After working for the last 6 years to increase City funding to demolish 800 condemned buildings in Omaha, Omaha Together One Community (OTOC) testified in favor of $1.1 Million included in the proposed 2018 City budget for demolition of condemned structures, up from just $250,000 in 2012 when OTOC started pushing for increases. As a result, the backlog of abandoned houses has been brought down from over 750 to less than 125.Read more
In photo, Episcopal Bishop Mary Gray Reeves leads joint study session with Monterey County Board of Supervisors and COPA leadership on healthcare for undocumented residents.Read more
Days before Congress adjourns for October recess, the word among lobbyists was that a proposal for flood recovery funding for Louisiana would not even get a vote for inclusion in the continuing resolution (short term budget).
Then, according to Together Baton Rouge, sister IAF organizations across the country began contacting their congressional representatives and senators urging them to support the funding package -- even across partisan lines. Together Baton Rouge posted a video that, in less than one day, was viewed 55,000 times as leaders quickly spread its message urging people to contact their congressional representatives. TBR additionally credits the Louisiana Governor and congressional delegation for "working tirelessly across party lines to make the case for flood recovery."
48 hours after the funding was declared dead on arrival, the Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell, threw his full support behind the funding and announced it would receive a vote.
At stake is tens of thousands of homes and potential foreclosures.
Great Flood of 2016 and What We Need to Rebuild, Together Baton Rouge
Said Tom Mendez, "We do not want to hear that the budget is tight -- if it's so tight you should not have given a tax break to the few."Read more
In front of 400 leaders assembled at Mt. Zion First Baptist Church in Baton Rouge, Together Louisiana leader Rev. Theron Jackson of Shreveport laid out the source of the state's budget shortfall (corporate exemptions and lower income taxes on the wealthy), referred to the reliance on sales taxes as "the big swap" and bluntly stated, "This calls for righteous indignation."Read more
After announcing that Medicaid expansion would save the state $100 million, the governor requested that Together Louisiana leaders assist him with long-term fiscal reform. Leaders expressed concern about short-term expansions of regressive sales taxes and called on the governor to help address water quality in St. Joseph and a statewide problem of food deserts. See full report below for more.Read more
Later that night, one dozen leaders spoke in support of specific priorities including a wage increase to $13.03 for all adult city employees, including part-time temporary workers; investment in Capital IDEA training; after-school programming; investments in branch libraries; improved park facilities and more.Read more