Sen. Gloor holding out hope for Veterans Home bill

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Updated: Thu, 20 Feb 2014 06:15:07 CST

Senator Mike Gloor isn't giving up the fight to keep the Veterans Home in Grand Island, despite his priority bill coming to an early halt in Committee.

While the bill has stalled, Senator Gloor says there is still a silver lining.

"The good news is we got it to a vote," said Senator Gloor, District 35. 

But the votes haven't been in LB935's favor.  First, an amendment was passed removing the possibility of changing the fate of the Grand Island Veterans home.

"So once that was taken out, then I thought that we should move forward for the next time that something comes up to make sure that the legislature does have the final say," said State Senator Russ Karpisek, District 32.

But Senator Karpisek wasn't in the majority.  With a 4 to 3 vote, the committee stalled the bill.  Senator Murante says it's because too much of the discussion revolved around the retroactive look.

"With not a lot of discussion about the broader issue, with all future services and agencies, should there be legislative approval for that," said State Senator John Murante, District 49.

Now Senator Gloor is using this time to his advantage.

"I've had a number of Senators who are empathetic. Quite a few Senators who are empathetic. But turning that empathy into votes is the challenge," the Senator told News 5 on Thursday.

And the biggest challenge of all? Getting Senators outside of Central Nebraska to feel just as passionately about the bill.

"I have not heard from any of my constituents about where the Grand Island Veterans Home should be located," said Senator Murante.

Senator Gloor will be spend the coming weeks meeting with Senators who voted against the bill-- with the chance the Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee could bring the bill up again.

"I don't believe that to be a likely scenario," Senator Murante added. 

But Senator Gloor is holding out hope.

"I have an old saying. Never say never. And never say forever."

There is a chance the bill could still change the fate of the Veterans home.  If the bill were to make it out of committee and onto the Senate floor, any of the Senators could still make an amendment adding that controversial portion back in.