Nebraska Association of County Officials

1335 H Street Lincoln, NE 68508

Phone: (402) 434-5660
Fax: (402) 434-5673
November 16, 2018 | | NACO E-Line Archive
Andy Masters Will Keynote Conference
Opening Session
124th Annual NACO Conference Highlights
The 2018 NACO Annual Conference will be held at the Younes Convention Center in Kearney, Nebraska on December 12 - 14. Andy Masters is an award-winning author and international speaker who has presented over 650 keynote programs across North America. Andy’s creative approaches to teach proven principles offers specific tools that will empower leaders and service professionals in a fun and entertaining presentation. He will deliver the keynote address at the 124th annual conference on December 12. You will not want to miss his presentation.

Registration is now open on the NACO website . The general activities agenda and the group agendas can also be found at that location.

Room reservations for the conference opened on June 18. By November 12, 2018 all rooms must have had a specific name assigned to it along with the proper billing and payment options attached. Those rooms that did not have that specific information were opened back up for booking availability.

If you know of deserving county officials, NACO has opened nominations for individuals that have made a difference in county government. The nominations may be submitted by completing the appropriate forms below.

The deadline for the nomination forms is by end of business on November 28 .
New County Board Member Training
On January 19 and 26, 2019 NACO will be sponsoring a training for newly elected county board members. The first training will be held at the Sandhills Convention Center & Quality Inn & Suites in North Platte on January 19. The second one will be held at the NACO office at 1335 H Street in Lincoln on January 26. They will both be held on Saturdays to be able to attract the most registrants. The trainings will be an afternoon session from 1:30 to 5:00 p.m. at each location and the same training will be given at each location. Attendees will be able to choose which date and location works best for them.

Registration is free for each session. Each new county board member will be given an $80 county board handbook for attending.

Registration for these events will be placed on the NACO website in the coming weeks.

Other county elected official's associations are asked to contact NACO if they are interested in using the NACO conference room to conduct training for their newly elected members.
Dollar Thresholds For County Purchases
Effective July 19, 2018, the competitive bidding amounts for purchasing property and services under the County Purchasing Act (Neb. Rev. Stat. §§ 23-3101 to 23-3115) were increased. Such changes were enacted by LB 1098 (2018).
Federal Resources Identified
For Rural Communities
Last month, the USDA released a 140-page publication titled “Federal Resources for Rural Communities to Help Substance Use Disorder and Opioid Misuse.” It contains an extensive listing of funding sources across a wide spectrum of federal departments and agencies which provide grants and similar financial assistance, particularly aimed at smaller communities. 

Click here to view that publication.
Grant Money For
Preventing Suicides Among Juveniles
Deadline: February 16/June 16, 2019

This Health and Human Services program supports research to test the effectiveness of combined strategies to both detect and intervene to reduce the risk of suicide behavior, suicide ideation, and non-suicidal self harm by youth in contact with the juvenile justice system. Eligibility is limited to state/tribal/local governments, colleges and universities, public housing authorities, nonprofits, and for-profits. There will be "multiple" awards of up to $225,000 each.  

Information: Questions, 301/945-7573.  Email : Solicitation  
Nebraska Energy Initiative Questionnaire
The Nebraska Energy Office is seeking information from local officials throughout the state on what energy assurance issues have been addressed in their jurisdictions. This information will help us to:
  • determine the services that the Nebraska Energy Office could provide,
  • learn of energy assurance issues that you have already experienced on the local level, and
  • determine what local energy assurance planning issues should be included in the Nebraska Energy Assurance Plan.
Through the Nebraska Energy Assurance Initiative, the Nebraska Energy Office is updating the Nebraska Energy Assurance Plan. The Nebraska Energy Assurance Plan was last updated in 2012.

A new component of the updated Nebraska Energy Assurance Plan will focus on energy assurance at the local level. The first step in developing this component is an assessment of what energy assurance/resiliency plans currently exist and what issues these plans address.
A questionnaire will be the tool used for this assessment. Please expect the questionnaire in your email with a date to be returned. Once the assessment is complete, the Nebraska Energy Office will hold a workshop to report on the assessment results.

The Nebraska Energy Office will invite participants to this workshop comprised of local officials, cooperatives, public power districts, and stakeholders that include the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency and other state associations that deal with energy issues.
November In Photos Request
NACO is looking for pictures from your county!

For the month of November, NACO is looking for pictures of your Veteran's Day events and memorials to honor those who served and sacrificed over the years to preserve the freedoms we so often take for granted.

