Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Letter From Congressman Adrian Smith

Knowing of your interest in immigration, I am writing to update you on recent developments.
As you may know, the America's Affordable Health Choices Act (H.R. 3200) is currently being considered in the House of Representatives. This measure would establish a public health care option which would be heavily subsidized by taxpayers. Unfortunately, this measure includes no provisions to prevent illegal immigrants from receiving either the public option or taxpayer subsidies to purchase private health insurance.
In an effort to address this concern, I have acted to enforce immigration laws, and more recently, joined a number of my colleagues in sending a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) urging the inclusion of verification mechanisms to prevent illegal immigrants from receiving taxpayer-funded benefits in any health care reform measure considered by the House of Representatives.
Our health care system is still among the best in the world, and Congress owes Americans more than hurried decisions and irresponsible policy. While I understand the need to increase access and lower costs for patients and providers, we must not allow haste to compromise our basic principles.
Rest assured, I am committed to upholding our responsibility to American citizens. Please feel free to contact me regarding this or any issue of your concern.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Senator's Column by Mike Johanns

September 28, 2009 Disappointing Lack of Transparency in Health Care Debate Dear Nebraskans, A very important opportunity was missed in the Senate last Wednesday. Throughout the week, the Senate Finance Committee debated and deliberated over amendments to a health care proposal that, if passed, will have a profound impact on the lives of every American. At stake was something many of you have told me in recent months is absolutely necessary: transparency and accountability of Congress to the American people. An amendment offered by Senator Jim Bunning of Kentucky would have taken us toward that goal, but unfortunately this amendment was defeated in the Finance Committee. Specifically, the amendment would have required the actual legislative text and a final cost analysis from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) be posted on the Finance Committee's website for 72 hours prior to the Committee voting on final passage of the overall health care legislation. This provision should've been a bipartisan effort to reassure the American people that Congress is doing the work they sent us here to do, transparently and deliberately. Nebraskans and indeed all Americans deserve this information, but it was roundly rejected by the majority of Senate Democrats on the Finance Committee. I do not understand what justification there would be for refusing to allow the language of what is likely to be more than 1,000 pages of legislation to be reviewed for three days before calling a vote. Republicans and Democrats agree on the need to fix the broken pieces of our health care system. Yet it is equally important to get it right. Our health care expenses make up one-sixth of our entire economy. Whatever legislation emerges from the Finance Committee, and from the Senate, will entail drastic changes for all of us. Families, businesses, hospitals, doctors and nurses, the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and indeed our economy as a whole will all be affected. I don't say this to invoke fear, it is simply a fact. If we are going to change the lives of so many, so significantly, shouldn't we be darn certain we're doing it right? This is why I don't understand the opposition to this amendment. I had the pleasure of visiting with so many Nebraskans throughout the state in August, and these were the most common requests I heard: read the bill; take the time to deliberate; use sound judgment. The Bunning amendment gave us the opportunity to do just that. In the coming days and weeks there will be many additions and alterations before any health care legislation is ready for a vote on the Senate floor. I will continue to be vigilant and make my concerns known if we continue on the wrong course.

A Nebraskan's View by Senator Ben Nelson

Monday, September 28, 2009 AN EASY WAY TO INCREASE ETHANOL USE AND HELP AMERICA’S BATTLE FOR ENERGY INDEPENDENCE By the year 2022 America is required by law to be using 36 billion gallons of renewable fuels a year. That’s enough to reduce foreign oil imports by 11.3 billion barrels a year, while saving the U.S. $817 billion that would otherwise go to foreign oil producers. It’s enough to create more than one million new jobs, add $1.7 trillion to the Gross Domestic Product and increase federal tax receipts by $209 billion.
We can help meet these goals, which will help America become more energy independent while growing our nation’s economy with one easy change in the law. We need to allow service stations to sell a mid level ethanol blend. They already sell a 10 percent blend and an 85 percent blend. We need a 15 percent blend.
E-15 Will Help Ethanol Industry Many industry observers think the U.S. will not be able to meet the 36 billion gallon goal by 2022 unless they are able to offer a 15 percent ethanol blend. To do so requires some changes in law because currently gasoline sold in the U.S. to meet Clean Air Act rules cannot contain more than 10 percent ethanol.
I recently co-sponsored a bipartisan amendment directing the Environmental Protection Agency to issue a waiver allowing the use of higher blends of ethanol in our gasoline supply. We will continue looking for support for this approach, but believe that he EPA should move ahead anyway on its own to promote renewable energy and energy independence, and allow the rule change.
Last July a number of ethanol supporters in the Senate sent a letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson urging her to allow an ethanol blend between E10 and E15. One of the reasons we cited was the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which included the historic renewable fuels standard calling for the U.S. to use 36 billion gallons of renewable fuel by 2022.
Action is Needed Soon With those Renewable Fuel Standards and the growth of the American ethanol industry, domestic production of ethanol will soon outpace the amount of ethanol-blended gasoline currently allowed and we will hit what is called a “blend wall.”
Boosting ethanol blends to between E10 and E15 is needed soon. It will keep our renewable fuels industry growing; particularly the development of next generation biorefineries, help to meet the Renewable Fuel Standards targets and curb our dependence on foreign oil.
Good for Nebraska As a co-founder of the Governors’ Ethanol Coalition in the 1990s and as a senator representing the nation’s Number Two ethanol producing state, I believe a vital ethanol industry is good for our country, good for rural America and good for our national security.
I am also mindful of concerns raised by the livestock industry and those questioning whether the higher ethanol blend can be safely used in vehicles.
Those concerns should be properly addressed. As we do, we must do what we can to clear bureaucratic underbrush away, so that the American people can use more American-made energy and less energy imported from overseas.

Governor's Column by Dave Heineman

The Nebraska Diplomats
Sept. 28, 2009 Dear Fellow Nebraskans:
I want to highlight an organization that plays an important role in our business recruitment efforts here in Nebraska. The Nebraska Diplomats is the largest economic development organization in Nebraska with more than 375 business and community leaders from across the state.
For more than 40 years, members of the Nebraska Diplomats have worked to grow Nebraska by promoting opportunities for business and industry to locate in our state. Their mission is to help build the state’s economy by supporting the business recruitment efforts of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development and working to improve Nebraska’s business climate and competitiveness.
Diplomats have a unique perspective on what our state has to offer. Its members are executives and business leaders who live and work in Nebraska. The current class of Nebraska Diplomats represents nearly 50 communities and Diplomats presidents in recent years have come from Scottsbluff, Norfolk, Crete, Columbus, Grand Island, Aurora, Lincoln, and Omaha. They are leaders of energy and hospitality companies, manufacturers, and transportation and logistics companies to name a few.
Each Diplomats member commits to making contact with several business leaders in other states in an effort to interest new companies in doing business in Nebraska. As business leaders who know firsthand the benefits of doing businesses in Nebraska, they add credibility to the efforts of the professional economic developers who work for the state and local communities. Diplomats also host business prospects and special guests visiting the state and help local leaders prepare for visits from prospective companies.
Through face-to-face meetings and personal connections, Diplomats help expand the number of contacts the State of Nebraska can make in a given year, which is particularly helpful in pursuing opportunities overseas. Many Diplomats represent companies with business interests in international markets. As part of their regular business visits, Diplomats commit some of their time to make connections on behalf of Nebraska.
The Nebraska Diplomats have also been strong supporters of Nebraska’s past trade missions to other countries. The organization sponsored the Reverse Trade Mission which brought 130 professionals from countries around the world here to encourage international companies to explore opportunities for investment in Nebraska. The event was coupled with the Diplomats’ signature annual event, the Passport to Nebraska Weekend.
During one weekend each fall, the Nebraska Diplomats invite guests and prospects from across the country and around the world to visit the state and attend events including roundtable discussions with CEOs and business consultants, tours of Nebraska businesses and communities, as well as a tailgate hosted at the Governor’s Residence followed by a Husker game at Memorial Stadium.
This year many of the special guests attending Passport to Nebraska Weekend were site selection consultants from around the country who scout locations for corporate clients looking to build new data centers, office parks and manufacturing facilities. Nearly a dozen site consultants took part in the event and shared comments such as “a truly first rate itinerary,” that the visit “showed how hard local groups are working to prepare for recruiting,” and “I would love to locate another project in Nebraska.”
While other states have partnerships with business leaders, few have as coordinated effort as the Nebraska Diplomats. Another visitor shared this comment: “We were impressed with the depth of support from the Nebraska Diplomats. It is the most effective organization of its kind we are aware of in the U.S.”
Having business executives and business recruiters work together gives Nebraska an edge in selling our state to prospective companies. I appreciate the outreach efforts of the Nebraska Diplomats. They play an essential role in letting other companies know that Nebraska is the right place to pursue new opportunities.

