Cindy Gonzalez

Cindy Gonzalez

Senior Reporter Cindy Gonzalez, an Omaha native, has more than 35 years of experience, largely at the Omaha World-Herald. Her coverage areas have included business and real estate development; regional reporting; immigration, demographics and diverse communities; and City Hall and local politics.

Proposal that targets government-assisted ‘home equity theft’ aired during public hearing

By: - March 23, 2023

LINCOLN — A retired judge, an Omaha City Council member and civil liberties lawyers were among those who stood up Thursday for a proposal to end what some have called government-assisted “home equity theft” in Nebraska. Among opponents who spoke against Legislative Bill 577 were county treasurers concerned about additional costs and companies that profit […]

State selects rural entities to receive the latest $10 million in Economic Recovery Act grants

By: - March 23, 2023

LINCOLN — Several rural Nebraska cities and the University of Nebraska were among winners of $10 million in grants that a state agency announced this week for pandemic recovery efforts. The funds came from the Economic Recovery Act approved last year as Legislative Bill 1024. That pot of funds, largely from the federal American Rescue […]

$250 million redo of tired regional mall signals further change in Nebraska’s fourth largest city

By: - March 21, 2023

GRAND ISLAND — A dying 1970s-era shopping mall is about to get a $250 million makeover that local  leaders hope will help return a retail sparkle and regional tourism draw to Nebraska’s fourth largest city. In its next iteration, the 50-acre Conestoga Mall site is to feature apartments and a hotel around a modern, downsized […]

Five Nebraskans honored by Civic Nebraska for helping to build a robust democracy

By: - March 20, 2023

OMAHA — Civic Nebraska, a nonprofit dedicated to voting rights and strengthening youth and civic leadership, is set to recognize five people who have helped build a “more modern and robust democracy.” The Strengthening Democracy Awards program April 13 also will feature a talk from national voting rights activist and 2023 Nobel Peace Prize nominee […]

South Omaha merchants get another shot at unclaimed ‘turnback tax’ grants

By: - March 17, 2023

OMAHA — Entrepreneurs in South Omaha are getting another shot at applying for about $36,000 in grant money left in limbo after nobody asked for those state “turnback tax” funds last year. Applicants have until early afternoon on April 6 to submit paperwork. Recipients are to be notified later that month. Speculating on why the […]

Image of an Omaha Fire/Rescue vehicle

City of Omaha to have its first woman fire chief

By: - March 16, 2023

OMAHA — The City of Omaha will have its first woman fire chief as Kathy Bossman this month succeeds retiring Fire Chief Dan Olsen. The appointment was announced Thursday by Mayor Jean Stothert. Bossman joined the department in 1997 as a firefighter paramedic. She has been promoted to captain, battalion chief and, in 2017, assistant […]

Less than a year into the job, Veta Jeffery is exiting as CEO of Greater Omaha Chamber

By: - March 15, 2023

OMAHA — Less than a year after she started, Veta Jeffery is abruptly exiting the top spot at the Greater Omaha Chamber. A press release issued Wednesday offered no reason and said a search for a new permanent CEO for the chamber has begun. While the search committee will work swiftly, it is likely to […]

Affordable housing advocates gather at State Capitol to learn and lobby for millions

By: - March 14, 2023

LINCOLN —  Nebraska’s billion-dollar onslaught of federal pandemic funds lit a fire of sorts last year under nonprofits that deal with affordable housing. They came to this year’s legislative session more organized as a coalition, said Wayne Mortensen of NeighborhoodWorks Lincoln. And on Tuesday, dozens of housing advocates from various parts of Nebraska converged at […]

‘Have jobs, need people’ is the message at Nebraska ‘workforce week’ event

By: - March 14, 2023

LINCOLN — With an unemployment rate of 2.5%, Nebraska remains among the five states with the lowest unemployment rates, according to data released this week from the U.S. Labor Department. Even though Nebraska reported adding about 5,000 workers in the past year, and about 1,000 in a recent month, the statewide business chamber president says […]

$43 million Capriana project adds a twist to Nebraska’s affordable housing crunch

By: - March 14, 2023

OMAHA — In a rather rare housing twist, a mixed-income neighborhood developing on Omaha’s western edge will offer single-family houses as the more affordable option and apartments as the market-rate component.  “Usually it’s flip-flopped, with the lower income renter and higher income homeowner,” said Kassie Inness, founder of developer Apogee Professional Services. “We thought this […]

South and North Omaha multimillion-dollar bill gets another airing, and good vibes from lawmakers

By: - March 9, 2023

LINCOLN — The State Capitol on Thursday saw another round of North and South Omaha advocates seeking to push hundreds of millions of dollars over the finish line and into economic development projects in those communities. The latest round of public testimony on an updated Economic Recovery Act was aired before a legislative committee different […]

Housing measures have Legislature hopping

By: - March 8, 2023

LINCOLN — If the third time’s a charm, State Sen. Tony Vargas might move past the finish line this year with proposed legislation that would make it unlawful to deny an apartment to someone based on source of income. The Omaha senator told a legislative committee Wednesday that nearly 20 other states and 100 cities […]