Policy & Advocacy News
This edition features:
Tax Bill Debated in the Nebraska Legislature
How to Stay on Top of Legislation Important to You
Tax Legislation Debate in the Legislature
Aside from money from the federal government, taxes are the main source of revenue for the state. Decisions about revenue and expenditures shape Nebraska's fiscal policy, which affects everyone who lives here. Engaging with these measures is daunting because tax measures are complex, and the process is hard to follow -- already six bills have been amended into LB754.
One amendment adopts a version of the childcare tax credit (originally proposed in a bill introduced by Senator Bostar).
Two groups are eligible for the credit: (1) parents/guardians who have a child, aged 5 or under, enrolled in licensed day care, and (2) parents/guardians whose total household income doesn't exceed the federal poverty level.
Eligible households with income of $75,000 or less would receive a $2,000 tax credit
Eligible households with income from $75,001 to $150,000 would receive a $1,000 tax credit
Households with income over $150,000 wouldn’t be eligible for a credit
However, only $15 million in tax credits are allowed each year. A household must submit an application to claim the credit, and the Department of Revenue will review and approve applications in the order they're received. Once they hit the $15 million cap, households won't be able to claim the tax credit—even if they're otherwise eligible.
Issues with LB754
Despite this provision, wealthy Nebraskans and corporations are by far the biggest beneficiaries, with more than 80% of the tax cuts going to the top 25% of earners.
Tax revenue decisions often have an indirect effect on our operations. Still, Together and similar nonprofit organizations typically don't engage with tax policy, choosing to focus on issues directly related to our mission and purpose. However, this legislation will likely have significant implications for us all of us, directly and indirectly, so it's worth bringing to your attention here.
For more details on the package of proposed income tax cuts, OpenSky has this overview:
To take action and/or stay engaged with this issue, check out:
How to Keep Updated with Legislation Important to You
This newsletter mostly provides updates on policies related to our mission at Together, but you may want to track other bills that address issues that are important to you. Here are some ways to stay up to date on the legislature's actions:
Create an account for this free service
Track up to 15 bills with email notifications of activity
To find out what will be discussed on a given day, go to the legislature homepage
Click on "View Day ## Activity" at the top:
The legislative calendar (on the right) provides information about future dates.
For the current date, click on the "Agenda" link to see the bills the Speaker has scheduled for debate that day.
To become law, bills generally progress through these steps:
Introduction - Committee - General File - Select File - Final Reading - Governor
You can see how far a particular bill has advanced by looking at the worksheet.
Here's an example -- the worksheet for March 29.
Click on "View Day ## Activity" at the top of the legislature homepage
Click on the "Worksheet" link (the last link under the "Legislative Activity for [Date]" heading)