January 1, 2016                                                                      NACO E-Line Archive  

Upcoming Events

Save the Dates For:   


NACO Legislative Bill Review Day

January 29, 2016

NACO Office Conference Room 


Nebraska Weed Control Association Annual Conference

Divots Conference Center, Norfolk, NE 

February 8-10, 2106




Nebraska Planning and Zoning Annual Conference

Younes Conference Center

Kearney, Nebraska

March 9-11, 2106

Agenda & Registration Information 




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.

In This Issue
In This Issue  
officeOffice Position Open at NACO
NACO has an immediate opening for a full-time office support position in the Lincoln office.  Position is an assistant to the Office & Finance Manager.   Employee will be required to perform detailed accounting functions for the association and a variety of office support duties.  Wages commensurate with education, experience, and individual strengths.   NACO has a comprehensive benefit program.   If you know of anyone with the required skill set, please have them send a resume to NACO.
cofficialsCounty Officials Directory Available in PDF Format
Effective January 1, 2016, the NACO Directory will be in electronic format available by selecting the "County Officials Directory" icon on the NACO website.  The directory is an annual publication that provides names and addresses for elected and appointed county officials in the State of Nebraska.  The electronic directory will be updated as changes are received by the NACO office.

The printed NACO 2015 Directory of County Officials is still available if you want the bound version. A printed directory is available for $17.00 if non-taxable and $18.00 if taxable.
legoutLegislative Outreach Opportunity
Since the legislative session begins next week, it's a great time to reconnect with returning legislators. All county officials are encouraged to meet with their senators to share legislative priorities and establish relationships for the new year. When senators are at home in their districts on weekends and recess days, it's a perfect opportunity to offer tours of county facilities to explain county functions and services.
Capitol_Building Ideas for hands-on learning could include: 
*   A trip around the county to view roads and bridges in need of repair.
*  A tour of your county's jail to discuss health care costs, mental health issues, and space issues.
*  A discussion of unfunded mandates, including a tour of your courthouse to point out space provided to Probation, Health and Human Services, and other state agencies.
*   A discussion about county levies, valuations, and county fees.
Nebraska high school seniors who are the children, stepchildren, or under the legal guardianship of county officials or employees are encouraged to apply for one of twelve $1,000.00 NACO scholarships.  Additional information and the application form can be found on the front page of the NACO website.  The scholarship application deadline is March 1, 2016.  To access the application from this article, click here.
roadstandardsTraining on Proposed Changes to County Roads Standards

The most extensive changes are being proposed for county roads and municipal streets standards since their inception in 1970.  The purpose of this presentation is to review the standards in general and discuss the more significant changes.  Most of the focus is on minimum design standards, including 3R standards, a new format for tables, and several new notes and definitions.   Expectations of the Nebraska Board of Public Roads Classifications and Standards will be discussed, especially relaxation of standards requests. State highway standards are not covered.
North Platte -
Lincoln -
commvolConsider Being A Community Volunteer
Calling all volunteers!

Tax season is right around the corner, and Community Action offers free tax preparation services to low-to moderate-income individuals and families in our community. We need your help this year to ensure that those eligible to the Tax Prep program are getting the services they need. The U.S. Census estimates that over 50% of families in Lincoln alone earned less than $50,000 annually, making them eligible for tax preparation services. Since the Tax Prep program operates solely on volunteers, eligible individuals and families are counting on people like you to share your time and talents, so that they can meet their basic needs. Whether you have had experience filing taxes in the past, or have no experience at all, we welcome you to join our team of volunteers! Community Action will provide all of the necessary training free of charge. Volunteer training begins in December through January, and tax preparation season runs from late January through April 15. If you would like to volunteer, but do not want to prepare taxes, we are also recruiting volunteers for the following positions: site coordinators, intake workers, greeters, and interpreters.

For questions or more information about becoming a volunteer and making a difference today, contact Georgann Roth at: 402-875-9320 or

Community Action empowers those living in poverty to reach economic stability

vetserveTraining to Better Serve Veterans

The Nebraska Association of Local Health Directors (NALHD) are supporting and coordinating five No Wrong Door trainings across the state (see attached flyer for dates and locations). These trainings have been developed by the multi-disciplinary Veteran's Brain Injury Task Force over the past several years to give community members from a range of professions/organizations a solid understanding of issues that veterans, service members, and their families/loved ones face. The training also gives participants resources and strategies they can use to serve veterans, service members, and their families better.

