No snow day at the Capitol 

Speaker Jim Scheer told senators the Legislature will meet Thursday despite snow forecasts for Wednesday night and Thursday. That will give students something to watch on TV if a snow day is called for schools. 

Lincoln Sen. Adam Morfeld tweeted: On behalf of my constituents I respectfully request a @UNLincoln snow day tomorrow, @RonnieDGreen. – at Nebraska State Capitol Building.

Meanwhile, on Nebraska-2

Sen. Ernie Chambers of Omaha gave his own State of the State address of sorts Wednesday after the official address by Gov. Pete Ricketts (which Chambers did not attend).

In a blistering floor speech, Chambers derided legislation brought by other senators as "trash," told his colleagues he was not there to make friends with them, and warned them they would become targets if they carried Ricketts' priorities to the floor of the Legislature.

"The governor tells you to do this and you do it, but not me," Chambers said. "The governor gets his feelings hurt ... but when he gets involved in legislation, that's what happens. A man must be a man. I don't care about what title or badge that he wears."

Death to bills 

Senators were in a killing mood Wednesday. Besides doing away with the motorcycle helmet repeal bill, they killed a bill that would increase the interest rate that could be charged under the Nebraska Installment Loan Act.

Now, a borrower could pay a maximum annual interest rate of 24 percent on the first $1,000 of an unpaid principal balance, and 21 percent on the remaining unpaid balance. LB384, introduced by Omaha Sen. Brett Lindstrom, would have raised the maximum to a single rate of 29 percent annually.

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State government reporter

JoAnne Young covers state government, including the Legislature and state agencies, and the people they serve.

Political reporter

Don Walton, a Husker and Yankee fan, is a longtime Journal Star political and government reporter.

Higher education reporter

Chris Dunker covers higher education, state government and the intersection of both.

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