May 6, 2016                                                                                                        NACO E-Line Archive  

Upcoming Events

Save the Dates For:   
CBWCounty Board Workshop
June 1-3, 2016
Holiday Inn
Let us know if you are interested in golfing on June 1

CODCClerks of the District Court Summer Workshop
June 8-10
Buffalo Point Steakhouse

ClerksClerks, Register of Deeds and Election Commissioners Workshop
June 15-17, 2016
Cornhusker Hotel
Tentative Agenda

HighwaySuptsHighway Superintendent, Surveyors, Engineers Workshop
June 14-16, 2016
Hotel Grand Conference Center (Formerly Mid-Town Holiday Inn)
Grand Island
Registration Form

TreasurersTreasurers Workshop
June 14-16, 2016
McCook (June 14)
Hayes Center (June 15-16)

AssessorsAssessors Workshop
August 22-25, 2016
Holiday Inn

Place your logo here and link it to any website
For details contact:


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.

TopIn This Issue
scholarship2016 NACO Scholarship Recipients Selected
Twelve children of county officials and employees have been selected to receive $1,000 NACO scholarships to assist with college expenses for the 2016-17 school year. The recipients and their home counties are:

Kasey Cllifford, Hayes; Paige Cross, Banner; Austin Freeman, Pierce; Megan Giese, Dodge; Jasmine Jallen, Cheyenne; Ashlyn Lang, Scotts Bluff; Josie Minor, Lancaster; McKenzie Paulison, Douglas; Sarah Ruzicka, Hall; Jacob Schaub, Cheyenne; Jace Walther, Frontier; Andrew White, Sarpy.
For pictures and a brief history about each recipient, click here.
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SummerworkshopsSummer Workshop Registration Deadlines Are Fast Approaching
Five Summer Workshops have been planned for June of this year and one in August.  Have you registered for the workshop of your respective group?

County Board Workshop
Deadline May 27th
Clerks of the District Court Workshop
Deadline May 19th
Clerks, Register of Deeds and Election Commissioners Workshop
Deadline June 3rd
Highway Superintendents, Surveyors and Engineers Workshop
Deadline April 15 or ASAP
Treasurers Workshop

Deadline June 3rd

Assessors Workshop
Deadline August 12th

If you haven't already registered for your specific workshop, please click on your group name and then review the agenda which appears in the left column of this edition and follow up with the registration process.  It's simple, easy and it lets others know how to plan best for those in attendance

recycle Grants Available For Recycling Equipment    
Recycling Equipment Grants Available for 2016-17
Nebraska State Recycling Association (NSRA) has grant funds available for municipalities, other government entities, non-profits and recycling companies (for example, waste haulers) who wish to purchase recycling equipment.  Interested parties should go to and call Deb Rost at 402-933-3059 in Omaha for more information. Or email to:
Grants can help fund the purchase of recycling trailers, semi trailers, carts, dumpsters, balers, lift-gates, forklifts, trucks and more. Equipment may be new, used or in need of refurbishing. In some cases, applicant's existing equipment can be refurbished with this grant.  Grants will be awarded until the funds are depleted. This is a quick-turnaround program where application-to-approval is usually completed in about a month.
Also available this year will be recycling review/consulting on existing or new recycle programs, ranging from a light review to in-depth, by phone or
on-site. Review can be conducted with or without an equipment grant.
This grant is one of 118 grants that will receive $18.8 million in grant awards from the Nebraska Environmental Trust. The Trust has awarded more than $250 million to over 1,900 natural resource projects in Nebraska since 1993, and their grants are funded by proceeds from the Nebraska Lottery.

The Nebraska State Recycling Association is a membership organization of public and private organizations as well as citizens, and has been a recycling advocate for Nebraska since 1980.

bridgeNDOR Announces Working Group For County Bridge Match Program
From the Communication Office of the Nebraska Department of Roads

The Nebraska Department of Roads (NDOR) has announced members of the County Bridge Match Program working group.  The working group was created as a result of the Transportation Innovation Act (TIA), which was signed into law by Governor Pete Ricketts on Monday.  The working group is comprised of leaders from across Nebraska that represent statewide associations, county officials, and bridge authorities.  The group is responsible for defining the program criteria and guidelines but not the actual selection of the bridges, which will occur at a later date.

