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Old 05-04-2008, 02:32 PM
Location: Bellevue, Ne
23 posts, read 60,092 times
Reputation: 11



This is an e-mail I sent to Richard Baier and his response.. He is the director of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development. His answer is found below. Bellevue gets a tin building on Franklin Street, the Wilson concrete eyesore and offices for defense contractors. Papillion and LaVista get Cabelas stores, hotels and huge shopping centers.

Does that seem fair to you?

Bellevue is being short changed in Economic Development

There are three groups who are being paid to bring economic development to Bellevue who are failing miserably. What makes the failure worse is the fact that they will not even discuss it. I have tried for years to find out who the Nebraska Department of Economic Development has assigned to Bellevue. Richard Baier will not even answer me. Mr. Baier is a strange fellow. He was the Economic Development director for North Platte. I helped him bring a Walmart distribution center and 800 jobs to North Platte as the representative from Qwest. For the past 6 years, Mr. Baier has refused to acknowledge my help. HE DID, HOWEVER, ACCEPT THE PROMOTION THAT THIS EVENT GOT HIM. The focus of all state activity is the corridor along I-80. Bellevue gets short-changed yet we pay the bulk of the taxes in the county.

Two other groups should share blame. The Bellevue City Council and the Sarpy County Economic Development Corporation (SCEDC) which offices at the Omaha Chamber of Commerce , have not done their job. I admit John Yochum presents a quarterly report to the City Council but the only economic development we have had is a tin building in Olde Towne. Toby Churchill ignores my requests for a meeting, too.

The City Council, led by Stacey and Charvat, has let downtown die. The Fort Crook Road development will fail unless it is financed as a BID. We are 3 years late on the Comprehensive Plan. Why would a business move to Bellevue with the horrible headlines over the past few years?

Carter McCann

Sent:Friday, May 02, 20084:06 PM

Mr. McCann,

As I have indicated to you in the past, the Department of Economic Development (DED) has a field staff person that is assigned to coordinate our communities activities in Southeast Nebraska, including Bellevue. That contact is Whitney Bumgarner. She can be reached at 402.471.6281 or whitney.bumgarner@nebraska.gov.

DED does not have a person specifically assigned to work full-time in Bellevue. However, DED works closely with Megan Lucas at the Bellevue Chamber and with Toby Churchill at Sarpy County Economic Development. I have spoken with both of them this week about your concerns. Over the past few years, I have personally been involved with multiple efforts to support the expansion of defense contractors in the Bellevue area as well as other business recruitment activities in the community.
Richard J. Baier, DirectorNebraska Department of Economic Development301 Centennial Mall SouthLincoln, NE68508
(402) 471-3747

From: Carter McCann [mailto:cgm707@cox.net]
Wednesday, April 30, 20088:28 AM
To: Baier, Richard
Importance: High

Who is the Bellevue representative from your office?

Clearly, they have failed miserably.
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Old 05-04-2008, 02:51 PM
Location: West Omaha
1,181 posts, read 3,555,400 times
Reputation: 474
Do you think its possible that LaVista and Papillion are sometimes simply better choices?? Or that maybe the owners of Cabela's - which is a very very selective company - had their own reasons for putting a store on I-80?? This never ending blaming game you so willingly take part in is getting to be an old tune. I think a lot of people from Grand Island or Scottsbluff might think that the economic development in Bellevue is quite robust. Does Papillion complain about Bellevue's advantageous relationship with the military?

Furthermore, everyone of your diatribes is actually centered around how YOU were affected. Why you aren't getting credit or why YOU aren't getting a pat on the back. Your story is getting to sound old.

Last edited by mattpoulsen; 05-04-2008 at 03:39 PM..
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Old 05-04-2008, 04:30 PM
Location: Omaha, NE
1,119 posts, read 3,715,573 times
Reputation: 398
Default ...

The Department of Economic Development has very little influence on whether a hotel or Cabela's wants to build in Bellevue..

I don't understand how Bellevue is getting short-changed here, As a matter of fact if anything, the city of Bellevue has had much more economic development than Papillion, La Vista and Gretna, just the last few years have been better for those cities..

I'm sorry but Bellevue is not being excluded, they have had huge successes under the Nebraska Department of Economic Developments direction..

Where do you think all of these defense contractors and Offutt role expansions are coming from? And why do you think a Cabela's is better than top paying space, IT, and military jobs? If you want a hotel developer, then I'd suggest you write these developers a letter.. Especially since they seem to 'favor' cities that are along the interstate..
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Old 05-04-2008, 05:07 PM
Location: Papillion
2,584 posts, read 9,225,614 times
Reputation: 883
I'm not sure the state economic development folks helped at all with either LaVista or Papillion. I think it was a cooperative spirit between the local city administration, mayor, city council and chamber of commerce that did it.
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