News Release: COVID-19 Budget and Economic Dos and Don’ts

News Release: COVID-19 Budget and Economic Dos and Don’ts

NEWS RELEASE from the Platte Institute 

Download file Responding to the COVID-19 Crisis

Contact: Adam Weinberg
Mobile: (402) 500-0209 

Dos and Don'ts for Budgeting COVID-19 Funds
Emergency Recommendations on Tax, Regs & Transparency

OMAHA, NE — As the Nebraska Legislature reconvenes to appropriate funds for the emergency response to COVID-19, the Platte Institute has released a list of recommendations for state policymakers on issues of tax compliance, budgeting, regulation, and government transparency in a major emergency. The complete document is attached. 

"The emergency response to COVID-19 necessarily requires Nebraskans to set aside all that is non-essential in daily life," said Jim Vokal, Chief Executive Officer of the Platte Institute. 

"To avoid prolonging the economic pain that will result, policymakers also need to set aside what is non-essential in state and local government and set clear budgetary guidelines," said Vokal.

The initial recommendations include: 

  • Extend state income tax filing and payment deadlines to match the federal date of July 15
  • Separate COVID-19 emergency funds from state general funds and add more funds to the state's Cash Reserve
  • Cut non-essential spending in the 2020 budget effective May 1 and plan for reduced 2021 budget requests
  • Provide emergency recognition of professional licensing and extend regulatory deadlines
  • Scrutinize proposed pay increases
  • Budget federal stimulus funds as a one-time source of emergency revenue
  • Uphold public meeting and open records requirements

To schedule a remote interview on this topic, please call (402) 500-0209 or email

The Platte Institute advances policies that remove barriers to growth and opportunity in Nebraska. More media resources are available at

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