The Douglas County Board agreed Tuesday to contribute $5 million worth of inheritance tax revenue to help fund a $323 million cancer center for the University of Nebraska Medical Center.
The City of Omaha could also chip in a $35 million contribution to the UNMC project — but the money would come from a proposed new tax on cigarettes.
City Councilman Chris Jerram, a sponsor of the cigarette tax proposal, said the idea emphasizes public health and job creation.
“It’s taxing tobacco to care for those who would develop cancer from it and provide the best research possible, while at the same time having a huge economic impact,” Jerram said. Not everyone is on board with the idea, however.
We expect to get our first look at the proposed ordinance’s language sometime next week.
Smokers and non-smokers: what do you make of this idea?