Members of the working group include:  Larry Dix, Nebraska Association of County Officials (NACO) Executive Director; Steve Riehle, Hall County Engineer and President of the Nebraska Association of County Engineers, County Highway Superintendents and County Surveyors (an affiliate of NACO); Chris Jacobsen, Custer County Highway Superintendent; Steve Mika, Saunders County Highway Superintendent; Kevin Barta, Knox County Highway Superintendent; Tim Ryan, Keith County Highway Superintendent, and Dennis Wilson, Sarpy County Engineer and member of NDOR Innovation Task Force.

The working group and NDOR staff responsible for coordination will meet over the spring and summer months to further define the program in preparation for 2016 implementation.  The NDOR is required to present details of the program, to include participation criteria and matching fund requirements for counties, to the Appropriations Committee and the Transportation and Telecommunications Committee of the Legislature on or before December 1, 2016.   Working group member Steve Riehle noted, "It is encouraging, especially to those aware of the issues with county bridges in Nebraska, that NDOR has put so much emphasis on ensuring stakeholders are involved in defining the process and program selection criteria."

The County Bridge Match Program is one of three programs established by TIA, other programs include the Accelerated State Highway Capital Improvement Program and the Economic Opportunity Program.  TIA authorizes up to $40 million in funds from the Transportation Infrastructure Bank to be used for the County Bridge Match Program, which would terminate in 2023.

According to NDOR Director, Kyle Schneweis, "We are excited about the opportunity to implement innovative solutions to improve our bridge infrastructure.  NDOR looks forward to working with our bridge partners to develop program criteria as we move forward with these much-needed improvements to our county bridges."

NDOR Contact: Vicki Kramer
, (402) 479-4512 or
golfoutingGolf Outing Prior to County Board Workshop
golf_event7.jpg NACO will be hosting a golf outing on the day prior to the County Board Workshop. This year we will be meeting at the Meadowlark Hills Golf Course at 1:00 p.m. in Kearney.  Each participant can decide whether they would like to play nine or eighteen holes of golf.  There will be no extra fees for participation.  It will just be the course fees of $16 for nine holes and $23 for eighteen holes.  Carts are $11 for nine holes and $14 for eighteen holes per rider. 

Everyone is encouraged to join a four-some at the time unless a predetermined group has been selected.  Each participant will keep their own scores and the scorecards can be turned in to LeRoy Janssen on opening day of the workshop so winners of both nines and the overall winner can be determined.  The winners will be announced at the Thursday evening banquet.  There have been no prizes set aside for this event; but will allow for bragging rights for those deserving of the honors.

This event is not a part of the workshop registration.  It is a separate and stand alone event.  The camaraderie among peers in the spirit of competition is the benefit of this undertaking.  Please sign up and enjoy the afternoon with your counterparts in county government.

If you are interested in participating in this event, please send an email to prior to May 30th  to determine initial interest and to let Meadowlark Hills Golf Course know the number of participants that we expect.  

