LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Military retirees in Nebraska will get to keep more of their retirement benefits under a bill that won first-round approval from lawmakers.

The bill would exempt half of a military retiree's benefit from Nebraska state taxes, a key priority for Gov. Pete Ricketts.

The measure advanced 46-0 on Monday through the first of three required votes.

Sen. Tom Brewer, who sponsored the bill, said the measure would help Nebraska attract and retain military service members after they retire.

Several neighboring states, including Iowa and Missouri, don't impose any tax on military retirement benefits.