Statistics from the US Department of Transportation show more than 700,000 registered motor carriers are traversing our highways and roads. These trucks, which can be packed with everything from bricks and stone to dog food and grocery items, keep thousands of American businesses afloat. For business owners shipping these products across the country, precise planning and high-level tracking are required. But with increasing rates and a wide range of delays to overcome, overseeing a shipment of LTL freight is easier said than done.
For overworked business owners, managing multiple shipments can seem impossible in today's freight landscape. But the reality is that many businesses rely on less-than-truckload shipments to keep their doors open. When these shipments are compromised, their business is too. But there's a viable solution: LTL freight brokers in Omaha, NE like RelyEx provide reliable solutions to common LTL shipment problems, eliminating the stress and worry of LTL shipping.
With more than 30 combined years of LTL experience and a solutions-oriented team, RelyEx is your go-to choice for streamlined, efficient LTL shipping services. To understand the true value of RelyEx's less-than-truckload shipping options, it helps to understand first what LTL shipping is and why it's used.
In the freight industry, LTL stands for "less-than-truckload." It is a widely-used method of transportation for smaller shipments that don't require the space of a full truckload. In an LTL shipment, several customers' loads are placed onto one truck, which helps reduce how much it costs to ship those products.
In fact, if your freight doesn't fill an entire trailer but weighs 150-15,000 lbs., LTL freight shipping in Omaha, NE, may be the most efficient, cost-conscious way to transport your products. That's because, in an LTL setup, you're only paying for the space your freight takes up. LTL shipping companies like RelyEx optimize LTL loads by choosing the most efficient routes at the best rates so your cargo gets to where it needs to go without any issues.
Business owners often choose LTL freight services in the following circumstances:
When it comes to LTL delivery options, there are a lot to choose from. But not every LTL broker is created equally. Some LTL companies do not have the tools or technology to track your shipments and optimize your routes. In worst-case scenarios, they may not be insured or reliable. If you're looking for an experienced LTL carrier that exceeds expectations with time-tested strategies and innovative technologies, look no further than RelyEx.
With more than two decades of experience in LTL operations, our team utilizes the power of GlobalTranz to compare rates across hundreds of approved carriers in the blink of an eye, while also providing the most cost-effective options for moving your freight. When you choose RelyEx for LTL shipping, you can leverage our expert team to handle your shipments. You can also manage the process yourself via GTZShip, which is Globaltranz's user-friendly management system. With GTZShip, you can access and compare LTL shipping rates, track your shipments, and manage your financials, all from one intuitive platform.
When it comes to LTL freight in Omaha, NE, clients trust their products with RelyEx for many reasons, including the following:
Because GTZShip keeps outsized freight available, it can negotiate the best LTL rates on your behalf. Our clients can access these extra-low rates in one of two ways:
Regardless of the option you choose, RelyEx's knowledgeable customer care reps will cover all of your LTL shipping options, so you can make an informed shipping and purchasing decision for your freight.
Yes, you read that right - in addition to giving you access to industry-leading rates, RelyEx's partnership with GTZShip gives you full management of your freight. We're talking about access to reporting, tracking, and much more. This extensive visibility is essentially a one-stop shop for everything related to the status of your freight.
Unlike some LTL shipping software, this system requires no contracts or signup fees, making it simple to provide quotes and book immediately when you're ready. Whether you use GTZShip directly or rely on our team to book your freight, your company will always have access to this free technology.
While it's true that RelyEx provides customers with the best rates and technology in the LTL industry, we go above and beyond the normal call of duty. Why? Because we strive to treat your shipment as if it's our most important one. Put simply, we put a lot of time and effort into making sure we do things right the first time around. Our fierce commitment to the customer and to quality protects not only your reputation, but your bottom line by preventing lost customers and sales.
RelyEx excels at LTL shipping because we are:
From dedicated LTL solutions to transactional relationships, RelyEx is here to help. Unlike other LTL companies, we get the job done right with customer-focused service, industry expertise, and Globaltranz's industry-leading Transportation Management System.
Our dedicated team of LTL specialists provides you with the best freight visibility available, whether you need a few shipments a week or you need hundreds. In order to do so, we communicate with carriers throughout the entire shipping process, so you know your items are delivered on time. Though rare, if we spot an issue, we'll provide you with an alternative solution immediately.
Plus, if you have large quantities that need to be shipped, our team is happy to provide you with customized reporting for free. That way, you can access at-the-moment updates and important shipment documentation with a few clicks or taps.
