Legislative Spotlight: June 2015

Sheila1113-2-150x150Contributed by Sheila O’Connor, AAF Omaha Board Member & Legislative Issues Chair

In case you missed them, see below some articles on what is happening on the state level that is affecting advertising and the general economy.

“Boost Your Local Workforce With Internships”

One of the top concerns voiced by Nebraska employers and local chambers of commerce is the shrinking pool of qualified or skilled workers. With a 2.6% jobless rate, Nebraska has the nation’s lowest unemployment rate — and more than 45,000 current job openings, according to the Department of Labor. Fortunately, the Cornhusker State offers a unique program to improve its workforce and retain the state’s young people. The Intern Nebraska (InternNE) program — administered by the Department of Economic Development — provides financial assistance to businesses that are willing to create new internships. Interns obtain valuable experience, while businesses develop future employees. Research shows that more than 50% of interns go on to become full-time employees at their place of internship, so internships can help ensure that your community and its businesses continue to grow. For a description of InternNE’s rules and requirements, click here, or contact Allison Hatch with DED at (402) 471-3368 orallison.hatch@nebraska.gov.

To see what internships are currently available — or to register a student or business with InternNE — click here.

“Omaha Public Schools focuses on high demand careers”

(Omaha World-Herald) — Omaha.com reports that “the Omaha Public Schools are re-examining their career education offerings,” hoping to train students in “careers that pay well and have plenty of job openings” — careers in fields like technology, the trades, tourism and hospitality. The story notes that “school districts nationwide are updating career education courses — classes that often fell under the vocational-technical umbrella in the past” — as employers need more skilled workers in “trade fields like plumbing, welding and electrical wiring.” Meanwhile, OPS is also “considering renovating or rebuilding its current Career Center,” housed at the site of the former Tech High School. This as Lincoln and Grand Island school districts “have opened or are in the process of building new, stand-alone career centers.”

Click here to read more.

“Nebraska Gov. Ricketts approves new two-year state budget”

(AP/HastingsTribune.com) — The AP reports that Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts has signed a new two-year budget that includes $408 million in state money for property tax credits. According to the story, the governor “approved the $8.7 billion package without vetoes,” saying the budget “met his goals of increasing property tax relief and slowing state spending increases.”

Find out more here.


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