May 19, 2017                                                                                     NACO E-Line Archive  

Upcoming Events

Save the Dates For: 

County Board of Equalization & Budget Workshop
May 31, 2017
- Holiday Inn, Kearney

County Board Workshop
June 1-2, 2017
- Holiday Inn, Kearney
Agenda  Registration

Clerks of the District Court Summer Workshop
June 7-8, 2017
North Platte
Agenda Registration

Treasurers Workshop
- June 13-15, 2017
- South Sioux City

Highway Superintendents, Surveyors & Engineers Summer Workshop
- June 13-15, 2017
- Hotel Grand, Grand Island
Dues Notice  Registration

  Clerks, Register of Deeds & Election Commissioners Summer Workshop
June 14-16, 2017
Quality Inn, Grand Island
Agenda Registration

Assessors Workshop
- August 28-31, 2017
- Lied Lodge, Nebraska City


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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.

cbbandequalizationCounty Board Budget and Board of Equalization Workshop Planned
The 2017 County Board Budget and Board of Equalization Workshop has been scheduled for Wednesday, May 31st.  In an attempt to maximize travel savings for officials attending the County Board Workshop on June 1 and 2, the Budget and Equalization Workshop will be held the previous day at the same location.  Both events will be held at the Holiday Inn in Kearney.  The Budget and Board of Equalization Workshop will be held starting at 10:30 a.m. and adjourn at 4:00 p.m. on May 31.

There is a separate registration for each event.  The County Board Budget and Board of Equalization is one registration and the County Board Workshop is another registration if you plan to attend both events.

Both event registrations will be closed Friday, May 26.  Late registrants will have to pay an extra $10 for the Budget Workshop and $15 for the County Board Workshops.

Larry Dix, NACO Executive Director and Deann Haeffner, Deputy State Auditor will fill the morning session with an introduction and will address the budgeting process, pitfalls to be aware of and how to properly monitor the budget against misuse.  The afternoon will be dedicated to the Board of Equalization process.  The first session will deal with the basics of assessment and valuation.  Ruth Sorensen, Nebraska's Property Tax Administrator will address the group and two of the three Tax Equalization and Review Commissioners have been confirmed to share their insights and to answer questions of the audience.

The workshop agendas and registration are available on the NACO website.

cbwregCounty Board Workshop Registration is Open. Only 7 Days Until Registration Deadline.
The 2017 County Board Workshop registration is open and will remain open for another two weeks.  The workshop will be held at the Holiday Inn in Kearney following the County Budget and Board of Equalization Workshop on May 31.  On the opening day of the County Board Workshop on June 1, Melanie Whittamore-Mantzois, an attorney from Wolfe, Snowden, Hurd, Luers and Ahl, L.L.P., will address employment law issues pertinent to hiring and retention of county workers to begin the morning.  Nebraska Tourism Director, John Ricks will be introduced to the attendees and Nebraska Attorney General, Doug Peterson will speak about opioid use and abuse and about human trafficking in the state.

After lunch four breakout sessions will include topics about open meetings laws, media relations, abandoned cemeteries, and NACO 101.  The sessions will alternate throughout the afternoon.

On Friday morning NACO Executive Director, Larry Dix will address the 2017 legislative session concerning bills that were introduced, passed, considered, and possibly needing reconsideration for the 2018 session.  Next; David Ptak, Hastings City Attorney will address planning and zoning issues concerning counties and cities in Nebraska. Closing out the morning; Kyle Schneweis, Director of the Nebraska Department of Roads will address the next funding cycle of the bridge match program instituted last year.

To review the agenda and to register for this county board workshop click here.

Registration expires on May 26.  After that date another $15 will be added to the registration fee.

hiltonHilton Rogers, Cass County Commissioner is Remembered
Hilton Rogers, who served as a Cass County Commissioner for sixteen years and until 1999 died Friday, May 12 in Lincoln, Nebraska.  Hilton served on the NACO Board of Directors from 1987 to 1991 as the Southeast District Commissioner Representative.  Our NACO condolences are extended to the Hilton Rogers family and to Cass County for their remembrances.

For his complete obituary, click here.