When your freight is too light for full truckloads but too heavy for basic parcel carriers like UPS, LTL shipping is a great option to consider. When you use an LTL shipping company like RelyEx, you get even more value. We've been over some of the basics associated with LTL freight shipping - now let's touch on some of the biggest benefits of using a company to handle logistics from start to finish.
One of the most common reasons clients use LTL services is because they're able to save money. LTL shipping is much less expensive than the alternative, which is to hire a private driver and truck. When you go in on LTL services with other shippers, you can have your products delivered at a fraction of the cost of going private. In this setup, you pay for space you use, not the space you don't use, which is common in full truckload freight shipping.
As an added benefit, relying on an LTL freight company like RelyEx can lower your warehouse costs since more shipments can be sent at a time. That means you don't have to wait weeks or even months for a trailer to fill up.
When you use a parcel carrier like FedEx, you can only ship up to 150 pounds at a time. That means you'd have to break down your shipment into separate boxes in order to ship. With LTL freight shipping, your packages can be palletized and shrink-wrapped so they're shipped in a single load.
At RelyEx, our team knows how important your shipment is, whether you're sending thousands of pounds of products or a single pallet. That's why we ensure your products are packaged correctly and have security protocols baked into every service we offer. Plus, by keeping your freight together, we decrease the chance of damaging your cargo, which pleases your clients and boosts your customers' satisfaction.
The magic of LTL shipping lies in the fact that we fill fewer trailers with more freight. Doing so reduces global emissions and makes the process much quicker. Imagine using a semi-truck to haul products that only fill a quarter of the trailer. It would waste money, time, and space that could be used for other products. With LTL shipping, you're protecting the environment and reducing the number of partially-filled trucks on the road. This, in turn, saves you money and makes you an eco-friendly company - something you can use as a selling point for your business.
LTL providers like RelyEx use advanced logistics technology to ensure your cargo arrives on time and without damage. By investing in technology like GlobalTranz, we save our clients from doing so themselves. With GlobalTranz, our clients gain access to robust tracking options like real-time freight locations, so you can monitor your shipment's progress. With GlobalTranz, you get more than just a way to book your LTL cargo â you benefit from our qualified network of carriers, expert logistics support, and leading technology features.
It's impossible to say exactly how much your LTL shipping may cost because the NMFC, or National Motor Freight Classification, determines those prices. Using this standard, pricing is dictated for commodities moving in intrastate, interstate, and foreign commerce. Items are grouped into 18 different classes, based on four characteristics:
If you're shipping a product that is more likely to be damaged, stolen, or cause damage to other items, it may affect LTL shipment pricing.
Does your product require specific care or handling instructions? If so, you can probably expect higher prices.
This factor accounts for how much space your item occupies in relation to its weight or the weight per cubic foot for each piece of freight you are shipping.
How easy is it to load and transport your commodity? Can it be loaded and transported with other items?
When combined, these characteristics are used to establish an NMFC code for your LTL cargo. These codes are crucial, as they help your LTL carrier understand the challenges of shipping your products. If the item you need to ship has a high NMFC code, it's because it's more difficult to transport, which usually means it's more expensive to ship.
Depending on where and how often you ship LTL freight, your broker may choose a regional or national LTL carrier. Regional carriers often service a group of states within a region. National carriers have a larger footprint and can often eliminate the need to use several carriers for your shipments. RelyEx has the infrastructure and strategies for all of your LTL shipping - contact our office today to learn more about your options.
Though regional and national carriers are different, they often use similar models for shipping. Two of the most popular types of shipping methods include hub and spoke distribution and LTL consolidation.
In this traditional model, your shipments go through a network of warehouses, terminals, and hub facilities where your products are grouped with other shipments. Your freight then travels to local "spokes" (or terminals), where they are delivered. If you need to ship freight over short distances, this model may be a good choice to consider.
Some common benefits of the hub and spoke model include:
LTL consolidated shipping is a model where LTL carriers bring several shipments from different shippers to a final destination. Instead of using hubs and spokes along the shipping route to bundle freight and move cargo, LTL consolidation works by taking multiple shipments and turning them into a single truckload. This truck then makes multiple stops, where your products are delivered.
Some of the most common benefits of LTL consolidation include:
At RelyEx, our goal is to expertly manage the movement of your freight so you can focus on your core business. With more than 20 years of combined experience with LTL freight shipping in Omaha, NE, our team can select the most efficient and cost-effective model for your needs. That way, you can accomplish your day-to-day tasks while we handle the heavy lifting and any logistical challenges.
