Lawmakers have advanced a bill intended to attract more wind-energy companies to Nebraska, as long as residents receive some of the benefits.

The bill (LB402) won first-round approval Monday with a 33-0 vote.

The measure by Sen. Heath Mello would make it easier for renewable energy firms to qualify for sales tax exemptions under an existing state program. At least 25 percent of the revenue from their power-purchase agreements would have to go to Nebraska-based owners or a local community.

It was the second wind energy measure advanced within the past week. Lawmakers say one or both bills will have to shrink to fit in the budget.

The other bill is aimed at larger wind farms that could export energy to other states.