Congressman's Column by Adrian Smith

Rural America Needs Veterinarians Those of us who enjoy living in small, rural communities know well the many benefits. Neighbors know each other, they help out during harvest or calving season, and they are always there to lend a hand.
Of course, there are challenges, among them access to air service, specialized medical care, and roads funding. One such challenge is access to a qualified veterinarian. The demand for large-animal veterinarians is soaring, but a shortage persists which could put our nation's agriculture economy at risk.
Nebraska's Third District is one of the largest agricultural districts in the country, home to more than 30,000 farmers and ranchers. We have the top three beef cow counties in the U.S., and we rank first in the nation in commercial red meat production.
Nebraska needs large animal veterinarians. Our food animal veterinary workforce is on the front lines of food safety, public health, and animal health.
This vital profession, however, is facing a critical shortage in the public, private, industrial, and academic sectors. To make matters worse, the problem is on the rise.
Large animal veterinarians, in particular, are integral to small, rural communities. But in many of these communities - communities with few people but large numbers of animals - we are seeing a very distressing trend.
According to the most recent date from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cherry County has 145,000 food animals per veterinarian. In fact, counties throughout our state are suffering from this disparity.
In order to stem this tide, I have introduced H.R. 3519, the Veterinarian Services Investment Act.
The legislation authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to award competitive grants to help develop, implement, and sustain veterinary services, especially in underserved areas. These grants may be used to support a wide array of activities based on the needs of an area, including:
Veterinarian and veterinary technician recruitment; Expanding and establishing practices in high-need areas; Surveillance of food animal disease and the utilization of veterinary services; Establishing mobile/portable clinics and tele-vet services;
Accredited veterinary education programs, including continuing education, distance education, and faculty recruitment.
Under my bill, eligible applicants must carry out programs or activities which will substantially relieve the veterinary shortages throughout our country.
I am proud to say more than 30 of my colleagues - Democrat and Republican - have joined me as cosponsors of H.R. 3519.
My legislation has been endorsed by the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Nebraska Veterinary Medical Association, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association, the National Pork Producers Council, the American Horse Council, the American Feed Industry Association, and dozens of others.
Veterinarians make a difference everyday. They understand animals and they are integral parts of our rural communities. Unfortunately, too many rural communities don't have this necessary support. Our nation faces major challenges to relieve veterinary shortages and to enhance the professional lives of veterinarians in both rural and urban areas. Improving the well-being of food animals and the agriculture producers who rely on large animal veterinarians for their economic well-being is one of my priorities. The Veterinarian Services Investment Act is a step in the right direction.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Bobcat Youth Fall to Nemisis Jets

The Blue Hill Bobcat youth football team fell to the Axtell Jets 20 -12 to fall to 1-1 on the season. Axtell was the only team to blemish the Bobcat's innaugural season last year and they proved to be a thorn in the paw of the Bobcats again this year. The Jets won the toss and selected to receive. The Bobcat defense proved to be too much for the Jets on their opening series and the Jets were forced to punt. However, the Bobcat return man fumbled on the punt return to give the Jets second life. The Jets managed to capitalize on the turnover to make the score 6-0. Bad went to worse for the Bobcats when they mishandled the ensuing kick-off. Again, the Jets capitalized on the turnover to make the score 12-0. The Bobcats were ineffective on their first offensive possession in the spread formation but the defense held strong. The Bobcats returned to the Wishbone on their next formation and capped a 4 play 70 yard drive with a 50 yard dash by Mitch Krueger early in the second quarter to close the gap to 12-6. Although the Bobcat defense played well in the 2nd half, the much larger Jets were able to capitalize again early in the third quarter to make the score 20-6 after converting the 2-point attempt. Still in the third quarter, the Bobcats responded with a 65 yard run by Bobcat quarterback Jayden Hamel to make the final score 20-12. Hamel led all rushers with 70 yards on 4 carries and a touchdown. Other Bobcat ball carriers were Mitch Krueger - 3 carries for 55 yards and a touchdown, James Fuller - 2 carries for 5 yards, Austin Rose - 1 carry for 5 yards, Andrew Mai - 1 carry for 5 yards, Kyl Rouse - 1 carry for 3 yards, and Joel Smith - 1 carry for 2 yards. Jacob Van Boening had two receptions for 45 yards. The Bobcat defense was led by James Fuller with 11 tackles. Other defensive stats included Mitch Krueger - 8 tackles, Austin Rose - 5 tackles and 1 sack, Jayden Hamel - 6 tackles, Alec Eiseman - 5 tackles, Kyl Rouse - 3 tackles, Ethan Sharp - 1 tackle and 1 fumble recovery, Joel Smith - 2 tackles, Andrew Mai - 2 tackles, Kody Mans - 2 tackles, Adam Krueger - 2 tackles, Alec Meyer - 1 tackle, Austin Kelley - 1 tackle. The Bobcats play next Sunday at Southern Valley in their final 11 man game. The Bobcats return home on Sunday October 11 to play 9 man football against the Kenesaw Blue Devils.

Letter to the Editor

Firstly, I should tell you, I smoked three packs of cigarettes per day for more than thirty years. I was an arrogant-smoker inasmuch as I smoked when and wherever I wanted. If someone suggested to me in any form that I should not smoke at that particular moment, I would bristle and let them know in no uncertain terms that I had a right to smoke, period, and if they were not comfortable with my smoke they could leave my presence. Now having said that, lets get on with it . . . Today we have much knowledge pertaining to the hazzards of smoking, both to the individual with the lit cigarette in the mouth and the innocent bystander. Of course, there are those that would refuse to believe there is any danger to themselves or others in smoking, just as there are those that believe our trips to the moon were staged on a movie lot. Denial is powerful and indiscriminate. However, the proof that smoking is killing, is positive and true whether it is denied by some or not. It randomly devastates not only the individual smoker, but people, animals and plants in the presence of smokers. Any qualified electronics technician will tell you it is even detrimental to VCR’s, computers, etc. The death of those affected by tobacco whether smoking or chewing is not ever desirable. I say not desirable, because I really believe there is an element of suicide involved with many current smokers. Given the absolute knowledge of the risks of smoking, we can compare smoking to playing Russian Roulette. If a person, male or female, were to walk into a room with one bullet in the cylinder of a six-shot revolver, spin the cylinder, point the gun at you or your child or grandchild and pull the trigger . . . How would you feel about that as the parent or grandparent? Would you feel any differently if the child was a brother or sister? What if this person were to again spin the cylinder, point the gun at another, and pull the trigger? How long would you continue to allow this person to behave this way before you did something about it? Would you just walk away, separating yourself and/or the child, or would you actively try to stop the individual with the gun? Would you try to understand the gunner’s point of view pertaining to their right to their behavior at that moment or would you find their right to behave this way nonexistent? Now ask the same questions of smokers. . ! The only way smoking in the presence of others is any different from the Russian Roulette Player above is the speed in which the harm is induced. Everybody present in the above scenario knows who gets hurt and when, but with the smokers that fact is not so instantly evident. I met a man a few years back, when I was smoking three packs a day. He walked into my repair shop and started pumping on a Primatene-Mist bottle. He then walked over to the counter less than 15 feet away and again started pumping on the Primatene-Mist. I asked him what was the matter, he replied with great difficulty, “Emphysema!”. I then asked him how long he had been affected by it, and he again replied with great difficulty, “Eight years!”. That was the moment I came to my senses and quit smoking. The thought of being like him for eight years was so undesirable to me . . . I did not fear death then, nor do I now, but to be imprisoned in a body like his for even a moment, let alone eight years was so undesirable to me that my cigarette smoking stopped dead that day. My anger toward the tobacco industry swelled for producing a product that could be so harmful to even one person let alone millions of people, animals, plants, electronic devices, etc. Today I listen to the arguments of the right-to-smoke and it seems as ludicrous to me as the rights of a Russian Roulette Player. In retrospect, I suppose one of the most ineffective laws we passed was the law insisting the tobacco industry place warning labels on their products’ package, because they now use that to escape prosecution. Think about that for a minute. The arrogant tobacco companies, who fought the warning labels in the past, spending massive amounts of money to produce doubts as to the dangers of tobacco use, today use the very warnings that were placed there, in hopes of preventing the informed from placing themselves in harms-way, as an “out” from prosecution, saying, “The smokers were warned, but ignored the warnings, so they have no one to blame but themselves!” Doesn’t that irritate you, just a little? We listen with horror, to the descriptions of the effects of bombs on buildings and persons involved in terrorist activities. We hear of dismemberment, disfigurement, pain, agony and despair. We hear of lives that are permanently scarred and changed for the worse, and we think, “Gees, what kind of an awful person or persons could do such a thing!”, and we have no mercy for the individuals involved, and yet . . . Even tho, the effects of inhaling tobacco smoke are not as immediate, they are just as, or even more so devastating, because the affect on people and families is more insidious, it takes more time, usually years to develop the calamitous effects of tobacco use, and then it is easy to raise doubts as to tobacco even causing these murderous effects. There are those that would tell us the evil people producing and selling tobacco products are not the monsters that bombers are. A mass murderer is a monster by whatever means he or she uses, period! I find little difference between the manufacturers of Crack-Cocain, Heroin, LSD, or Methamphetamine and the life-threatening, life-altering product we know as Tobacco! Neither do I find any difference between the distributors of the products of the drug-culture, and the distributors of Tobacco products. Both, are producing and/or disseminating illness and death at an alarming rate. The people hooked on street-drugs and the people hooked on tobacco, both, are destroying their own lives and the lives of those coming in contact with them. I think back to my attitude with regard to smoking when I smoked and find it truly shameful. It embarrasses me to think I could be so naive. I started smoking to appear adult, because that was the adult thing to do. Well, when I was even younger I wet-my-pants, but I stopped that, because it was the adult thing to do! At least I was correct half the time!Lets do something about tobacco, the manufacturers and the distributors! What can you do? Well a lot depends on your motivation. . We need to understand, just harassing the maker, distributor and user is not going to get us very far. We also know that education is not the solution, denial is far too strong for education to be anymore than somewhat effective. What then? We all, who are concerned for the well-being of our loved ones, young and old, friends and strangers, must come up with an alternate, non-harmful use for tobacco. By doing that, we will drastically reduce the incentive to promote tobacco use by humans, and the tobacco industry can divert their efforts towards this alternative, safe tobacco use. We must also stop immediately the federal government subsidizing the tobacco industry! It would be beneficial to put pressure on the sellers of tobacco products starting today, by letters and conversation with the store owners and managers and associates declaring your displeasure with their part in the distributing of these lethal products. Letters to and conversation with, the government officials in local, state, and federal government, also stating your displeasure with their part in not actively participating in the removal of tobacco use by humans all over the United States, indoors and out. Folks, the devastating effects of tobacco use is fully documented by every person, house pet or sensitive electronic device that has suffered from exposure to it. If we do nothing, this suffering will only continue. If you do not use tobacco yourself, you will most likely be an unfortunate victim of second-hand smoke some years in the future. Certainly your children, friends, house pets and total strangers will suffer. To take no active part in putting an end to this evil, is giving it your blessing, and just as the tobacco companies are saying to the users, “It’s their own fault, they were warned!” The same will be said about you, and the rest of us that do nothing.We are the only ones that can make a difference - it will not happen by itself! Tone Kister 409 North Kansas Avenue Hastings, NE 68901

