In October, at the OTOC Accountability Session, Congressional candidate Don Bacon pledged to meet with OTOC’s Environmental Sustainability Team and to join the bi-partisan Climate Solutions Caucus, should he win the seat for Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional district. This unique caucus requires that a Republican and Democrat join at the same time so there equal numbers from each party at all times. Rep Bacon is the first member of Congress from either party from the Midwest to join the Climate Solutions Caucus.Read More . . .
February 10th, 2017
February 10th, 2017
Call you Senator today to support LB194, a bipartisan bill being sponsored by two freshman Senators, Tony Vargas (District 7) and Lou Ann Linehan (District 39). The bill aims to protect our most vulnerable Nebraskans while allowing the pay day lending industry to remain profitable in the state.
Click on the links below to learn more:
These Omaha Area Senators are on the Banking Committee and will decide if LB 194 gets a vote by the Unicameral. Let them know what you think.
Sen. Brett Linstrom, District 18 & Chair
Phone: (402) 471-2618
Sen. Joni Craighead, District 6
Phone: (402) 471-2714
Sen. John McCollister District 20
Phone: (402) 471-2622
Please let us know about your contacts at email@example.com or 402-344-4401
On Feb. 21, brave leaders gave testimony at a public hearing at the Banking Committee about the impact of Pay Day Loans on their lives
On Feb 16, OTOC held a Clergy Caucus for so faith leaders could learn more about how Pay Day Lending ensnares desperate people.
On Feb. 7, OTOC held an Issue Cafe to teach our leaders about Pay Day Lending
We learned that across the United States 12 million people borrow $7 billion each year. These are people who have a job and checking account and make approximately $30,000 a year. Most have credit cards, but they are maxed out. Most use pay day loans for monthly or recurring expenses.
In Nebraska pay day lenders are allowed to charge up to 461% in fees/interest each year on a loan. These high rates are among the highest allowed in the nation and lead to a revolving door of debt for the borrower. The loans last an average of 5 months, and the borrower pays $530 in fees to borrow $300 for those 5 months.
Reducing Interest Rates
Neighboring states, such as Colorado and South Dakota, have passed laws similar to our LB194. Tracy Bruckner described ours as a middle of the road law. This means that the regulations that would be imposed would not cripple the industry in Nebraska. There are plenty of Nebraskans who need help when unexpected expenses arise, but the restrictions of LB194 will ensure that those Nebraska borrowers will not be stuck in a revolving door of debt that so many borrowers have experienced.
January 31st, 2017
It was a great crowd of over 1,500 people at Turner Park for the Refugee Prayer Vigil on January 31st. It was a time of prayer, teaching, story telling and exhorting us to take risks to love our neighbor and welcome the stranger.
Comments on Facebook following the vigil were all like these:
“A moving and beautiful evening showing our support and love to our refugee and immigrant neighbors.”
“Very moving evening, seeing so many people of different races, backgrounds, and faiths coming together in the name of peace and unity. This is what my America looks like!”
- Fr. Daniel Hendrickson, S.J of Creighton University,
- Bishop Brian Maas of the ELCA,
- Rabbi Steven Abraham of Beth El Synagogue,
- Rev. Eric Elnes of Countryside Community
- Deacon Marty Smith of St. Margaret Mary Catholic
- for teaching and praying and calling on us all to heed God’s injunction to welcome the stranger
And also to:
- Rev Jane Florence and Rev Cynthia Lindenmeyer of First UMC
- Sr. Katheen Erickson, RSM
- Rev. Ernesto Medina, of St. Martha Episcopal, Papillion
- Rev. Sergio Amaya of San Andres Lutheran
- Rev. Cyndi Simpson, of Second Unitarian Church
- Rev. Scott Jones of First Congregational
For leading powerful prayers asking God’s love for refugees, for those who persecute them, for immigration and elected officials and for all of us so that we have the courage to welcome the stranger.
Thanks to our Partners
Thanks especially to the staff of Lutheran Family Services and Refugee Empowerment Center who worked with OTOC and IPL to organize this vigil and especially for Lacey Studnicka of LFS for her tireless efforts to pull it all together. And thanks to other organizations who invited their networks including Nebraska Appleseed, ACLU, Anti-Defamation League
Media Coverage included
Omaha World Herald
January 20th, 2017
OTOC leader Mary Spurggeon was among five speakers at a press conference in Lincoln on Wednesday, January 18, 2017. The press conference was to encourage members of Congress to have a replacement for the ACA before they repeal it.
To join OTOC’s effort to assure ongoing access to health care for all, contact one of the Action Team chairs:
Mary Spurgeon at firstname.lastname@example.org
January 20th, 2017
It was a packed house at UNO on January 25th when members of OTOC’s Environmental Sustainability Action Team (ESAT), League of Women Voters and others collaborated to ask, “Who is Watching Nebraska’s Waters?” For clear summary of the risks associated with Costco/Lincoln Premium Poultry project in Fremont and surrounding counties, click on the link below:
The discussion focused on how to protect the watersheds around Omaha from the runoff coming from large scale livestock producing and processing operations that are part of this project. OTOC’s Environmental Sustainability Action Team is hosting this in partnership with the League of Women Voters and Nebraska Communities United in order to assure that the public begins to understand this issue.
The Panel featured panelists, Bill Stowe, CEO & GM, Des Moines Water Works, Dr. Alan Kolok, Director of Nebraska Watershed Network & Director of the Center for Environmental Health and Toxicology at UNMC provided the audience with an abundance of information
The participants learned that over 250,000 chickens will be processed each day in the Fremont plant, and over 17 million birds will be raised in 400 different facilities in the surrounding counties. These birds will produce 900,000,000 lbs of manure each year.
The OTOC ESAT wants there to be an adequate study of the potential water quality problems and careful monitoring of our watersheds if this project is built.
I…change only happens when ordinary people get involved and they get engaged, and they come together to demand it.”
-President Barack Obama