To view the informational flyer to obtain more details, click here.

Susan Bockrath, Executive Director of the NALHD says that, "I want to make sure that other folks, especially those who maybe don't think their work relates to veterans, know that these trainings are coming up and that there really is value for everyone... teachers, principals, county clerks, law enforcement...everyone."
marcMulti-Agency Resource Training Center Opportunity
Nebraska Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NE VOAD) is sponsoring a training this fall and early winter in four locations on multi-agency resource centers (MARCs). A MARC is a one-stop shop for those affected by disasters-various community and state organizations and agencies have booths. Disaster victims can visit all the service/information providers and determine a plan of action based upon their and their family's needs.   
Red Cross will teach the training, and it is free to attend; lunch will be provided. Travel scholarships are available; information is on the flyer. Participants will learn the benefits of a MARC, how to set up a MARC, what agencies should be included, and challenges for coordinating a MARC. This information will be useful to community leaders!

View the training flyer here.

For more information contact: Ashley Mueller, MS, Extension Educator, Disaster Education Coordinator, Nebraska Extension.  Email: Office phone: 402-727-2775.  Address: Nebraska Extension in Dodge County, 1206 W. 23rd Street, Fremont, Nebraska 68025-2504  
grantwriteGrant Writing Training in Omaha in January

The Omaha Police Department and Grant Writing USA will present a two-day grants workshop in Omaha, January 11-12, 2016.  This training is for grant seekers across all disciplines.  Attend this class and you'll learn how to find grants and write winning grant proposals.
Beginning and experienced grant writers from city, county and state agencies as well as nonprofits, K-12, colleges and universities are encouraged to attend.
Multi-enrollment discounts and discounts for Grant Writing USA returning alumni are available.  Tuition payment is not required at the time of enrollment.
Tuition is $455 and includes all materials: workbook and accompanying 420MB resource CD that's packed full of tools and more than 200 sample grant proposals.  Seating is limited, online reservations are necessary.
Complete event details including learning objectives, class location, graduate testimonials and online registration are available here  .
The Client Services Team
at Grant Writing USA
Sgt. Kurt Sorys
Omaha Police Department
More than 10,000 agencies across North America have turned to Grant Writing USA for grant writing and grant management training.     
boardelectBoards To Elect Chairs in January
Neb.Rev.Stat. 23-156 provides that the board of county commissioners at its regular meeting in January of each year shall elect a chairman of the board to serve for the ensuing year.

Pursuant to Neb.Rev.Stat.  23-272, "The regular meetings of the county board shall be held in January." Until this statute was amended in 2004, it required the reorganization to occur on the second Tuesday in January. As it now stands, the re-organizational meeting can occur on any date in January.

The election of the chair is addressed in 23-274. "The board at its regular meeting of each year shall organize by choosing one of its number as chairman, who shall preside at all meetings of the board during the year; and in case of his absence at any meeting, the members present shall choose one of their number as temporary chairman."
setsalariesCounty Boards and a Limited Number of Officials' Salaries Must Be Set by January 15, 2016
Pursuant to Neb. Rev. Stat. 23-1114, the salaries of all elected county officers must be fixed by the county board prior to January 15 of the year in which a general election will be held for the respective offices.  The majority of elected officials' salaries were set for their term by January 15, 2014; however, there are two exceptions. The first exception is for elected officials who will be elected in the non-Presidential election years. The second potential exception is for county boards that choose to increase or decrease the salary for county board members. Boards are able to do so due to provisions in the Nebraska Constitution, Art. III, 19 that provides in part:

[T]he compensation of any public officer, including any officer whose compensation is fixed by the Legislature, shall not be increased or diminished during his or her term of office, except that when there are members elected or appointed to the Legislature or the judiciary, or officers elected or appointed to a board or commission having more than one member, and the terms of such members commence and end at different times, the compensation of all members of the Legislature, of the judiciary, or of such board or commission may be increased or diminished at the beginning of the full term of any member thereof.

