February 10, 2012                                                     NACO E-Line Archive 

Upcoming Events

Washington, DC
March 3-7, 2012


Southeast District Meeting 

Camp Carol Joy Holling, Ashland

March 8, 2012


Central District Meeting

Quality Inn, Hastings

March 15, 2012


Northeast District Meeting

Lifelong Learning Center, Norfolk

March 16, 2012


Panhandle District Meeting

Country Club, Alliance

March 28, 2012


West Central District Meeting

Sandhills Convention Center, North Platte

March 29, 2012


To view all upcoming events click here















AssocMembersAssociate and Sustaining Members

NACO Associate and Sustaining Members enable NACO to enhance its continuing education programs for county officials across the state. Visit NACO's complete associate and sustaining membership list here.


 EducationFoundationEducation Foundation Memorial Program

A gift to NACO's Education Foundation ensures that the children of county officials and county employees are eligible to apply for scholarships to continue their education at Nebraska's higher learning institutions. Whatever their passion - history, art, music, science, education, sports - the NACO Education Foundation will provide them an opportunity to fund their education beyond the K-12 level. Memorial gifts to NACO's Education Foundation are tax deductible and will be a lasting legacy in honor of your loved one's commitment to educating the children of Nebraska's county officials and employees. For more information about how to make a memorial gift, please contact Larry Dix  / 402-434-5660 ext. 226.

In This Issue

NEMA Issues Memo Regarding State/Federal Distaster Recovery Program

2012 NACO Institute of Excellence

2012 NACO Scholarships Available

2012 Directory of County Officials

2011 County Levies, Valuations and Tax Rates

NEFB to Hold Campaign Management Training Seminar

Legal Line

News Across the State

News from NACo

NACo Web-based Education

Legal Calendar

County Classifieds

Associate & Sustaining Members

NACO Education Foundation Memorial Program


NEMANEMA Issues Memo Regarding State/Federal Distaster Recovery Program

On February 3, 2012, Al Berndt, Assistant Director of the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency, issued a memo regarding inspections on county projects that have received funds through the State/Federal disaster recovery program. Click here to view the memo.


Institute2012 NACO Institute of Excellence 

The 2012 NACO Institute of Excellence is open to all elected and appointed county officials. Deadline for registration is February 20, 2012. To register, click here. For additional information, contact the NACO office at 402-434-5660.


Scholarship2012 NACO Scholarship Applications Available

Nebraska High School seniors who are the children or stepchildren of county offiicals or employees are encouraged to apply for one of twelve $1000 NACO scholarships. Additional information and the downloadable application can be found under the 'Services' tab on the NACO website. The scholarship deadline is March 1, 2012.


Directory2012 Directory of County Officials

The order form for the NACO 2012 Directory of County Officials is available here or on the NACO website. Each directory is $17 if tax-exempt or $18 if taxable.


Levies2011 County Levies, Valuations and Tax Rates

The Nebraska Department of Revenue, Property Assessment Division has published the 2011 county levies, valuations and tax rates. To view the report, click here.



NEFBNebraska Farm Bureau Federation to Hold Campaign Management Training Seminar

The Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation (NEFB) will be holding a campaign management training seminar, "The ABC's of Campaigning", on February 23-24, 2012. The two-day seminar will be held at the NEFB State Office and is designed for candidates for public office, their families, their campaign teams, and other individuals who may be interested in seeking elected public office. Registration deadline is February 17, 2012.


For additional information and to view the agenda, click here.


LegalLine Legal Line
Editor's Note: Legal Line is a feature that will periodically appear in NACO E-Line. This edition has been prepared by Beth Ferrell, a member of the NACO legal staff. Legal Line is not intended to serve as legal advice. Rather, it is published to alert readers to court decisions and legal or advisory matters important to county government. For a specific opinion on how the information contained in this article or that which will be discussed in future issues relates to your county, consult your county attorney or personal counsel.


Constitutional Issues Examined in Common Levy Case 


The Nebraska Supreme Court applied three constitutional principles to determine that a common levy for a legislatively-enacted learning community served a local purpose, not a state purpose under Sarpy Cty. Farm Bureau v. Learning Community, 283 Neb. 212, ___ N.W.2d ___ (2012). The Court examined constitutional prohibitions against the state levying a property tax for state purposes (Art. VIII, sec. 1A), prohibitions against commuting taxes (Art. VIII, sec. 4), and requirements for uniform and proportionate valuations (Art. VIII, sec. 1). Although the facts of the decision were specific to learning communities, the constitutional language applies to other governmental subdivisions, including counties.


