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Nebraska Legislature: Introduced bills include sexual assault survivor rights, medical marijuana

January 11, 2019

LINCOLN — State Sen. Kate Bolz introduced Legislative Bill 43, the Sexual Assault Survivor’s Bill of Rights Act, on Thursday. The bill would ensure that sexual assault victims receive “accurate and timely information they need to navigate the medical and criminal justice systems,” Bolz said. The bill would also inform medical and criminal justice professionals of victims’ rights.

The measure was among 135 bills and two proposed constitutional amendments introduced on the second day of Nebraska’s 106th Legislature. Some of the other bills introduced Thursday were:

Red flag:

LB 58 would allow authorities to temporarily take guns away from people suspected of being dangerous. It was introduced by Sen. Adam Morfeld of Lincoln.

Medical marijuana:

LB 110 would add Nebraska to 32 states that have legalized nonrecreational cannabis. A leader of the committee leading a similar petition effort, Sen. Anna Wishart of Lincoln, introduced the bill.

Road safety crackdown:

LB 39 would make not buckling up a primary offense, meaning that an officer could pull you over if you or your passengers are without a seat belt. LB 40 would make texting on the road a primary offense, and for teens with learner’s permits or provisional licenses, using a cellphone and driving. Both were introduced by Sen. Robert Hilkemann of Omaha.

Only one plate:

LB 38 would eliminate the second license plate required for vehicles. It was introduced by Hilkemann.

Nebraska’s favorite vegetable:

Corn would become Nebraska’s state vegetable if LB 105, introduced by Sen. Lou Ann Linehan of Omaha, is passed.

Wildlife license plates:

New wildlife conservation plates would show “support for the conservation of Nebraska wildlife, including sandhill cranes, bighorn sheep, and cutthroat trout.” Fees would go into a conservation education fund. LB 128 was introduced by Sen. Dan Hughes of Venango.

Felon voting rights:

LB 83 would eliminate the two-year waiting period for felons to vote after the completion of their prison sentence or probation. Sen. Justin Wayne of Omaha offered the bill, just as he did in 2017. The previous bill was vetoed by Gov. Pete Ricketts.

The death penalty, again:

Sen. Ernie Chambers of Omaha introduced LB 44, his perennial bid to eliminate the death penalty.

Protection for mountain lions and prairie dogs:

Chambers’ LB 46 would end mountain lion hunting in Nebraska. Another Chambers bill, LB 45, would repeal a law allowing counties to eradicate prairie dogs on private land.

National motto:

Schools would be required to display the national motto, “In God We Trust,” under LB 73, introduced by Sen. Steve Erdman of Bayard.

Property taxes:

Erdman also introduced Legislative Resolution 3CA, a proposed constitutional amendment to provide income tax credits equal to 35 percent of property taxes paid.

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