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PRINT ROUNDUP: Nebraska rest areas reopen after toilet paper thefts
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PRINT ROUNDUP: Nebraska rest areas reopen after toilet paper thefts

All Interstate 80 rest areas have been reopened by the Nebraska Department of Transportation after some were closed earlier this week because of the theft of toilet paper.

The rest areas were closed whenever an attendant was not present at the facility, but truck parking remained available.

The department said Friday that it understands the importance of rest areas to the interstate highway system, particularly to trucking supply chains.

All rest stops will now be open 24/7, and staff will regularly clean and sanitize the buildings during daylight hours.

"We want to help to support those who are transporting vital goods and services across the nation to those who need it most," the department said in a news release.

Educational programming available 

The Nebraska State Education Association will offer educational programming for elementary and secondary students free to all children in the state beginning Monday.

Jenni Benson, president of the statewide teacher’s union, said four hours of daily live programming will be available through nearly every video and cable TV service, as well as online or via mobile app from Flood Communications News Channel Nebraska.

“Our 28,000 members care deeply about their students and want them to continue their learning during these school closures,” Benson said. “We are pleased to partner with News Channel Nebraska and Lincoln Public Schools to make this educational programming available statewide.”

The effort is in response to school closings across the state in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Programming for elementary students will air from 9-11 a.m. and for secondary students from 1-3 p.m. Monday through Friday. All live content will be captured and available for online demand playback.

NSEA Executive Director Maddie Fennell said the organization is working with its teachers to coordinate the programming.

“From read-alouds to learning games to instructional lessons with teachers, we will work to support our students and their families as we navigate this pandemic together,” she said.

Families can livestream from News Channel Nebraska at newschannelnebraska.com, download the NCN app on any mobile device, or access the programming through their local cable provider, NCN on Amazon Fire, Apple TV and Roku apps.

Those living in Omaha, Lincoln, Grand Island, Beatrice, Norfolk, Columbus and South Sioux City can also use an over-the-air antenna to access the live presentations. News Channel Nebraska will also share the programming with its 300,000 social followers.

Nebraska Recycles offers computer monitors 

In response to the need for in-home work stations because of the rapid spread of the coronavirus, Nebraska Recycles announced Friday it will donate 400 basic computer monitors to those in need.

Community members are invited to pick up a maximum of two monitors in the south parking lot at Gateway Mall, 6100 O St., from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Nebraska Recycles asks that people don't exit their vehicles, as the monitors will be loaded into vehicles by staff.

“We have been receiving a lot of requests for monitors with the need to work or educate from home," said Nebraska Recycles President Jack Doerr. "In this time of uncertainty, we are proud to be able to provide what we can and support the community."

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Weekend editor

Alex Lantz is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has had various roles at the Journal Star since 2012. He currently manages the news section on weekends and oversees the internship program.

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