Last night, at A Bold New Year, we shared our plans for 2012. Here are the issues we’re going to tackle and the commitments we’re making to you, our fellow Bold Nebraskans, for this year.
We resolve, as citizens in small towns and urban communities, to stay engaged in issues that matter and to ensure we keep our elected officials accountable to moving our state forward.
President Obama has until February 20th to deny TransCanada’s permit. Let’s keep sending him letters with pictures of our families, our land and our water, reminding him of the promise he made to keep our families safe and to move toward a clean energy economy.
The Unicameral can still pass bills to protect landowners from eminent domain abuse by oil companies as well as oil spill liability protections. Let’s promise to tweet and meet with our state senators to ensure they keep working on common sense oil pipeline laws.
NDEQ will need the public’s input on TransCanada’s proposed route and the risks to the Ogallala Aquifer, let’s ensure we are present at all meetings and engaged in the public process.
Nebraska utilities are facing tough choices on keeping our energy costs down while implementing new EPA standards that will protect our families’ health. We believe both goals can be achieved and promise to to get our voices heard at the local and state level.
Nebraska is unique because we are the only state to have a 100% publicly-owned utilities. For too long too many of us have been silent on what we as citizens need and want from our public power. We will call for more wind, solar, biofuels and efficiency to be part of a renewable energy standard.
The Unicameral, led by Sen. Jannsen, might pass a “voter ID bill” that threatens Nebraskans’ constitutional right to vote. We will keep bringing the facts to hearings and to state senators that a “voter ID” bill as written has one goal and one goal only–turning our fundamental right to vote into a partisan issue.
Moving to statewide mail-in ballots and same day voter registration will broaden the voices of Nebraskans engaged in politics making our body politic more accountable and balanced.
We resolve to shine a bright light on government failure to our kids and families.
Children and families who are in crisis should be able to find safety in our state government’s welfare system. Instead, spending on all the wrong things like privatized care and not enough resources in local care leaves our government and kids at risk. The state had enough chances to fix the system without louder voices being engaged and writing about their process. That time is over.
School funding is on the decline while state politicians pretend schools are fully funded. The current formula does not work for our state, our schools, our teachers or our kids. Putting band-aids on funding and shifting blame to school districts is not helpful. Let’s bring together ideas and leaders to figure out a sustainable school funding model that works for the small rural districts and our big urban centers.
Health care reform is a good thing for our families and kids. Reminding our neighbors and elected officials the next step is implementing a state-based insurance exchange in order to keep costs down and access to care open for everyone.
Farmers and ranchers every day in our state grow crops and raise cattle to feed the world. We believe more local food has to get to local schools so our kids’ lunches are healthy and our local economies grow.
Nebraska farmers, ranchers and food consumers all have a role in protecting and preserving Nebraska’s family agricultural heritage. Healthy, sustainable, productive and profitable farms and ranches are the cornerstone of healthy, sustainable, productive and profitable small towns. We can work together, large or small, rural or urban, producer or consumer, to produce healthy soils, healthy foods, healthy bodies, and healthy communities. Buy local and push for laws that help not hinder family-run operations.
We resolve to stay bold and stay committed to grassroots politics.
Politics is too often a place for insiders. Favors are traded and our families end up losing. Through training and sharing best practices, we will grow the grassroots and ensure we have Bold Boots on the ground from Omaha to Scottsbluff. We will fight for our families and fight for a more balanced political landscape across our state.
Bold’s 2012 Voter Guide will expand on our work in 2010 to include more races like NPPD board and PSC positions. Letting bold voters know who is on our side and who is on the side of TransCanada will happen online, at events and at the door of fellow voters.
Online and offline action will keep us connected and keep elected officials listening to the grassroots. Let’s use common tools to make sure our voices are amplified. Bold’s Facebook page is an active place for us to talk and get organized on issue of equality, energy and anything you are working on in your community. On Twitter, use tags of #unicam and #nebpol to keep us all up to date of each others actions and news.