Nebraska Budget Chair Expects Many Requests For Federal Cash

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A leading Nebraska senator who helps create the state budget said Wednesday that he's already getting requests for how to spend the state's share of federal pandemic relief money, and he's expecting a lot more.

Sen. John Stinner, chairman of the Legislature's Appropriations Committee, said he has spoken with groups including Nebraska's child welfare and developmental disability service providers.

Stinner, of Gering, said the providers are under compeititve pressure to keep workers because they aren't able to pay as much as other employers, and Nebraska's unemployment rate is the lowest both nationally and in state history.

Stinner said he also expects pressure to spend the money on jobs programs and broadband service, among other priorities. His comments came at a public question-and-answer session hosted by the OpenSky Policy Institute, a Lincoln-based tax policy think tank.

The next legislative session begins in January.