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Saturday, Nov. 1, 2014
Intern Nebraska Program; a good success story (07/11/14)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: I want to remind businesses and students about the Intern Nebraska program. Intern Nebraska provides financial assistance to businesses creating new internships and connects Nebraska's college students to hands-on internship opportunities...
Cattleman's Ball (05/30/14)
Each year I attend the Cattleman's Ball of Nebraska. It is one of my favorite events because it celebrates Nebraska beef as part of a healthy diet, showcases rural Nebraska and raises money for cancer research. Formed in 1997 by a group of beef industry leaders, the Cattlemen's Ball of Nebraska has become one of the nation's most successful cancer fundraisers with more than $9 million raised since inception...
The 2014 Legislative Session (04/18/14)
It's been a very good year for Nebraska taxpayers. One of the most important accomplishments of the recently concluded 2014 Legislative Session was providing more than $412 million of tax relief to Nebraskans over the next five years. We've indexed Nebraska's individual income tax brackets for inflation. ...
Changes needed in Nebraska's 'Good Time' law (01/24/14)
Recently, Attorney General Jon Bruning, Omaha State Senator Scott Lautenbaugh and I announced our support requiring inmates convicted of the most violent crimes in our state to earn a reduction in a prison sentence rather than receive it automatically. The law would change Nebraska's "good time" law to a system of "earned time."...
College bound Nebraska (10/18/13)
Higher education is important. Whether looking at a technical school, community college, or a state college or university, I encourage counselors, principals, mentors and all those who work with Nebraska's youth to join me in sharing the message that if students work hard, college is possible. Collegebound Nebraska Week begins Oct. 21 and provides an opportunity to encourage students and their families to begin planning for college...
Living a healthy life in Nebraska (10/11/13)
Many Nebraska employers and employees are making a serious commitment to employee well-being. This year, 50 Nebraska employers are receiving the Governor's Wellness Award for their successful efforts in promoting wellness in the workplace. Nebraska is one of only a handful of states nationwide that honors the wellness efforts of employers. My office partners with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services and WorkWell to help recognize employers who value workplace wellness programs...
Nebraska's relationship with Asia (09/06/13)
This week, representatives from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture and the Nebraska Department of Economic Development joined Lt. Governor Lavon Heidemann on a trade mission to Taiwan and Japan. As Governor, I have focused on international trade, direct investment and the creation of new export opportunities. This is the 12th foreign or reverse trade mission of my administration. Each trade mission has allowed us to explore agriculture and business development in key markets...
Obama care in trouble (07/19/13)
Recent actions by the Obama Administration are a sure sign that President Obama's new federal health care law, commonly referred to Obamacare, is in deep trouble. The continued problems with implementation of the federal health care law are indicative that the overall approach of Obamacare is impracticable and unworkable...
2013 legislative session (06/07/13)
One of the most important accomplishments of the recently concluded 2013 legislative session was the passage of the budget for the next two years. This budget is focused on the vision for Nebraska's future that I have emphasized throughout my term as Governor and those issues are education, growing the state's economy and rebuilding the cash reserve...
Cattlemen's Ball (05/31/13)
Each year I attend the Cattleman's Ball of Nebraska. It is one of my favorite events because it celebrates Nebraska beef as part of a healthy diet, showcases rural Nebraska and raises money for cancer research. Formed in 1997 by a group of beef industry leaders, the Cattlemen's Ball of Nebraska has become one of the nation's most successful cancer fundraisers with more than $7 million raised since inception...
Driving safely benefits all of us (05/24/13)
As Memorial Day approaches, travel on Nebraska roads will increase. I want to remind all drivers and passengers to buckle up every time for every trip no matter how short or long. We have a responsibility to buckle our seat belt, and ensure our passengers do the same, each time we get in a vehicle...
Honoring veterans this Memorial Day (05/20/13)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: On May 27, we will observe the Memorial Day holiday in a variety of ways. For some, this weekend will serve as the unofficial start summer, and I encourage everyone to join family and friends and explore all Nebraska has to offer...
