Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

August 1991


Published in Great Plains Research 1:2 (August 1991), pp. 324–344. Copyright © 1991 The Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Used by permission.


In an effort to stem Nebraska's loss of population and create new employment opportunities, the State Legislature passed the Nebraska Employment and Investment Growth Act in 1987. The legislation provides various tax incentives to businesses that make new investments in the state or create "new jobs," the majority of which are located in metropolitan counties. However, the largest nuntber of jobs to result from this legislation is at IBP's beef-packing plant in Lexington. Previous studies of the impact of beef-packing plants upon small towns found high levels of social disruption associated with the arrival of the workers. Lexington, by contrast, has so far been able to avoid many of the adverse social impacts associated with sudden population growth by a de facto policy of restricting new housing construction in the community.