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Congressman's Column by Adrian Smith

NASA's Future Over the past 50 years, the research and technology developed by our country's National Aeronautics and Space Administration (more commonly known as NASA) has had a profound impact on nearly every American. Our lives have been improved or even saved by digital hearing aids, miniature heart pumps, cancer detection devices, fire-resistant aircraft seats, and numerous other medical and safety devices and improvements which trace their origins to space technology. Technology developed by our space program has resulted in more than 1,500 commercial products, including aerodynamic bicycle wheels, satellite radio, digital and satellite television, cell phone technology, cordless tools, and GPS navigation used by everyone from families on vacation to farmers and ranchers. Space technology is responsible for rainwater purification systems for developing countries and oil spill control to help protect our environment. In 2004, President George Bush unveiled the Vision for Space Exploration providing NASA a clear direction with measurable goals. Under this initiative NASA was directed to complete the International Space Station by 2010, enabling microgravity research into new vaccines and other promising bio-medical research, as well as research into the long-term effects of spaceflight on humans. Now America has the opportunity to take the next step and move beyond low Earth orbit by re-establishing capabilities which have been lost since the 1970s, allowing us to return to the Moon and venture beyond. Recently, the House Science and Technology Committee met to review options for the future of human space flight. It became clear our nation's human space flight program has the greatest chance of success if given clearly defined objectives, design requirements, and an adequate sustained investment by both the federal government and private entities. Human spaceflight should be a source of pride for all Americans, and carries with it the promise of significant breakthroughs in health care, defense, and alternative energy technologies. Of particular note is NASA's research into technology to produce biofuels from algae. Algae have the potential to provide as much as 2,000 gallons of fuel per acre, though it is difficult and expensive to grow using standard practices. Algae grow very quickly, as anybody with a backyard garden or a watering tank in their pasture knows. In fact algae production rates can be more than five times those of land plants. Algae can be grown in many types of marine environments, including specially designed tanks, with minimal ecological impact. NASA's research into algae-based fuel has the potential to reward us with a readily available and renewable resource to combat high prices at the gas station. At a time in which technology moves forward at an astounding rate, the human space flight program serves as an inspiring example for students - encouraging them to excel in math and science courses. The work being done benefits science, education and the economy. The human exploration of space has led to such life-saving technologies as smoke detectors, laser heart surgery and the "jaws of life" while at the same time giving us Velcro and convection ovens. Two prior Congresses and two presidential administrations have endorsed NASA's mission - but failed to provide the necessary funds to accomplish the mission they have been tasked with. Over the years, NASA has always managed to exceed expectations. Congress needs to meet the commitment to our nation's space agency. From the 1960s through today, NASA is an investment in our economy, in our country, and in our future.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Racing, Ropes & Rockets

Blue Hill's Scout Troop, Pack 99, hosted their annual scout derby, "Racing, Rockets and Ropes", on Saturday, September 19 from 9:00 am - 2:30 pm. Scouts from around the area took their turn racing soap box derby cars down the Lancaster Street hill. Winners in the Boy Scout division were (from left to right) 3rd place - Matthew Schwab, 2nd place - Kyl Rouse both of Blue Hill, and 1st place - Marcus Long from Troop 192 in Hastings.
Winners in the Cub Scout division were (from left to right) 3rd place - John Rouse, 2nd Place - Kade Kohmetscher both of pack 99, and 1st place - Ben Howie from Pack 125 in Hastings The scouts also launched pop bottle rockets and practiced rope skills while waiting for their turn on the track.


The Webster County Board of Commissioners met at 8:30 am on Tuesday, September 15th for a regular business meeting. The following Members were present for roll call: Jeff Ord, John Soucek, Roger Bohrer, Keith Buschow and Mary Delka. Motion was made by Bohrer, second by Buschow to approve the minutes of the September 1st business meeting. All Members voted to approve the minutes. Upon review of the 2008/09 budget, motion was made by Buschow, second by Delka to adopt Resolution 33-2009: BE IT RESOLVED, that $50,000.00 be transferred from the County General Fund to the County Road Fund to complete transfers of 2008 Property Tax Monies as provided in the 2008/09 County Budget Document. All Members voted to adopt the Resolution. The Board received proposals from Speece-Lewis Engineers for preliminary planning and construction observations on two Soft Match Box Culvert Projects. One project will be west of Inavale and the other project is east of Guide Rock. Motion was made by Buschow, second by Bohrer to accept the two proposals at the contracted fee. All Members voted in favor of the motion. After review of three quotes for bridge inspection services, motion was made by Bohrer, second by Soucek to accept the lowest quote from Speece-Lewis Engineers to inspect 62 standard bridges and up to 35 fracture critical bridges for the Webster County Road Department. Upon roll call vote, voting in favor of the motion: Bohrer, Soucek, Buschow and Ord. Voting nay: Delka, due to this item not being placed on the agenda. Absent or abstaining: none. The motion was approved. The Road Department will request that the State inspect the fracture critical bridges. Sandi Stevens of South Heartland District Health Department, met with the Board on a proposal for a Workplace Wellness Program. There is a grant for 2 years on a county program. The program aims to have healthy employees with special concerns for obesity. SHDHD and Mary Lanning Hospital provide services. The County would have to make a minimal financial commitment and form a local team for administrative support. The Board will review this at the next meeting. At 10:30 am, the Board held a Public Hearing for the adoption of the Budget. No public was in attendance for the Hearing. Clerk Knehans and the Board discussed the proposed budget. After final review of proposals, motion was made by Buschow, second by Soucek to adopt RESOLUTION 34-2009: BE IT RESOLVED, by the Board of Commissioners of Webster County, Nebraska as follows: SECTION 1. That the budget for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010, as categorically evidenced by the Budget Document be adopted as the Budget for Webster County for said fiscal year. SECTION 2. That the offices, departments, activities and institutions herein named are hereby authorized to expend the amounts herein appropriated to them during the fiscal year. SECTION 3. That the income necessary to finance the appropriations made and expenditures authorized shall be provided out of the unencumbered cash balance in each fund, revenues other than taxation to be collected during the fiscal year in fund, and tax levy requirements for each fund. Upon roll call vote, all Members voted to adopt the resolution. Sharon Hueftle, Executive Director of South Central Economic District (SCEDD), met with the Board. She reviewed projects and plans for the 12 county district. She advised the Board of the many grants and federal funds received for local and district economic development. Michele Bevers, Director of South Heartland District Health Department (SHDHD), met with the Board and provided the most recent information on H1N1 (swine flu) influenza. This has reached the pandemic stage in the state with the 5 to 24 age bracket being affected the most. Bevers reviewed symptoms and prevention. Currently, H1N1 is not as extremely dangerous as first expected EXCEPT for those persons with chronic underlying medical conditions. Bevers recommended that persons obtain vaccinations for the seasonal flu and for H1N1. The H1N1 vaccine may be available in about a month and there may be no cost except for an administrative charge. The Board discussed seasonal flu vaccinations after Bevers had left the meeting. Having concerns for employees and lost work hours, motion was made by Delka, second by Bohrer to authorize county employees and all active county EMTs to obtain their seasonal flu vaccination from the Webster County Clinic. The County will reimburse the Webster County Hospital for the balance of the cost for those shots after insurance coverage. All Members voted in favor of the motion. The Board reviewed a claim from the Road Department for a used truck costing $4,000. The claim was not signed by any Members and the claim may be withdrawn by the Road Office. The following claims were approved for payment: Wages for 8 part-time and 37 EMTs - $81,775.93 GENERAL FUND Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $4,018.63, Automated Systems software $282.99, Robert Beardslee maintnce $220.00, BlueCross Blu Shield health $12,158.96, Blue Hill Leader publish $181.78, Bob Barker Co. supply $308.91, Business World supply $14.86, Carpenter Reporting copies $64.80, Carrot-Top Indust flags $65.84, Cash-Wa Candy Co supply $12.50, Country Classic signs $24.00, Social Security FICA $4,334.61, Eakes Office supply $283.15, Executive Copier service $143.42, Farmers Coop fuel $1,441.60, Farmers Coop GW supply $806.01, Fed Ex freight $33.80, First Concord fee $6.00, Fleet Services fuel $86.97, Fleetpride health $420.00, Glenwood Telecom service $55.00, Guide Rock St Bnk health $325.00, Hastings Tribune paper $91.00, Jared Auto Expert repair $544.49, KS Highway Patrol car $11,950.00, Kenny’s Lumber repair $931.97, Lafayette Life insurnc $10.95, MB Construction service $1,120.00, McDole Welding repair $31.25, Bryan S. McQuay counsel $123.50, NE Law Training testing $70.00, Nebraska Telecom long dist $153.88, O’Keefe Elevator repair $185.00, Olson Enterprises repair $53.56, OMB Police Supply freight $11.99, Platte Valley Com repair $35.00, Quality Red D Mix concrete $608.75, Red Cloud Chief publish $201.51, R.C. Hardware supply $40.78, Seiler & Parker counsel $28.50, Co. Dental Fund premium $2,729.00, South Central PPD utility $24.80, Summit Masonry service $3,045.00, Theobald Law Off counsel $1,171.00, Village Pharmacy supply $84.22, Marty Wackerla maintnce $165.00, W.C. Transportatn handibus $866.00, W.C. Treasurer transfer $50,000.00, Robert Willicott contract $700.00. ROAD FUND ACE Machine Shop repair $2,002.97, Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $1,572.20, APAC, Inc. material $920.41, Baum Hydraulic repair $21.14, BlueCross BluShld health $5,526.80, Catherland Auto repair $548.76, Century Lumber repair $81.87, Country Corner fuel $252.10, D-A Lubricant repair $8,852.80, Social Security FICA $1,777.56, Eiseman Auto repair $629.88, Farmers Coop repair $8,302.23, Farmers Union repair $10.26, Monte Garvin repair $75.00, Glenwood Telecom 3 phone $128.68, Grand Island Lab testing $27.00, Guide Rock Village utility $41.63, Jared Auto Expert repair $408.09, Jim’s OK Tires tires $641.00, Kenny’s Lumber repair $164.87, Kucera Constructn maintnce $1,035.00, L & M Tire repair $9.90, Lang Diesel repair $394.50, Lawson Products repair $837.71, Martin Marietta material $889.14, McDole Welding supply $43.00, Nebraska Machinry repair $8,165.94, Nebraska Telecom long dist $96.77, Ragland Trucking maintnce $730.80, R.C. Hardware repair $187.46, Reliant Transport maintnce $229.23, Road Builders repair $6,269.21, Co. Dental Fund premium $874.00, Timm’s Service repair $3,050.90, Village Pharmacy supply $13.01. SELF-INSURED DENTAL Howard L. Miller dental $44.80, W.C. Treasurer transfer $10,000.00. MEDICAL RELIEF Adams County hearing $464.00, Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $6.75, Social Security FICA $7.65. NOXIOUS WEED Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $51.56, BlueCross BluShld health $552.68, Lynn Collison rental $200.00, Social Security FICA $58.44, Co. Dental Fund premium $31.00, Timm’s Service fuel $125.43. AMBULANCE FUND Farmers Coop fuel $113.31, Linweld rental $76.75, Olson Enterpris repair $450.76, Timm’s Service towing $325.00. Being no further business, Chairman Ord adjourned the meeting at 12:15 pm. The next regular business meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 6th, 2009. A current agenda and complete minutes are on file in the County Clerk’s Office. Dated this 15th day of September, 2009.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Governor's Column by Dave Heineman