Please take a photo of your local veteran service memorial(s), your local veterans, parade activities or other ways you honored and celebrated veterans. Submit them by email to Deb Spira by November 30 so we can gather and display them in tribute to those dedicated to serving our country.
Reorganization Meetings in January
& New Officials Sworn In
After elections, questions arise of swearing in dates and related issues. Terms of office, oath of office, bonds and in lieu of individual bonds and pro-rata salaries are addressed in this article that is intended to provide an overview of those issues.
Legislature Schedules
Interim Study Hearings
In preparation for the 2019 legislative session, the Legislature’s standing committees are beginning to schedule hearings on interim study resolutions. The resolutions are introduced during the session to examine new ideas for legislation and to dig deeper into issues raised by previously introduced bills. Public hearings are held on some of the priority issues selected by each legislative committee, including the topics that are of interest to counties. County officials are encouraged to attend the hearings and provide testimony. Unlike hearings during the legislative session, testifiers do not need to take a position in support or opposition to the issue, but are simply asked to provide input. Some of the hearings will be live-streamed through the Legislature's website.
The complete interim study schedule is available here or each month's hearings can be found on the Legislature's calendar .
Legal Line
This Legal Line provides short updates on decisions from three separate bodies
TERC Vacates County Board Waiver of Late Personal Property Tax Filing Penalty
In an October 31 decision, the Tax Equalization and Review Commission (TERC) vacated a county board of equalization’s waiver of penalties imposed for failing to file personal property tax returns. In Battiato v. Douglas County , the taxpayer had failed to timely file a personal property tax return and was subject to the statutory penalty of twenty-five percent of the tax due on the value added. The taxpayer filed a protest of the penalty with the county board of equalization. The board granted relief to the taxpayer and the assessor appealed the board’s decision to TERC.
The Commission vacated the board’s decision. It found that the county board of equalization lacked the authority to waive a penalty that has been correctly calculated and imposed. It relied on Neb.Rev.Stat. § 77-1233.04(3) , which provides in pertinent part:
  • (3) The action of the county board of equalization, in an appeal of the penalties imposed, shall be limited to correcting penalties which were wrongly imposed or incorrectly calculated. The county board of equalization shall have no authority to waive or reduce any penalty which was correctly imposed and calculated. (emphasis added)
  Supreme Court Grants Attorney Bond Money
Money posted for a bond could be used to pay attorney fees, rather than back child support, pursuant to a Nebraska Supreme Court decision, State v. McColery , 301 Neb. 516, __ N.W.2d __ (2018). The case focused on whether bond money is considered personal property registered with a county office as defined by child support laws. The court did not address the policy concerns of collecting unpaid child support but limited its analysis to the statutory language enacted by the Legislature in § 42-371 .
  Out of State Title Inspector Defined
Out-of-state motor vehicle inspectors are treated differently than in-state inspectors under §60-146 according to a recent Attorney General’s opinion. This section provides that “The county treasurer shall accept a certificate of inspection, approved by the superintendent, from an officer of a state police agency of another state unless an inspection is required under section 60-174 .”
The opinion distinguished between in-state vehicles that are inspected by a holder of a certificate of training issued by the Nebraska State Patrol and out-of-state vehicles that must be inspected by an officer of a state police or another state agency. It concluded that persons who are not state police officers or persons licensed to conduct inspections by another state’s policy agency are not authorized to conduct out-of-state motor vehicle identification inspections In Nebraska. The opinion was requested by Senator Kate Bolz in anticipation of potential legislation. The opinion, No. 18-009 , was issued on October 17.

Editor's Note: Legal Line is a feature that will periodically appear in NACO E-Line. This article 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.
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 .
News from NACo
Registration is Now Open
2019 NACo Legislative Conference

March 2–6, 2019 | Washington Hilton | Washington, D.C.

The National Association of Counties (NACo) Legislative Conference brings together over 1,500 elected and appointed county officials to focus on federal policy issues that impact counties and our residents. Attendees engage in relevant and timely policy and educational sessions, interact with federal officials and participate in congressional briefings and meetings.
Don't miss this unique policy advocacy opportunity!
NACo Webinars
Addressing Inequities in Health: Key Concepts for Counties
Dec. 6, 2018
1:00 pm – 2:15 pm CST
Contact; Nyana Quashie
(202) 661-8825

Counties touch the lives of their residents through the many agencies that serve their communities, be it through social services, transportation, labor, or education. As such, counties are in a prime position to influence the health and well-being of their residents by utilizing approaches that address the social determinants of health. These factors influence the ways in which we grow, live, learn and work.

Join us to learn how counties can use health equity as a framework to develop programs and policies to improve the health of their residents. Experts from County Health Rankings & Roadmaps and the Government Alliance on Race and Equity will share strategies and tools for counties doing work to create positive shifts in health for their residents. Then hear from Boone County, Mo. on the work they are doing to create more equitable health opportunities in their community.
NACO Annual Conference
Younes Convention Center
Kearney, Nebraska
December 12-14, 2018
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Nebraska Association of County Officials
1335 H Street Lincoln, NE 68508
Phone: (402) 434-5660
Fax: (402) 434-5673
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