State wellness program (05/03/13)
In 2009, the State of Nebraska launched a wellness program for state employees and spouses, called "wellnessoptions." With this program, Nebraska became one of the first states to offer an integrated wellness program that is tied to health insurance plan coverage...
Serving the adult learner (04/12/13)
By the year 2018, it is estimated that nearly 70 percent of jobs in Nebraska will require some type of postsecondary education? To meet that need, Nebraska must increase the number of its citizens who have a college education. I am devoting this week's column to the segment of Nebraska's population that could help our state meet future job needs--adults aged 25-64 who went to college but left without finishing a degree. This group of individuals represents over 236,000 Nebraskans...
The drought may continue (04/05/13)
I want to share an update on the expected weather conditions we are facing as a state, in particular so our farmers and ranchers can make the best decisions for their businesses and families in the upcoming seasons. In 2012, Nebraska experienced record-setting heat and dryness. ...
Award-winning Nebraska National Guard (03/29/13)
The Nebraska National Guard had earned several significant national awards in recent months and I would like to talk more about these awards as well as several other significant events involving the men and women of our Nebraska National Guard. Members of the Nebraska National Guard's Joint Force Headquarters air staff learned they had been awarded their second-consecutive U.S. ...
Celebrate Nebraska agriculture (03/18/13)
During the week of March 17-23 people all over the nation will celebrate National Agriculture Week. I would like to remind all Nebraskans of this important week and encourage our citizens to take a moment to reflect on the importance of the agricultural industry in our state...
Medicaid expansion would hurt state priorities (03/11/13)
The Nebraska Legislature recently held a public hearing on LB 577, a bill to bring President Obama's massive unfunded Medicaid expansion to Nebraska. To no one's surprise, liberal advocacy groups have voiced support for the optional expansion, but ultimately it would be at the expense of our state priorities, including education. What you don't hear from them is a discussion about the enormous and unsustainable costs of this expansion and who's going to pay for it...
Get to know the Department of Veterans Affairs (03/05/13)
Nebraskans support our military veterans. We owe our freedom to those who have served and sacrificed. Our state plays a role in expressing that debt of gratitude. Through the Nebraska Department of Veterans Affairs we assist Veteran Service Organizations and the United States Department of Veterans Affairs in addressing the needs of America's heroes...
Get to know the Department of Natural Resources (02/22/13)
Water is Nebraska's most precious natural resource and during the last few years we have experienced both extreme flooding and prolonged drought. I would like to share with you the work of the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources and their dedication to the sustainable use and proper management of our water and related land resources...
Agriculture conference focuses on the future (02/15/13)
This week I joined farmers, ranchers, agribusiness leaders, and policymakers to celebrate the accomplishments and future outlook for Nebraska agriculture. The Governor's Ag Conference is one of my favorite events. It was an even more special event this year because it was the 25th anniversary...
E-file this tax season (02/08/13)
Filing your tax returns for tax year 2012 has begun and I want to encourage every Nebraskan to consider filing their individual income tax return electronically. E-filing is a convenient and secure way to file state and federal taxes. I want to encourage taxpayers who are making state income tax payments, including estimated income tax, to use the state's electronic payment program...
Nebraska's internship program (02/01/13)
Before we know it summer will be here and students will be actively searching for internships to enhance their skills. This is a great time to remind businesses and students about Nebraska's internship program -- Intern Nebraska. I am pleased to announce the new and improved InternNE.com website is up and running. ...
A platform for Nebraska agriculture's future (01/04/13)
The 25th Annual Governor's Ag Conference will be held February 12-13 at the Younes Conference Center in Kearney. I invite all Nebraskans to attend this event and participate in discussions that focus on the future of the state's number one industry...
Keeping service members in our thoughts (12/27/12)
My fellow Nebraskans, As we continue to celebrate the Holiday Season and the coming New Year, it's fitting that we keep our Nebraska service men and women in our hearts and prayers, especially those who are currently deployed. One of the most important reminders from the past 11 years since Sept. ...
