Governor Signs Bill into Law Extending Bonding Authority for the Papio NRD

Governor Ricketts last night officially signed LB 177 into law, extending the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District’s bonding authority for five years for flood control projects.

The Papio NRD can now complete the Missouri River Levee project that protects Offutt Air Force Base and Omaha’s Wastewater Treatment Plant after this year’s historic and destructive floods, as well as build six priority reservoirs throughout the Greater Omaha Metro Area to provide needed flood mitigation.

“We would like thank Governor Ricketts, Senator Lindstrom and other bill sponsors; Senator Hughes, Chairman of the Natural Resources Committee; countless state senators and their staff, mayors from partner jurisdictions, and citizens who supported LB 177,” says John Winkler, general manager of the Papio NRD.  “This is an important piece of legislation that enables the Papio NRD to continue its job of protecting lives and property through construction of additional flood control infrastructure throughout our District,” says Winkler.

 

Union Dike

Decision Now Up to Governor on Future of Flood Control Projects

Bill Extending Bonding Authority Advances – One Final Step To Go

Legislative Bill 177 today passed Final Reading with no debate on a vote of 35-8 by the Nebraska Legislature.  The bill extends the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District’s bonding authority for five years for flood control projects.

The bill will ensure the Papio NRD can complete the Missouri River Levee project that protects Offutt Air Force Base and Omaha’s Wastewater Treatment Plant after this year’s destructive and historic floods, as well as, build six priority reservoirs to provide needed flood mitigation in the Greater Omaha Metro Area.

The bill now goes to the Governor for his signature.

Papillion Wastewater Treatment Plant

 

 

 

 

 

River Access Sites Closed Indefinitely Due to Flooding

 

Elkhorn Crossing

 

Sorry folks, we know this is not the news you want to hear.

All of the Papio NRD river access sites will be closed indefinitely due to the recent flooding. These include:

          • Platte River Landing
      • Elkhorn Crossing
      • West Maple Road
      • Graske Crossing

The campground at Elkhorn Crossing Rec. Area will also be closed for the season. Our crews are working as quickly as possible to get the access sites back in shape.

We truly appreciate your understanding.

 

Lied Bridge Closed to All Users

Lied Bridge

Due to the extraordinary high water during the flood last week, the protective railing on the Lied Bridge over the Platte River has been damaged and the bridge is closed to all users. The Papio-Missouri River NRD is working with the Lower Platte South NRD, and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission to determine the extent of the damage, and to have repair design and construction moving forward as soon as possible.

Sections of the MoPac Trail under Hwy 50, and from the trailhead parking lot at the west end of Hwy 31 down to the Lied Bridge were also damaged. Signs will be placed to alert users of trail closure. Do not use, or access any section of trail that seems damaged, as the conditions are currently unknown.

Contact the Papio NRD office at (402) 444-6222 if you have any questions about the status of the MoPac Trail or Lied Bridge.

 

 

New Director Fills Vacancy in Subdistrict 7 on Papio NRD Board

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors has filled its Subdistrict 7 vacancy.

The Board selected Omahan Danny Begley to replace Patrick Leahy, who had to resign due to moving to a residence located outside of Subdistrict 7. Nebraska state law declares a Papio NRD Director must reside in the subdistrict he/she represents.

Begley, who works for the Omaha Public Power District, took the oath of office on February 14, and will officially participate in his first board meeting Thursday night.

Subdistrict 7’s boundaries roughly comprise of the Dundee/Benson neighborhoods to west of I-680 on Dodge Street.

 

District Map

Papio NRD Announces Board Subdistrict 7 Vacancy

District Now Accepting Applications to Fill Vacancy

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors announced a vacancy on the board at its meeting last night.

Director Patrick Leahy, who represents Subdistrict 7, provided his formal resignation from the board earlier this month, as he will be moving to a residence located outside of Subdistrict 7. Nebraska state law declares a Papio NRD Director must reside in the subdistrict he/she represents.

Subdistrict 7’s boundaries roughly comprise of the Dundee/Benson neighborhoods to west of I-680 on Dodge Street.

“I would like to thank the Directors, the constituents of Subdistrict 7, and the entire NRD staff for making serving the District fun and fulfilling,” said Leahy. “I have enjoyed the past six years and I will miss helping with the good work of the NRD’s mission.”

“Director Leahy’s commitment to the District and those he served never wavered and we cannot thank him enough for his service and leadership,” said John Winkler, General Manager of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District. “Director Leahy’s support and tenacity will be sorely missed by the District and his constituents. We wish Director Leahy nothing but the best and no doubt he will soon return to public service in one way or another,” said Winkler.

