Whiteclay: What can Nebraska do?

Published Saturday, December 12, 2009
BY NANCY HICKS
LINCOLN JOURNAL STAR

What can Nebraska do?

Some suggestions from Friday’s hearing:

* Create buffer zone where liquor cannot be sold, thus closing all the beer outlets in Whiteclay.

* Limit alcohol sales to one store.

* Limit hours of sale of alcohol in Whiteclay.

* Have a full-time law enforcement officer in Whiteclay.

* Use state alcohol tax revenue from Whiteclay (about $122,500 last fiscal year) to help build a detox center or a homeless shelter.

* Create a safe house for children whose parents are drinking or using drugs.

* Help create day labor programs, perhaps a recycling center, to provide jobs for street people in Whiteclay.

* Establish agreement between Nebraska and the reservation to help eliminate the liability problems and pay the costs when the reservation ambulance goes into Whiteclay for an emergency.

* Work with South Dakota to reimburse households for alcohol-related accidents and deaths.

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2 Responses to “Whiteclay: What can Nebraska do?”

  1. The Battle For Whiteclay» Blog Archive » Legislative committee hears recommendations on problems near Whiteclay Says:

    [...] « Whiteclay: What can Nebraska do? [...]

  2. Paul Says:

    Gov. Heineman-

    Thank you for your response to my letter. Let me start by saying how deeply disappointment and disturbed I am by your response.
    While I understand that the state of Nebraska has spent countless hours addressing the issues that exist in White Clay, NE the results of such activity have been minimal. Crime and alcohol violations still permeate the town. As you said in your letter “increased enforcement alone will not solve the problems” .That being said I wonder if your attempts have merely served as a band-aid rather than as a solution. It seems to me that the valuable services of the Nebraska State Patrol could be better used than in curtailing the crimes that are directly attributable to one specific thing. Alcohol.
    I am sure that you are aware of the many websites that have evolved around this issue. In addition it appears that the press both in NE and SD have started to investigate what is being done to solve this problem. (I will include links in this email for your review) With so much attention to this issue I am having trouble understanding why Nebraska does not become proactive and simply refuse to issue alcohol distribution permits within 25, 50, 100 miles of the Pine Ridge Reservation. This solution would prove to be more than a band-aid and will immediately effect the situation. It is not Nebraska’s job to educate, treat or rely on tribal police to help monitor the situation. It is however, as the mayor of Nebraska, the responsibility to protect its people. While the very few residents and the state for that matter may gain financially from the sale of millions of can of beer it is doing so at the expense of a huge body of people. And that sir is just wrong.
    In your letter you asked for suggestions on how to stop this problem. Here is my solution: STOP ISSUING ALCOHOL DISTRIBUTION PERMITS IN WHITE CLAY!
    It is time that political leaders started to do the right thing, addressing issues that are in the best interest of the population as whole. While it may not be the residents of Nebraska’s fault that the Native Americans of Pine Ridge are susceptible to alcoholism, it is really a mute and self-centered point. Nebraska is affected every day by the criminal behavior that occurs in White Clay. Law enforcements time spent in one city could be better served throughout the state. Nebraska could use the positive press that banning alcohol sales would generate. And you Mr. Heineman could be recognized for being a pro-active politician rather than as one who blames others for “their” problems. Please do the right thing and ban alcohol sale in White Clay, NE.
    Sincerely,
    Paul
    In addition I would like to receive a list of the contributors to your most reason campaign. If you could help me ascertain such a list it would be greatly appreciated.
    http://battleforwhiteclay.org/

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