UNL Contributes to Education & Busines Development
Sept. 18, 2009 Dear Fellow Nebraskans:
The University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) is focused on serving two key goals: keeping young people in our state and growing Nebraska’s economy.
As one of the nation’s top 50 public universities, UNL provides great educational opportunities for young Nebraskans. The array of 150 undergraduate majors and 275 programs of study offered at UNL provide an astonishing list of educational opportunities.
Many of these programs have been developed in the last 20 years to help prepare students to address modern issues. For example, the UNL College of Engineering has a net-zero energy project where students and faculty have built a house that produces at least as much energy as it uses.
In the areas of food, fuel and water, UNL is making strides that will help position Nebraska researchers and agribusinesses as an authority for others across the nation and around the world. UNL’s Water Center and international Water for Food initiatives are examples of UNL’s growing leadership in these critical areas. Where better than Nebraska, with its long history of agricultural success and the resources of the Ogallala Aquifer and natural waterways, could issues of food production and water efficiency be better addressed?
In looking at the challenges facing our state, it is clear that Nebraska’s success over the long-term will be determined by providing real and relevant educational opportunities for our young people. A great education opens doors for young Nebraskans that can lead to global opportunities and great benefits for our state.
In addition to providing a strong educational foundation for students, UNL is a vital partner in efforts to grow our state’s economy. UNL Chancellor Harvey Perlman has emphasized programs that support entrepreneurship and create new research potential for our state.
Many UNL students are encouraged to become entrepreneurs and establish new companies based on original inventions or discoveries developed in Lincoln. The Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management is one program that attracts high-achieving students who work through an intense curriculum to develop new technology-based business ideas. While still a new program, it has already helped develop several new businesses that are adding to Nebraska’s tax base and creating new quality job opportunities for recent graduates.
UNL is also a key asset in bringing new research funding to the state. This past year, UNL faculty members earned a record $122 million in new research grants. These research dollars provide fuel for our economy, just as planning for the development of the new Nebraska Innovation Campus will create new investment potential for our state.
Innovation Campus will provide new opportunities for partnerships and collaboration between businesses and faculty researchers. This is a major, long-term investment designed to create good jobs for Nebraskans and to leverage high caliber research for economic growth.
UNL also is focused on bringing the benefits of research and learning opportunities to the state as a whole through efforts such as the Cooperative Extension program, which helps agricultural producers achieve greater value for their products. More on the many ways Nebraska communities are impacted by outreach efforts at UNL is available online at
I am very proud of the progress taking place on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

A Nebraskan's View by Senator Ben Nelson

Monday, September 21, 2009 A WAY FORWARD FOR AFGHANISTAN America is at a tipping point in Afghanistan. It hinges on a functioning government that is able to provide protection for its citizens and can provide the most basic services to its people.
As Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel I am watching developments and the troop buildup in Afghanistan closely. My concern is about the U.S. strategy and how it will address governance in Afghanistan.
Benchmarks Need to Measure Progress For months I’ve called for establishing a series of benchmarks to measure the new strategy in Afghanistan and Pakistan. They will help the American people see where progress is being made and what challenges remain.
This is the substance of a letter I sent to Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, following his recent appearance before the Armed Services Committee.
I am confident that he and others are measuring effective governance but urged him to make those benchmarks public when he and others on the National Security Council outline other military and diplomatic measures of progress.
Disrupt Dismantle and Defeat In my letter I also mentioned that our committee is waiting for an assessment on Afghanistan from General Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. and NATO commander there. We need to know how U.S. strategy fits with the President’s goal to “disrupt, dismantle and defeat al Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and to prevent their return to either country in the future.”
The President has noted the key role of governance in reversing the Taliban’s gains and promoting a more capable and accountable Afghan government. This is no small undertaking but it is absolutely essential for America to be able to eventually leave Afghanistan and to make sure it doesn’t again become a safe haven for al Qaeda and terrorists.
The forthcoming benchmarks and reports will demonstrate to those called to service in Afghanistan and to the American people what we hope to accomplish and how we will operationally achieve those goals.
Straightforward Approach My approach is an outgrowth of bipartisan work I undertook several years ago during the war in Iraq. I was troubled because there was no objective measure of our progress there and some groups said that we were winning, while others said that we were losing. In response, I helped draft bipartisan legislation that Congress approved and President Bush signed into law.
We established 18 benchmarks, or measurements, of economic, military and diplomatic efforts in Iraq. The benchmarks helped Congress and the American people gain a better understanding of our successes and challenges in Iraq. They helped play down a partisan debate over whether we were winning or losing.
We need to do the same as we see a buildup in Afghanistan so U.S. troops and the American people have a clear mission and a clear set of benchmarks to judge how it is progressing.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Youth Football Wins Opener

The Blue Hill Youth Football team defeated the Gibbon Buffaloes 26 - 6 to open their 2009 campaign. The Buffaloes won the toss and elected to have the wind at their backs. The Buffaloes opening kick-off sailed over the head of Bobcat return man, Austin Rose for a touch back. Bobcat fullback, Mitch Krueger rumbled for 37 yards on the first play from scrimmage. Halfback Austin Rose followed up with a 15 yard scamper and tight-end Alec Eiseman added 9 yards on an end around before the Bobcat offense stalled inside the red zone. Linebacker Andrew Mai put the Bobcats on the board when he recovered a Buffaloes fumble in the endzone on their first posession. The 2-point conversion failed and the Bobcats led 6-0. The Bobcats got their second score on a 24 yard sweep by Mitch Krueger as time expired in the second quarter. Again the 2 point conversion failed and the Bobcat's took a 12 - 0 lead into half time. The Bobcats converted again in the third quarter on a 15 yard end around by Alec Eiseman. Ethan Sharp plowed in for the two point conversion to put the Bobcats up 20 - 0. The Buffoles scored early in the fourth quarter on a 40 yard quarterback draw to close the gap to 20 - 6. Kody Mans scampered 15 yards on the final play of the game to make the final score 26-6. Since time was expired, no 2-point conversion was attempted. 10 of Blue Hill's 23 players had carries in the opening game and two additional player's had passes thrown in their direction. The Bobcat's offense netted nearly 350 yards on the ground. Mitch Krueger led the offense with 130 yards on 8 carries and one touchdown. Other ball carriers were; Kody Mans - 7 carries for 55 yards and one touchdown, Jayden Hamel - 6 carriers for 40 yards, Austin Rose - 5 carries for 35 yards, Alec Eiseman - 3 carries for 35 yards and one touchdown, Joel Smith - 3 carries for 20 yards, Ethan Sharp - 2 carries for 5 yards and a 2-point conversion, Andrew Mai - 2 carries for 5 yards, Alec Meyer - 1 carry for 12 yards and Dakota Jameson - 1 carry for 1 yard. The Bobcat passing game had no completions in 5 attempts. Austin Rose, Kody Mans and Mitch Krueger led the Bobcat Defense with 6 tackles each. Andrew Mai added 4 tackles and two fumble recoveries. The Bobcat's host the Axtell Jets on Sunday, September 27. Axtell handed the Bobcat's their only loss of their innagural season, 20-6 in last year's season opener.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Senator's Column by Mike Johanns

