State Senator Working on Bill to Stop Vets Home Move

By: Megan Johnson Email
By: Megan Johnson Email

State Senator Mike Gloor is revealing more details about a bill he thinks could halt the move of the state Veterans Home from Grand Island.

Gloor told the Grand Island Chamber's Legislative Forum on Wednesday that he's frustrated by the process Governor Dave Heineman used to ultimately choose Kearney as the site of a new vets home.

"This bidding process pits communities against each other to take state services and move them from one community to the other," says Gloor. "Certainly there are jobs that are created in one community and positive economic impact, but then you've left a hole in the other community, unlike bringing businesses in from outside the state."

Gloor plans to introduce a bill that requires any state services that will cost $15 million or more to be moved to get legislative approval. The Legislature already has oversight on funding for such projects, but Gloor says his proposal won't be adding more government to the process.

"I don't see it as an add on, I see it as a refinement in the requests that already came in for those moves and that's through the budgeting process," he says. "I think it'll make it easier to make both the budget decision as well as justification for the move."

Gloor says he may craft part of the legislation to be a "look back" that he believes can bring the choice to build a new vets home in Kearney back on the table.

"I think the only controversial component of it, I think a lot of the legislators would be comfortable with what I'm proposing, is the fact that it would also bring back into play the decision made to move the Grand Island Veterans Home," says Gloor.

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