I would like to thank the Nebraska Highway Commission for listening to members of the Lincoln Independent Business Association (LIBA) and quickly responding to LIBA’s call to get Lincoln’s South Beltway built.

On September 23, 2011, I went to the Nebraska Department of Roads (NDOR) Highway Commission meeting to talk about the necessity of a South Beltway in Lincoln. Just before I spoke, an NDOR staffer said that Lincoln’s stretch of Highway 2 was the ONLY Nebraska highway in the “red zone” or the extreme category for semi-truck traffic in the future. I later said that at least one person dies on Highway 2 every year, and we need to do something about it.

The commissioner’s responded by saying that they would be willing to help with the beltway but they hadn’t heard enough “noise” from Lincolnites. So I sent out emails and made phone calls to LIBA members and asked them to let their voices be heard. I was copied on several emails that LIBA members sent to the Highway Commission, urging them to build the beltway.

The commissioners listened. On November 2, (about a month later) the NDOR announced that the Lincoln South Beltway was on its 10-year priority list, which was made possible by Senator Deb Fischer’s 2011 Roads Funding bill LB84.

I want to thank all of you who made phone calls or sent emails. You made a difference! You deserve the credit for this exciting future event. I would also like to invite those of you who are in favor of building the beltway to send an email to greg.weinert@neb.gov and thank the Highway Commission for listening to the united voice of the people. We really can make a difference.

If you are not a member of LIBA we would like to add your voice to our organization.  Business memberships are under $265 a year and individuals who believe in a conservative approach to government are also encouraged to join for only $100.  LIBA studies and promotes these types of issues that are important to businesses and our community.  If you have an interest in joining LIBA, please call me at 402-466-3419.

by Coby Mach, President & CEO
Lincoln Independent Business Association