OTOC (Omaha Together One Community)
Did you know that First Unitarian Church is a member of OTOC along with 25 other congregations
What is OTOC? It is a local Omaha organization which “teaches people to become effective leaders,
while exploring their legitimate interests, doing solid research, engaging in tough, but always respectful
public discourse, holding elected officials accountable and creating positive change through collective action.”
OTOC’s Vision: To create a connected community that bridges race, social and economic status that works together to influence policy about issues that we care about.
At Nov. 8th Steering Committee meeting, members voted to proceed on the
Raise-the-Wage Campaign. Members voted not to work on Decline-to-Sign until after the petition drive would happen to get on the ballot.
Google sheet if you need it. Copied and pasted off it for the info below.
OTOC Mental Health Civic Academy 11/11/21 @ 6pm via Zoom
Registration Link: http://bit.ly/OTOCMentalHealthCA
First UMC & Clair Memorial UMC present: Minimum Wage and Its Impact on Housing” 11/13/21 9-11@ via ZOOM
Action & Research Team Reports:
Housing Action Team, Gloria Austerberry, Augustana Lutheran Church
The Housing Team visited by Zoom with Mr. Scott Lane, Chief Housing Code Inspector for the City of Omaha, in September, to learn how things were going in his department implementing the Rental Property and Registration Ordinance. There are now 13 inspectors in the department, with two more inspectors plus an additional clerk to be hired effective January 1, 2022. His greatest need is to get warrants so he can do necessary inspections when landlords refuse to allow them. The current situation where tenants can refuse inspections with no penalty to the landlord and where some landlords threaten tenants with extra charges if they open the door to a city inspector creates a loophole that must be nipped in the bud.
We will organize a meeting with Mr. Lane and City Council members so they can address this as well as possibly changing the "consent decree that prevents tenants from filing complaints anonymously. We are also asking Council Members to ask the Omaha Legal Department to do the necessary research to determine if there could be an ordinance tying landlord registration to the ability to evict tenants in County Court. (This would potentially be similar to Senator Terrell McKinney's legislative effort that would have involved both Omaha and Lincoln.) Six months into 2022 we will check in with Mr. Lane again to see how the implementation of the 10 year cycle is going, especially regarding the need for additional housing code enforcement inspectors. We are also deferring the question about the length of cycle until a later time when it will be possible to evaluate the cycle as it being implemented. The consequential outcome of the meeting with Mr. Lane is the recognition he gave us that we are his ally, and that he would like regular discussions with OTOC as often as on a quarterly basis.
The Child Daycare and Early Education Research Committee has met twice in the the last month. Affordable quality daycare has been a consistently been raised as a family and friends concern raised in one-on-ones and house meeting. In addition, many OTOC institutional members operate daycares, after-school and summer programs. Business interest organizations such as the Omaha and Nebraska Chambers of Commerce support investment in this area to increase workforce development. Major local and national philanthropic funders are targeting this work.
The agree framework of the Build Back Better Act (The Social Infrastructure Bill) will invest billions of new federal dollars in this field, as of today, about 70 million dollars a year just in the Omaha metro area compared to around 30 million in government spending today. The new federal investment is currently structured to be a block grant to the State which will submit a plan to achieve federally set goals.
There are currently a lot of experts with a lot of plans on how to spend these new dollars but shockingly little input from parents and caregivers. The goal of this committee will be to empower that parental and caregiver input.
Individual Meeting Team, Kevin Graham, First United Methodist Church
Six leaders attended the first meeting of the Individual Meeting Team on Oct. 11, 2021, with four additional leaders expressing regrets and intentions to attend future meetings of the team. The six leaders present reported on 11 meetings and expressed commitments to meet with a total of 15 leaders before the next team meeting. The next team meeting will take place on Tues., Nov. 16, 2021, 7:00-8:00 pm, via Zoom video conference.
Please contact Kevin Graham (firstname.lastname@example.org) of First UMC, team chair, to request a link to the meeting so that you can get support from your fellow OTOC leaders in your work to do individual meetings that will build the organizational power of OTOC.
Free Trade Olive Oil for Sale
Free Trade Zatoun Palestinian Olive Oil, 25.4 oz (750mL) bottle $22
Money collected goes back to the Palestinian farmers and their programs such as Trees for Life and for youth, Project Hope.
Current OTOC Action Teams:
Housing and Revitalization
If you would like to receive the OTOC Newsletter go here: https://otoc.org/newsletter-sign-up/
Questions? Need more info about OTOC?
Contact Sharon Conlon at email@example.com
The OTOC website has several resource pages for you specifically about dealing with Covid-19.
Check them out at https://otoc.org/covid-19-action-site/?blm_aid=8131585
Minutes from OTOC meetings: