Executive Board

Agency reporting changes adopted

Lawmakers gave final approval April 9 to a bill meant to strengthen state agency reporting requirements.

LB719, introduced by Bellevue Sen. Sue Crawford, adds a public comment summary to the required information that a state agency must submit to the secretary of state, attorney general and governor regarding a proposed rule change under the Administrative Procedures Act.

The bill requires agencies to provide the Legislature a report containing a written summary of testimony offered at a public hearing, any specific issues or questions presented at the hearing or in written testimony and written responses from the agency.

The Executive Board of the Legislative Council will refer each written report to the chairperson of the standing legislative committee with subject matter jurisdiction over the issue for review.

In addition, if practicable, each report will be submitted to the senator who was the primary sponsor of the bill or amendment that initially granted rule-making authority to the agency.

The bill includes provisions of LB720, also introduced by Crawford, that expand an existing complaint process regarding proposed agency regulations.

Current law provides a process for senators to file a complaint regarding proposed regulations on the basis that the proposed rule is unconstitutional, in excess of statutory authority or inconsistent with the legislative intent of the authorizing statute.

The bill expands that process to existing rules and regulations or their repeal. It also adds the following criteria for filing a complaint:
• a rule or regulation creates an undue burden;
• circumstances have changed since passage of a law that a rule or regulation implements; or
• a rule or regulation overlaps, duplicates or conflicts with other laws, rules or ordinances.

LB719 passed on a 46-0 vote.

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