The Full Platter

Diane Battiato’s right: Assessors aren’t the cause of Nebraska’s property tax woes

Diane Battiato’s right: Assessors aren’t the cause of Nebraska’s property tax woes

As summer begins and finalized property valuations land in many Nebraska mailboxes, county assessors can take an undue share of the blame for what looks to be an unavoidable—and sometimes major—increase in property tax bills. But in a recent Omaha World-Herald letter to the editor, Douglas County Assessor and Register of Deeds Diane Battiato appropriately...

By Jim Vokal

Case Study: How We Helped Create More Jobs in Nebraska

Case Study: How We Helped Create More Jobs in Nebraska

Nebraska has more jobs available than people to fill them. That can make job creation seem like an unimportant issue for the state.  But for Nebraska to grow and meet its workforce needs, it needs to offer economic opportunities for people from all walks of life and all communities. Recent census figures show Nebraska trails...

By Jim Vokal

Iowa’s repeal to leave Nebraska with region’s only inheritance tax

Iowa’s repeal to leave Nebraska with region’s only inheritance tax

Thanks to a comprehensive tax reform bill (SF 619), Iowa has successfully set a date for repealing its inheritance tax. Iowa will phase down the tax by 20% each year until it is repealed in 2025, leaving only 5 states in the nation left with an inheritance tax. Among them, Nebraska has the highest rate...

By Sarah Curry

Nebraskanomics: Former State Sen. Jim Smith on Next Steps for Blueprint Nebraska

Nebraskanomics: Former State Sen. Jim Smith on Next Steps for Blueprint Nebraska

Former Nebraska state Sen. Jim Smith is joining the Platte Institute as its new Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer. He discusses his past work at Blueprint Nebraska and how its initiatives are being carried over to the Platte Institute. You can watch the video on YouTube here or listen to the podcast episode on...

Highlights of the 2021 Nebraska legislative session

Highlights of the 2021 Nebraska legislative session

The first session of the 107th Nebraska Legislature has adjourned Sine Die, concluding regular legislative business in Lincoln until 2022. Now that all the legislating (except the forthcoming special session on redistricting) is complete, let’s summarize some of the ways senators expanded economic opportunities and freedoms for Nebraskans in 2021. During the session, the Platte Institute weighed...

By Nicole Fox

Former Nebraska state Sen. Jim Smith to join Platte Institute

Former Nebraska state Sen. Jim Smith to join Platte Institute

Former Nebraska state Sen. Jim Smith, of Papillion, will join the staff of the Platte Institute as the organization’s Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer. Smith serves as President of Blueprint Nebraska, a statewide visioning process for Nebraska’s growth, competitiveness, and prosperity. Before leading Blueprint, Smith served two terms in the Nebraska Legislature, representing...

5 Essential Steps to Reform Taxes in Nebraska

5 Essential Steps to Reform Taxes in Nebraska

Do you ever wonder why Nebraska doesn’t seem to have its act together when it comes to taxes? Politicians want you to think it’s a red or blue problem. It’s not. It’s a lack of vision problem.  That’s why I’m sharing the five essential steps to reform Nebraska taxes. Stay tuned until the end to...

By Jim Vokal

How much do Nebraska-based companies pay in taxes and does it matter?

How much do Nebraska-based companies pay in taxes and does it matter?

Nebraska is no stranger to business incentives. Starting in 1985 (LB273), Nebraska embarked on a long journey of business incentives in an attempt to lure companies to the Cornhusker State as well as promote job creation. Over the last 35 years there have been many central programs in the state’s history including the Employment and...

By Sarah Curry

In Nebraska, cocktails to-go are here to stay

In Nebraska, cocktails to-go are here to stay

The hospitality industry was one of the hardest hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, leading many states including Nebraska to allow restaurants and bars to sell cocktails and/or spirits to-go to generate more revenue. Today, state lawmakers gave final approval to a bill making that temporary regulatory relief measure a permanent policy in Nebraska, along with...

By Nicole Fox

Truth in Taxation bill awaits governor’s signature

Truth in Taxation bill awaits governor’s signature

Today, the Legislature passed Sen. Ben Hansen’s LB644 – often referred to as “the postcard bill” in the Legislature. When it’s signed into law, Nebraska will be the third state to adopt a comprehensive Truth in Taxation law, which requires direct notification of property taxpayers, by mail, about proposals for local property tax increases. As...

By Nicole Fox

Podcast: Post-Pandemic Economics with Jeremy Horpedahl

Podcast: Post-Pandemic Economics with Jeremy Horpedahl

Dr. Jeremy Horpedahl, Assistant Professor of Economics at Central Arkansas University, joins Jim to discuss some fast-moving economic indicators, and why the big picture issues may matter more in the months and years ahead. You can watch the video on YouTube here or listen to the podcast episode on Apple Podcasts or Spotify. Mentioned on this episode: Economist Writing Every...

State tax collections are $650 million more than compared to last year, even with the delayed tax filing deadline

State tax collections are $650 million more than compared to last year, even with the delayed tax filing deadline

The April 2021 state tax revenues have been published, and overall, it’s good news again. The revenues are broken down into two measures, one for the month and another for the fiscal year. For the month of April 2021, the revenues do not meet the state’s expected forecast of revenue – however, this may be...

By Sarah Curry

Nebraska ranks 35th in national economic outlook according to policy group

Nebraska ranks 35th in national economic outlook according to policy group

Every year, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) releases their economic outlook rankings for states. The Rich States, Poor States ranking incorporates 15 different policy variables to look at the 50 states and determine their economic outlook. This is essentially a forecast for each state. Since 2008, Nebraska has remained relatively steady in the outlook...

By Sarah Curry

Taxpayers Beware: 3 Issues You Should Be Concerned About in Nebraska

Taxpayers Beware: 3 Issues You Should Be Concerned About in Nebraska

Do you think Nebraska taxpayers would like to pay $1 billion more in taxes each year?  Unfortunately, some groups and policymakers in our state have pushed for this without many people even knowing about it. That’s why experts at the Platte Institute go down to the Capitol to testify against expensive policies threatening economic opportunity...

By Jim Vokal