At RelyEx, we believe that trustworthy, comprehensive, and streamlined LTL shipping options are better for your business. And for us, what's better for your business is better for ours. That's why, when it comes to LTL shipping, we work tirelessly to ensure every aspect of your freight experience is embedded excellence. We take this unique approach because our management were once customers like you. They were people who, for one reason or another, had to deal with frustrating and often unsolved shipping and logistics challenges. Today, we take pride in solving those challenges and only partner with carriers who match our high standards.
If you're looking for an LTL company in Omaha, NE that prioritizes customer service, strong communication, and proactive thinking, we're here to help you avoid delayed shipments and missed expectations.(843) 885-3082
WALTHILL, Neb. (KTIV) - Walthill, Nebraska, is a small village on the Omaha Reservation. And, although the village doesn’t sit on a major highway, it does have one key attraction... the “Lucky 77 Casino”.After 18 years in its previous building, the casino officially opens in a brand-new building Thursday morning creating *jobs* and economic growth.KTIV’s Matt Breen spoke with Brad Appleton, the CEO of the Blackbird Bend Corporation to find out more.“Brad, what does this new casino represent ...
WALTHILL, Neb. (KTIV) - Walthill, Nebraska, is a small village on the Omaha Reservation. And, although the village doesn’t sit on a major highway, it does have one key attraction... the “Lucky 77 Casino”.
After 18 years in its previous building, the casino officially opens in a brand-new building Thursday morning creating *jobs* and economic growth.
KTIV’s Matt Breen spoke with Brad Appleton, the CEO of the Blackbird Bend Corporation to find out more.
“Brad, what does this new casino represent economically for Omaha Tribe of Nebraska, and the village of Walthill?” asked Matt Breen. “This project in itself represents an important advancement in the Omaha Tribe’s vision for continued economic development, development and growth,” said Brad Appleton, Chief Executive Officer for the Blackbird Bend Corporation.
“When we talk dollars and cents, how much did this project cost? How many jobs will it create?” asked Breen. “Dollars and cents wise, we’re right in the neighborhood of $2 million when it’s a complete, and it will create approximately eight new jobs at this time. And we may be looking at a couple of more in the near future,” said Appleton.
“How long has it taken to get this project from the drawing board to reality?” asked Breen. “Oh, this year has been a long one really hit. We opened a facility the original facility back in August of 2005. So, 17 plus years in the making, trying to two doors open. It’s been about two years. A lot of thought out of development, a lot of hard work and dedication has went into this project,” said Appleton.
“What does the new casino offer that the old “Lucky 77″ didn’t?” asked Breen. “As we mentioned, you know, the added jobs, greater opportunity to the community. project itself. You walk into the facility, it’s more spacious. Got new machines, variety-- added variety. We will offer a food offering snack bar, pizza, subs, stuff of that nature. But overall, you’re just going to have to come on out and take a look yourself,” said Appleton.
“For folks used to going to the old Lucky 77, they won’t have much farther to travel to get to the new casino, will they?” asked Breen. “That is correct. It’s right across the street if you’ve been to Lucky 77 before, you know you know where it’s at beautiful facility right across the street 205 Main Street, Walthill, Nebraska. If you haven’t been there, come on down and check us out,” said Appleton.
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When Elkhorn North has a game, it’s a certainty that junior outfielder Chris Thiessen will have a buddy nearby.His name is Buddy.Chris has Type 1 diabetes, which means he can’t make his own insulin. Enter Buddy, a service dog trained to detect hypoglycemia — low blood sugar — and alert his owner to treat it.“He’s usually with my dad at games,” Thiessen said. “He can sense a 20% greater change in my blood sugar, so it’s really cool how it works.”Buddy is a...
When Elkhorn North has a game, it’s a certainty that junior outfielder Chris Thiessen will have a buddy nearby.
His name is Buddy.
Chris has Type 1 diabetes, which means he can’t make his own insulin. Enter Buddy, a service dog trained to detect hypoglycemia — low blood sugar — and alert his owner to treat it.
“He’s usually with my dad at games,” Thiessen said. “He can sense a 20% greater change in my blood sugar, so it’s really cool how it works.”
Buddy is a fixture in the dugout before and after games for the Wolves, who will play for their second consecutive Class B title Friday at the state baseball tournament. Thiessen, who is hitting .458 and bats leadoff, is a key member of the team.
“Chris undoubtedly is our leader offensively,” coach Anthony Dunn said. “He’s an incredible athlete and a really good kid.”