September 14, 2009 ACORN Funding Cut Off Dear Nebraskans, On Monday, my colleagues in the Senate rose above partisan loyalties to support my amendment that will prevent tax dollars from supporting an organization shrouded in controversy: ACORN. Employees of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now have been convicted of irresponsible, fraudulent, and at times illegal behavior, and I took action to protect taxpayers. The federal government has long provided funding to many services and organizations on the premise that its recipients put the money to good use. Our government funds the construction of roads, bridges, and public areas; and community service organizations that assist the less fortunate and promote the public interest. But ACORN's employees have established an alarming pattern of deception over time that demonstrates they do not deserve taxpayer support. ACORN employees have been arrested for voter fraud in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas, and most recently Miami. These offices have been raided by federal agents and local authorities and found to have falsified voter registration forms. Last year in Miami, one office was found to have falsified 888 registration cards out of about 1,400. That means ACORN falsified close to three voter registrations for each legitimate one-and that was just in Miami. Even more shocking are the videotapes that have been emerging reportedly from ACORN offices in New York, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The tapes appear to feature ACORN employees offering advice on a host of illegal activities, including tax evasion, fraud, and even prostitution. Coinciding with the release of the tapes was the Census Bureau's announcement Friday that it is severing all ties with ACORN for work on the 2010 Census. My amendment blocks federal funding in the transportation and housing appropriations bill from going to ACORN, which has received $53 million through Congress since 1994, according to a recent report. The thought of more federal dollars going to this organization is unthinkable. In July, the House Oversight Committee minority staff published a report, and based on their investigation described ACORN as: "... a shell game played in 120 cities and 43 states ... a complex structure designed to conceal illegal activities, to use taxpayer and tax exempt dollars for partisan political purposes, and to distract investigators." It's clear that ACORN's employees have undermined our country's democratic process, our laws, and our good faith. I am proud that Senators overwhelmingly stood up at a time when every dollar is critical to our taxpayers and our economy, and said 'no' to letting tax payer money continue to bankroll an organization besieged by so much controversy and allegations of wrongdoing. I hope this act of rising above partisanship to do what is right becomes the rule and not the exception.

Congressman's Column by Adrian Smith

Health Care Debate Gets Heated In August, I - like many Members of Congress - made the most of my time to engage constituents in a debate about legislation directly impacting the future of our health care. I took the opportunity to ask folks attending my public meetings if they thought we should have finished the bill before the end of August. Even though we had people on both sides of the issue, not one on either side of the issue raised their hand. We need to work together, but more importantly, we need to take the time to get the bill right. What I heard back home is folks want us to take action here in Washington which will increase access to care, lower the cost of health insurance and lower the cost of health care in the long term. Just a few days ago, President Obama made a rare address to a joint session of Congress. I appreciated the President for once again laying out his thoughts on health care. However, for the most part he did not say anything we haven't heard before. The President missed a historic opportunity. The American people don't want us to launch a new government-run insurance plan which will lead to a government takeover of health care, paid for with $900 billion in higher taxes. What's more, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office's (CBO) Director Douglas Elmendorf confirmed H.R. 3200 would actually drive costs higher for American families and force patients onto a government-run plan. A separate study concluded this move could drive as many as 114 million Americans from their current employer-sponsored coverage. This bill would force providers to accept reimbursements equal to Medicare rates, which on average reimburse doctors 20 percent less than private plans, and hospitals as much as 30 percent less. The result would be unsustainable, forcing private plans to raise the cost of private coverage to absorb underpayments. Moreover, millions of seniors would lose health care choices due to billions of dollars in Medicare cuts, making it more difficult for seniors to obtain the coverage they need. The American people want our current health care system to work better. They don't want it replaced with a government-run plan. Nor do they support one party taking a go-it-alone approach. Why not let all Americans purchase health insurance across state lines? Why not bring about reasonable restrictions and limits on medical malpractice claims to end the era of defensive medicine? Congress must recognize the need to lower health care costs and both sides must be ready, willing and able to work with colleagues throughout the political spectrum to solve our health care challenges in a bipartisan manner. It is understandable this issue has raised emotions, even causing outbursts from small constituent meetings all the way to the House floor. I say this with firsthand knowledge. Lawmakers should pursue ideas which hold to traditional American principles and offer real results. We should be working to empower states to experiment with their own reforms; to allow Americans to purchase health insurance across state lines; and implement tax reforms which would allow individuals to purchase the coverage best suited for them and their families. When I was in Nebraska, people told me Congress should take its time and work to develop a bill which will lower the cost of health care without spending $900 billion more of taxpayer dollars. We have the opportunity to make the American people proud. We should make the most of it.

Senator's Column by Mike Johanns

September 7, 2009 How Much Debt Is Too Much? Dear Nebraskans, Late last month, the White House's Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released its annual mid-year review of the federal budget. We all knew it would report a record-setting deficit-$1.6 trillion for 2009-but the review further revealed the challenges we will face as a country if the current track of fiscal irresponsibility continues. The report revealed the deficit over the next ten years would be $2 trillion more than previously estimated by OMB. The expansive and impulsive spending demonstrated by the Obama Administration has led our country into uncharted waters. We now face realities of an economic landscape that will-or at least, should-significantly alter our policymaking decisions for years to come. We are confronted with many issues that require responsible action, yet no one issue can be considered in a vacuum, free from the consequences of fiscal irresponsibility. Consider that our projected $1.6 trillion federal deficit for 2009 is more than three times that of last year. This leaves us with a cumulative federal debt of more than $11 trillion, and it is rising every day. Imagine if that happened in the state of Nebraska, a state that has always responsibly balanced its budget. If Nebraska had a deficit similar to that of the federal government, our state would be $1.5 billion in the red this year. It would be a statewide crisis, on the front page of every newspaper from Omaha to Scottsbluff. This is how heavily the stimulus, budget, and TARP bailouts have weighed on the American taxpayer. OMB currently projects the federal deficit to grow to nearly $23 trillion by 2019. This increase in national debt means we must drastically increase our borrowing from countries like China to pay for our own budget shortfalls. A $23 trillion national debt is equal to 76 percent of our nation's yearly economic output. A debt so high would be nothing short of alarming. The bottom line is we cannot afford to continue the spending spree. Attempting to maintain America's strength in a 21st century world while owing three-fourths of our economic worth to rising powers like China is simply unthinkable. I will do everything I can to prevent that from happening. America's government must learn to tighten its belt and live within its means, just as the American people have done. As the Senate returns to business in D.C., many will press for health care expansion with a $1 trillion price tag. At a time when health care programs make up 26 percent of government spending, one bill being proposed is actually projected to add $239 billion to the deficit over the next ten years. This is unacceptable. Significant health care reform is needed, but we need to do this right, and responsibly, or we risk unintended consequences the likes of which our country has never seen.

Straight From the Horse's Mouth

Duane A. Lienemann, UNL Extension Educator, Webster County September 18, 2009 Edition Many farmers are gearing up for the wheat planting season by readying their drills and preparing their fields. Most have probably decided what variety of wheat they are going to plant, and might be planning on using saved seed. Saved seed is acceptable for planting if proper precautions are taken to ensure quality and purity has been preserved. Producers already know that consideration has to be given to the viability of saved seed. Damage to seed can occur in the field, during transportation, and during storage. I think they are wise to have saved seed tested after harvest and again before planting to ensure germination. Storage, handling, and cleaning can also damage or reduce the viability and purity of saved seed. One easy way to reduce the risk of using saved seed is to have it tested before planting. Many have been feeling the crunch of the economy, which has farmers rethinking their business choices for this coming year. For wheat growers, this means deciding whether to save seed for next year or buy new. While using saved (bin run) seed may help cut initial costs, hidden risks exist that could hurt a farmer's yield in the future. Although saved seed may be viable, farmers have to make sure it is legal. I am not sure how many farmers even know about the legalities of planting wheat. In fact there is a law that has been around for many years that see to the legality of planting certain varieties of wheat. That law was put in place by the Plant Variety Protection Act (PVPA). I had not quite honestly heard too many people talk about this law even though it is listed under many varieties of wheat in at the Universities in Kansas, Nebraska and other states as well as individual companies such as AgriPro, Asgrow and WestBred. There has been a lot of discussion lately on this law and in fact what has got my attention is that many seed companies have started exercising their right to pursue retailers that sell seed illegally. They also can pursue the purchasers of illegal seed and request that they destroy the fields they have planted with this seed. Law suits have been leveled against wheat producers in Oklahoma, Kansas and South Dakota as well as other states. A farmer in Oklahoma settled with a $50,000 fine, a couple of brothers in Kansas were sued for illegal sale of Jagger and Santa Fe wheat as seed. The total amount of the settlement was $150,000. In July, South Dakota State University filed five lawsuits against farmers for brown-bagging seed it has developed and protected with patents under the Plant Variety Protection Act. I do not know of any at this time in Nebraska, but we certainly don’t want to see it here either. Let’s take a look at this law in a little more detail. While patents can be obtained on plants -- asexually reproducing plants have been patentable since an act of Congress in 1930 -- protection more often takes the form of a Plant Variety Protection certificate. These PVP certificates offer patent-like protection. This legislation was enacted in 1970 and amended in 1994 to promote the development of new varieties by allowing the variety owner to determine who may sell seed of the variety. Basically the law states that farmers may save seed for their own planting needs but are prohibited from selling any “farmer saved seed” without the permission of the variety owner. All seed sales must comply with state seed laws. This law applies to all varieties protected prior to April 4, 1995 and provides protection of the variety for 20 years. I suggest you check into your seed wheat and see if it complies to either the 1970 or 1994 law or one of the options listed under the law. The Plant Variety Protection Act allows farmers to plant seed that has been saved. However, this is only legal if the original crop was legally purchased. In the case of certified seed, the farmer must ensure his purchase was accompanied with a specific label. This label, found on the bag, invoice, or bulk sales certificate, verifies the transaction is legal. If the farmer doesn't get a label, the sale might be illegal. When planting patented seed, for example a Clearfield wheat, it might be illegal for farmers to save seed for the next year. Some patented seed comes with a contract that specifically states the farmer cannot save back seed. You can get more information on this topic at: The bottom line is to be aware of these stipulations to avoid problems down the line. Plant Variety Protection specifically gives farmers the right to save seed that they've legally purchased. They can save that back as many generations as they want. They do not owe any kind of royalty on it. Farmers do that regularly, every year, and that's fine, but not for replanting. Those farmers are not allowed to sell (or even give away) the seed to others for replanting. The Plant Variety Protection Act was designed to promote the development of new plant varieties. Allowing plant breeders to determine who can sell seed of the varieties developed gives them the ability to insure that the farmers are getting a particular variety. It also allows the breeder to recoup some of the development costs usually through royalties and re-invests in future variety development programs. Farmers have to remember that a lot of time and money goes into certified seed to create new disease and insect resistance, and improve characteristics like yield. That helps insure that we continually get new and improved varieties that help the bottom line. Check with your UNL Extension Educator or directly contact the Nebraska Crop Improvement Association; or in Kansas, the Kansas Wheat Alliance or KSU for lists of wheat or for more information on PVP. Play it safe and make sure you are legal with your wheat seed. The preceding information comes from the research and personal observations of the writer which may or may not reflect the views of UNL or UNL Extension. For more further information on these or other topics contact D. A. Lienemann, UNL Extension Educator for Webster County in Red Cloud, (402) 746-3417 or email to:

