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In the last two weeks, I had the pleasure of attending fairs and events across District 17. At the Wayne County Fair, I had the pleasure of greeting attendees with Governor Ricketts at the 56th Annual Free BBQ. At the Dakota-Thurston County Fair I thoroughly enjoyed talking with attendees, and had the pleasure of watching a few of my grandchildren participate in 4H Shows. I applaud the county board members for their dedication and hard work leading to two successful fairs. Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the 2018 Nebraska State Fair in Grand Island from August 24th to September 3rd. More information can be found at https://www.statefair.org/.
The Northeast Nebraska Economic Development District (NENEDD) held their annual meeting on July 26th to discuss the growing economy in our corner of the state. Executive Director Executive Director Thomas L. Higginbotham, Jr. welcomed NENEDD members along with representatives for Congressman Jeff Fortenberry and U.S. Senator Deb Fischer. NENEDD has provided over $6.5 million in grants and loans to support Northeast Nebraska, creating or retaining 78 jobs and assisting 38 housing units. Four awards were presented to members of the NEDEDD; The City of Fremont was awarded the Doug Bereuter Accomplished Community Award, Tyler Thomas of T&T Electric, Fremont, received the Housing Partnership Award, The Outstanding Service Award was presented to Columbus City Finance Director Anne Kinnison, and Rural Enterprise Assistance Project Senior Loan Specialist Eugene Rahn was awarded the Entrepreneurial Advancement Award. Karl Elmshaeuser, Nebraska State Director of Rural Development for the United States Department of Agriculture, gave the keynote address of the event. Karl highlighted the successes that Northeast Nebraska has accomplished by coming together to create the power of the common good. He also gave well-deserved praise to NENEDD for being a “forward-focused” group that helps in the development of rural populations. Northeast Nebraska and District 17 continue to make admirable strides in economic development.
Nebraska Supreme Court Chief Justice Heavican and his fellow justices spend one week each year traveling around the state to tour courtrooms, meet judicial branch staff, and discuss ideas to better the court system across the state. While Chief Justice Heavican’s tour visited locations all around District 17, I was honored to attend his State-Tribal Courts Roundtable on August 1st in South Sioux City. At the roundtable, representatives from the Omaha, Ponca, Santee Sioux, and Winnebago Tribal Courts gathered with Nebraska Supreme Court members, local judges, juvenile and probation officers, and court administration. Senator Tom Brewer, District 43, also joined the discussion as Chair of the Legislature’s State-Tribal Relations Committee. We spent the morning discussing the current state-tribal judicial coordination as well as the unique challenges facing the sovereign tribal nations and their respective court systems. Throughout our discussions, we identified successes and areas in need of improvement in state-tribal coordination, the juvenile justice system, and child welfare. The Nebraska Supreme Court, Tribal Court Officers, and other attending members all agreed that it is imperative for the court systems to work together to ensure that the court systems are able to fulfill their duties to serve our citizens. I hope that this is the beginning of many meetings to build a stronger working relationship and solve evolving problems facing the court systems.
I want to encourage my constituents to reach out to me, I look forward to hearing from you!