Dunn said he first met Chris and Buddy when Thiessen was in the eighth grade.
“He came and tried out for our reserve team that first summer we had baseball,” the coach said. “He came to tryouts and had his dog which was pretty unique, but now Buddy is like a member of the team.”
Buddy can detect low blood sugar through organic compounds in Thiessen’s breath and is trained to act accordingly. Thiessen’s dad Jac and his canine friend sit near the Wolves’ dugout during games.
“If Buddy senses that it’s low, my dad will tell me to go grab a juice and then I’m back in the game,” Chris said. “I’m not really sure how they train the dogs but he smells my breath, so it’s kind of crazy how it works.”
Thiessen said he has had diabetes since he was 4, so his medical journey is nothing new.
“It’s basically just a lifestyle for me,” he said. “I don’t really know any life differently.”
He added that Buddy has been his constant companion since fifth grade.
“He’s a great dog,” Thiessen said. “He’s my best friend and he goes everywhere with me.”
Chris said his condition hasn’t prevented him from being active in sports.
“Having diabetes hasn’t slowed me down at all,” he said. “It’s just another obstacle to overcome.”
Dunn said having Buddy around is a positive for the entire team.
“He’s always somewhere near the dugout,” the coach said. “It’s the same for football when he’s on the sidelines, and it would really feel strange not having him around.”
Dunn said it’s not unusual for him to get a text from Thiessen’s parents, alerting him that Buddy senses trouble.
“They’ll tell me that Chris needs something,” he said. “I think Buddy works better than some of the other technology they have these days.”
The coach said he’s no medical expert but is glad one of his top players has a canine pal watching out for him.
“I don’t know how it works,” he said. “But it works.”
Thiessen said he’s proud to be part of another championship contender, and happy that Buddy has been embraced as a member of the team.
“We all love to play with him at practice,” Thiessen said. “It’s great that the rest of the guys love him as much as I do.”
If Buddy seems almost human, Thiessen said he has one other trait that might make you think so.
“He loves bacon, just like most people,” Chris said. “It’s another way he’s like one of us.”
Where: UNO’s Tal Anderson Field
All games televised on Nebraska Public Media
Lincoln East (30-4) vs. Millard West (32-6), 7 p.m.
The top-ranked Spartans have gone 3-0 at the tourney and are riding a 12-game win streak.
East is seeking its first state title and looks to become the first Lincoln school to win the Class A championship since Southeast in 1977.
Defending-champion Millard West is 3-1 at state, losing to Grand Island 7-5 on Wednesday before bouncing back with a 5-1 win to clinch a spot in the final.
Both teams are expected to throw their aces — Carter Mick for the Spartans and Drew Deremer for the Wildcats.
East beat Millard West twice during the regular season.
Norris (25-9) vs. Elkhorn North (23-6), 4 p.m.
The No. 1 Titans lost to Omaha Skutt 4-2 on Wednesday but defeated the SkyHawks 11-2 later in the day to advance to the final for the eighth time in quest of their second state title.
LSU pledge Kale Fountain leads the offense though top pitcher Kaizer Papenhagen pitched that victory Wednesday night against Skutt so will be unavailable for the final.
Defending champion Elkhorn North threw Nebraska pledge Ryan Harrahill on Wednesday in a 3-2 win over Omaha Gross to reach the final so Creighton recruit Colin Nowaczyk probably gets the call today.
Norris posted a late-season 8-7 win over the Wolves.
Malcolm (24-3) vs. Omaha Roncalli (13-11), 1 p.m.
The top-ranked Clippers went 3-0 at state, surviving a pair of one-run games against Platteview.
Malcolm lost 4-3 in a district final against Omaha Concordia but defeated the Mustangs 9-1 in the opening round at state.
Roncalli has played a predominantly Class B schedule so its record isn’t as glittery but the Crimson Pride are resilient, rallying for three runs in the top of the seventh Wednesday night to defeat Wayne 5-4 and advance to the final.
The teams, which did not play during the regular season, seek a Class C title — a classification last contested in 1960.
LINCOLN — Nebraska lawmakers passed the last pieces of the state budget Thursday and sent the package on to Gov. Jim Pillen's desk.The governor will have until Wednesday to sign or veto any bill within the package or to issue line-item vetoes on specific items. It will be the first budget of Pillen's administration.The package includes several items Pillen called for in his January budget recommendations, such as $1.25 billion to create an Education Future Fund to boost state aid to schools, plus money to build a new pris...