Winter road safety (12/18/12)
In many of my previous year end highway safety messages to Nebraskans I have been able to applaud a decrease in the number of traffic deaths. I am not able to do that for 2012. So far 200 people have lost their lives this year on our state's roadways compared to the 181 deaths recorded in 2011...
Adoption Awareness Month (11/09/12)
Many Nebraskans look forward to spending the upcoming holidays renewing family traditions. While most of us hold fond childhood memories of the holidays, there are more than 400 children across our state in foster care available for adoption who won't share these special days with a forever family...
Education test results Class C-1, C-2 and smaller schools (10/19/12)
The State of Nebraska conducts statewide reading, math, science and writing assessments so that parents, citizens, school boards, superintendents, principals, teachers and elected officials can compare results from one district to another. This data can be very helpful in improving both student and school academic achievement performance...
Joint Forces Headquarters (10/09/12)
This week marked an important day in our state's history as we opened a new Nebraska National Guard Joint Force Headquarters on the Nebraska National Guard air base in Lincoln. This 140,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility replaces several aging, 1960s-era buildings and an underground facility that was utilized by the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency and served as the site of our state emergency operations center...
Go Visit College (09/07/12)
September 7, 2012 Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Visiting a college campus is an important step for Nebraska high school students in their pursuit of education after high school. EducationQuest Foundation has developed a program called "Go.Visit.College!" This campaign encourages Nebraska's high schools and colleges to work together to coordinate group and individual campus visits...
An Update on Preschool through College Education in Nebraska (08/31/12)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: In 2009, Nebraska reorganized its preschool through college (P-16) initiative to strengthen the education that we provide to Nebraska students. As good as Nebraska's education is now; it needs to be even better in the future...
2012 Nebraska State Fair (08/17/12)
With the 143rd Nebraska State Fair set to kick off next week, I would like to invite all Nebraskans to join in the tradition and fun of the State Fair. The staff has worked very hard to prepare for the State Fair that will run from August 24 through September 3...
Livestock friendly county program continues to grow (08/10/12)
This week, Cuming County became the 18th Nebraska County to receive an official Livestock Friendly County designation joining Adams, Box Butte, Dawes, Deuel, Gage, Garden, Grant, Hitchcock, Jefferson, Keith, Lincoln, Morrill, Saline, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, Wayne and Webster counties...
Fighting fires (07/27/12)
This week, we are monitoring the status of the drought-related fires throughout the state. While the magnitude of the fires and the drought impacts weigh heavy on Nebraskans and the economy of our state, I have been reminded the past few days of the strong resolve and resiliency of our state's citizens...
Trade mission to China (07/27/12)
International business is increasingly important and beneficial to Nebraska's economic strength. Global trade and investment generates in excess of 56,000 jobs and more than $9 billion in new money here each year. During the last four years, Nebraska recorded 29 international investments from 12 countries. ...
Child welfare system reform (07/06/12)
The state of our state's child welfare system is an important issue for many reasons. Anytime you are dealing with a situation where a child is removed from their family and home, it is a difficult situation. As a result, the child welfare system will not be a perfect system; however we are looking for ways to improve the lives of these children every day...
Nebraska is the place for business (06/29/12)
Our state is receiving national attention for the sound and responsible fiscal policies that have put Nebraska in better shape than most of America. Our numbers and rankings are a strong indication that Nebraska is on the move. It is no longer a secret that Nebraska is one of the best places for new and expanding businesses to locate. ...
It's time to visit Nebraska's county fairs (06/22/12)
Summer is a great time to visit fairs and festivals held across our state. Nebraska's county fairs offer a wonderful opportunity to showcase the best of our state and highlight the agricultural heritage, achievements and talents of Nebraska producers, youth and hobbyists...