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scholarships2017 NACO Scholarships Awarded
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:
Tom Bonham, Sarpy County; Shauna Coburn, Sheridan County; Hannah Fleischer, Adams County; Emily Flint, Custer County; Baylee Goff, Lancaster County; Morgan Konen, Adams County; William Reiter, Butler County; Andrew Schmidt, Cedar County; Whitney Steckel, Loup County; Holden Vavricek, Polk County; Brielle Weverka, Furnas County; and Luke Witte, Lancaster County.
A special scholarship, the first annual Ronda L. Dix Memorial Scholarship, was awarded to Ann Nordby of Holt County.
For pictures and a brief history about each recipient, click here.

highwaytrainingCounty Highway Superintendent Licensing Training Updated
Training for candidates interested in taking the exam for licensure as a County Highway and/or City Street Superintendent in Nebraska has been updated, effective beginning with the October 6 exam.

In the past, candidates could attend a three-day pre-exam workshop one month prior to taking the six-hour exam. The new format requires them to attend four separate one-day classes on various topics related to the job/license if they plan to attend the pre-exam workshop. The pre-exam workshop will then be reduced to two days to review the courses completed along with other training provided.

The licensure exam will now be one week after the two-day workshop "review" instead of waiting 30 days. Candidates are allowed to take the exam without attending the workshop if they desire.

Courses required in advance of taking the pre-exam workshop include:
1)   C onstruction Math & Plan Reading
2)    Superintendent 101 Basics and Test Prep Skills
3)    Classification and Standards Course
4)    One And Six and SSAR Course

These four one day courses will be provided in advance of future pre-exam workshops in both Lincoln and Ogallala to help prepare candidates for exams starting with the next exam on October 6. Others interested in taking any of these courses are encouraged to register, provided seats are available after exam candidates register.

Licensure exams are held twice a year at the Nebraska Department of Roads (NDOR) headquarters in Lincoln. More information about the exams, as well as videos and PowerPoint presentations created by NDOR Boards-Liaison Services staff working with the Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP) at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, can be found here .
custodialwkshpCounty Custodial Staff Workshop
The NACO Board of Directors in 2016 gave approval to develop a courthouse restoration and improvement project designed to educate courthouse maintenance staff and those responsible to keep county properties in good repair.   Jerry Berggren of Berggren Architects developed the idea after visiting several counties in the state and noted the need for custodial and maintenance staff and elected county board members to keep our historic keepsakes in top shape to preserve our heritage and remain functional into the future. A key component to honing and perfecting a suitable environment with building upkeep lies encompassed within the joint decision making of the staff completing the work and the county board members responsible for providing support through educational opportunities, financial backing, and a reflection of pride in the presentation of our county properties.

Berggren felt that a strong tie with the Nebraska community colleges would help to enhance the project ideas of education, geographic diversity and support from the community college program development staff. The Northeast Nebraska Community College was the first to sponsor and present ideas at the Spring NACO District meeting to county board members. The work continues in this endeavor to host a fall custodial workshop through the Southeast Community College in Beatrice in October. Other community college sites will be considered for future meetings.

The working group at this time is seeking input from county board members and custodial and maintenance staff to determine what type of training and education is most pertinent and beneficial for everyone involved. The one-day workshop will seek up to 25 two-person registrations. One registrant will be the maintenance/custodial staff person and the other would be the county board member chosen to attend who would take a lead role in educating the other board members of the significance of the maintenance role in building upkeep.  October 5, 2017 is the projected workshop date.  Further details will follow in future editions of this newsletter.

NACO is looking for topics of interest from county board members and county maintenance staff to determine educational presentations at the one-day workshop. After a general session, part of the day will be for staff education, part of the day will be for the education of the county board members and the day will conclude with a joint courthouse tour to review the lessons learned and to further the camaraderie of the attendees to develop relationships with other counties and their processes.

If you have a topic of interest that you would like to see on the workshop agenda please email LeRoy Janssen or give him a call at 402-434-6225 Ext. 221.

 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.

Supreme Court Reverses, Upholds TERC Decisions

In late April the Nebraska Supreme Court issued a decision upholding the Tax Equalization and Review Commission's (TERC) decision to increase valuations in some areas of Douglas County and finding that a TERC order to decrease valuation in one area by 8 percent was arbitrary, capricious, and unreasonable.