Those interested in being appointed to fill the remainder of Leahy’s term (until January 2020) can submit a letter of application until January 31, 2019.

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors is an 11-member board that sets policy for Papio NRD programs and projects and oversees a $72 million annual operating budget. The Papio NRD District includes all of Sarpy, Douglas, Washington and Dakota counties, plus the eastern 60% of Burt and Thurston counties.

 

New Board Members Sworn in at Papio NRD

Left to right: Tim McCormick, Chairperson Jim Thompson, and Kevyn Sopinski

Two recently-elected members of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors were sworn in at last night’s board meeting.

Tim McCormick, owner of a bridge and heavy civil construction company, now officially represents Subdistrict 4 following the retirement of long-time board member John Conley.

Kevyn Sopinski, a financial adviser, serves Subdistrict 10. Sopinski replaces David Klug who chose not to run for re-election to focus on election to the Sarpy County Board of Commissioners.

Another new face will join the Papio NRD Board of Directors in February, as the board announced the resignation of Director Patrick Leahy of Subdistrict 7 due to Leahy’s move to a residence located outside of Subdistrict 7.  Those interested in applying to fill the remainder of Leahy’s term can find more information here.

McCormick and Sopinski join current members of the Papio NRD Board of Directors: Ted Japp (Subdistrict 1), Fred Conley (Subdistrict 2), Larry Bradley (Subdistrict 3), Richard Tesar (Subdistrict 5), Jim Thompson (Subdistrict 6), Mark Gruenwald (Subdistrict 9), and John B. Wiese (Subdistrict 11).

New Faces on Papio NRD Board of Directors

 

 

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors will see some new faces this year following the 2018 General Election.

Tim McCormick, owner of a bridge and heavy civil construction company, takes over John Conley’s seat in Subdistrict 4. Conley retired after serving 19 years on the board.

Kevyn Sopinski, a financial adviser, replaces David Klug in Subdistrict 10, who chose not to run for re-election to focus on election to the Sarpy County Board of Commissioners.

Longtime incumbent Tim Fowler, who has represented Subdistrict 8 since 2003, will hold onto his seat after defeating challenger Jim Kusek.

Incumbents Jim Thompson in Subdistrict 6 and Fred Conley in Subdistrict 2 ran unopposed.

Additional members of the Papio NRD Board of Directors include Ted Japp (Subdistrict 1), Larry Bradley (Subdistrict 3), Richard Tesar (Subdistrict 5), Patrick Leahy (Subdistrict 7), Mark Gruenwald (Subdistrict 8), and John B. Wiese (Subdistrict 11).

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors is an 11-member board that sets policy for Papio NRD programs and projects and oversees a $72 million annual operating budget.

Elkhorn River Access Sites to Close For Season on November 1

Elkhorn River rats…last chance!

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District will close all access sites to the Elkhorn River for the season on November 1st. While the Elkhorn Crossing access site closed early for the season for renovations, the West Maple Road and Graske Crossing access sites will close the morning of November 1st.

The access sites will reopen April 1st, 2019.

 

Calling All Creative, Nature-loving Students – It’s NACD Poster Contest Time

 

Aren’t these posters incredible…and inspiring? They were drawn by K-12 students who illustrated their love of natural resources in previous NACD poster contests for the chance to have their art displayed as part of a national conservation outreach initiative and win monetary prizes.

2018 NACD Poster Contest

Get your colored pencils and crayons ready! We are now accepting entries for the 2018 NACD Poster Contest. This year’s theme is “Watersheds – Our Water, Our Home.”

The Nebraska Association of Resources Districts (NARD) along with Nebraska’s Natural Resources Districts provide K-12 students with an opportunity to express their thoughts about water, soil, and related natural resource issues.

Interested? Of course you are. For details at-a-glance regarding the poster contest, the blue infographic provides a quick run-down. For more in-depth information, such as contest rules, filling out the entry form (which you definitely want to do), etc., please do the following:

How to Enter the NACD Post Contest

 – Fill out the entry form on the NARD website. 

 – Attach the completed entry form to the back of your poster (tape, glue, staples, etc).

 – Mail your poster to:

Austen Hill, Education Programs Supervisor
Papio NRD
8901 S. 154th Street
Omaha, NE 68138

Better hurry, the contest entry deadline is November 14th.

 

 

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