Keystone XL pipeline update (06/08/12)
Over recent months, our state has continued an ongoing conversation and discussion about the Keystone XL Pipeline, currently planned to avoid the environmentally sensitive Nebraska Sandhills. As you can imagine, Nebraskans have important opinions on this issue, and I appreciate Nebraskans willingness to share their opinions with me. Today, I would like to provide you an update on the current evaluation process of the new route...
Advances in technology (05/24/12)
As we continue to make state government more efficient and available to our citizens, I want to highlight several successful projects launched in the past year and provide updates on other online services. Our goal is to provide access to government services outside of regular business hours, while providing increased efficiency at a lower cost...
Intern Nebraska (04/26/12)
This week, I was pleased to host business and government leaders from our region for the fourth and final national summit on entrepreneurship and innovation in Omaha. As Chair of the National Governors Association, my initiative, Growing State Economies, has focused on ways states can encourage job creation and improve state economies through encouraging and fostering entrepreneurship and business innovation...
Nebraska Leopold Conservation Award (04/20/12)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: The recipient of the 2012 Nebraska Leopold Conservation Award is the Buell family of Bassett. The award is given annually to private landowners who practice responsible land stewardship and management. Each year as we prepare to celebrate Earth Day, we acknowledge the conservation efforts of Nebraska landowners, including this year's award recipients, the Buell family. ...
The importance of ecotourism (03/26/12)
Last week, I was pleased host Gov. Sam Brownback of Kansas and Gov. John Hickenlooper of Colorado as we met to discuss common efforts and issues related to ecotourism and economic development. In addition to discussing tourism efforts, my colleagues and I had the opportunity to view the world-renowned migration of the sandhill cranes, a significant ecotourism attraction in Nebraska...
Nebraskans prepare for severe weather (03/15/12)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Today I want to remind Nebraskans that the severe weather season is beginning and all of us need to take steps to be ready. Last year our state suffered record flooding along the Platte and Missouri Rivers. Promoting preparedness for flooding and severe weather can help prevent serious injury and loss of life and property across our state...
Celebrate the value of agriculture (03/09/12)
Each year in March, we celebrate the hard work and dedication of our Nebraska farmers and ranchers, and we recognize our agricultural industry's contributions to our state. Nebraska's agricultural sector is the top segment of our state's economy and one of the key reasons our state is financially stronger at than most other states in the country...
Expanding Nebraska exports (03/02/12)
I'm pleased to announce my plans to lead a delegation to China July 28 through Aug. 3. This trade mission will include stops in Beijing, Xi'an and Shanghai, China. It will mark the eleventh trade mission of my administration. China is a growing export market for Nebraska and it is important that we continue to explore new business opportunities. ...
Nebraskans need tax relief (02/10/12)
Throughout our nation, citizens are focused on one issue -- the economy. One of the best ways to help hard-working, middle class citizens and spur economic development is through tax relief. This year, Nebraska is not the only state focused on tax relief. Kansas, Oklahoma, Idaho, Ohio, Maine, and New Jersey are all debating income-tax cuts this year...
Nebraska Business Hall of Fame (02/03/12)
We have a bold and strategic vision to make Nebraska the ideal place to create jobs and grow a business, the best place to obtain an education for students of all ages, and the perfect place to raise a family. We've made fundamental investments in education and the economic vitality of our state and as a result Nebraska has made significant progress and we have consistently ranked in the top 10 as a business-friendly state...
Growing Nebraska's economy (01/27/12)
We are fortunate in Nebraska to have one of the strongest economies in the country. Our unemployment rate is 4.1% while the national average is more than double at 8.5%. Nebraska is recognized nationally as a top state in which to do business and we continue to grow and create jobs in our state...
E-File this tax season (01/23/12)
It is time to begin thinking about filing your tax returns for tax year 2011 and I want to encourage every Nebraskan to consider filing their individual income taxes electronically. E-filing is a convenient and secure way to file state and federal taxes. I also want to encourage taxpayers who are making state income tax payments, including estimated income tax, to use the state's electronic payment program located at www.revenue.ne.gov...
