Regulatory Reform

Nebraska unemployment ranks lowest, approaching pre-pandemic levels

Nebraska unemployment ranks lowest, approaching pre-pandemic levels

Since the start of the pandemic, Americans have wondered when the job market would return to normal. For Nebraska, that time may be now. The Nebraska Department of Labor announced Friday that the state’s unemployment rate currently sits at 4%. That figure is not only the lowest in Nebraska since the beginning of the pandemic...

By Jaliya Nagahawatte

Nebraska is cutting red tape, but still has room to improve

Nebraska is cutting red tape, but still has room to improve

Excessive regulations have harmful effects on prosperity and growth. In many cases, the compliance costs of these regulations constitute a hidden tax on businesses and citizens, costing valuable resources that could be contributing to Nebraska’s economic growth. Regulation is a necessity of our society, and we should not get rid of all regulations. But Nebraska...

By Sarah Curry

Manufacturing report card gives Nebraska an average GPA

Manufacturing report card gives Nebraska an average GPA

An annual assessment of state manufacturing and logistics industries by the Ball State University Center for Business and Economic Research finds that Nebraska ranks average among its peers, though the scorecard also notes Nebraska’s people and strong finances are advantages for its manufacturing potential. While the 2020 Manufacturing Scorecard does not give Nebraska a single...

By Adam Weinberg

Nebraska has cut red tape for these careers and businesses

Nebraska has cut red tape for these careers and businesses

Nebraska’s 2020 legislative session ended on August 13. In looking through the multiple occupational licensing reform bills that were signed into law just this year, Laura Ebke and I couldn’t help but notice how great of an impact the Platte Institute’s campaign for job licensing reform has had since we first supported a bill eliminating the...

By Nicole Fox

The future of ridesharing might be decided in California

The future of ridesharing might be decided in California

If you’ve traveled into an airport of any size in the last few years, the chances are that as you waited for a cab or airport shuttle, you’ve also seen lines of Ubers or Lyfts—vehicles and drivers part of the “ridesharing” economy. Or perhaps you’ve learned to use these services to get where you need...

By Laura Ebke

Nebraska’s unemployment rate falling, but still near Great Recession levels

Nebraska’s unemployment rate falling, but still near Great Recession levels

Following an uptick in unemployment in June, Nebraska’s preliminary July unemployment rate fell to the second-lowest in the country, but the jobless figure is still at historically elevated levels for the state. While any almost any state would be happy to trade places with Nebraska, the July unemployment rate of 4.8% is closer to the...

By Adam Weinberg

New York lawmakers seek to license “shampoo assistants”

New York lawmakers seek to license “shampoo assistants”

It would appear that lawmakers around the country haven’t gotten the word that more regulation doesn’t help the economy. Take for instance this legislation (sent to me via this link today) moving through the New York Assembly. While it doesn’t appear that the legislation is moving quickly, one has to wonder what motivates the introduction...

By Laura Ebke

LB607 is bad for already hard hit businesses

LB607 is bad for already hard hit businesses

It’s no secret that many Nebraska businesses are hurting as a result of forced shutdowns during the pandemic. But a bill set for Select File debate this week would add insult to injury for a number of small businesses that were required to close this year. LB607 is a bill that proposes to redefine what...

By Nicole Fox

Bill seeks increased housing options in Nebraska cities

Bill seeks increased housing options in Nebraska cities

The Nebraska Legislature has given first-round approval to a bill that would require large and medium-sized Nebraska cities to take more action to reduce barriers to affordable housing options. Sen. Justin Wayne’s Legislative Bill 866 advanced on a 28-5 vote and contains provisions of Sen. Matt Hansen’s LB794, also known as the Missing Middle Housing...

By Adam Weinberg

Nebraska’s June unemployment rate increases to 6.7%

Nebraska’s June unemployment rate increases to 6.7%

The Nebraska Department of Labor is reporting that the state posted a preliminary unemployment rate of 6.7% in June, a significant uptick from May when Nebraska posted a revised unemployment rate of 5.3%, which was the lowest in the country at the time. The department says the greater volatility in unemployment rates can be attributed...

By Adam Weinberg

Missouri governor signs “best” universal recognition bill

Missouri governor signs “best” universal recognition bill

On Monday, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson joined the list of governors who have signed major occupational licensing reform in the last year. Missouri’s bill, like Iowa’s bill a few weeks ago, creates substantial universal recognition and opportunities under what has sometimes been termed a “fresh start act”–giving those who have spent time incarcerated the potential...

By Laura Ebke

Nebraska economy shrinks, but spared worst by growth in agriculture

Nebraska economy shrinks, but spared worst by growth in agriculture

New estimates show that growth in the ag sector gave Nebraska the country’s smallest economic contraction in the first quarter of 2020. Nebraska’s economy shrank 1.3% according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. That’s compared to the U.S. average of a 5% contraction. Nebraska’s Plain States region averaged a loss of 3.6%. While the data...

By Adam Weinberg

Nebraska hospitality workforce 28% smaller than one year ago

Nebraska hospitality workforce 28% smaller than one year ago

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the May unemployment rates for 2020 this morning. Overall, it was a more optimistic picture for our nation. Rates were lower in 38 states, with Nebraska posting the lowest unemployment rate in the nation at 5.2%. The total unemployed in the state currently stands at 54,879 people, down from...

By Sarah Curry, Jaliya Nagahawatte

Iowa to offer universal recognition of job licenses

Iowa to offer universal recognition of job licenses

Last weekend, our neighbors in Iowa took a big step forward in occupational licensing reform with the passage of House File 2627 by both houses of the legislature. The governor is expected to sign the bill—probably in a signing ceremony worthy of a significant reform effort—sometime in the next week. The Iowa bill does not...

By Laura Ebke