In County of Douglas v. Nebraska Tax Equal. & Rev. Comm., 296 Neb. 501, __ N.W.2d __, TERC issued an order adjusting values following the annual statewide equalization hearing to analyze the level and quality of assessment of the classes and subclasses of property within each county.

Douglas County was divided into six residential real property areas. TERC found that three areas had median assessment-to-sales ratios outside of the statutory 92-100 percent range. TERC voted to increase the valuation in Areas 3 and 4 (central and west Omaha) by 7 percent and decrease the valuation of Area 2 (northeast Omaha) by 8 percent.

Douglas County appealed TERC's decision. In considering the appeal, the Court reviewed accepted standards for equalization and mass appraisal, including statistical measures and ratio studies, as well as statutory requirements in the assessment process. Using measures of central tendency, the statistics showed that lower-value properties in Area 2 were significantly overassessed while higher-value properties were significantly underassessed, resulting in vertical inequities. Because the decrease ordered by TERC would not solve those inequities and TERC didn't have the authority to adjust only the lower-valued properties in Area 2, the Court found that fixing the uniformity problems was a task belonging to Douglas County, rather than TERC. It reversed TERC's order to decrease the value of Area 2 by 8 percent and found it to be arbitrary, capricious, and unreasonable.

In Areas 3 and 4, Douglas County called into question the quality of the statistics presented by the Property Tax Administrator but the TERC relied upon the sales presented. The Court found that the TERC's reliance upon evidence submitted by the Property Tax Administrator was not arbitrary, capricious, and unreasonable. It upheld TERC's 7 percent increase in value in the area.

The full text of the case is available here.

The TERC recently concluded show cause hearings for 2017 statewide equalization. Links to the Property Tax Administrator's Reports and Opinions for each county are available here.

Links to TERC's decisions are available here.

codirectory2017-2018 Directory of County Officials
NACO's 2017-2018 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. 

The NACO Directory is also still be available in electronic format by selecting the "Directory of County Officials" icon on the NACO webpage.  The electronic version is updated on a regular basis and contains the changes that occur between printings of the hard copies.
A printed directory is available for $19.00 if non-taxable and $20.00 if taxable.

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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County_Board_Handbook_2012  2016 County Board  Handbook and Revision s
The 2016 County Board Handbook and related revisions are now available.

The cost for a current handbook, including legislative information from the 2016 session, is $80.00/book plus $18.00 shipping and handling per book. The 2016 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 or by clicking here.  If you are interested in purchasing a complete handbook or a supplement  please contact
Deb Eberly by email or call her at (402) 434-5660 ext. 232.
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NACoNews From NACo

Significant challenges ahead in Senate for ACA overhaul bill
By Brian Bowden  
May. 12, 2017

Senate will try to balance AHCA tax cuts with restoring health protections, major changes expected

On May 4,  the House narrowly passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA), H.R. 1628, legislation that would reshape the nation's health care system.
The complex legislative package, which has already undergone multiple revisions since first being introduced in March, now goes to the Senate, where it is expected to be significantly changed.

AHCA also faces stricter procedural rules and different policy dynamics in the Senate, where Republicans can only lose two votes. Both chambers must agree on a final bill before it can be sent to President Trump for his signature.
To read the article in its entirety, click here . 
websNACo Webinars
Stepping Up Network Call: Conducting a Comprehensive Process Analysis and Inventory of Services for People with Mental Illnesses in Jails

Jul. 6, 2017
, 1:00 pm - 2:15 pm CDT 
Contact: (202) 942-4289

Join the Stepping Up partners for the fourth Stepping Up Network Technical Assistance Call. On this call, counties will engage in a facilitated discussion on the fourth question of the "Six Questions" document: Have We Conducted a Comprehensive Process Analysis and Inventory of Services? Counties are encouraged to sign on and join the conversation with national experts and county practitioners! Please be sure to participate in or review the June 29 webinar on "Conducting a Comprehensive Process Analysis and Inventory of Services" prior to joining the call.