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City of Omaha questions police helicopter use in fundraisers

City of Omaha questions police helicopter use in fundraisers

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) _ Omaha officials are reviewing the practice of police offering rides in a department helicopter to the highest bidders in at least a half-dozen fundraisers.

The Omaha World-Herald ( ) reports that City Council President Ben Gray began questioning the practice after Police Chief Todd Schmaderer donated a helicopter tour of Omaha two weeks ago to a Roncalli Catholic High School fundraiser. The event raises money to support the school, which is Schmaderer’s alma mater.

Gray says that that while offering an inside look at police work is
well-meaning, the ride “went a little far. It didn’t follow (the state law) chapter and verse.”

Common Cause Nebraska chairman Jack Gould says that offering public equipment for a payment, even for charity, is illegal.

City officials have canceled rides recently won by bidders.


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