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Fall Enrollment At UNO Highest Since 1992

Sep 9, 2020
UNO

Fall enrollment at the University of Nebraska-Omaha is the largest in nearly 30 years.  The school says the 15-thousand-892 students is the biggest enrollment number since 1992. The university also says the two-thousand-220 freshmen is the largest first-year class in a decade.

The 2020 U.S. Census is entering the home stretch and the Bellevue University Library is hosting an event and offering free assistance to those who need help completing the 2020 U.S. Census.  

The community event will be held Thursday, September 10, 3:30-5:30 p.m., outside the front entrance of the Freeman Lozier Library located at 1028 Bruin Boulevard, Bellevue, Nebraska, 68005.  Staff from the U.S. Census and Bellevue University will be on hand to answer questions or assist individuals.  Accessible parking is available and a ramp is available for those who need it.  Additional parking is available south of the Bellevue University Durham Administration Building.  Face masks must be worn (and will be available, if necessary) and physical distancing will be observed.

Allie O’Connor, Document Delivery Specialist at BU, is heading up the census event that’s happening on campus.  She takes a moment out of her busy day to chat with Mike Hogan on KIOS-FM.

More information can be found at https://blogs.bellevue.edu/library/index.php/2020/09/cooperative-event-between-2020-census-and-bellevue-university-library/

USA Today

Nebraska will apply for federal assistance to help workers who were laid off because of the coronavirus pandemic, allowing those who qualify to collect an extra $300 per week. Nebraska is the last state to confirm that it will seek the extra federal aid. Every other state has said it will apply, except for South Dakota, which refused the money. The payments are a part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s lost wages supplemental payment program. People who qualify will receive $300 per week, along with their unemployment benefit, for a limited number of weeks. 

Norfolk Daily News

There have been no cases of the mosquito-borne West Nile virus so far this year in Nebraska. An insect-transmitted illness expert at Nebraska's health department told the Lincoln Journal Star that it's unusual to have no cases by this time. Disease scientist Jeff Hamik says a cool spring might have delayed mosquito breeding, resulting in the longest period without a pool of West Nile-positive mosquitoes in Nebraska history. But Hamik says West Nile cases will start cropping up soon. Most people with West Nile virus don't have symptoms.

KHGI

There are now nearly 36-thousand COVID-19 cases in Nebraska.  Officials reported 89 new cases yesterday bringing the total in the state to 35-thousand-975.  COVID-19 has claimed 404 lives in Nebraska during the pandemic. Nebraska hospitals are asking for more federal aid to help recover financially from the coronavirus. The Omaha World-Herald reports that Nebraska Hospital Association officials say the pandemic has meant increased costs and a decline in revenue for hospitals.

Omaha World Herald

Efforts to get state senator Ernie Chambers' name on November's Douglas County Commission ballot are falling short.  He's 346 petition signatures short of the two-thousand needed to get on the ballot. The most common reason for signatures being rejected is voters weren't registered in District 3 or in Douglas County. Incumbent Commissioner Chris Rodgers will run unopposed.

 

Early Ballot Applications On Their Way Through Mail

Sep 4, 2020

Early ballot applications are being mailed out across Nebraska. Secretary of State Bob Evnen says a request for a mail-in ballot is going to every registered voter in the state, calling it a "good option" for those who have concerns about voting at the polls in November. The first early ballots will be sent out on September 28th, with the U.S. Postal Service recommending the ballots be returned by October 27th.

 

Norfolk Daily News

State health officials reported 474 new cases of COVID-19 in Nebraska yesterday. There are now 35-thousand-469 confirmed cases of the virus in the state, and 404 deaths. The Department of Health and Human Services says 34 percent of hospital beds and 82 percent of ventilators are available. Three new COVID-19 clusters were announced at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Officials say five cases were reported at the Chi Omega sorority house, and eight were found in FarmHouse fraternity.

August 2020 Driest Omaha Has Seen In A Century

Sep 3, 2020

Last month was the driest August that Omaha's seen in more than 100 years. The National Weather Service says Eppley Airfield saw less than a half inch of rain last month. The Weather Service says Omaha usually averages nearly four inches of rain in August.

The former chief of finance for the Nebraska State Fair has been charged with theft following an investigation into the fair's finances. Court records show Patrick Kopke has been charged in Hall County with three counts of theft of more than $5,000. Earlier this year, the Nebraska State Fair Board hired a forensic investigation firm to look into the fair's finances after staff discovered suspicious activity during an internal review. Eight fair employees lost their jobs in December as officials took steps to firm up finances after a 2019 loss. Kopke is scheduled to be arraigned on Sept.

