Nebraska is on the move.
For many years, too many young people were leaving the state, and Nebraska wasn’t competitive national or globally for jobs. But we’ve changed that in the past few years. We’ve made important investments in education and jobs and more of our talented citizens are staying in Nebraska and having fulfilling lives and careers.
We’ve had a laser-like focus on Nebraska’s business and tax climate to improve our competitiveness. As a result, Nebraska has made significant progress improving our economic environment for families and small businesses.
There is no doubt we are in better shape than the rest of the country because we don’t spend money we don’t have with our family budgets, in our businesses and in state government. We balance our budget in state government by controlling spending, not by raising taxes.
We modernized our economic incentive programs called the Nebraska Advantage and it’s been incredibly successful. There are 309 companies that have decided to expand or locate in Nebraska during the past six years. These companies are planning to invest $8.4 billion in our economy and create more than 20,000 new jobs.
We passed the largest tax relief package in Nebraska’s history that repealed the estate tax, eliminated the marriage penalty in the income tax system, repealed the sales tax on construction labor and lowered income taxes. And look at the results.
• CNBC ranks Nebraska as one of America’s top 10 best states for business.
• Forbes ranks Nebraska as the eighth best state for business and careers.
• Business Facilities says Nebraska has one of America’s Top 10 best business climates.
• Gallup says Nebraska is the fourth-best state to live in.
• Nebraska has the second-lowest unemployment rate in America at 3.8 percent.
Nebraska has safe communities, good jobs, great schools, affordable homes and an unmatched quality of life. We believe in freedom, hard work and self-sufficiency. We believe every child should have the opportunity to receive a quality education.
We’ve made exceptional progress during the past few years, but we have more work to do. Our focus is to make Nebraska the most attractive place in America to live, work and to raise a family.
I wish you all the best in 2013. Thank you for your support.
Dave Heineman Governor