Ricketts backs tax exemption for Nebraska military retirees

(MGN)
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LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts is proposing a tax exemption on military retirement pay in an effort to keep retirees from leaving the state.

Ricketts announced Friday that he will propose a bill to exempt half of the benefits paid to all military retirees. The measure would apply to an estimated 14,000 retirees in Nebraska and cost the state an estimated $15 million in lost revenue.

Ricketts says the bill is intended to replace a "clunky" state law that only provides a tax benefit to a smaller subset of military retirees.

Sen. Tom Brewer, of Gordon, will introduce the bill. Sen. Carol Blood, of Bellevue, who represents a large number of Offutt Air Force Base retirees, says many are moving to nearby Council Bluffs, Iowa, where they pay less in taxes.