The constitutional prohibition against levying property taxes for state purposes was adopted in 1954 and amended in 1966 when the state adopted a sales and income tax. The court reviewed a number of cases before concluding that the levy of a property tax by a local governmental unit should not be treated as a state levy for state purposes merely because the Legislature has authorized or required the local government to make the levy. The converse is also true. The crucial determination is whether the predominant purposes are state purposes or local purposes. The language of the statutory scheme is of prime importance in making such a determination. The Court found that because the predominant purpose of the common levy was to utilize property tax revenue to reduce or redistribute state equalization aid, thereby saving the state as a whole sales and income tax dollars, the learning community's common levy was predominantly for local purposes.


Next, the Court applied the constitutional proscription against commuting taxes. This section prohibits the Legislature from releasing either persons or property from contributing a proportionate share of taxes. An unconstitutional commutation occurs when tax funds raised in one district are diverted entirely to the benefit of another district.


Finally, the Court applied the uniformity clause to the concept of a common levy. The Nebraska Constitution provides that "[T]axes shall be levied by valuation uniformly and proportionately upon all real property and franchises as defined by the Legislature except as otherwise provided in or permitted by the Constitution." Art. VIII, sec. 1. The Court found that because the member school districts within the learning community were part of the same taxing district and the levy was uniform throughout the district, the levy was uniform and did not violate the uniformity clause.


StateNewsNews Across the State

Links are to outside sources and may not be available indefinitely


Supervisors oppose cutting death tax

Columbus Telegram, February 1, 2012


Planning commission addresses possibility of closing county roads

Grand Island Independent, February 1, 2012


Transition in the treasurer's office

Grand Island Independent, February 3, 2012


Inheritance tax take declines

McCook Gazette, February 6, 2012


County: Software still not working

Fremont Tribune, February 8, 2012


Dodge County receives $9,000 through Federal Forfeiture Fund

Fremont Tribune, February 8, 2012


Inheritance tax issue looms as County Board tackles mid-year budget review

Lincoln Journal Star, February 9, 2012


Inheritance tax issue still on the table

York news Times, February 10, 2012

NACoNewsNews from NACo 

NACo_LogoNACo 2012 Western Interstate Region Conference


Santa Fe County, New Mexico is hosting NACo's 2012 Western Interstate Region (WIR) Conference, May 16-18, 2012.


NACo's WIR Conference focuses on public lands and other issues critical to the western region of the United States. This year's conference will feature Dr. Lowell Catlett, a regent's professor/dean and chief administrative officer at New Mexico State University's College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences. An exciting futurist, Catlett's knowledge of technologies and their implications on the way Americans live and work is addressed in his upbeat presentations.


For additional information about the conference and to register, click here.


Online Achievement Award Applications Now Available


Applications for the 2012 Achievement Award program are still available. The annual program is non-competitive and recognizes innovative county government programs.


Application deadline is February 13, 2012. Click here for additional program information.


National County Government Month


National County Government Month, celebrated each April, provides an outstanding opportunity for you to talk proudly about programs and services that help the residents of your county.


The theme this year is Healthy Counties, Healthy Families.


To see all the resources provided by NACo to help you plan activities, click here.


NACoWebEdNACo Web-based Education 
After the Crash, Collaboration is Important in Collecting Road Crash Data
Thursday, February 16, 2012
1:00 PM - 2:15 PM CST
Collecting and analyzing crash data is essential for setting goals for road safety improvements. County engineers are learning that by collaborating with other county departments, they can obtain more thorough crash data. Join this webinar to learn about online tools that are facilitating the collection of crash data at the scene of the crash, as well as best practices for creating and maintaining a collaborative relationship with county law enforcement officials and emergency management staff. Register here.
NACo's Briefing on President's FY2013 Federal Budget
Friday, February 17, 2012
1:00 - 2:15 PM CST
During this webinar, Larry Naake, NACo Executive Director, Ed Rosado, Legislative Director and the NACo legislative staff will brief members and provide analysis of the proposed FY13 budget. Please register below to learn how the President's request is expected to impacy county government and the federal programs they participate in. This is a NACo members only webinar. You must log in to the Member Center to register.
Health Coverage for Your County Jail's Pretrial Population
Thursday, February 23, 2012
1:00 PM - 2:15 PM CST
Through the Affordable Care Act many uninsured, low-income individuals - some of whom will be involved in the criminal justice system - will become eligible for Medicaid and subsidized private health plans in 2014. Learn about the possible opportunities for individuals being held pretrial in county jails to gain health coverage, issues counties may face enrolling people in custody into appropriate plans and the potential fiscal relief this may offer counties. Register here.

For more information on these or other upcoming or previous webinars, visit the NACo Web-based Education page.
Nebraska Association of County Officials
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