All NET News Stories

School finance changes, racial impact statements get hearings A proposed overhaul of school funding met resistance from school groups, and a proposal to evaluate the racial impact of various bills got a public hearing.Sen. Tom Briese proposed the school funding overhaul. Briese told the Education Committee Nebraska relies too heavily on property taxes.We collect almost twice as much in property taxes in Nebraska as we do state, local and motor vehicle... more››
Omaha Doctors To Study COVID-19 Vaccine Trials For Kids And Pregnant Women Doctors in Omaha will lead two new COVID-19 vaccine trials in children ages 5 to 18, and pregnant women, and their infants. A research partnership between the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Children’s Hospital & Medical Center is part of the global studies sponsored by Pfizer. Dr. Kari Simonsen is chair of the UNMC Department of Pediatrics and pediatrician-in-chief at Children’s,... more››
State Sues Ethonol Plant Operator in Mead, says company has ignored environmental warnings The State of Nebraska has filed a lawsuit against an ethanol plant just outside of Mead in Saunders County that has failed to clean up a huge pile of contaminated seed corn. Attorney General Doug Peterson announced the 97-page civil lawsuit that contains 18 complaints against AltEn and asks to company to comply with the state’s environmental laws.“To me it’s one of the clear cases of a... more››
Carbon Is A New Cash Crop For Some Farmers There’s been a lot of hype around how farmers can make money from selling the carbon their plants naturally remove from the air, but there are still questions about how much of a difference these markets can make in reducing greenhouse gases.Kelly Garrett is experimenting with carbon markets on his farm in western Iowa’s Crawford County. As of early February, he’s made $115,000. Most of that... more››
Competition Seeks Young Nebraska Entrepreneurs with Big Ideas Nebraska high school students can pitch new business ideas during a virtual statewide contest this spring. Mike Tobias reports.It’s called the Big Idea Nebraska High School competition. It's an opportunity for students in grades 9 through 12 across the state to pitch business ideas, learn about entrepreneurship, network with professionals, and maybe win a cash prize.“The goal is to just inspire... more››
Nebraska GOP Passes Expression of Disappointment Against Senator Ben Sasse The resolution, passed Saturday at a party meeting in Columbus, expresses disappointment in Sasse, but does not censure him. The final language in the resolution covers a wide range of issues, from Sasse's criticism of President Trump after receiving his endorsement for re-election in 2019 to not answering emails in a timely manner. Ryan Hamilton is Executive Director of the State GOP. “It is a... more››
Gender options on driver's licenses, more disclosure of incentives proposed Nebraskans would not have to specify their gender on driver’s licenses or other forms of ID, under a bill heard in the Legislature Friday. And a proposal to disclose more information on tax incentives got a public hearing.Sen. Megan Hunt is the sponsor of legislation to change the requirement that people be identified by gender on their drivers licenses or other forms of identification. Under... more››
Private High School Celebrates Black History Month Thanks To One Student It’s almost the end of Black History Month and one Nebraska student made sure her whole school celebrated this year. Syionna Conner is one of four black students in Roncalli Catholic High School’s senior class. She said she noticed the predominantly white high school in Omaha didn’t really do anything for Black History Month last year, and wanted to take action this month through announcements,... more››
Winnebago Public Health Department Is Ahead of COVID-19 Vaccination Efforts COVID-19 vaccination efforts continue in Nebraska with almost 20% of the eligible population injected with the first dose Wednesday, according to the DHHS dashboard.  But, the Winnebago Public Health Department is ahead of that pace and estimates about 40% of the community has already received the first dose.Mona Zuffante is the department’s administrator and said they’re lucky to receive doses... more››
Controversial Student Discipline Bill Faces Stiff Opposition Again A contentious legislative bill in the Nebraska Legislature looks to shield teachers from liability when using force to stop disorderly students. Opponents say the bill, LB 673, targets minority students and children with disabilities and similar proposed legislation in the past has failed. Deb Rasmussen is a counselor at Goodrich Middle School in Lincoln.“It's hard. It's nerve-racking,”... more››
Medicaid delay discussed; briefing held on Mead ethanol plant Some state senators expressed frustration with yet another delay in Nebraska’s Medicaid expansion. And the head of the Department of Environment and Energy briefed lawmakers on the situation at a controversial closed ethanol plant near Mead, Nebraska on Thursday.Nebraska voters approved expanding Medicaid in November, 2018 and coverage began in October of last year. But under a waiver approved... more››
'From Racism to Sexism': Former OPD Chief Reflects on Tenure, Change With Policing When Thomas Warren started with the Omaha Police Department, he said, it dealt with a number of isms: racism, sexism, nepotism and cronyism.During his time with police force and his time as chief -- from 2004 to 2008 -- OPD became much more representative of the community it served. But in 1983 when Warren was hired, the relationship between the police and and community was intense, he said.“Not... more››