LINCOLN - In his 2024 state of the state address, Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen focused on the phrase “The Good Life” and described  a 2019 marketing campaign from Nebraska Tourism as detached from economic development.

In his address, the governor said the state must focus on great careers and recruiting people to ‘The Good Life.’

Pillen: “Speaking of attracting people to Nebraska, it’s tough to do that with nonsense slogans like we’re ‘not for everyone.’

We must bring our economic development, people recruitment, and tourism promotion work back under the same leadership, so that they can be better coordinated and run at less administrative expense to the taxpayers.”

He said a bill by Sen. Mike McDonnell would correct a decade-old mistake of separating tourism from economic development.


Pillen: “I urge you to pass this bill so we can again tell the world that The Good Life is for everyone.”

The Nebraska Examiner reported Monday that the Nebraska Department of Economic Development is suggesting the pitch “The Good Life is Calling” to help recruit workers.

McDonnell’s bill, LB 624, would end the State Tourism Commission as an independent entity and return to being a division of the Department of Economic Development.

The Nebraska Examiner report says the Tourism Commission reported a record $7.2 million in lodging tax revenue in 2022, up 18.3 percent over the previous record set in 2021.

The commission says the ‘Honestly, it’s not for everyone’ slogan pushed Nebraska from the least likely state for travelers to visit to being 45th in the nation.

 McDonnell says the move will lead would lead to a more unified message in future campaigns.