Recognizing that 2014 was an election year providing for the election of a majority of county officials and that County Board members were required to set the salaries for the 2015-2018 term prior to January 15, 2014, the Nebraska Association of County Officials (NACO) once again renewed its continued effort to promote that fair and equitable salaries and benefits be provided to all elected and appointed county officials.  A report of salary recommendations and supporting documentation was previously sent to your county clerk in 2013; however, if you would like a copy of the information, please contact Elaine Menzel at:
legallineLegal Line
Tax Bills Take Effect on January 1, 2016
As 2015 comes to a close, Nebraska will ring in several new laws affecting counties. While most bills passed during the 2015 session carried an August 30, 2015 effective date, the Nebraska Constitution allows the Legislature to set different operative dates. Article III, section 27 sets the standard effective date as three calendar months after adjournment unless two-thirds of the Legislature votes otherwise. In some cases, the Legislature votes to enact an emergency clause so that the bill takes effect after the governor's signature. In other instances, a specific operative date, such as January 1, is set forth in the bill.

"No act shall take effect until three calendar months after the adjournment of the session at which it passed, unless in case of emergency, which is expressed in the preamble or body of the act, the Legislature shall by a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected otherwise direct. All laws shall be published within sixty days after the adjournment of each session and distributed among the several counties in such manner as the Legislature may provide." Art III, Sec. 27
For bills passed in 2016, the tentative effective date will be July 21, 2016. The Legislature will convene on January 6 and is tentatively scheduled to adjourn sine die on April 20. The calendar for the legislative session is available here.
Which bills will take effect on January 1, 2016?
Starting on January 1, 2016, Nebraskans will receive an exemption of the first $10,000 of tangible personal property for each tax district in which a personal property tax return is filed. Under LB259, the state will reimburse counties for the tax loss due to the exemption. A Directive from the Nebraska Department of Revenue on how to implement the program is available here.
Fraternal benefit societies, such as Woodmen of the World and the Knights of Columbus, will receive a property tax exemption under LB414.
Additional types of renewable energy sources will be taxed under the nameplate capacity structure pursuant to LB424. The bill expands the tax from wind energy to solar, biomass, and landfill gas energy sources.
Countygovernementdaycd County Government Day PowerPoint
The PowerPoint presentation is available electronically at no charge (sent via e-mail) for use by counties during their annual County Government Day. The PowerPoint provides a comprehensive look at county government functions in the State of Nebraska and can be customized by each county. CD's are also available for $10.00 each to cover processing, shipping and handling. To request the County Government Day PowerPoint electronically, please e-mail your request to The CD order form is available here.
NACO's 2015 Directory of County Officials is a valuable resource that not only gives you names, addresses, phone numbers, fax numbers and e-mail addresses of every county official in the state, but includes a listing of county board meeting days, NACO districts, county seats, NACO officers and directors, affiliate officers and NACO staff.  In January, county clerks for each county will receive one complimentary copy of the directory intended for use by all offices in their courthouse.  For additional copies, click here for the order form.
County_Board_Handbook_2012 2015 County Board  Handbook and Revisions
The 2015 County Board Handbook and related revisions are now available! The cost for a current handbook, including legislative information from the 2015 session, is $80.00/book plus $18.00 shipping and handling per book. The 2015 Supplement to the County Board Handbook is available for $25.00 plus $5.00 shipping and handling. The order form is available on the NACO website. For questions, contact Elaine Menzel by email or call her at (402) 434-5660 ext. 225.
News From NACo

Sunday, April 17, 2016 - Tuesday, April 19, 2016
Washington, D.C.

It's not too late for counties to apply for the Stepping Up National Summit.  The National Summit will bring together teams of county elected officials, criminal justice and behavioral health leaders and other stakeholders to reduce the number of people with mental illnesses in U.S. jails.  The deadline has been extended until January 15, 2016.


Washington, DC

The NACo Legislative Conference is held on an annual basis in Washington, DC. This meeting brings over 2,000 elected and appointed county officials from across the country to focus on legislative issues facing county government. Attendees hear from key Administration officials and members of Congress and are offered a myriad of additional educational opportunities addressing current and hot topic issues. A day of lobbying on Capitol Hill the last day rounds out an information-packed conference.

Meeting in Washington, D.C. gives you access to key decision makers that no other city can provide. The NACo Legislative Conference focuses on timely and pressing federal policy issues that have an impact on America's county governments. Attendees help shape NACo's policy priorities and positions, advancing our message to key federal decision makers, and receive training on the latest information and tools.

Educational offerings will cover cutting-edge solutions to help you lead your county and networking provides valuable interaction and time to share and learn from county peers across the U.S.

Nebraska Association of County Officials
1335 H Street | Lincoln, NE 68508 | 402-434-5660