Riepe steps up to the plate


Published March 26, 2015, in Senator Features

Delivered at the family home in rural Iowa with his grandmother’s assistance, Sen. Merv Riepe’s life began with the help of a strong woman—and that has been a theme ever since. As the only son in a family of three sisters, he was the natural choice to follow in their father’s footsteps and run the…


Out-of-home juvenile placement updates advance


Published March 26, 2015, in Judiciary

Collection and management of information regarding juveniles in out-of-home care is the focus of a bill amended and advanced from general file March 24. Introduced by Lincoln Sen. Kathy Campbell, LB265 would make a number of changes relating to juveniles and child welfare, including: • establishing a pilot project to demonstrate how state agency data…


Plan to sell Norfolk’s former regional center advanced


Published March 25, 2015, in Executive Board

The site of a former regional center would come under new ownership under a bill advanced from general file March 25. LB56, introduced by Norfolk Sen. Jim Scheer, initially would have donated the land housing Norfolk’s former regional center to Northeast Community College. Unused for more than 20 years, the land is adjacent to the…


OIG oversight of juvenile justice system amended, advanced


Published March 24, 2015, in Judiciary

A bill designed to change oversight of the state’s juvenile justice system advanced from general file March 24. Under LB347, introduced by Sen. Bob Krist of Omaha, the Office of the Inspector General of Nebraska Child Welfare (OIG) also would oversee the juvenile justice system. Currently, the OIG conducts audits, inspections and other reviews of…


Procedures for juvenile offenders advanced


Published March 24, 2015, in Judiciary

Lawmakers gave first-round approval March 24 to a bill relating to the treatment of juveniles charged with certain crimes. Under LB482, introduced by Omaha Sen. Bob Krist, juveniles charged with running away or being uncontrollable or truant would not be fingerprinted or placed in a juvenile detention facility or out-of-home care unless certain factors exist….


UNMC disease training center resolution approved


Published March 26, 2015, in Health and Human Services

Lawmakers approved a resolution March 26 recommending that an infectious disease training center be established in Nebraska. LR41, introduced by the Health and Human Services Committee, urges Nebraska’s congressional delegation to support efforts in Congress to establish an infectious disease training center at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) in Omaha. The medical center…


Organ donor status requirement considered


Published March 26, 2015, in Transportation and Telecommunications

Senators debated a bill March 24 and 25 that would require Nebraskans to indicate their organ donor status when applying for a driver’s license. Introduced by Syracuse Sen. Dan Watermeier, LB47 would require a person to state whether or not they wish to be an organ donor when applying for a state driver’s license or…


Borrowing authority for municipalities amended, advanced


Published March 25, 2015, in Urban Affairs

Cities and towns in Nebraska would have the express authority to borrow funds to purchase property or construct improvements under a bill advanced from general file March 25. LB152, introduced by the Urban Affairs Committee, would allow municipalities to borrow from state- or federally-chartered banks, savings banks, building and loan associations and savings and loan…


Medicaid payment for juvenile therapies advanced


Published March 24, 2015, in Health and Human Services

Lawmakers gave first-round approval March 24 to a bill that would authorize Medicaid reimbursement for therapies used to assist troubled Nebraska youth. LB500, sponsored by Omaha Sen. Sara Howard, would direct the state Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to submit an application by July 1, 2015, to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid…


Alzheimer’s state plan added to aging and disabled needs bill


Published March 24, 2015, in Health and Human Services

A bill seeking to improve access to existing services and support for Nebraskans who are aging or disabled was amended and advanced from general file March 24. LB320, as introduced by Lincoln Sen. Kate Bolz, would establish resource centers to provide information on long-term care services for aging and disabled Nebraskans and their family members…