Middle class tax relief (01/13/12)
I'm proud of you and our citizens for your input, your insight and your leadership. Every day I am proud to be the Governor of this great State and as I enter my eighth year as Governor of Nebraska, I am more determined than ever to keep Nebraska moving forward and to address the key challenges of today...
2011 in review (12/30/11)
The new year presents the opportunity to reflect upon the important issues that have been addressed during the past year. In 2011, Nebraska has been able to build upon the momentum we were experiencing regarding job creation, education, public safety and growing Nebraska's innovation economy...
Keeping Nebraskans safe (12/16/11)
Beginning January 1, Nebraska will have a new drunk driving law that forces offenders to choose an administrative license revocation hearing or apply for an ignition interlock permit. Through the passage of LB 667, we have found a way to ensure public safety with effective monitoring of individuals convicted of driving under the influence (DUI), by allowing them to install an ignition lock device in their vehicles. ...
Reading assessment results (12/08/11)
The State of Nebraska began statewide reading assessments two years ago so that parents, citizens, school boards, superintendents, principals, teachers and elected officials could compare results from one district to another. This data can be very helpful in improving both student and school academic achievement performance...
Common sense solution (11/23/11)
The special session of the Nebraska Legislature is over and Nebraska now has an oil pipeline siting process. I signed LB 1 and LB 4 into law on Tuesday, Nov. 22. LB 4 will address the circumstances that exist regarding the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality will now work with the U.S. Department of State to develop a Memorandum of Understanding on how to move forward...
A safe holiday season (11/18/11)
My wife and I recently attended the Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) news conference to kick off their annual "Tie One On for Safety" campaign. The purpose of this campaign is for citizens to tie a red ribbon on their car antenna as a commitment to prevent drunk driving. I appreciate the work of MADD and all of our safety partners who encourage every Nebraskan to celebrate the holiday season by staying safe and sober...
Honoring our veterans (11/04/11)
Veterans Day is November 11th and it is an opportunity to honor and remember those who have served our state and our country in uniform. As we observe Veterans Day, I want to express my sincere gratitude to our veterans for their service. We're proud of these men and women and their families for what they have done for us...
Protecting Nebraska's natural resources (10/28/11)
For several months now, our state has had an ongoing conversation and discussion about the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline, currently planned to cross Nebraska's most precious water resource, the Ogallala Aquifer. As you can imagine, Nebraskans have very strong opinions on this issue, and I appreciate Nebraskans willingness to share their opinions with me...
Nebraska Internship Program (10/14/11)
Today, I am providing you with information on another program from the Talent and Innovation Initiative. The Nebraska Internship Program (InternNE) is an important component of Nebraska's strategic economic plan and is designed to enhance technology and innovation, and assure a technology-focused workforce for Nebraska companies...
2011 leaders in Workplace Wellness (09/30/11)
Recently, we recognized several Nebraska employers for their efforts to promote wellness at work. In 2008, we developed an award to highlight successful workplace wellness programs. Now in its fourth year, the Governor's Excellence in Wellness Awards will honor 28 winners this year...
A salute to Nebraska's National Guard (09/19/11)
This past week we observed the 10-year anniversary of the 9-11 attacks. Prior to the start of the "Guardians of Freedom" airshow, the names of 14 Nebraska Army National Guard Soldiers were read followed by a moment of silence. These were active duty individuals who died of either combat or non-combat related injuries since 9-11...
The world comes to Nebraska (09/09/11)
Nebraska is open for business and ready to meet and exceed the expectations of anyone interested in doing business throughout our state. As Governor, I have focused on international trade, direct investment and the creation of new export opportunities. That was our focus for Nebraska's second Reverse Trade Mission...
State technology update (09/02/11)
One of my key priorities is to develop a more efficient government through greater use of technology. I want to highlight several successful technology projects that have helped Nebraskans access their state government in a more efficient manner. Our goal is to provide improved access, increased accountability, greater efficiency and lower costs...
