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Sunday, May 1, 2016

City officials to testify in Lincoln

Monday, January 16, 2012

McCOOK, Nebraska -- Two McCook officials will testify on a bill introduced by Sen. Mark Christensen, to change a law that forced two city councilors to forfeit their seats after one was convicted of harboring a potentially vicious dog and the other was convicted of disturbing the peace. City Manager Jeff Hancock and City Councilman Mike Gonzales will address Nebraska legislators in testimony at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at the capitol in Lincoln.

Sen. Christensen told members of the McCook Area Chamber of Commerce that he hoped they could help explain the situation and the impact it recently had in McCook.

The bill, LB 786, introduced Jan. 5, 2012, changes forfeiture of office provisions for City Council members in cities such as McCook, that have a city manager form of government. The bill would strike the word crime from the section and replace it with language that is used in other elected positions, "felony or of any public offense involving the violation of the oath of office of such member."

Sen. Christensen said there were 10 to 12 cities that were being faced with potential problems from the statute and that he intends to pursue an interim study that would assist in defining what a violation of an oath of office actually is.

Sen. Christensen introduced three other bills last week.

LB 785 intends to protect citizens' rights to transport and store firearms within their vehicles. The bill prohibits business entities, property owners and any public or private employer from establishing or maintaining policies that prohibit the transportation or storage of a firearm in their privately-owned vehicle. The bill authorizes civil action against those that violate it by individuals injured or having damage incurred as a result of the violation. The bill would also entitle employees terminated for violations of a policy that contradict it to reinstatement and lost wages.

The bill offers protection from liability to the business entities, property owners and any public or private employer, from civil action for damages or injuries resulting from actions involving firearms transported or stored in accordance with it.

That protection includes theft of such firearms from their owners vehicles.

The bill is specific that it would not include employer supplied vehicles, vehicles parked on residential property or in any place where firearms are expressly prohibited by federal law.

LB 950 intends to change crediting provisions relating to reimbursement of certain assistance to the natural resources districts. More specifically the bill seeks to put NRDs' repayment funds into a Water Resources Cash Fund to be used for future water issues.

LB 739 transfers Champion Mill State Historical Park in Champion, Nebraska, and other property in Chase County from the Game and Parks Commission to the County of Chase for public purposes.

The bill also sets the conditions for the maintenance and operation of the property being conveyed, including maintaining attractiveness to the public and sanitation facilities.

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