Nebraska State Constitution Article III-22

Article III-22


Appropriations for state; deficiencies; bills for pay of members and officials.

Each Legislature shall make appropriations for the expenses of the Government. And whenever it is deemed necessary to make further appropriations for deficiencies, the same shall require a two-thirds vote of all the members elected to the Legislature. Bills making appropriations for the pay of members and officers of the Legislature, and for the salaries of the officers of the Government, shall contain no provision on any other subject.


  • Neb. Const. art. III, sec. 19 (1875);
  • Amended 1972, Laws 1971, LB 139, sec. 1.


1. Necessity of appropriation

2. Subject of appropriation

3. Continuing appropriation

4. Miscellaneous

1. Necessity of appropriation

Before a state warrant may issue, there must have been an appropriation made by the Legislature for its payment. Fischer v. Marsh, 113 Neb. 153, 202 N.W. 422 (1925).

Appropriation for one biennium cannot be used to supply deficiency of preceding biennium. State ex rel. Western Bridge & Construction Co. v. Marsh, 111 Neb. 185, 196 N.W. 130 (1923).

It is not essential that money be actually drawn during fiscal year, but expenses must have been actually incurred during the period for which appropriation was made. State ex rel. Ledwith v. Brian, 84 Neb. 30, 120 N.W. 916 (1909).

No appropriation will lapse before the end of the first fiscal quarter after adjournment of Legislature unless specifically otherwise directed by act making appropriation. State ex rel. Dales v. Moore, 36 Neb. 579, 54 N.W. 866 (1893).

Unless otherwise limited, the appropriation extends to the end of the first fiscal quarter after the adjournment of the next session of the Legislature. State ex rel. Bullock Mfg. Co. v. Babcock, 22 Neb. 33, 33 N.W. 709 (1887).

2. Subject of appropriation

Sections 77-202.25 to 77-202.33 do not constitute an appropriation and are not violative hereof. Stahmer v. State, 192 Neb. 63, 218 N.W.2d 893 (1974).

Imposition of maximum expenditures for personal services on annual basis constitutional. State ex rel. Meyer v. State Board of Equalization & Assessment, 185 Neb. 490, 176 N.W.2d 920 (1970).

Act which allowed pledging of fees and charges received by the commission beyond the biennium violated this section. State ex rel. Meyer v. Duxbury, 183 Neb. 302, 160 N.W.2d 88 (1968).

Act which pledged future receipts of fees for permits and licenses to hunt, trap, and fish for payment of bonds violated this section. State ex rel. Meyer v. Steen, 183 Neb. 297, 160 N.W.2d 164 (1968).

Bills appropriating salaries for state officers cannot contain provisions on any other subject. This limitation applies to all officers of the state government. State ex rel. Hibbard v. Cornell, 60 Neb. 276, 83 N.W. 72 (1900).

3. Continuing appropriation

Continuing legislative appropriations are prohibited. Rein v. Johnson 149 Neb. 67, 30 N.W.2d 548 (1947).

Warrants may be drawn on special fund originally established as a continuing appropriation without subsequent biennial appropriation. State ex rel. Ridgell v. Hall, 99 Neb. 89, 155 N.W. 228 (1915), affirmed on rehearing 99 Neb. 95, 156 N.W. 16 (1916), overruled in Rein v. Johnson, 149 Neb. 67, 30 N.W.2d 548 (1947).

An appropriation under this section cannot be made to continue for a longer period than the biennium. State ex rel. Norfolk Beet-Sugar Co. v. Moore, 50 Neb. 88, 69 N.W. 373 (1896).

4. Miscellaneous

Attempt to appropriate funds was not an inducing element to passage of remainder of Tax Appraisal Board Act. Midwest Popcorn Co. v. Johnson, 152 Neb. 867, 43 N.W.2d 174 (1950).

Legislature has authority to increase salary of officer during term whose compensation has not previously been fixed by legislative enactment. State ex rel. Johnson v. Marsh, 149 Neb. 1, 29 N.W.2d 799 (1947).

Excess of gasoline inspection fees paid without protest or demand for refund, lapsed after each biennium, and after having lapsed, court is without power to determine directly the question of their excessiveness. Power Oil Co. v. Cochran, 138 Neb. 827, 295 N.W. 805 (1941).