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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 13, 2000)
Lower taxes a speech focus I
SPEECH from page 1
hard by the agricultural crisis.
“If we accomplish just one thing
together in this session, it should be to
balance economic opportunities from
east to west to north to south,” he said.
He said his proposed Rural
Economic Opportunity Act would
encourage job creation and investment
in Nebraska’s small and middle-sized
counties. This act proposes to expand
tax incentives for private business
employment and investment ventures.
Johanns also emphasized the
importance of value-added agriculture,
which is aimed at increasing the supply
of new products that are in demand and
increasing the demand for existing
Johanns said value-added agricul
ture would lead to increased productiv
ity and income for the state’s farmers
“We have the land, the crops, the
animals and die people to make value
added agriculture an even bigger com
ponent of our economy,” he said.
Johanns proposed more than $1
million in support of value-added activ
ity in the Department of Economic
Development and the Department of
The additional funds would come
from reallocated resources within the
department, increased support from the
general fund and a partnership with
industry groups, he said.
Johanns also focused on the safety
of Nebraska’s families, stating his new
initiatives about crime legislation.
Johanns’ recommendations includ
ed die adoption of lethal injection as the
method of execution, the addition of 12
new state troopers and reform of the
post-conviction appeals process.
He also proposed initiatives to pro
tect and help Nebraska’s children.
“The health, safety and develop
ment of Nebraska’s children is a high
priority in this administration,” he said.
The governor proposed using
$500,000 in general funds to support
youth mentoring programs, as well as
additional funds for child care and child
Johanns concluded his speech with
the same message he stated in last
“Working together we unite
Nebraska as we advance a vision that
benefits all of our citizens,” he said. “A
vision of less government, lowering our
taxes, building our economy, protecting
our families and advancing die health,
safety and success of our children.”
Senators react to Johanns budget
REACTION from page 1
Wehrbein, along with other sena
tors, said he supported many of
Sen. Pam Redfield of Omaha said
she thought the governor’s address
Redfield said Johanns had good
proposals that were consistent with his
“There weren’t any surprises,” she
Johanns is dedicated to rural eco
nomic development and property tax
relief, but he is also very committed to
education, Redfield said.
The state has increased funding for
kindergarden through 12th grade edu
cation by 293 percent in the last 10
years, so now could be time to shift to
other issues, she said
Suttle said she thought the governor
seemed more comfortable giving his
address and working with the
Legislature this year.
“I was happy he talked about chil
dren’s issues, and I am hopeful we
could implement his ideas as well as
mine,” Suttle said.
Suttle said it will take compromise
and cooperation between the governor
and senators for a successful session.
Suttle said during a short session,
budget issues are the biggest, so
Johanns’ initiatives were appropriate.
Governor supports four
CRIME from page 1
The change would require persons
interested in training to become police
officers to obtain a basic pre-ceitifica
tion completed through a state univer
sity, private college or community col
Once the certificate had been
earned, the person could apply for the
training center located in Grand
Island; the program would work
somewhat like a graduate program,
In addition to saving money on
training, Weitl said, it would also cre
ate a larger pool of trained applicants.
Currently each police department
accepts applicants and pays them
while they are training.
While this did create a possible
financial imposition on prospective
officers, Weitl said, it would decrease
the amount of money the state had to
pay for officer training.
The governor is also looking to
impact the state patrol with proposed
Johanns proposes hiring 12 addi
tional troopers with $176,814 from
general funds and $158,466 from fed
A large part of the money would
go toward the new troopers’ salaries,
said Terri Teuber, state patrol press
Tom Nesbitt, colonel of the state
patrol, is excited about one of
Johanns’ bills that would use
$271,880 of general funds and
$59,300 of federal funds. Qualified
carrier enforcement officers would be
allowed to receive the same amount of
benefits as state patrol officers.
Carrier officers are involved in
rules and regulations such as semi
truck inspections and weigh stations.
This is important because out of
88 carrier officers, 36 percent of them
decided to become state troopers,
With the added benefits, Nesbitt
said, carrier officers might avoid a
The last part of Johanns’ crime
package is to obtain an additional
$200,000 of federal funds for 2000
01. The fiscal year adjustment is pro
posed to update the Criminal Justice
Information System used by law
Weitl said Johanns’ crime legisla
tion is geared toward improving the
protection of citizens without undue
cost to taxpayers.
“Protecting Nebraska families
and keeping our state’s communities
safe is a priority for my administra
tion,” Johanns said.
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