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Councilman's Column by Jesse Alber

Fewer Handshakes -- More Signatures One of the pleasures of small town life (most of the time) is that everybody knows everybody else. For the most part, we trust our neighbors and the other members of our community. Business is often conducted with no more than a firm handshake or a gentleman's agreement. We trust our instincts, upbringing and our experiences when we make business decisions. The bonds between friends tend to make contracts and policy & procedure manuals seem alien to the small towner. The City of Blue Hill has gotten away with a completely inadequate set of personnel policies and procedures to date simply based upon the quality of the individuals we have been blessed to have working for our municipality. However, we cannot expect to be so fortunate forever, and the council has started to take action to develop a comprehensive Policy Manual for Municipal Personnel. Countless hours have been devoted to the mundane discussion of the exacting wording of specific phrases in the proposed 17 page document over the past three council meetings. The manual discusses everything from maternity leave to bereavement leave, from equal opportunity to grievances, from overtime to vacations, from drug use to military service and from health insurance to sick leave. It is a sobering reminder of the world we live in, where every detail must be put in writing and every contingency must be thoroughly planned for. I applaud the work that the Mayor and my fellow council members have put into this chore. This manual is way past due and their efforts to scrutinize every detail will be a great benefit to the city in the long run. I will miss the "good ole days". Electrical Shock I have spoken with numerous individuals who dropped to their knees and clutched their chest when they read their utility bill this month. The council had approved a 10% electric rate increase recently and the pain could be felt on the very first billing cycle following. My own bill was so high, it came with a stewardess ..... brrrrrrumpumpum!!! Only a portion of the shock was attributable to the rate increase. The dog days of summer has had our air conditioners and ice makers working overtime the past couple of months and electrical usage has nearly doubled since just a few months ago. The discomfort of the higher rates, however, were an unavoidable necessity as the city's electric rates and administrative, maintenance and distribution costs continue to rise at a rate much more rapidly than we are comfortable passing on to the customers. Despite the pain we feel this month, Blue Hill still enjoys utility rates that are very favorable when compared to rates in surrounding communities. I hope that recent budgetary modifications can help to ensure that the need for future rate increases are eliminated or kept to a bare minimum at the least. I also feel that our current budget places the city in a strong position to continue to keep our tax request modest.

Scouts to Host Derby

Blue Hill Boy Scout & Cub Scout Pack 99 will host a Scout-Mobile Derby on Saturday, September 19 from 9:00 am - 2:30 pm. Lancaster Street will be blocked off from Liberty Street to Wilson Street (Hwy 281) for the event. Approximately 50 Scouts from across the area will participate in the event. Scouts take turns driving gravity pulled "soap box" derby cars down the hill. Two cars race per heat. The scouts will also lauch "pop bottle rockets and practice some of their rope skills. The event is an annual favorite for all of the scouts.

City Council Sets Tax Request

The Blue Hill City Council met on Tuesday, September 15. The 2009-10 Personal & Real Property Tax Requirement Request amount in the proposed 2009-10 Budget was set at $101,000. This amount is unchanged from the previous several years. The 2008 Property Tax Rate was 0.369443. The 2009 Proper try Tax Rate has been set at 0.357187. The decreased rate is due to increased property valuation within the city limits. There was no public discussion on the tax request during the Tax Request Hearing. Tim Eiseman addressed the board with concerns of traffic speed on the newly paved South West Railway street and considerations for correcting the issue. Eiseman also discussed additional breeds of dogs that he feels should be added to Ordinance No. 615. The council will review both concerns and address them at a later date. Sylvia Alber addressed her concerns with Mayor Schunk's lack of compliance with a city ordinance. Subject was discussed. Notice of the City Council's vacancy resulting from the recent recall election will be published in the Blue Hill Leader and will be posted at City Hall, the Post Office, and the Community / Senior Center. Interested candidates should contact Mayor Keri Schunk. Schunk should present her nomination to the City Council on Tuesday, October 13. A lengthy discussion was held on personnel policies to be included in a new personnel policy manual for city employees. A revised draft of the policies will be submitted, again, in October. Discussion was also held on a new health insurance program offered by the Nebraska League of Municipalities. Additional information was requested. Discussion was held on old lease agreements between the city and Burlington Northern Railroad. The downtown park, some utility accesses, and three of the four wells to the north of Blue Hill all reside on Railroad right-of-way. BNSF has transferred management of the properties to Railroad Management Company. The city will pay the requested lease amount on one of the tracts but has suggested additional information before submitting a payment on the other tracts. An amendment was made to the wording of Ordinance No. 622 dealing with electric rates. Customers who have meters on the primary side of the system owned transformers will now receive a 1.5% discount on their energy costs instead of on their total billing. Discussion was held on certain dogs in the community that have demonstrated aggressive tendencies. Discussion was also held on contractual opportunities and what government agency is responsible for animal control. Discussion was held on proposed improvements to the ball fields. The council requested additional research. Additional items discussed were recent work on Hickory Street, upcoming Boy Scout / Cub Scout activity, pest control services, the city's website, and personnel review of the Deputy City Clerk.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Letter from Congressman Adrian Smith

Knowing of your interest in agricultural exports, I am writing to update you on recent developments in Congress. As you may know, on April 10, 2008, the House of Representatives suspended fast-track trade procedures of the U.S.-Columbia Trade Promotion Agreement (CTPA), indefinitely prolonging action on the trade deal's implementation. As a member of the House Agricultural Committee, I joined a number of my colleagues in expressing disappointment in Congress and the Administration's failure to work cooperatively to promote U.S. products. The CTPA, when fully implemented, will provide increased access for Nebraska's agricultural exports. Already our largest market in South America, Colombia now holds even greater potential. Upon implementation of CTPA, Columbia will immediately eliminate its 80-percent duty on prime and choice beef cuts, and will begin phasing out all duties, some as high as 30 percent, on pork, corn, soybeans, wheat and barley. Trad agreements such as Colombia, South Korea and Panama are invaluable to Nebraska's farmer's and ranchers by establishing a level playing field. Currently, the Office of U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) is accepting public comment on the trade proposals with South Korea and Colombia. Written comments are due by 12:00PM on September 15, 2009, and may be submitted through the USTR's website at by clicking on "Federal Regulation Notices".

A Nebraskan's View by Senator Ben Nelson

Monday, September 14, 2009 HEALTH CARE REFORM: THE "WHAT'S IN IT FOR ME" FACTOR The vast majority of Americans, some 250 million people, have health insurance. That includes 85 percent of Nebraskans. While many Nebraskans have health insurance, most of those with coverage face steep increases in premiums every year. They want to contain those costs, but don’t want to sacrifice what they have so that coverage may be extended to others. That was one of the main themes I heard over and over again at public meetings statewide during August. Up until the President spoke last week, those proposing health care reform have failed to tell the majority of Americans who have insurance what reform holds for them and how they would benefit from it. The Lost Message Previously, the message had been all about how to cover the uninsured and not addressed to those who have worked hard and paid their share to obtain health insurance. The value of reform for those who have insurance had been lost and the absence of this important message crippled the debate. The President spoke directly to these Americans on how health reform would make their coverage work better for them and become more secure. This is why I said his speech was a bit of a game changer. He regained control of the message for the 250 million people who have insurance and what's in it for them. Controlling Costs for the Insured Their premiums are going up an average of 9 percent a year which most families cannot sustain because they’re going up two to three times faster than wages. While I need to see details and cost estimates, on the surface, I agree with the President that reform should help keep costs down for those who have insurance while not adding more deficit spending. I will be looking for a plan which stresses prevention and wellness, quality improvement in the delivery of health care, yet not raise taxes, increase the deficit, ration care, or fund abortions. These are some of the basic principles that are guiding me as we work our way through this difficult issue. Listening to Nebraskans Swing votes, those of us in the middle, the centrist and conservative Democrats and moderate Republicans, were a target of the President’s speech, but the people I will continue to listen to on this important issue are Nebraskans. They will be the ones who influence my vote. As a result I plan to be holding more public meetings across the state on health care reform. Now that we are starting to get much needed details, additional meetings are more important than ever.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

City Council to meet September 15

The Blue Hill City Council will meet on September 15 for their regular meeting. Meeting is scheduled to commence at 7:30 p.m. with a Budget Setting / Final Tax Request Hearing set for 8:00 p.m. The 2009-10 Personal & Real Property Tax Requirement Request amount in the proposed 2009-10 Budget is $101,000. This amount has remained unchanged for several years. The 2008 Property Tax Rate was 0.369443. The 2009 Protery Tax Rate will be 0.357187. The decreased rate is due to increased property valuation within the city limits. Other items of business include; pay request submitted by Vontz Paving, requested installation of a speed bump at Simpson & Southwest railway, addition of breeds to the dangerous dogs list, review and follow up of recall election, bills from the Railroad Management Company, animal control, requested improvements at baseball fields, recent work completed on Hickory Street, request to block off Sycamore Street on September 19, pest control services, city's web site and more.

