Omaha, NE – Voices for Children in Nebraska has released its Kids Count in Nebraska 2011 Report.
Research Coordinator Melissa Breazile says the report focuses on the importance of investing in early childhood. She says the report is broken down into four key areas: health, education, safety and economic stability. Positive findings include an increase in the graduation rate and a decrease in the number of children living outside of their homes.
Omaha, NE – Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman is calling on lawmakers to cut state income taxes by $326.6 million dollars over the next three years.
Taxes were a central part of Heineman's State of the State address Thursday. Heineman's plan would change the state income tax brackets and lower rates accordingly. The legislation, sponsored by Bellevue Senator Abbie Cornett, would also eliminate Nebraska's inheritance tax.
Omaha, NE – The former chairman of the Douglas County Republican Party is seeking the GOP nomination for the Second Congressional District.
Glenn Freeman announced his candidacy last week. Freeman is the third challenger to incumbent Congressman Lee Terry in the Second District race. Financial Advisor and former Husker Quarterback Brett Lindstrom, and UNO mathematics department chairman Jack Heidel, are also candidates.
Freeman says his campaign will focus on the national deficit and state sovereignty.
Omaha, NE – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says 19 levee repair projects are in the works at a cost of $280 million dollars.
Officials from the Corps' Omaha office updated the levee repairs during a conference call Friday afternoon. Last summer's Missouri River flooding caused several levee breaches along the Nebraska-Iowa border, and farther south in to Missouri.
Omaha, NE – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to use last year's record water releases and runoff in its future forecasts for water releases.
The Corps released its 2012 Annual Operating Plan Friday. The plan is based in part on comments received at a series of public meetings. It also includes recommendations from a report issued last month by a four-member panel who studied the Corps' response to last summer's Missouri River flooding.
Omaha, NE – The VA of Nebraska-Western Iowa opened a homeless Veterans Day services center in Omaha this past September.
Linda Twomey is the Mental Health Specialty Programs Manager for the VA of Nebraska-Western Iowa. She says the day service center is a clinic where veterans have access to social workers, who function as case mangers and vocational rehabilitation staff to provide a one-stop shop for homeless veterans.
Twomey says when veterans first come in, their needs are assessed. Staff will then assist them in accessing the appropriate VA and community resources.
Omaha, NE – Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle says job creation and strategic planning are among his priorities for 2012.
In a video message released Wednesday, Suttle talked about the challenges the city faced this year, including Missouri River flooding and the downgrade of Omaha's bond rating. The rating was restored in early December.