Governor calls for property tax relief, workforce development

Gov. Jim Pillen highlighted proposals to reduce property taxes, support local businesses and assist workforce development efforts in his State of the State address Jan. 18.

Calling it the most important issue facing Nebraskans, Pillen focused on measures introduced in the Legislature this year to combat rising property taxes. Those proposals include a “hard cap” on local spending, $1 billion in new property tax credits and the removal of “special interest” tax breaks.

When combined with actions taken by the executive branch, Pillen said the goal is to cut Nebraskan’s property tax bills by 40% this year. He said the current property tax system is in “crisis” and has been for many years.

“High property taxes hurt every Nebraskan in every part of our state,” he said. “Fixed-income Nebraskans who have lived, worked and raised families here now face the prospect of being forced out of their homes due to out-of-control property taxes.”

The governor also issued a call to “get government out of the way,” and noted introduction of a bill that plans to eliminate 48 — or 20% — of state-authorized boards and commissions. Many of those entities are redundant or oversee activities that easily can be abolished, he said.

Pillen touted a variety of workforce measures to improve access to child care, early childhood education, housing and supporting business ventures — including the development of the new bioeconomy.

This area of economic activity encompasses everything from sustainable aviation fuel to plastics, nylons, acrylics and amino acids, Pillen said, which all are sourced from corn and soybeans and are able to be made in the state.

“Nebraska is uniquely well-equipped to be the leader in the new bioeconomy,” Pillen said. “This will provide more value for our agricultural products, more research and innovation and more wealth right here.”

The governor also detailed several proposals intended to attract new talent to the state, remove barriers to entering the teaching profession and ease regulations to encourage workforce housing development.

“There is a tremendous amount of the people’s work we must accomplish to make this a better, safer and stronger place for every Nebraska kid, family, business and farm,” Pillen said. “If we are thoughtful, principled and keep the interests of all Nebraskans before us, I have no doubt this can be one of the most impactful legislative sessions in our history.”

Bookmark and Share