Congressman's Column by Adrian Smith

The Potential of Wind Energy Energy is the lifeblood of the American economy. Our country is fortunate to have energy resources ranging from underground deposits of oil and natural gas to wind, hydro, and solar power. The question is how we can make the best use of every form of domestic energy. Recently, I toured areas of the Gulf Coast to take a first-hand look at our nation's offshore drilling infrastructure. It was insightful to see the offshore exploration process and to learn how environmentally-safe the entire process is. Louisiana is the nation's largest offshore oil and gas producer, and there are pipelines from the Gulf of Mexico to virtually every part of the country, including Nebraska. But America needs to ensure we have as diverse an energy portfolio as possible, including making the best possible use of wind generated power. According to a Department of Energy report published in May 2008, land-based and offshore wind resources could provide a much greater proportion of the nation's demand for electrical energy. However, in order to expand from today's proportion of electric generation from wind (less than 2 percent), our nation's energy infrastructure will require several significant advances including wind turbine technology, improved wind forecasting capability, improved energy storage, and most importantly the expansion of transmission systems to deliver wind power from resource centers to centers of population. It is the last point which has proved particularly vexing to me. America has tremendous wind energy potential, but our energy infrastructure needs to have the ability to create energy in one part of the country and use it in another. Otherwise, it is the equivalent of building a restaurant in the middle of a pasture. Nebraska ranks sixth in wind energy potential, behind North Dakota, Texas, Kansas, South Dakota, and Montana. We are behind Iowa, Colorado, South Dakota, Wyoming, and Kansas regarding wind energy generation. Nebraska's wind generation ranking is in large part due to the fact our state - even though we have tremendous wind energy potential -- lacks the transmission capacity to send the energy to other parts of the country. Recently I authored an amendment to the Wind Energy Research and Development Act which would allow for research and development for ways to efficiently and cost-effectively create high-voltage transmission for renewable energy. The Wind Energy Research and Development Act will help our nation's infrastructure make better use of wind energy, but we also have to make sure we have a diverse energy portfolio. This legislation is scheduled to be on the House floor for a final vote in the very near future. America needs a comprehensive national energy plan, not a debilitating national energy tax under the guise of ‘cap-and-trade.' An all-of-the-above approach to our energy policy - one which includes offshore oil and gas production as well as the advancement of technologies to develop alternative sources of energy such as wind power - needs to be on the table. I am a cosponsor of the American Energy Act - a plan which takes just such an all-of-the-above approach to energy independence, more jobs, and a cleaner environment without imposing a national energy tax. In order to become truly energy independent, we must continue to explore all forms of domestic energy, including wind power. As Congress continues to debate energy legislation, I want to make sure we are not only making the best use of our energy resources, but also looking to the future for our energy security.

Governor's Column by Dave Heineman

Sept. 11, 2009 Preparing Your Family for H1N1 this Fall A new kind of influenza is circulating in Nebraska. It’s called the 2009 pandemic influenza A (H1N1). Public health officials, like our state’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joann Schaefer, expect there to be more cases nationally and within Nebraska. With the beginning of school and kids congregating together, cases are on the rise. Dr. Schaefer says that this is a changing situation and we must be vigilant, staying on top of the information provided to us by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There is no vaccine right now, but one is expected to be available within the next month or two. At this time, those most at risk from this illness are pregnant women, children younger than five years old, and anyone with certain chronic medical conditions which place them at higher risk of complications. These conditions include diabetes, heart disease (not high blood pressure), asthma, and kidney disease. Other people at risk of complications are those who have compromised immune systems (like those who are on chemotherapy or who have had transplants). I know that parents are especially concerned about this virus. Although most cases seem to be mild and patients recover without treatment or even a visit to the doctor, some have become seriously ill. Children with underlying health conditions, like asthma, diabetes and neuromuscular disorders, are more likely to be seriously impacted. Parents can teach their children what they need to know to protect themselves against the virus. Teach them to wash their hands with soap and water, frequently. They can also use an antibacterial gel. Teach them not to touch their eyes, nose and mouth. Teach them to stay away from others who appear to be ill. To avoid spreading the virus, teach them to cough into their elbow or into a tissue, then throw the tissue away. Have your kids stay home if they are sick. Dr. Schaefer says they should stay home until 24 hours have passed without fever (without using fever-reducing drugs like acetaminophen). If your child or you have only a mild case of illness, you don’t need to call your doctor’s office, which may be seriously challenged by the number of patients and calls because of this virus. If you or your child are seriously ill, then do call your doctor’s office. He or she may prescribe an antiviral over the phone based on your symptoms. Antivirals can lessen your symptoms or perhaps shorten the duration of your illness. If he or she wants to see you, then arrangements may be made to see you separately so that other people in the waiting room are not exposed. If you are pregnant or have a chronic, underlying health condition, you may want to call your doctor before you become ill. He or she may want to make arrangements for quick antiviral treatment if you become sick. I encourage you to use the DHHS Website ( ) for more information. This Website includes news releases and links to very good information and fact sheets from the CDC, HHS and USDA.

Straight from the Horse's Mouth

by Duane A. Lienemann, UNL Extension Educator, Webster County September 11, 2009 Edition This past week, I walked through the aisles of the Nebraska State Fair in Lincoln for the last time. I drank in the sights, the sounds, the smells and the sense of tradition and history. I shared memories with many old friends as we walked the grounds, watched the shows or just simply sat on a bench observing the diversity of people who were attending the final state fair to be he held in this tradition rich and historic location. When I led the last steer to the truck and then put the last box of static exhibits in my pickup, I turned to take one last look-- and it was like saying goodbye to a very good friend. Memories rushed back from the first time I came to the fair in the mid-50s with my dad and grandpa; to the days that I exhibited; or sat in the old 4-H Building arena waiting for my number to be called to give reasons as I represented Franklin County on its 4-H judging team. More memories of many students that I worked with as an FFA advisor, and more recently as an extension educator; and special memories watching and helping my own daughter prepare and show the string of cattle that she showed over the years. I smiled and then found deep-seated emotions running through me as I remembered those precious moments, and true to my personality decided I needed to seek out at the history of our State Fair. I thought this week I would share some of what I learned with you in a very brief form. I found it rather interesting. Nebraska State Fair History: The Fifth Territorial Legislature, in an act approved Oct. 14, 1858, providing for the organization of County Agricultural Societies, established a Territorial Board of Agriculture to receive and digest reports from, and of, the several organizations, and to hold annual meetings for the purpose of deliberating and consulting as to the wants, prospects and condition of the agricultural interests throughout the Territory. The first meeting of the Board was held in Omaha October 30, 1858. It was determined at this meeting that the first annual fair be held three days in succession, commencing on the third Wednesday of September, 1859, in such county as offered the largest donations, privileges and best accommodations. The list of premiums and amenities having been published accordingly, Otoe County was selected as the location. It appears the Nebraska City had a lot of firsts in our state history. The first “Territorial Fair” was held at Nebraska City September 21, 22 and 23, 1859, the list comprising premiums on farm stock, “blooded and ordinary”, of all kinds then in the West, farm implements, domestic manufactures and dairy products, American cloth manufactures, needle, shell and wax works, paintings and drawings, stoves and stone ware, cabinet ware, book binding and printing, flowers, fruits, vegetables, grain and field crops, listed in nearly the same order in which they have been mentioned. A premium was also offered for the best essay on the character, composition and improvement of soils in Nebraska, for which it appears there was no competition. “The amount actually awarded aggregated to $355, in addition to a gold watch, saddle and bridle, and two sets of jewelry, valued at $115, and a goodly number of diplomas”. The address of the occasion was delivered by J. Sterling Morton. At the end of the report of the fair, to the next Legislature, the Committee "beg leave to say that this first Territorial Fair of Nebraska, though not a complete success, is far from a failure. Taking all things into consideration, it is a marvel that we have done half so well." This was the only Territorial Fair ever held in Nebraska, no decided effort appearing to have been made toward another exhibition until 1868, when the Board, having been resolved into a State organization by the admission of the Territory, held the second annual fair, also at Nebraska City, on October 7, 8 and 9. The next fair was held in Nebraska City on October 7-9, 1868; this was the first fair held after Nebraska became a state, so this technically was the first actual Nebraska State Fair. Nebraska City also hosted the 1869 fair. In 1870 and 1871, it was held in Brownville. From 1872 until 1901 the fair switched back and forth between Lincoln and Omaha. In Omaha it was held at the Omaha Driving Park in North Omaha. The Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben was formed in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to keep the fair in Omaha, but succeeded in having their own show. In 1901, the Nebraska Legislature named the Lancaster County Fairgrounds in Lincoln as the official home and it has been there every since. It stayed pretty much “status quo” until recently. Struggling with lowered attendance, the Nebraska State Fair was thought by some to be threatened with termination in the early years of the new millennium. It was added as a voluntary donation recipient to the annual state income tax and attendance rose enough in subsequent years to give it a second wind. As do many things, big changes were just around the corner. Questions kept arising about the viability of the fair and condition of buildings, etc. where it was currently housed. In 2008, the Nebraska legislature enacted LB1116 to transfer the Nebraska State Fair to Grand Island in 2010. The realization of this kicked in at this, the 140th edition of the Nebraska State Fair. I hope attendees this year got to see remnants of the Nebraska State Fair’s past at the historic Industrial Arts building. The old brick structure has been hosting state fairs since 1918. Not far away, the 4-H building has been standing since 1931, the root of many of my own memories. By this time next year, the State Fair will have completed its first new venue in Grand Island, and those historic buildings and the current grounds likely will be just a memory. I bid the “Old State Fair” adieu. Goodbye old friend, it was a good run. I will miss you and all that you entailed. But I welcome and look forward to a new adventure, new facilities and the start of a new history at the first Nebraska State Fair in Grand Island! See you there next year! The preceding information comes from the research and personal observations of the writer which may or may not reflect the views of UNL or UNL Extension. For more further information on these or other topics contact D. A. Lienemann, UNL Extension Educator for Webster County in Red Cloud, (402) 746-3417 or email to:

