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Gregory-Failed Drug Tests

March 29, 2015

Ex-Husker DE Randy Gregory to NFL Media: I failed drug tests

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Defensive end Randy Gregory said he tested positive for marijuana at the NFL scouting combine last month and that he failed two drug tests at Nebraska last year.

Gregory disclosed his marijuana use in an interview with NFL Media on Wednesday.

Gregory went into February's scouting combine projected to be among the top 10 picks in the draft. He declared for the draft after his junior season at Nebraska, where he recorded 17 1/2 sacks in two seasons.

Nebraska's February jobless rate of 2.7 percent lowest in US

March 28, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska's preliminary unemployment rate of 2.7 percent last month was the lowest in the country, a state report showed Friday.

The Nebraska Labor Department report said the February rate was seven-tenths of a point under the February 2014 rate of 3.4 percent and remained well under the new national average rate of 5.5 percent.

Nebraska's rate of 2.7 percent was trailed by North Dakota at 2.9 percent and South Dakota and Utah at 3.4 percent, according to U.S. Labor Department figures.

Nebraska high court: Doors should have stayed

March 28, 2015

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The adage goes that if opportunity doesn't knock, build a door. One rural Nebraska couple were forced to build 12 when they arrived at their newly purchased home to find all of the interior doors missing.

The Nebraska Supreme Court ruled in favor of the couple Friday, agreeing that the man who sold them the building should have disclosed that he planned to take the building's doors with him.

The high court's decision upheld a Custer County District Court ruling last year that found Andrew Solomon was wrong to take the building's 12 interior doors.

Colorado defends pot law, says Nebraska is free to legalize weed

March 28, 2015

DENVER (AP) — States are free to legalize marijuana, Colorado argued Friday in a filing to the U.S. Supreme Court in response to a lawsuit from neighboring states that have asked the nation's highest court to shut down Colorado's pot law.

The filing marks the first time Colorado has defended legal marijuana in writing. The federal government did not sue to block the state's 2012 vote to legalize pot for all adults over 21.

Nebraska transparency law constantly under attack

March 16, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A Nebraska law that allows the public to know the names and backgrounds of finalists for top jobs in government is sometimes ignored and frequently challenged, advocates for transparency say.

All efforts to end the disclosure law have failed in the Legislature, but government accountability advocates say they often see a new push for secrecy when a high-profile job comes open.

US charity staff to leave Sierra Leone amid Ebola scare

March 15, 2015

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (AP) — Ten health care workers with a Boston-based nonprofit organization responding to Sierra Leone's Ebola outbreak are to be evacuated to the United States after one of their colleagues was infected with the deadly disease.

Partners in Health said in a statement Saturday that the 10, the largest group to be evacuated to the United States over possible Ebola exposure, would travel on non-commercial aircraft and be isolated in Ebola treatment facilities.

Bill proposes state standards for Nebraska livestock permits

March 15, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A sharp decline in the number of Nebraska dairy farms while neighboring states prosper is driven by inconsistent local zoning regulations, some county officials say, and a measure moving through the Legislature aims to rectify the issue with a mandatory set of standards.

St. Patrick’s Day Special Enforcement Planned

March 14, 2015

(Lincoln, Neb.)- Reducing the potential for alcohol related crashes by cracking down on impaired driving is the focus of a special St. Patrick’s Day special enforcement effort conducted by the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP).

Troopers and communication specialists with NSP will put in overtime hours on St. Patrick’s Day, Tuesday, March 17 in an effort to gain voluntary compliance with all traffic safety laws as they work to keep Nebraska roads safe. The overtime funding is provided thanks in part to a $5,367.50 grant from the Nebraska Office of Highway Safety (NOHS).

State Fire Marshal Warns of Wildfire Danger

March 14, 2015

As the weather warms and potentially drier conditions occur in Nebraska, the State Fire Marshal reminds Nebraskans of the potential for wildfires. A lack of moisture, high winds, and a failure of individuals to exercise caution with regard to the fire danger potential is a combination for disaster and an area of concern for Nebraska Fire Service.

Ricketts to visit Broken Bow

March 14, 2015

Ricketts to travel state for Nebraska ag week tour

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts is set to travel the state as part of a National Ag Week tour.

Ricketts will visit Omaha, Broken Bow North Platte and Seward on Monday for various events.

The tour includes stops at commodity-processing facility in Omaha; a lunch with farmers, ranchers and agribusiness representatives in Broken Bow; his monthly call-in show in North Platte; and an agriculture banquet in Seward.

Sales tax bill for Nebraska farmland voted down in committee

March 10, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A bill that would have imposed a sales tax on Nebraska farmland to pay for property tax relief has stalled in a legislative committee.

The Revenue Committee voted 5-1 against the measure on Monday, with two senators abstaining. Committee members are sorting through various proposals designed to lower property taxes.

The legislation by Sen. Paul Schumacher of Columbus would have generated nearly $82 million in the next fiscal year. Virtually all of that money would go into a property tax credit fund for owners of agricultural land.

Ranchers uneasy about power line's Sandhills route

March 9, 2015

THEDFORD, Neb. (AP) — Some Nebraska ranchers remain uneasy about a high-voltage power line that is planned to cross part of the state's environmentally sensitive Sandhills region.

Rancher Dan Welch tells the Lincoln Journal Star (http://bit.ly/1HhRX64) the project will harm sensitive wildlife areas, create erosion in the sandy soil and scar the landscape with access roads.

But the Nebraska Public Power District says the new line's route is designed to minimize the effect on the Sandhills.

Plus, utility officials say the line will improve reliability and help wind power development.

Riley: Cornhuskers are learning new language this spring

March 9, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — New Nebraska football coach Mike Riley started building the foundation for the Cornhuskers future on Saturday. He also spent some of the first spring practice acknowledging the program's past.

Riley split the team into two groups for separate 90-minute workouts so he could better evaluate the personnel he inherited from former coach Bo Pelini.

"I liked the enthusiasm for the work as much as anything," Riley said. "Some of it looked a little bit like football from time to time, and we'll keep working on that part."

Words could be expensive under proposed domestic violence bill

March 7, 2015

By Kelli Rollin, Nebraska News Service

LINCOLN--A few word changes could make a big difference under a proposed bill.

LB 307, introduced by Sen. Rick Kolowski of Omaha, would increase penalties for domestic violence offenders and redefine stalking.

Kolowski said he wants to equalize punishments with this bill. Currently, first degree assault of a stranger holds harsher penalties than first degree assault of a family member. Also under the bill, stalking would include the use of technological devices.

Fiscally conservative Nebraska lawmaker seeks higher gas tax

March 7, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A lawmaker known as a tax-cutting fiscal conservative urged his colleagues Friday to pass a fuel-tax increase to help repair Nebraska's aging roads and bridges.

Sen. Jim Smith of Papillion argued that the phased-in, 6-cent-per-gallon increase would help maintain roads for farmers, truckers and businesses.

"Roads infrastructure supports the commerce of our state and the careers and livelihoods of our citizens," said Smith, a Republican who serves as state head of the conservative American Legislature Exchange Council.

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