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Inside Story for Friday, July 30, 2010

Designated Carpool Parking Makes Debut

Carpool signsComing soon to an MCC location near you: preferred parking for carpoolers. Twelve stalls are now designated for carpoolers at South Omaha Campus, and each MCC location will see 6-12 carpooling stalls with the carpool designation in the coming weeks. These designated areas are marked with "Car/Van Pool Preferred Parking" signs. The parking spots are available to both student and staff vehicles carrying two or more persons.

Carpooling helps ease MCC's limited parking and reduces emissions. If the average commuter carpooled every day, he or she would save 500 gallons of gasoline and 550 pounds of poisonous exhaust emissions every year. Commuters sharing a ride to work would be the equivalent of taking 67.5 million cars off the road - four times the number of new cars sold in the U.S. per year. (The Green Book)

MCC faculty, staff and students who seek persons with whom to carpool are encouraged to visit the Metro Rideshare website.

Computers, Satellite Dishes Among Collegewide Auction Items

Current items set to be auctioned at the Collegewide Auction, Aug. 7 at FOC Bldg. 25, are available for preview at www.mccneb.edu/auction/.

You can contribute your unwanted items to the auction, too. Here's how:

  1. Fill out the Move, turn in, transfer of non microcomputer equipment form that can be found in the Forms Bank.
  2. Send that form to Central Stores, which will schedule a time to pick up the items.
  3. For questions, contact Bob Barnes at 457-2777 or Central Stores at 457-2300.

Open Enrollment Available for Dental Insurance

Open enrollment for Blue Cross and Blue Shield dental insurance only is available now through Sept. 30.  Employees may elect to change or add dependents to their dental coverage with a Sept. 1 effective date. 

Employees and/or dependents added to the BCBS dental plan during the open enrollment period are limited to Coverage A, Preventive and Diagnostic Dentistry only (exams, cleanings, x-rays) for the first 12 months. After the 12-month waiting period, the dental plan includes Coverage A (preventive and diagnostic), Coverage B (minor restorative) and Coverage C (major restorative).

For questions or to request a BCBS dental open enrollment form, contact Julie Nohrenberg in Human Resources, jnohrenberg@mccneb.edu or 457-2232.

Outdoor Concert at Sarpy Center

The La Vista Summer Concert Series returns to the Sarpy Center-La Vista Public Library on Friday, Aug. 6, with Blue House and the Rent to Own Horns at 6:30 p.m. Events are free and open to the public.

Vote for Top Environment Omaha Ideas

On July 15, Environment Omaha launched www.passthepotatoes.com, a virtual town hall event that invites anyone to submit or vote on ideas to improve Omaha's sustainability. You can help improve Omaha by voting for MCC staff member Greg Stachon's idea or vote for another.

Ideas are sought in five Environment Omaha content areas, with Natural Environment as the first category. The voting period for this category runs from July 30 to Aug. 6.

Car Maintenance Tips and Tricks

MCC's Auto Technology Program offers a number of easy-to-use car maintenance tips and tricks. Here are a few:

Taking care of your car in today's world can be compared to the 19th century when your great-grandparents had to take care of their horses. Don't expect it to live very long when you beat it to death.

When it comes to cars, the old saying, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" does not apply. Routine maintenance is required.

If the gas pedal sticks to the floor and will not return, put the transmission in neutral. Turn on your emergency flashers and pull off to the side of the road. Turn off the ignition as soon as you can.  Make sure you know what each position of the ignition key does and which position locks the steering wheel.

Driving in the city is considered "severe driving conditions." Driving on interstate for long periods is considered "normal driving conditions." The oil in your engine needs to be changed more often when driving in "severe driving conditions".

Pay attention to the little things about your car. It is telling you how it feels. Turn off the radio once in awhile and listen.

Most cars have many lights on the dash; however, the basic four are: oil light, engine hot light, battery light and check engine light. Become familiar with their meanings.

Performing proper maintenance will help maintain your vehicle's resale value as well as keep your car running properly. Regular maintenance is typically cheaper than making car payments. 

Keep your car cleaned inside and out! The quality of the work performed by a technician is directly related to the cleanliness of your car.

Making weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual checks are absolutely essential for maintaining a healthy car.

Know the basics of car care. Then you can tell if you are being taken for a ride by a technician or shop.

If your engine has aluminum cylinder heads, you must avoid overheating the engine. It is very easy to produce engine damage due to excessive heat.  Each time the engine runs too hot, the amount of damage increases. 

In the past, people who worked on cars were referred to as mechanics. Because of the sophistication of today's cars, they are called technicians.

Ask lots of questions. An unqualified technician does not like to explain because he/she does not understand the problems and/or the solutions.

Seeking Opinions on Alternative Transportation

Douglas County's Communities Putting Prevention to Work initiative works to make Douglas County a healthier and more active place to live. Your input will contribute to a foundation of knowledge to make the city an even better place to live.

Take a 2-minute survey and share your opinions about cycling and walking in Omaha. Your input will help address the state of alternative forms of transportation in Omaha.

Weekly Green Tip

Try to flush just one less time per day, and you will save about 4.5 gallons of water - as much water as the average person in Africa uses for a whole day of drinking, cooking, bathing and cleaning. -The Green Book

MCC in the News

Lan Huynh, MCC IT Specialist, on becoming a U.S. citizen, July 20, Omaha World-Herald
Fair Offers Resources for Seniors and Caregivers, July 23, KIOS

From the Board of Governors

The MCC Board of Governors approved a resolution authorizing the College's proposed budget statement and plan to administer the budget for fiscal year 2010-11.

Public hearings on the budget will be Aug. 24 and Sept. 14. Final approval will be Sept. 14, after amendments are included to reflect changes in county property valuations and any other amendments.  

This resolution also establishes a plan to administer the proposed budget as outlined in the Budget Calendar approved at the June 2010 Board meeting.

Other items approved at the July meeting included:

  • Recognition of Joel Williams as a recipient of the 2010 Kappa Beta Delta Dr. Andrew V. Stevenson Merit Scholarship. The $1,000 scholarship was awarded for his commitment to academic excellence and active involvement in the community. The award was presented by Dr. Idalene Williams, faculty advisor.
  • Minutes of the June 22, 2010, Board of Governors meeting and July 20, 2010, special meeting.
  • Appointments.
  • Accepted resignation from board member Patrick Leahy, who represents District 1. Leahy's resignation will be effective Aug. 2, 2010.

The MCC Board of Governors represents five districts, with one member at large. The board governs the College, sets policy, approves the budget and sets the local College tax levy.

MCC Job Openings

For information about the College's open positions and how to apply, visit www.mccneb.edu/hr or call the jobline at (402) 738-4050. Applications are also online at www.mccnebjobs.com.

MCC Is Making News

What's the latest and greatest? Check out the latest news releases issued by Public Affairs to find out.

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