Gloor Says Vets Home Bill Too Polarizing, Governor Expects Funds - KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings

Gloor Says Vets Home Bill Too Polarizing, Governor Expects Funding Soon

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The veterans home decision is out of lawmakers hands, as Governor Dave Heineman tells Kearney, money for a new home should come soon.

Grand Island Senator Mike Gloor still thinks it's a good idea to give lawmakers the power to decide where to move state facilities, but knew his bill to do just that would be a tough sell.

"I knew from the beginning it would be an uphill battle," he said.

He thinks the idea has merit, even after his bill inspired by the controversial vets home move failed.

Gloor said, "Relocation of state services is still, I think an important bill, and who knows, may get a chance to revisit that in the next couple of years."

Gloor maintains his view that there should be public input and a vote of the Legislature before moving large facilities, but says it was too hot to handle at the capitol.

He said, "It was seen as a very polarizing issue and even now we stripped out the lookback provisions, I think most senators didn't want to be seen as taking sides one way or another."

Others in Grand Island continue the fight to retain the home that's been in the city more than 125 years. But Gloor says his part is done, saying, "I have spent my time and energy working the legislative angle on this, and haven't been connected with other initiatives I know are out there."

For his part, Heineman said, "As hard as this decision is, the focus needs to be on veterans."

Heineman continues to say it's time to move on and accept his decision to relocate to Kearney, where he expects funding soon.

Heineman said, "Within the next year, either later this year, or early next fiscal year, we're going to receive that federal funding. We're in the top 25, number 22. They funded a number of projects already. I think we're close to receiving a commitment from federal government."

Gloor agrees the focus should be on a new home for veterans. But continues to disagree about where the best site is, and who should have authority to make the decision.

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