The Omaha Public Library has suffered through the pandemic, like everyone else.  And while closed to internal visitors, the library has been lending books by providing some limited curbside service.  Before the CARES Act money to the library was announced, Emily Getzschman joined Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to talk about the procedures and to give her recommendations for some very interesting books!

More information, including which branches will be reopening and when, is available at omahalibrary.org.

Omaha Public Libraries To Gradually Reopen This Month

Sep 2, 2020

The City of Omaha is opening some of it's libraries.  The city says five branches across the city will open September 21st.  It comes after Douglas County and the state of Nebraska funneled 60-million dollars in federal CARES Act money to Omaha to cover budget shortages caused by COVID-19.  The city says it wants to open three more libraries on September 28th, with the remaining four coming at a later date. All 12 Omaha library branches have been closed since March.

Nebraska is approaching 400 COVID-19 deaths.  As of yesterday, 399 people statewide had died from the coronavirus during the pandemic.  The state has seen 34-thousand-547 COVID-19 cases. Omaha residents will have to wear face coverings in public for a few more weeks.  In response to the pandemic, the Omaha City Council voted yesterday to extend the public face mask ordinance to October 20th.  The ordinance went into effect on August 11th and was scheduled to expire on September 15th.

Most school districts in Nebraska have some percentage of their learning happening remotely.  This requires parents to help their children with the school work.  So what happens if a parent (or child) is visually impaired?

This happened to Paulette Monthei, who has low vision.  She discovered she could not use some applications to complete remote learning assignments for her 10-year-old son, who just started fourth grade.

Fortunately, Monthei is program manager for Outlook Enrichment, which provides a range of programs and services that create greater accessibility and inclusivity for the visually impaired.  The nonprofit has created a virtual support group on Zoom that will be held on six consecutive Thursdays from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.   The group started on August 27th.  The group gives blind and visually impaired parents the chance to talk with peers and the nonprofit’s adaptive technology training staff about distance learning issues they come across this school year.  They will work together to provide creative solutions that accommodate for vision loss in a remote learning environment.

Paulette joined Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the program and the obstacles to be overcome.  This two part interview is below, as it was aired.  More information can be found at https://www.outlookne.org/programs/enrichment  and https://shareomaha.org/nonprofit/outlook-enrichment.

Norfolk Daily News

Nebraska is launching a new campaign to promote local agricultural companies to foreign countries, many of whom are the state’s biggest customers. The new campaign is called “Nebraska Straight from the Good Life” and will be managed by the state Department of Agriculture. Agricultural companies that are based in Nebraska or have a significant presence in the state will be allowed to participate for free. Agriculture is Nebraska’s largest industry, and many of its farm and ranch products go to Asian and European nations. Gov.

The Douglas County board has abandoned a plan to spend $1.85 million in federal coronavirus relief funding to buy a mobile command center for the county sheriff’s office. Sheriff Tim Dunning withdrew his request for the RV-like truck because he said his office couldn’t find a manufacturer who could build and deliver one in 2020, when the federal aid must be spent. Officials had argued that the command center could have helped officials respond to the coronavirus outbreak by supporting mass vaccination efforts in the area.

KSNB

There are now more than 34-thousand COVID-19 cases in Nebraska.  Officials confirmed 293 new cases yesterday, bringing the statewide total to 34-thousand-46.  There have been 392 coronavirus-related deaths in Nebraska since the start of the pandemic. The Nebraska State Penitentiary in Lincoln has been placed under quarantine after 29 inmates tested positive for the coronavirus, officials said Sunday. The positive cases were identified by tests that were done Friday.

Omaha World Herald

A new science center will be going up along Omaha's riverfront. Developers say it will be a learning and entertainment attraction with a focus on science, technology, engineering, and math-inspired activities. The 101-million dollar project will be privately funded.

 

Omaha World Herald

State health officials reported 374 new cases of COVID-19 in Nebraska yesterday. There are now 33,101 confirmed cases of the virus in the state, and 391 deaths. The Department of Health and Human Services says 32 percent of hospital beds and 84 percent of ventilators are available. A COVID-19 cluster was recently identified at another University of Nebraska sorority. Officials say four members of Delta Delta Delta have tested positive for the virus, along with one other self-reported case. The university says those living in the house are being isolated.

Union for Contemporary Arts

  

  “I’m sorry. We’ve kept our silence long enough.”

That is the last line of a poem by writer Ikran Hamza titled, “My apology letter (children of war).”