Nebraska ranks high nationally (08/26/11)
Our state is receiving national attention for the sound and responsible fiscal policies that have put Nebraska in better shape than most of America. Our numbers and rankings are a strong indication that we are on the right track. Nebraska has the second lowest unemployment rate in America at 4.1%...
Back to school (08/12/11)
It's "back to school" time. Whether you are an educator, parent of a school age child or a student yourself, you are keenly aware that summer vacation is about to come to an end. We have made it a priority to invest in Nebraska's young people by strengthening Nebraska's education system and growing educational opportunities...
Celebrating the agriculture outlook (08/08/11)
The headline on the front page of the July 11, 2011, Time magazine was intriguing: "Want to Make More Than a Banker? Become A Farmer!" I was very proud of our state when I read the story and found Nebraskan John Willoughby and his farm as the photo backdrop for the piece. The article featured a discussion on the profitability of agriculture, and talked about what that has meant for our state...
Enjoy Nebraska's county fairs (07/18/11)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Summer is a great time to connect with the fairs and festivals held across our state. Nebraska's county fairs offer an outstanding opportunity to showcase the best of our state and highlight the agricultural heritage, achievements and talents of Nebraska producers, youth and hobbyists...
Get to know the Nebraska Board of Parole (07/08/11)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: I would like to introduce another one of Nebraska's state agencies, the Board of Parole. While it is a small agency, it plays an important role in our criminal justice system. The Board of Parole was established in Nebraska more than 40 years ago and is headed by Chairperson Esther L. ...
Bringing the world to Nebraska (07/01/11)
In two months, Nebraska will be hosting international business leaders and trade partners from several nations as they travel to our state for Nebraska's second Reverse Trade Mission. This event presents an opportunity to bring the world to Nebraska...
Nebraska adopting new drunk driving laws (06/20/11)
This week I want to highlight two measures approved during the 2011 legislative session to update Nebraska's drunk driving laws. Both bills represent a common sense approach to dealing with the challenges presented by motorists who choose to drive drunk...
Flood update (06/13/11)
I want to share an update on the flood situation that is threatening many communities across our state. Communities along the Missouri River, from Niobrara, to South Sioux City, Blair, Fort Calhoun, Omaha, Bellevue, Plattsmouth, Nebraska City, all the way to Falls City and Rulo, are being affected...
Talent & Innovation Initiative now law (06/07/11)
One of the most important accomplishments of the recently concluded 2011 legislative session was the passage of several bills focused on creating new momentum for developing and attracting businesses rooted in technology and innovation. The Legislature gave unanimous support to four proposals that I proposed as part of our Talent & Innovation Initiative. ...
Get out and explore Nebraska with 2011 Passport (05/26/11)
This is a good time to make plans to explore Nebraska, and the 2011 Nebraska Passport is a good way to get started. The passport program highlights Nebraska's unique attractions and offers travelers a range of activities and places to visit during peak summer travel season...
Buckle up for safety (05/19/11)
With Memorial Day approaching and the start of the summer travel season, I want to urge every single Nebraskan to buckle up every time you get into a vehicle. Whether we are running an errand, picking up kids from school, commuting to or from work, or heading out for a family vacation, we have a responsibility to buckle our seat belt and ensure our passengers do the same each time we get in a car or truck...
Advancing college access and success in Nebraska (05/16/11)
I was pleased to join a number of education leaders and others interested in creating opportunities for more Nebraska students to pursue higher education at the Nebraska College Access Summit. We want to provide our kids the best education that we can and prepare them to compete in a knowledge-based, technology driven, global, free-market economy. ...
Recognizing outstanding student performance (05/06/11)
In the Class of 2011, 16 Nebraska students earned a perfect ACT score and one earned a perfect SAT score. They represent Nebraska's best and brightest young people. Nebraska's Commissioner of Education, Dr. Roger Breed, and I hosted ceremonies to recognize these graduating high school seniors...
Get to know the Nebraska Department of Administrative Services (04/29/11)
I want to highlight the work done by the Nebraska Department of Administrative Services (DAS), which plays an important role in organizing and maintaining the resources of state government. The department serves as a central point of contact supporting the work of state agencies...
