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Commissioners get Legislature update

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Dawes County Commissioners met in regular session at 9:10 a.m. July 12. The meeting was called to order by Chairman Vic Rivera. Board Members present were Jake Stewart and Webb L. Johnson.

Elaine Menzel, NACO, met with the Board. She informed the Board of up-coming NACO events which include the Legislative Conference in Gering Oct. 28, the NACO Conference in Denver July 21 and the NACO Convention in Kearney Dec. 14-16. NACO has also purchased land in Keith County to build a satellite office in Western Nebraska.

Other information presented included news of a committee formed by the NACO President to obtain 10/30 County Plans. This would be a study to see where counties will see themselves in 10 vs. 30 years. Offices can now sign up for the electronic newsletter that NACO sends out.

Legislative issues discussed included LB 310 which passed this session, which will effectively reduce the amount of Inheritance Taxes a County can collect. NACO estimates a loss of 10% in revenues with the passing of LB 310. There is also a requirement beginning July 21 for all county treasurers to report to the State on Inheritance Tax collections.

Menzel indicated there are additional resources available for counties to use, such as ARPA funding.

Wade Yada, Highway Superintendent Wade Yada met with the Board. Road updates included:

District 1 — Crews still working on Beaver Valley Road

District 2 — Crews finishing up on Hollibaugh Road

District 3 — Crews still working on Squaw Creek Road and Ferguson Road as needed.

All districts are fixing holes, washouts, etc. The Crusher is down and crew is waiting on parts. A fuels audit was being conducted in the Roads Department.

In other business Commissioner Stewart reported a hiring committee consisting of himself, Katie Schenbeck and Lindsay Adams will conduct five interviews for the HR position.

Jennifer Borie and Audrey Pickering joined the meeting to present another proposal for the HR position. Borie planned email the proposal prior to interviews being conducted.

Borie also presented the engagement letter, later approved to sign, received from Lutz Consulting announcing increases in pricing for consultations.

Tourism Director Kerri Rempp, presented two grants, both approved, including: Grey Eagle Warrior Challenge in the amount of $960 and Harvest Moon in the amount of $2,500.

A letter addressed to the Department of Revenue was presented for Rivera’s signature requesting a list of lodging tax permit holders. Rivera was approved to sign it, and Rempp informed those present she feels more lodging tax could be collected if all entities providing room and board in their pricing would have a lodging permit. This would include Hunting Guide services.

Custodian Brad Streeks presented a bid received from Mike Felton to paint/stripe the back parking lot of the Courthouse at a cost of $1,675.15. Discussion ensued regarding glass beads being added to the paint for reflective purposes at nighttime. The bid was awarded to Felton for $1,675.15, which includes the beads.

An engagement letter for Auditing services for 2022, 2023 and 2024 was received from the State Auditor’s Office not to exceed $18,000, but no action was taken by the Board. County Clerk Cheryl Feist was instructed to solicit two more bids with a decision to be made at a later date.

The PC Credit Card program paperwork was reviewed by Deputy County Attorney Adam Edmund and Feist was directed to execute the document.

The next meeting of the Dawes County Commissioners will be July 26 beginning at 9 a.m. The meeting will be in the Commissioner Room. The agenda will close at noon on July 21.

All resolutions adopted by the Dawes County Board of Commissioners are available for public inspection during normal business hours of the County Clerk’s Office.

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