LINCOLN — Nebraska lawmakers passed the last pieces of the state budget Thursday and sent the package on to Gov. Jim Pillen's desk.
The governor will have until Wednesday to sign or veto any bill within the package or to issue line-item vetoes on specific items. It will be the first budget of Pillen's administration.
The package includes several items Pillen called for in his January budget recommendations, such as $1.25 billion to create an Education Future Fund to boost state aid to schools, plus money to build a new prison and a canal-and-reservoir system in western Nebraska.
But it also would increase state spending more than the governor had recommended, including higher payment rates for health and human services providers and a larger increase in funding for the University of Nebraska.
As passed, the Legislature's budget would appropriate $10.7 billion for state operations and aid and authorize capital construction projects for the two fiscal years ending June 30, 2025. It also would transfer more money into the state's long-standing Property Tax Credit Fund.
The budget would increase state general fund spending by an annual average of 2.2% over the two years. That's well below the average going back 20 years but more than the 1.3% average spending growth that Pillen proposed.
The package would leave an estimated $892 million in the state's general fund for tax cuts and other uses over the two fiscal years. That would be the difference between revenue projections and the spending plan.
Major income tax cut and property tax relief measures that are awaiting final approval would reduce those revenues by an estimated $561 million during the two years. That's down from the $870 million impact estimated before lawmakers trimmed back the tax measures.
State Sen. Rob Clements of Elmwood, the Appropriations Committee chairman, pointed out that the tax cuts plus all other bills at the second and third rounds of consideration would tally up to $863 million. He said he hoped to see some additional trims made in those bills.
Overall, however, Clements said he was pleased with the budget. He said the package kept spending growth down, while funding the priorities of state agencies and addressing about half of the 87 bills referred to the committee. Those bills sought a combined $1.3 billion, out of which the budget package included about $400 million.
Clements said he hopes to set aside more money in the state's "rainy day" fund in the future. Under the budget package, the cash reserve fund is expected to be at $779 million by June 30, 2025, or about 13% of state revenues for one year. That would be down from the nearly $1.6 billion expected in the reserve by June 30 this year.
The Appropriations Committee had proposed to keep the reserve at about 16% of state revenues but, at Pillen's request, lawmakers opted to make more room for tax cuts by reducing a planned transfer of money into the cash reserve.
The budget also would tap the fund to pay for a number of water, housing, economic development and other initiatives, including two major construction projects.
The budget would set aside $574.5 million from the reserve for the proposed Perkins County Canal, which is to start in Colorado and bring water into southwest Nebraska. Under a century-old compact, building the canal would entitle Nebraska to 500 cubic feet per second of water from the South Platte River during the non-irrigation season, in addition to the current 120 cfs during the summer irrigation months.
Another $95.8 million would be transferred from the cash reserve for a new $350 million prison. Lawmakers had set aside the rest of the money during previous years but held off approving construction to encourage negotiations on slowing the increase in prison populations.
This year’s main budget bill would authorize the Department of Correctional Services to proceed with building the prison. Language included in the bill would require the department to complete studies of staffing and programming needs, as well as projections of the mix of maximum-, medium- and minimum-security inmates. The studies were called for under previous legislation.
The main budget bill also would boost payment rates for hospitals, nursing homes, foster parents, therapists and other health and human service providers by 3% next year and another 2% the following year, which accounted for close to $70 million of spending growth.
Pillen did not include any provider rate increases in his original budget plan. But numerous provider groups had asked for larger increases, saying they were struggling to stay afloat in the face of inflationary cost increases and workforce shortages.
The budget also included a 2.5% annual increase in state funding for the University of Nebraska. The increase was less than university officials requested and more than Pillen had recommended in January, but represented a compromise between the two.
In addition, the committee plan included the full cost of salary increases for state employees, which averaged 7% the first year and 5% the second year.
Chicken Parmesan is my go-to order at our favorite Italian restaurant. It starts with a bed of carbs, then it’s topped with crispy, seasoned chicken breasts, rich spaghetti sauce and tons of melty mozzarella. My mouth waters just thinking of it.Chicken Parmesan Meatballs put a fun twist on this classic dish. The meatballs in this recipe incorporate all of the normal breading ingredients as the binder and they are extremely flavorful. You can easily substitute ground turkey — I couldn’t find ground chicken recently &m...
Chicken Parmesan is my go-to order at our favorite Italian restaurant. It starts with a bed of carbs, then it’s topped with crispy, seasoned chicken breasts, rich spaghetti sauce and tons of melty mozzarella. My mouth waters just thinking of it.