legallineLegal 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 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.
Nebraska Supreme Court Decides Guardian Ad Litem Fee Indigency Case
After a district court ordered a county to pay for a guardian ad litem (GAL) in a divorce case because the wife was indigent and bankrupt, the Nebraska Supreme Court looked at whether she had sufficient funds to pay without prejudicing her ability to provide for the necessities of life. While the court declined to establish a bright-line rule for determining indigence based upon the amount of income or funds remaining after regular expenses, it reversed the district court's finding that the wife was indigent.
In White v. White, 239 Neb. 429, __ N.W.2d __, the parties in a divorce were each required to pay half of the costs for the GAL appointed for the children. The wife filed bankruptcy and listed the GAL as a creditor. The GAL made a motion in district court asking to find her indigent and order Douglas County to pay the fees. After the bankruptcy was completed, the district court found the wife to be indigent and ordered the county to pay the GAL fees. The county appealed.
The county argued that its due process rights were violated because it did not receive proper notice. It questioned the timing of the indigency determination and the opportunity to be heard on the reasonableness of the fees. The court found that the county had no right to due process because it is a creature of the state, not a "person" and that the county's other arguments had no merit.
Next, the county argued that the district court erred in finding that the wife was indigent solely because the debt to the GAL was discharged in the bankruptcy and not because she was actually incapable of paying the fees. The Supreme Court disagreed, calling the district court's findings ambiguous because it did not explain how the bankruptcy factored into its decision. It concluded that the bankruptcy was circumstantial evidence that the wife met the test of indigency as defined in a 2004 case, Mathews v. Mathews, 267 Neb. 604, 676 N.W.2d 839. The court noted that the standards for indigency and bankruptcy are not the same but the district court did not abuse its discretion in applying the Mathews test.
Finally, the county argued that the district court erred by finding that the wife was unable to pay the GAL fees. It argued that the district court should have looked at 1) the wife's finances after her debts had been discharged by bankruptcy and 2) whether, either before or after her debts were discharged, she had sufficient funds to pay the GAL fees without prejudicing her ability to provide for the necessities of life.
Because the court had never examined the time period a court should consider in order to determine whether a party is indigent, it looked to statutory language in Neb.Rev.Stat sec. 42-3581 and its legislative history. Because the history is silent, the court looked to similar language defining indigency in Alaska statutes for guidance. It concluded that as a matter of policy, it is best to apply the test for indigence to the party's finances at the time the court is making the determination. It held that when an indigence hearing takes place last in the chain of events, a district court's determination of indigence should depend upon a party's finances at the time of the indigence hearing.
The court declined to "delineate an exclusive list of expenses that constitute the necessities of life or that impact one's ability to provide those necessities" of life. It found that the wife had enough money remaining after expenses each month to pay for the GAL fees without meaningfully prejudicing her ability to provide the necessities of life for herself and her dependents.
Here is a link to the case.

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.

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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.

As of  January 2016, NACO will no longer print the hard copy of the directory and send one to each county.  The directory has been made a part of the NACO website through a clickable and searchable icon and will be updated as corrections are submitted. The directory on the website is downloadable for a printed copy and it can also be transferred electronically to office computers and devices with memory storage such as smartphones and ipads.

For a copy of the latest 2015 directory, click here for the order form.

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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

Join county officials, experts from the private and nonprofit sectors and other leaders from across the country in Los Angeles County, Calif. for the 2016 NACo Annual Conference and Exposition. 

Appointments are for:
  • Policy steering committee chairs and vice chairs and subcommittee chairs and vice chairs
  • Large Urban County Caucus (LUCC) and Rural Action Caucus (RAC) chairs, vice chairs and members
  • Standing committee chairs, vice chairs and members
  • Ad hoc committee, task force and advisory board chairs, vice chairs and members
  • At-large NACo Board Directors
Click here for more information about NACo Committees.  Click here for the Presidential Appointment Application.

To be considered for a presidential appointment to any of the following committees or as an at-large director for the NACo Board of Directors, you MUST complete the application online before June 3, 2016.
IMPORTANT:  Steering committee membership is not a part of this application process.

NACo First Vice President, Bryan Desloge looks forward to receiving applications and working with you in the 2016-2017 year.
nacowebNACo Webinars
Keeping Counties Moving: Technological Innovations in Transportation
May 18, 2016, 1:00 pm - 2:15 pm CDT

Contact: Jenna Moran (202) 942-4224
Join us on this interactive webinar to learn how counties are leveraging technological innovations to improve transportation systems and ready them for the future. Transportation and technology experts will discuss national trends and current county projects in connected vehicles and open data sharing, the actual and expected benefits and future plans for innovation.  This discussion will give county elected officials and staff members an idea of where the field of transportation is heading in the face of rapidly developing technologies and suggest next steps.  

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