Removing Barriers for Nebraskans

Treasury issues guidance on Federal relief package and some of the rules might impact Nebraska

Treasury issues guidance on Federal relief package and some of the rules might impact Nebraska

The U.S. Treasury has issued guidance as a follow-up to the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) that was enacted by Congress on March 11, 2021. As background, Congress enacted ARPA as a continuation of their previous relief packages to help the nation recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. In total, there was $350 billion spent for...

By Sarah Curry

Montana enacts pro-growth tax cut and now has lower rates than Nebraska

Montana enacts pro-growth tax cut and now has lower rates than Nebraska

According to the 2020 U.S. Census figures, Montana grew 9.6% over the last ten years, and as a result has gained an additional congressional seat. The last time the state had two U.S. House seats was in 1992. In the wake of the good news, Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte decided it is time to continue...

By Sarah Curry

Studies suggest hope for rural Nebraska requires cutting red tape

Studies suggest hope for rural Nebraska requires cutting red tape

A series of stories and studies released recently suggest a grim future ahead for rural Nebraska if the state, counties, and cities don’t make it easier for young people to return to their hometowns. A recent analysis of census data shows that 78% of the counties in Nebraska (or 72 of the 93 counties) lost...

By Laura Ebke

Iowa governor proposes $400 million in tax cuts

Iowa governor proposes $400 million in tax cuts

In an attempt to create compromise between the Iowa House and Senate, Governor Kim Reynolds offered a plan on Wednesday, May 5 to cut taxes in the Hawkeye State by $400 million. How is she doing this? She has proposed shifting the funding for county mental health from local property taxes to the state’s general...

By Sarah Curry

Consumption tax proposal to eliminate Nebraska property taxes fails to advance

Consumption tax proposal to eliminate Nebraska property taxes fails to advance

If you listened to the Nebraska Legislature debate today you would have heard the following quotes from multiple members: “Our tax code is antiquated and was written in a time before the internet existed and before people and businesses were as mobile as they are today.” “People are mad about their property taxes.” “Nebraska can...

By Sarah Curry

Podcast: Help for Nebraska Small Businesses

Podcast: Help for Nebraska Small Businesses

The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Nebraska District Director, Leon Milobar, joins Jim Vokal to discuss resources available to small businesses impacted by the pandemic, and even Nebraskans who are still thinking about getting into business. Mentioned on this episode: Nebraska SBA District Office SCORE Small Business Mentoring SBA Office of Advocacy GROW Nebraska Women’s Business...

Laura Ebke talks job licensing and Truth in Taxation on LIBA livestream

Laura Ebke talks job licensing and Truth in Taxation on LIBA livestream

Platte Institute Senior Fellow Laura Ebke joined Bud Synhorst of the Lincoln Independent Business Association to discuss Nebraska’s progress on job licensing reform and an advancing property tax transparency measure.

Podcast: How the Unicameral Decides Tax Policy

Podcast: How the Unicameral Decides Tax Policy

Sarah Curry joins Jim Vokal to discuss a week full of tax policy-related proposals in Lincoln. Mentioned on this episode: Nebraska forecasting board increases two-year revenue projections LB644: Truth in Taxation – Direct Notification of Property Tax Increase Hearings

Nebraska forecasting board increases two-year revenue projections

Nebraska forecasting board increases two-year revenue projections

Nebraska’s Economic Forecasting Advisory Board met today to confirm the state’s positive outlook on tax collections. Because the state of Nebraska operates under a biennial, or two-year budget, the forecasting board only holds it April meeting every other year. Their annual meetings occur in October and February. This meeting was different from most because of...

By Sarah Curry

Tax attorney, community philanthropist, bring new perspectives to Platte Institute board

Tax attorney, community philanthropist, bring new perspectives to Platte Institute board

Jo Ellen Stock, Assistant Vice President of State and Local Taxes for Union Pacific, and Lori Scott, an Omaha-area philanthropist with a background in education and health care, have been elected to the Platte Institute’s board of directors. The board of directors currently has 11 members who are responsible for overseeing the organization’s mission and...

Study suggests licensing restrictions for engineers may limit opportunities for minorities

Study suggests licensing restrictions for engineers may limit opportunities for minorities

A recent study published by The Center for Public Integrity suggests that licensing restrictions for Professional Engineers in many states may be disproportionately limiting the opportunities for Black engineers. Take the story of Ida Habtemichael, who has spent 14 years working as an engineer for Micron Technology, but who would have difficulty getting licensed as...

By Laura Ebke

States gaining and losing U.S. House seats: how does Nebraska compare?

States gaining and losing U.S. House seats: how does Nebraska compare?

The U.S. Census Bureau has announced the final figures for apportionment of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives for the next decade. As expected, Nebraska is retaining its 3 House seats, the number of representatives the state has held since the 1960s. The 2020 Census reports Nebraska’s population was 1,961,504, which is a 7.4%...

By Adam Weinberg

Should Nebraska license journalists?

Should Nebraska license journalists?

Last week, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts’ administration announced a new method for “credentialing” journalists to participate in gubernatorial press conferences. The new policy would require those who wish to have credentials to submit answers to questions about their organization’s business model, as well as a notarized letter from their manager. The policy was apparently in...

By Laura Ebke