Chicken Parmesan Meatballs put a fun twist on this classic dish. The meatballs in this recipe incorporate all of the normal breading ingredients as the binder and they are extremely flavorful. You can easily substitute ground turkey — I couldn’t find ground chicken recently — but whichever you use, get a mix of light and dark meet (not extra lean) because poultry has a tendency to get dry.
I usually serve this dish over pasta. You could also opt for carb-friendly zoodles, or the meatballs would be excellent served as a sandwich on a hoagie bun.
2 large eggs, beaten
1 pound ground chicken (white and dark meat)
2 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, finely chopped
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
¼ cup chopped fresh basil, plus basil leaves for garnish
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 medium garlic cloves, grated
2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1¼ cups), divided
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup dry red wine
1 (24-ounce) jar marinara sauce
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded (2 cups), divided
1. Combine eggs, chicken, prosciutto, panko, basil, salt, black pepper, crushed red pepper, garlic, and half of the Parmesan in a large bowl. Gently mix with your hands to thoroughly combine, taking care not to overmix. Shape into 12 to 14 balls (about 2 ounces each).
2. Preheat oven to 450 F. Heat olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium-high. Cook meatballs in a single layer, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, 8 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Reduce heat to medium. Add wine to skillet; cook, scraping bottom of skillet to release browned bits, until reduced to about 2 tablespoons, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in marinara sauce.
3. Arrange meatballs in skillet in a single layer; turn to coat in sauce. Sprinkle with 1½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese and remaining Parmesan.
4. Transfer skillet to preheated oven; bake until mozzarella cheese is melted and beginning to brown and internal temperature of meatballs registers 165 F, 10 to 14 minutes.
5. Sprinkle remaining ½ cup of mozzarella over the top and garnish with basil leaves.
LINCOLN — Funding to help erect a Chief Standing Bear museum and to tear down dilapidated property in western Nebraska are among additions to a multimillion-dollar package aimed primarily at lifting North and South Omaha.The updated Economic Recovery Act cleared voting hurdles Thursday that now push it to the final debate stage.State Sen. Terrell McKinney of North Omaha noted that the Legislature last year set aside about $335 million largely to spur transformational change in North and South Omaha. Some of that has alrea...
LINCOLN — Funding to help erect a Chief Standing Bear museum and to tear down dilapidated property in western Nebraska are among additions to a multimillion-dollar package aimed primarily at lifting North and South Omaha.
The updated Economic Recovery Act cleared voting hurdles Thursday that now push it to the final debate stage.
State Sen. Terrell McKinney of North Omaha noted that the Legislature last year set aside about $335 million largely to spur transformational change in North and South Omaha. Some of that has already been allocated.
Now it’s time to appropriate the remainder, he said, namely about $225 million in grants to specific North and South Omaha entities to be chosen by the Department of Economic Development.
Newer funding requests — for projects such as a Malcolm X museum, health clinics, the Standing Bear museum and rail spurs in western Nebraska — have pushed up the total package beyond $400 million, said State Sen. Justin Wayne of Omaha.
Wayne, who along with McKinney was an original sponsor of the Economic Recovery Act, said the final cost projection is to be laid out in the fiscal note that will accompany the next round of debate.
Folded into the package were several bills, including a few that update provisions of the state’s Community Development Law, which governs the economic tool called tax-increment financing.
“These bills lift our communities up,” State Sen. Jane Raybould of Lincoln said. She said the overall package “contains momentum on many different levels.”
Not all of the proposal was met favorably. State Sen. Rob Clements of Elmwood, who chairs the Legislature’s budget committee, was wary of the proposed use of some interest earnings from certain project funds to cover some of the cost.
State Sen. Tony Vargas of Omaha, another sponsor of the North-South recovery bill, called the overall process “a monumental dedication to east Omaha.”
“This has been a long time coming,” he said. “We’re focusing on big transformational projects.”
The DED is to review the original 367 applications from community entities that sought a chunk of the North and South Omaha funding.
Previously, the Olsson consulting firm was awarded $1.7 million to review and narrow down the applications. Though Olsson completed that task, a special legislative committee shifted to the DED review.
State Sen. Mike McDonnell of Omaha said he thought that 90% of Olsson’s work was good. But he said the consultant, for example, overlooked a proposal for a proposed Ernie Chambers museum in North Omaha, and he advocated that DED give it another look.
Among other measures included in the proposed package: