Feb 25 2019
**Audio of this week’s column is unavailable**
During the recent February state work period, I spent a week in the Good Life. As I travelled around our state, I was happy to have the opportunity to meet with Nebraskans and listen to their thoughts and concerns about the challenges they face on a daily basis.
As always, Nebraskans are fully engaged on some of the most pressing issues of the day. Whether it’s enhancing the capabilities of our military, opening up new opportunities for our farmers, or improving education, there’s a lot of work to be done. I want to share with you a bit about what I have been discussing with Nebraskans.
My first stop was in Lincoln for a meeting with the National Army and Air Guard. I sat down with leaders of the 155th Air Refueling Wing and received an update on the status and readiness of the aerial-refueling aircraft, the KC-135R fleet. As the Air Force aims to expand its operational squadrons to continue to dominate the skies and keep our citizens safe, maintaining the readiness of the KC-135R fleet has never been more important. I was encouraged to hear about their continued support and commitment to executing the goals of the administration’s National Defense Strategy to protect our country.
I also received a summary of the movement of the 55th Wing at Offutt Air Force Base to the Lincoln facility during construction of the new replacement runway, something I’ve been working on for many years.
Additionally, I met with members of the Army National Guard and learned about where our citizen soldiers and airmen are currently stationed around the world – and where they will be going in the future. We also discussed the effectiveness of the Family Readiness Program and the paramount responsibility of assisting service members and their families in separations during short- and long-term deployments. Congress’s work is never done to support our military and their families. I was delighted to hear ways I can help further their important efforts in the Senate.
I am proud of Nebraska’s men and women for their dedication to keeping our armed forces fighting around the globe. I will keep doing my part in the Senate and utilizing my position on the Armed Services Committee to support the robust defense budget our National Guard needs to continue protecting the American people.
My next visit was with children at the Winnebago Public School. I was greeted by the footsteps of fourth graders running down the hallway towards me yelling “Senator Fischer!” and adorable cards that read “Welcome to Winnebago.” I toured the school and saw their brand-new theater, gym, and updated technology in their classrooms. I was also honored to be presented with a beautiful Winnebago school spirit Star Quilt during my visit. It’s an incredibly special memento to remember my visit.
My heart was full after this trip, and I was encouraged to see firsthand how grant dollars from the Impact Aid Program are brightening the educational experience of our future generations.
It’s always great to be on the road in Nebraska visiting with you. I’m looking forward to bringing your feedback to committee hearings, leadership meetings, and the floor of the Senate chamber.
In closing, I also wanted to remind Nebraskans that my office will once again be holding local office hours. Starting on Wednesday, February 27, my staff will be in six different communities: Hooper, Blair, Tekamah, Harrison, Chadron, and Alliance. Local Office Hours are a chance to share your concerns directly with members of my staff and receive assistance in navigating federal agencies.
Please note that this is just the beginning of our local office hours. Throughout the year, my staff will be traveling across the state and holding these meetings. Stay tuned to my social media accounts for more information regarding times and locations or visit my website at www.fischer.senate.gov.
Thank you for participating in the democratic process. I look forward to visiting with you again next week.