Who cannot relate to this funny piece of roadside humor? Thanks to Lonnie Cease for sharing this on the Facebook page, Nebraska Through The Lens.
For more than three years, the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station was the only nuclear energy plant in the country that was in a special federal oversight program for reactors with performance problems. But last month, it was released to routine oversight status to join the 98 other U.S. nuclear power plants. The Fort Calhoun plant was offline for eight months in 2011 when the Missouri River flood, a switchgear fire, and the discovery of hundreds of minor safety irregularities caused the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to put it on “probation.” The process has cost Omaha Public Power District customers $58 million. The plant restarted in December 2013.
A $900,000 federal air-quality grant through the Nebraska Department of Roads will help Omaha’s bike sharing network double its stations this year. Heartland B-Cycle now has 31 stations with 150 bikes in downtown, midtown, NoDo (north downtown) and Ak-Sar-Ben Village. Bike sharing provided an estimated 6,700 rides last year. Daily passes are $6.
Comedian, author and actor Louie Anderson is returning to Norfolk June 18-19 to headline the opening session of the annual comedy festival at the Johnny Carson Theatre. He was there in 2011. Host will be Brian Kiley, the 2014 pro stand-up competition winner last year and a writer for Conan O’Brien. Comedian Brian Regan will be the Saturday night headliner.
A 8-year-old alligator named Sprinkles was being illegally kept as a pet in a kiddie pool in Scottsbluff. But police and animal rescue officials working with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission “arrested” her with the owner’s OK. They quarantined her at the Scottsbluff zoo, Riverside Discovery Center. Last week they took her to the Colorado Gators Rescue Park in Mosca, Colo. Many exotic animals are illegal as pets in Nebraska. April is Animal Cruelty Prevention Month.
Nebraska has the biggest inventory of cattle on feed of any state in the nation, according to a March report by the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Nebraska edged out Texas for the distinction. Nebraska had more than 4,500 feeding operations, with 2.49 million in feedlots of 1,000 or more. According to the Nebraska Beef Council, the state sells $6.5 billion worth of cattle each year.
The citizens’ right to be protected is being weighed against Nebraska’s prison overcrowding problem as the Unicameral debates whether to do away with many “mandatory minimum” sentences in Nebraska law. Purpose: to reduce the number of incoming inmates. The Nebraska Association of County Attorneys and Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert are among those who advocate keeping the stiff sentences for drive-by shootings; crack, heroin and meth dealing; and habitual criminal violations. Others, including Lincoln Sen. Colby Coash, defend LB 173, saying it would ease the overcrowding problem and return more discretion to judges. The state’s prison population is 1,938 inmates, 59% above design capacity. Adding a prison would cost an estimated $130 million.
A former McCook attorney who was sentenced to prison time in Nebraska in 1998 for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars now faces felony theft and embezzlement charges in Colorado Springs. Terry Malcom is accused of stealing more than $1 million from two water districts there over the past 10 years.
Gov. Pete Ricketts has called for the Environmental Protection Agency to announce its new renewable fuel standard, which dictates how much ethanol must be blended into the nation’s gasoline supply. The standard has been delayed for two years for 2014 and six months for this year. The governor said the delay and uncertainty hamper the ethanol industry, which supports 3,000 jobs in Nebraska, including better-paid jobs in computers, robotics and economics, and has attracted $5 billion of investment. The state’s 24 ethanol plants produce 2 billion gallons a year.
With the Red-White game Saturday at Memorial Stadium, the football team is back in the spotlight. One Husker-related spoof in the Omaha Press Club Show last week went viral nationally. It was a parody to “Let It Go” by KFAB radio host Scott Voorhees about missing Bo Pelini: Click Here
Several Hall County Vietnam War Hero Flights to the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., are being planned in Grand Island, starting in mid-2016. The initial fundraising activity will be a hamburger feed from 5 to 8 p.m. April 29 at the United Veterans Club. Volunteers — as well as veterans to participate! — are encouraged to attend and sign up.
Veterans who will live in the 225-bed, $121 million Central Nebraska Veterans’ Home planned in Kearney will benefit from the ideas and work of University of Nebraska-Kearney students who are building model suites for the project. The construction management and interior design students were invited to build and furnish the rooms using blueprints from Wilkins Hinrichs Stober Architects.