Bill would provide certified version of Nebraska constitution

A bill that would establish a process for the development and publication of a certified version of the state constitution was advanced from general file March 29.

Omaha Sen. Ernie Chambers, sponsor of LB686, said no official copy of the state constitution currently exists. The measure would ensure that all necessary entities involved in changes to the state’s governing document are part of the process of creating the official copy, he said.

“It will create a certified copy of the Nebraska constitution and it will serve as prima facie evidence of what the law is,” Chambers said.

Under the bill, the secretary of state, attorney general and the Legislature would cooperate in publishing a certified version of the Nebraska Constitution. The document would be updated annually to incorporate any changes made by the Legislature or the courts.

The certified copy resulting from the process would serve as the official version of the Nebraska Constitution and could be cited as prima facie evidence of the law in all state courts. It also would be made available electronically on the Legislature’s website and to the public in print form upon request.

Omaha Sen. Bob Krist supported the bill.

“I believe that people will have a more useable, more functional constitution in the future,” he said.

Following adoption of a technical amendment from the Executive Board on a 30-0 vote, senators advanced the bill 28-0.

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