Sen. Watermeier Highlights Priority Bills In State Legislature

LINCOLN – State Sen. Dan Watermeier says priority bills before the Legislature include sales tax on Internet purchases, confidentiality for lethal drug providers and farm land tax reform.

The senator designated LB44 as his priority bill. It would require online retailers to collect sales tax or inform buyers that they must fill out a tax return and pay the tax directly.

He said option for buyers to self-tax is necessary to avoid legal challenges posed by a 1992 US Supreme Court ruling prohibiting sales taxes on Internet purchases.

Watermeier: “This is not a new tax, as taxpayers currently owe it, but few actually pay it. It is estimated that LB 44 would increase revenue for our state by $30 to $40 million annually. I believe this is a conservative estimate and may be closer to $100 million.”

Two bills introduced on behalf of the governor propose an income tax reduction and a change in the method used in valuation of agricultural land from a market approach to more of an income approach.

Among other bills prioritized, Sen. Watermeier predicts controversy over a bill to make the identity of lethal drug providers confidential.

Watermeier: “Nebraska voters chose to retain the death penalty and Sen. John Kuehn, the sponsor of LB661, feels it is the responsibility of elected officials and state agencies to act in accordance with the will of the people and address the functional problems in the lethal injection procedure.”

LB622 would allow medical marijuana in Nebraska in liquid or pill form.

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