Omaha, NE – The City of Omaha plans to cut more than six million dollars from its fiscal year 2009 budget.
Mayor Mike Fahey announced Tuesday that 74 positions in seven departments will go unfilled, which is estimated to save $2.3 million. The Omaha Police and Fire Departments will both delay recruit classes, and the city's Planning Department will only fill one of three new Housing Inspector positions.
An additional $667,000 will be saved by cutting equipment and vehicles from the Parks and Public Works Departments.
Omaha, NE – The Council Bluffs Community School District is preparing a five-to-ten year Master Facilities Plan and wants the public's input.
Three public meetings are scheduled, including one Thursday night at Thomas Jefferson High School. Diane Ostrowski is Supervisor of Community Services for the District. She says the input is important as the District decides whether or not to build new schools.
Omaha, NE – The Salvation Army's Tree of Lights campaign has raised just over two million dollars with one week left.
Salvation Army of Omaha Spokeswoman Susan Eustice says fund-raising so far this campaign is about three percent behind this time last year. There are seven days left in the Tree of Lights Campaign and the goal is $2.8 million.
Omaha, NE – The Omaha metro area can expect more bitterly cold temperatures and snow this week.
The National Weather Service says three to five inches of snow are forecast Tuesday. That'll be combined with wind chills reaching 15 degrees below zero.
NWS Valley Meteorologist David Eastlack says when temperatures are that cold, frostbite can set in within 15 minutes. He says it isn't unusual to have a cold snap in December, but the lack of a significant snowfall so far this season is out of the ordinary.
Omaha, NE – A First Amendment Scholar says schools need to include religion in teaching if students are going to get a full education.
Charles Haynes spoke Thursday night during a Project Interfaith forum at the University of Nebraska-Omaha. Haynes says the "godless public school" belief is a myth. He says schools can allow students to express their religious beliefs and not violate rules separating church and state.
Omaha, NE – Nebraska Medical Center patients and doctors are profiled in a new art exhibition opening Friday at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts.
The exhibition is called "Here I Am and Nowhere Else: Portraits of Care." Artist Mark Gilbert spent more than two years at UNMC as an artist-in-residence. During that time, he built relationships with patients, their families and caregivers, and asked them to sit for portraits. What resulted was a series of paintings and drawings depicting the human side of illness.
Omaha, NE – Nebraska has its first confirmed case of the flu, and health officials are encouraging anyone who hasn't done so to get a flu shot.
The first confirmed case, announced Tuesday, is in Lancaster County. In Omaha, the Visiting Nurses Association is hosting flu shot clinics this week. Registered Nurse Kris Shipp with the VNA says it takes about two weeks after you get a flu shot for immunity to build up. Shipp says it's not true that you can get the flu from getting a flu shot.
Omaha, NE – It was one year ago Friday that eight people were murdered inside the Von Maur department store in Omaha's Westroads Mall.
Hundreds of people gathered Friday afternoon outside the store's south entrance to remember the victims. Six Von Maur employees and two customers were shot to death by a teenage gunman, who then killed himself.