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Newscast: 02.04.22 State lawmakers could consider increasing tax on vaping, SD lawmakers to consider changing the name of Custer State Park

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Two unions have responded to this week’s wage increases approved by the Woodbury County Supervisors. The board gave all county employees a raise of 4 percent.

The Woodbury County Deputies and Correctional Officers Union CWA 7177 and Woodbury County Secondary Roads Union CWA 7103 have each sent a letter to the Board. They are requesting that supervisors opens each of their contracts to allow bargaining groups' raises to be more in line to keep up with inflation.

A small group in the Iowa House is working on a bill that would tax the liquid used in electronic cigarettes at or near the same rate as regular cigarettes. Representative Ann Meyer of Fort Dodge said she’s concerned about the kids who’re using E-cigarettes.

People who buy vaping products in Iowa pay the state sales tax, but people who buy a pack of rolled cigarettes pay a far higher tobacco tax. Opponents of a new tax on vaping liquid says it’s a healthier alternative to combustible cigarettes and should not be taxed like tobacco because there’s no tobacco in it.

Two Indigenous Democratic lawmakers in South Dakota have introduced three bills that would change the name of Custer State Park, several location names in Gregory County that include the term “scalp” and school mascots that are named after terms derogatory to Native Americans, according to the Argus Leader.

Sen. Troy Heinert has brought Senate Bill 178 to replace the name of Custer State Park. Heinert said Custer State Park land does have a traditional Lakota name, but he purposely chose not to put a name in the bill or release it at this time because he wants to see the bill go through the process so lawmakers can learn the history of the area.

The bill will have a year for public debates and hearings, then four years to change signs and run an advertising campaign if needed.

The University of Nebraska may be taking a step toward selling alcohol at athletic events, according to the Omaha World Herald.

The University of Nebraska Board of Regents at its Feb. 11 meeting is slated to consider reversing the long-standing ban on alcohol sales at Husker athletics events. The board will consider allowing the University of Nebraska president and chancellors to authorize the sale and consumption of alcohol at athletic events on campuses.

The regents also will consider allowing alcohol sales during the Big Ten Wrestling Championships at Pinnacle Bank Arena, according to an agenda posted Thursday. The tournament runs March 5-6.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Athletic Director Trev Alberts and UNL Chancellor Ronnie Green sponsored the proposal, and University of Nebraska President Ted Carter recommended and signed the proposed addendum to the agenda.

Giving the green light to alcohol sales at a sporting event wouldn’t be entirely unprecedented for the Board of Regents. NU allows alcohol sales at Baxter Arena for University of Nebraska at Omaha hockey and basketball.

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