrap up another week of hearings by testifying in front of the Health and Human Services Committee on:

Stay up to date on Appleseed’s issues

You can keep up with all the happenings at the Legislature by following Appleseed online. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Don’t miss out on our live updates on legislative hearings on Twitter.

We’ll let you know how you can take action to get involved and make your voice heard throughout the session!

Want to help support Appleseed’s efforts? Become a monthly Sustaining Supporter by giving $5, $10, or $15 per month. Now through March 15, a supporter will make a $100 contribution for the first 25 new monthly sustainers, making your support go even further.

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