Honoring conservation (04/22/11)
I was very pleased to join with the Nebraska Cattlemen and the Sand County Foundation in announcing the recipient of the 2011 Nebraska Leopold Conservation Award ahead of Earth Day. The award is presented to private landowners who practice responsible land stewardship and management. It recognizes the important role private landowners play in caring for the land, water and wildlife in our state. It honors a commitment to stewardship...
New business mentorship efforts (04/15/11)
Recently, I joined with business and development officials from the public and private sector in announcing a new partnership created to help strengthen Nebraska small businesses and startup enterprises through mentorship. This mentorship effort is aimed at creating a new generation of homegrown business success stories in Nebraska...
Promoting Nebraska's outdoor adventures (04/08/11)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Six years ago we began a new event designed to help a growing segment of small business owners and entrepreneurs succeed in our state. Tourism is a leading industry in Nebraska and holds significant potential for additional growth, particularly in the sector of the tour and travel industry known as agri- and eco-tourism...
April is Donate Life Month (04/04/11)
I want to highlight an important cause this week. April is Donate Life Month, which presents an opportunity to reflect on one of the most selfless gifts a person and a family can give... life. Donate Life Month is a national observance that helps increase awareness of the potential for organ, cornea and tissue donations to save lives...
Reading assessment results (03/25/11)
This past year, Nebraska schools began to administer statewide reading tests. For the first time ever, Nebraskans will be able to compare their school district with other districts in the state. Known as the Nebraska State Accountability (NeSA) Reading Assessment, it was taken by students in grades three through three through eight and high school juniors. I want to focus on the results of our high schools...
Get to know the office of the Chief Information Officer (03/14/11)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: I want to highlight the work done by the Office of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) on behalf of state government. This agency is responsible for deploying technology that helps state agencies take advantage of premier information technology (IT), communications and online services. Their work requires close collaboration with all agencies of state government, the University of Nebraska and other educational organizations, and technology providers across Nebraska...
Agriculture conference highlights opportunities (03/04/11)
This week I joined with farmers, ranchers, agribusiness leaders, and policy makers to celebrate the accomplishments and future outlook for Nebraska agriculture. The Governor's Ag Conference is one of my favorite annual agriculture events because it serves as a venue for frank discussion and dialogue about how our state's number one industry has fared in the past year and what we can look forward to in the coming year...
Nebraska Advantage progress report (02/28/11)
Five years ago, a new package of economic incentives known as the Nebraska Advantage went into effect that has helped attract outstanding new business opportunities to Nebraska while helping existing businesses expand. We worked closely with the Legislature to develop and pass legislation creating the Nebraska Advantage, which was the first comprehensive update to Nebraska's economic incentives since the mid 1980's. Our goal was to stimulate statewide economic development and job creation...
A new wireless radio network for first responders (02/21/11)
I'm pleased to share the news that Nebraska has accomplished a goal that we have been working toward for more than a decade -- to build a new statewide wireless radio system to enhance public safety. I was excited to celebrate the final piece of this new state wireless radio network recently with first responders from a number of state agencies. ...
Invitation to attend 2011 Governor's Ag Conference (02/07/11)
I want to invite agricultural producers and those connected to Nebraska's agriculture industry to take part in our 23rd annual Governor's Ag Conference. The conference will be held Tuesday and Wednesday, March 1 and 2 at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Kearney. ...
A commitment to education (01/31/11)
I want to focus this week on several proposals aimed at strengthening education in Nebraska. These proposals are focused on creating new opportunities for students and accelerating Nebraska's potential to attract research and development projects. I have recommended directing $8.5 million to the development of a virtual high school for Nebraska students. ...
The talent and innovation initiative (01/24/11)
I want to highlight a series of legislative proposals designed to advance business innovation and workforce recruitment efforts in Nebraska. The four legislative bills making up my Talent and Innovation Initiative were introduced in the Nebraska Legislature last week as part of my budget recommendations...
