Ricketts signs budget
Gov. Pete Ricketts has officially signed the next two-year budget into law.
“This budget controls spending to deliver $550 million in direct property tax relief over the next two years,” Ricketts said Monday, in a statement provided to The Columbus Telegram. “It also includes over $2 billion in state aid to K-12 education as well as new resources for public safety initiatives.
The budget bills signed Monday include 293e, 294e, 295e, 296e, 297e, 298e, and 299e. The governor also signed the following bills in addition to the budget package: LB 300e, LB 300Ae (judges salaries for the biennium), LB 464e (claims bill), and LB 675e (TEEOSA change).
A dozen senators voted against passing the mainline budget bill.
Ricketts touted the budget’s increase to the Property Tax Credit Fund, which brought the total to more than $500 million over the two years of the budget.
The governor had proposed a 3.1 percent increase in spending, and the Appropriations Committee knocked that down slightly to a 2.9 percent increase.
“Our ongoing commitment to controlling spending helped the state do property tax relief this year, and has set the state up to expand relief in years to come,” he said.
University President Hank Bounds told Telegram sister paper the Lincoln Journal Star that Ricketts sent a strong message to the 52,000 students, their families and the people of Nebraska, with his signing of the budget, about the state’s commitment to affordable, competitive higher education that grows the state’s economy and quality of life.
Lee Newspapers contributed to this report.