The poem is pasted in neat white letters across the street-facing windows at the Union for Contemporary Art in North Omaha. Inside the windows are two beautiful black and white photographs taken by local artist N8 DeVivo. The display can be viewed entirely from the sidewalk outside the building.

Empowerment Network transforms the economic condition and quality of life of African-Americans, North Omaha residents, and citizens of greater Omaha by building wealth, creating strong families, preparing successful children, and rebuilding thriving neighborhoods. 

Willie Barney is the Executive Director and Founder of Empowerment Network.  He joined Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the genesis of the organization, the Seven Step Empowerment Plan, and how they achieve the lofty goals set in the mission.

Since the topic was rich with content, the original conversation went longer than the "Live & Local" time slot allows.  This web-exclusive audio below includes the full 10-minute discussion between Willie and Mike.

More information can be found at https://empoweromaha.com/

Omaha World Herald

Omaha police have revised a policy on arresting protesters following the mass arrest of more than 100 peaceful protesters last month. The Omaha World-Herald reports that Mayor Jean Stothert unveiled the policy change during a news conference Tuesday to discuss coronavirus relief funding. Stothert said the revised policy requires officers to use body cameras to get pictures of each individual they arrest rather than doing mass arrests.

Medical Marijuana To Be On November Ballot

Aug 27, 2020

A group calling for medical marijuana in Nebraska is saying it has collected enough signatures to force a vote on the issue.  Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana says it has collected signatures from more than 10-percent of the state's registered voters to put their constitutional amendment on the 2020 ballot.  Officials say the campaign also collected signatures from at least five-percent of registered voters in 48 of the state's 93 counties.

Another $60 Million In CARES Act Money Goes To Omaha

Aug 26, 2020
KFOR

The City of Omaha is getting more CARES Act money. The Douglas County Board will give the city 30-million dollars to cover COVID-19 related losses. Last week the state also gave Omaha 30-million dollars in CARES Act funding. The city says the combined 60 million dollars will close the budget gap caused by the pandemic.

Lincoln Journal Star

A new South Omaha Test Nebraska site is up and running. It's across from OneWorld Community Health Centers. It's open from 1:00 until 6:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The state says the site will stay at that location for the foreseeable future. Some people tested for COVID-19 under Test Nebraska will have to be re-tested. The state Department of Health and Human Services says a technical issue in a testing lab caused some results not to be reported to the person tested or put into state's system.

Nebraska’s top elections official says he won’t put three measures to legalize casino gambling on the November ballot, arguing that the language they used was misleading and confusing. The decision announced Tuesday by Republican Secretary of State Bob Evnen means voters won’t get to decide the issue this year unless a court overturns his decision. Supporters of the ballot measures filed an immediate legal challenge, and the dispute is likely headed to the Nebraska Supreme Court.

Great Plains Black History Museum is the only museum in Nebraska whose sole focus is on the rich history of African Americans.  Eric Ewing is the Executive Director of the Great Plains Black History Museum and he spent some "Live & Local" time with Mike Hogan to discuss the origins and mission of this organization.

Due to COVID, they are requesting all guests to book an appointment prior to visiting the museum. They’re open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 1 pm to 5 pm.  To ensure that they are following social distancing they are limiting visitor’s sizes to no more than 8 visitors at a time.  To ensure the safety and health of all visitors to the Museum face mask will be required for entry. 

For more information or a virtual tour, go to https://gpblackhistorymuseum.org/

Omaha Sweats Through Hottest Weather Since 2018

Aug 25, 2020

The Omaha metro area is the midst of its hottest weather in two years. The National Weather Service says Sunday's 99 degrees was just shy of the most recent 100 degree day in 2018.  Temps are forecast to be in the upper 90's through mid-week.

Ashford Declines To Run As Write-In Candidate

Aug 25, 2020

Former Nebraska Congressman Brad Ashford is planning to launch a write-in bid for the U.S. Senate.  Ashford says he will move forward with the campaign if current Democratic Senate nominee Chris Janicek  does not withdraw from the race.  Janicek, who has faced sexual harassment allegations, takes on incumbent Republican Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse in the November general election.  Sasse and Janicek will hold a debate Friday, September 4th at 7:00 p.m. The debate will be hosted by N-E-T Nebraska.

Protests Emerge In Omaha Following Wisconsin Shooting

Aug 25, 2020
Omaha World Herald

Omaha residents are speaking out against the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin.  Protests took place last night at 72nd and Dodge and in the Old Market.  Demonstrators held signs and chanted against police brutality.  Video of the incident from Sunday shows Blake being shot when he walked away from officers and opened his car door.

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