Setting priorities in a new budget (01/17/11)
I want to share with you details of the budget recommendations for FY 2012 and 13. I recently proposed a balanced budget without raising taxes. Additionally, I've proposed several job and education-related investments aimed at enhancing Nebraska's economic momentum...
Nebraska recognized for workplace wellness (01/07/11)
We have good news to share about the state's wellness program. This year, the State of Nebraska will receive the Well Workplace Award presented by the Wellness Council of America for its wellness program for state employees. Nebraska is one of only two state governments to win the award...
Merry Christmas and happy holidays (12/23/10)
As Nebraskans prepare to celebrate the holidays with family and friends, I want to acknowledge a special group of families in our state. More than 1,000 Nebraska National Guard personnel are among those serving our nation this Christmas overseas. I ask Nebraskans to please keep all of those serving in the armed forces in their thoughts this holiday season, in particular the families of soldiers with the 192nd Military Police Detachment providing security in Iraq, the 67th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade serving in Iraq, and Charlie company of the 2-135th General Support Aviation Battalion who will soon be providing aerial evacuation and medical attention for troops in Iraq.. ...
An invitation to celebrate Nebraska (12/17/10)
Sally and I recently announced our preliminary plans for the 2011 Inauguration. I want to extend a personal invitation to all Nebraskans to be part of our Inaugural celebrations. For this inauguration, we are creating the opportunity for more Nebraskans to take part in the celebration by holding four Inaugural events in Scottsbluff-Gering, Grand Island, Lincoln, and Omaha in early January...
Road safety progress (12/10/10)
Dear Fellow Nebraskans: I want to focus this week on road safety. Regardless of whether it is the daily commute to and from work or school, or a special trip to visit friends and relatives, the message of road safety is particularly important during this time of year. Accidents are a reality on our nation's roadways. The potential for getting into an accident exists even when we take the proper precautions and do all the right things...
An update on state and national education initiatives (11/26/10)
Today I want to provide an update on Nebraska's P-16 Initiative that is working to strengthen our education system in Nebraska from preschool through high school and four years of college. I serve as chair of the P-16 Initiative with four key state education leaders serving as co-chairs, including: State Sen. ...
2010 leaders in parental involvement (11/19/10)
This week, two Nebraska school districts were recognized as leaders for their efforts to engage parents in their child's education. The Blair Community Schools and the Gothenburg Public School District were honored as the 2010 recipients of the Governor's Education Initiative Award for Parental Involvement...
Employment services for Nebraska veterans (11/12/10)
Having recently marked Veterans Day, I want to highlight one area of support state government provides to veterans and military personnel in Nebraska. One of the responsibilities of the Nebraska Department of Labor is working with veterans and military personnel transitioning to the civilian workforce access training and employment opportunities...
Get to know the Nebraska Department of Veterans' Affairs (11/10/10)
With Veterans Day approaching, I want to focus this week on an agency that works closely with veterans in our state. The Nebraska Department of Veterans' Affairs serves over 150,000 military veterans each year in our state. The Nebraska Department of Veterans' Affairs assists veterans and their families in acquiring the state and federal benefits they are entitled to through their service in the U.S. ...
Global dry bean promotions help Nebraska farmers (11/01/10)
Dear Friends: Nebraska businesses operate in a global marketplace. In 2009 Nebraska companies exported $4.8 billion in products, with businesses in Canada, Mexico, Japan and China our leading customers. When I traveled to Asia in 2007, I was amazed by the opportunities for our state's businesses. I came away convinced that with targeted outreach and collaboration, Nebraska could continue to increase its share of the global marketplace...
Statewide radio network nearing completion (10/22/10)
This week I was joined by state emergency personnel and officials with the Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) to mark the completion of the third phase of a new wireless radio network being built in our state. The statewide wireless radio project involves numerous state public safety agencies and NPPD, the state's largest power provider. ...
Gov. Dave Heineman
State Issues