Friday, September 11, 2009

Record Crops Forecast

A new federal forecast says the Nebraska corn crop will be even bigger than the already expected record. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that, based on Sept. 1 conditions, the corn crop should hit 1.55 billion bushels – 11 percent higher than last year's 1.39 billion bushels. The Nebraska corn crop record was set in 2007 - 1.47 billion bushels. The USDA report issued Friday also says 9.15 million corn acres were planted in Nebraska, 7 percent more than a year ago. The yield is forecast at 169 bushels an acre, which would be 3 bushels higher than the 2004 record. Soybean production is forecast at 237 million bushels – 5 percent higher than last year. Yield is forecast at 51 bushels at acre. That would tie the record set in 2007.


The Webster County Board of Commissioners met at 8:30 am on Tuesday, September 1st for a regular business meeting. The following Members were present for roll call: Jeff Ord, John Soucek, Roger Bohrer, Keith Buschow and Mary Delka. Motion was made by Bohrer, second by Soucek to approve the minutes of the August 18th, 2009 business meeting and the August 26th emergency meeting. All Members voted to approve the minutes. The Board discussed a pending vacancy on the Hospital Board of Trustees due to the resignation of Marlys Schmidt. Her term was due to expire 01/01/2013. Commissioner Buschow may submit a name for nomination at the next regular business meeting. Clerk Knehans and the Board discussed budget proposals. The increase for new growth would allow for the construction of two concrete box culverts. The new tax levy would be down to 42.8 cents. Motion was made by Buschow, second by Bohrer to approve of the County Board Proposals for the 2009/2010 County Budget with a Public Hearing to be held at 10:30 am on Tuesday, September 15th before adopting the budget. All Members voted in favor of the motion. Upon review of Unused Budget Authority created for next year, motion was made by Soucek, second by Buschow to approve of a one percent increase above the restricted funds for the budget. All members voted in favor of the motion. Marianna Harris, Hospital Administrator, met with the Board and submitted a financial report for the end of the fiscal year. After review with the Board, the report was favorable. Harris reported on current activities, future plans, finances and the annual budget. County Attorney McDole and Clerk Knehans met with the Board regarding a request from a former employee for extended benefits. No actions would be taken on the matter. Commissioner Buschow was excused from the remainder of the meeting for personal reasons. Merle Illian, on behalf of the Trailblazer R.C.& D., and Jim Zimmerman, Manager for Red Cloud Country Club, met with the Board regarding the cleanup of illegal dumpsites in county road ditches. The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality has funding for such a project. Motion was made by Bohrer, second by Delka to authorize Webster County to apply for the NDEQ funding as the local agency for coordination of the project and seek the eligible costs of the project from NDEQ. Red Cloud Country Club would be reimbursed for their eligible expenses. The four members present voted in favor of the motion. Linda Grummert, Highway Superintendent, met with the Board and submitted her Report on the study that she had made on three possible road closings proposed by the Board. Grummert also discussed bridges, roads, signs and concrete box culvert plans. Grummert and the Board reviewed two easements across county roads. Motion was made by Soucek, second by Delka to approve of the easements for a buried waterline for Stacey Goodrich and an underground electric powerline for Ryan Winter. The four members present voted in favor of the motion. Joe Wilken, of Nebraska Machinery Company, met with the Board on a lease-purchase option for a new Caterpillar track driven skid/steer loader. The annual cost to lease this equipment (valued at $39,173) is $3,750 for the first 250 hours of use and then $15.00/hr for additional use in the first year. Motion was made by Bohrer, second by Soucek to enter into this lease agreement with Caterpillar Financial Services Corp. The four members present voted in favor of the motion. Highway Superintendent Grummert returned to the meeting to follow up on road closing proceedings. Motion was made by Bohrer, second by Soucek to adopt RESOLUTON 32-2009: WHEREAS, a clear and unambiguous description of the roads to be vacated or abandoned, is as follows: Road #86 running east and west between Section 22 & 27-T3N-R12W; Road #87 running northeast 253 feet from the west side of the county bridge between the SE¼ Section 1 and NE¼NW¼ Section 12-T1N-R10W; Road #88, the west .035 mile of county road, including the bridge, running east and west between SW¼ Section 4 and NW¼ Section 9-T2N-R9W. WHEREAS, the Webster County Highway Superintendent has performed a study of said roads, and recommends that the roads be vacated or abandoned. BE IT RESOLVED that the matter of vacating or abandonment of said roads shall be set for public hearing October 20th, 2009 at 10:30 a.m. Voting to adopt the Resolution: Bohrer, Soucek, Delka and Ord. Voting nay or abstaining: none. Absent: Buschow. Resolution 32-200 was adopted. The following claims were approved for payment: Wages for 9 part-time and 12 EMTs - $7,083.50 GENERAL FUND Adams Co Clerk probation $2,765.52, Advanced Furnitur equipmt $44.17, Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $197.40, NeDAS Central Ser telecom $448.00, Robert Beardslee maintnc $220.00, Business World supply $1.37, Richard Calkins counsel $104.50, Carpenter Reportg service $141.90, Cash-Wa Candy supply $22.34, Catherland Auto supply $65.76, Social Security FICA $243.76, Eakes Office supply $141.43, Electronic System repair $114.00, Glenn Plumbing repair $68.58, Glenwood Telecom equipmt $566.21, Grainger repair $160.00, Judy Grandstaff election $123.50, Great Plains Com phone $44.60, Jareds Auto Exprt repair $298.55, Kenny’s Lumber supply $5.99, Myrtle Knehans service $25.00, Shirley Kort election $94.25, Vaden Lane election $94.25, Duane Lienemann expense $484.60, MB Construction repair $420.00, McDole Law Off rental $84.12, Jerry McDole mileage $7.70, MIPS, Inc. service $1,169.09, Harold Mitchell mowing $75.00, NE Sheriff Assn register $90.00, Office Depot supply $123.21, Joyce Ostdiek election $94.25, Red Cloud City utility $1,407.19, JoAnn K. Reiher mileage $24.20, Reliable Office supply $62.78, Donna Rose expense $263.06, Verlin Rose election $94.25, Troy Schmitz expense $68.90, Simply Whatever service $1,325.00, SourceGas utility $108.57, Theobald Law counsel $3,481.78, Treat America supply $208.29, USDA,APHIS funding $1,383.11, Web Co Sheriff petty cash $68.34, Web Co Court crt cost $144.00, Whelan & Scherr counsel $261.25, Robert Willicott mileage $105.05. ROAD FUND ACE/Eaton Metal culverts $564.55, AGCO Finance tractor $15,670.30, Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $58.91, Barton Pipe & Rod bridges $41.72, Bladen Sand/Gravel gravel $8,790.44, City of Blue Hill utility $111.62, Business World supply $23.87, Country Corner fuel $165.59, Social Security FICA $66.77, Farm Plan repair $1,282.18, Nebr Filter Care repair $31.20, Linda Grummert lodging $239.82, Hatten Electric repair $259.50, Jareds Auto Exprt repair $224.37, John Deere Credit payment $26,055.19, LRNRD Rural Water utility $20.00, Martha Meyers expense $9.28, Nebraska Machinry parts $8,350.68, Olson Enterprises repair $125.69, Orscheln’s repair $63.48, Platte Valley Com repair $173.75, Road Builder Mach repair $109.16, SourceGas 3 accts $50.07, Michael Todd & Co signs $920.91, Ultra Chem supply $462.89, Universal Hydrlic repair $598.50, Marvin Webber repair $5.14, Windstream phone $55.88. VISITOR PROMOTION FUND W.C. Visitor Cntr salary $500.00. NOXIOUS WEED FUND Ameritas Life Ins retiremt $51.56, Social Security FICA $58.44. AMBULANCE FUND Campbell Village 911 fee $120.00, Social Security FICA $172.94, SourceGas utility $13.24. Being no further business, Chairman Ord adjourned the meeting at 12:15 pm. The next regular business meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 15th. A current agenda and complete minutes are on file in the County Clerk’s Office. Dated this 1st day of September, 2009.