Mayor Stothert flip-flops on restaurant tax and
loses another major business.

OMAHA, NE – This week alone Mayor Jean Stothert both flip-flopped on the restaurant tax and lost yet another business and major employer from the heart of downtown Omaha.
Jean Stothert campaigned on ending the restaurant tax and yet this week she announced support for the expansion of the tax to more food vendors. Stothert’s broken promises and failed leadership are also on full display with HDR announcing they will not build their multi-million headquarters in downtown Omaha.
“Jean Stothert broke her promise of ending the restaurant tax – and even worse, is now expanding the tax to even more food vendors. Given her record, it’s no wonder Mayor Stothert can’t keep businesses downtown,” said NDP Chair-Elect Jane Kleeb. “Republican Stothert’s failed leadership was made clear and obvious once again with HDR’s announcement they will be taking their dollars away from the small businesses that are the heartbeat of our downtown. It’s time for Omaha to declare independence from all the broken promises of Republican Stothert.”
Democratic Councilmen Ben Gray, Chris Jerram, and Garry Gernandt helped lead Omaha out of a fiscal calamity through supporting the restaurant tax, which brings almost $30 million dollars into the City of Omaha’s annual budget. Republican Jean Stothert may try to take credit for the now $10.8 million in surplus, but the only reason the surplus even exists is because of the restaurant tax she campaigned to end.
“Mayor Stothert should simply tell Omahans she lied about repealing the restaurant tax just to get elected,” said Kleeb. “We look forward to her explanation on why she keeps sending businesses outside of the vibrant and creative downtown Omaha.”

Further Background:

  • Food trucks level playing field on restaurant tax that brings surplus to Omaha, a tax Stothert said she would end. [1] [2]
  • Mayor Stothert failed to keep HDR downtown because of her failed leadership and broken promises.[3]

[1] http://www.omaha.com/news/metro/ordinance-on-city-council-s-july-menu-would-apply-restaurant/article_63ecafb1-c7e7-54e9-8205-03f2bd1a9905.html

[2] http://www.omaha.com/money/lawsuit-over-food-trucks-should-be-tossed-city-of-omaha/article_608e9205-4a64-5d6c-b2ef-c392911056ef.html

[3] http://www.omaha.com/money/hdr-excited-to-build-hq-in-aksarben-village-a-vibrant/article_838739bc-3eec-11e6-a241-732db1c227a1.html

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