Bill Seeks to Create State Guardian Office


Lawmakers have advanced a bill aimed at helping some of Nebraska's most vulnerable people who can't make decisions on their own.

Sen. Colby Coash, of Lincoln, introduced a bill that would create the Office of the Public Guardian. Coash says Nebraska is the only state without this kind of office.

A county court can appoint a guardian or conservator to someone who is unable to make responsible decisions for themselves, due to reasons such as disability or mental illness. However, if no one volunteers to serve, the court will ask an attorney to volunteer.

Supporters say the need has outgrown the supply of volunteers and Nebraska needs a guardian program.

The bill advanced from the first round of debate on a vote of 34-0.