State legislators adjourned in May and the next session doesn’t begin until January, but Nebraska’s lawmakers are still at work.
Senator Russ Karpisek of Wilber says the legislative session usually only lasts five months or so, but the job encompasses all 12 months of the year.
“We have interim studies coming up where people run a study to see how a bill might work, get some lay of the land before you actually run a bill, so that gets very busy and, of course, we always have constituents who need some help,” Karpisek says. “Just to go back and forget about it sure doesn’t happen.”
Karpisek chairs the General Affairs committee which has two studies on the docket that he says are of great interest. One, from Senator Gwen Howard of Omaha, would focus on alcohol consumption.
The study will look at alcohol impact zones, seeing how many liquor licenses could or should be in certain areas of Omaha.
The second study concerns the horse racing industry and legislation being backed by Senator Mark Christensen of Imperial. Karpisek says that promises to be a learning experience.
“I think what (Christensen) is trying to do is to show it really isn’t the money maker that I’ve tried to say that it is,” Karpisek says. “I’m more than happy to have a study and show what kind of money really is exchanged through horse racing, that it is a viable industry and that we need to keep it in Nebraska.”
To find out when these study hearings are being held, go to www.Nebraskalegislature.gov and click on the calendar tab.
Stan Smith, KUTT, Fairbury