West Papio Trail Expansion Ready for Cycling Action

New three-mile bike trail connects west Omaha to Bellevue area –
a milestone 25 years in the making

On October 2, 2018, the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District and the Cities of Omaha and La Vista celebrated the grand opening of a new three-mile stretch of the West Papio Trail in Millard that links west Omaha to the Bellevue area. The new segment creates a 130-mile network through Douglas and Sarpy Counties that’s been more than 25 years in the making.

The West Papio Trail addition connects the existing trail at 108th & Giles Road to the new Lumberyard District at 132nd & Q Street. While technically small in size, the connection provides tremendous recreational opportunities with historical significance by connecting Millard and west Omaha to La Vista, Papillion, and Bellevue – stretching down to the Missouri River by a continuous dedicated trail corridor.

“This regionally significant and boundary-breaking project provides expanded recreation, active transportation for Omaha metro residents, and increased access to natural resources,” said Eric Williams, Papio NRD Natural Resources Planner. “The Papio-Missouri Natural Resources District was fortunate to partner with the Cities of La Vista and Omaha in the design and construction of this milestone project,” said Williams.

“Through the partnership of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resource District and the City of La Vista, we are all very excited to announce the completion of the West Papio Trail extension that links West Omaha and Bellevue,” said Brook Bench, City of Omaha Parks and Recreation Director. “This trail segment will allow for more recreation in the community and will serve as an active avenue for transportation for Omaha metro residents.”

“Today we celebrate the extension of the West Papio Trail which connects with La Vista,” said La Vista Mayor Douglas Kindig. “Projects such as this one are not possible without partners and cooperation between different entities. The completion of this project will improve the quality of life and provide a valuable amenity to our citizens,” said Kindig.

The trail expansion follows the original stretch of the former Union Pacific transcontinental railroad. The Papio NRD was able to restore all of the old bridges that will now be used as trail bridges. National “rails to trails” efforts are focused on reusing abandoned railroad property for multi-use paths, allowing long, flat corridors to become community focus points and preserving the history of railroad infrastructure.

As the most well-known railroad in America, this new section of trail highlights the natural geographic features, incorporates transportation and commerce history, and connects communities just as the railroad did nearly 150 years ago.

The West Papio Trail expansion project cost $3.2 million, with the Cities of Omaha and La Vista each contributing 20 percent of the cost.

 

 

Papio-Missouri River NRD Board Approves Proposed 2019 Budget

Decrease in Property Tax Levy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 9/14/18
Contact: Jennifer Stauss Story
Cell Phone: 402-960-5329 

Omaha, NE: At its September 13th meeting in Dakota City, the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors voted to approve the Fiscal Year 2019 general operating budget that includes a decrease in the Papio NRD property tax levy.

“We are proud the District’s property tax levy will decrease again this year,” said John Winkler, general manager of the Papio NRD. “For 13 out of 14 years, the District has either decreased or kept the tax levy the same. We work diligently to save local taxpayers millions of dollars and take seriously our responsibility in doing so in a transparent manner.” said Winkler.

The FY 2019 budget calls for a property tax levy of .037594 per $100 of assessed valuation, which means a homeowner with property valued at $100,000 would pay a total of $37.59 in property taxes next year to support NRD projects. The budget calls for an estimated $24 million in revenue from the NRD’s property tax levy. The total operating budget is estimated at $72.2 million.

The Papio-Missouri River NRD’s property tax levy amounts to less than two percent of the total property tax bill for residents living within the District’s six-county area. The levy is based on an estimated 5.2 percent increase in valuations across the district, which includes all of Sarpy, Douglas, Washington and Dakota counties, plus the eastern 60% of Burt and Thurston counties.

 

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Papio NRD Announces Winners of “Dam Fun Contest”

Contest celebrated the grand opening of Flanagan Lake
with the Omaha community

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District today announced the winners of the city-wide “Dam Fun Contest” it launched in celebration of the grand opening of Flanagan Lake in June.

More than 200 Flanagan Lake-goers entered the photo contest for their chance to win recreation-themed prizes donated by sponsors. Members of the public determined the winners by voting for their favorite photo, casting more than 11,000 total votes. The top-voted photos in the following categories (kayak, Trek bike, fishing, gift card) are the contest grand prize winners:

 

“Dam Fun Contest” Winners

  • Perception Hook 105 Angler Kayak – Brian Harmon
  • 2018 Trek FX 2 Hybrid Bicycle – Rob Morrison
  • Two Scheels Outfitters Pfleuger President Tournament Combo, Scheels 50 Super Cooler, Fins & Fur Outdoor Adventure Guide gift certificate for ½ day guided fishing trip for two with guide Steve Satra – Nick Hummel
  • $100 SCHEELS gift certificates – Adriana Guzman, Kari Marcley, Heather Steffen, Beth Pietzmeier, and Adam Denney

Sponsors for the prizes included FYRA Engineering, HDR, Inc., Olsson Associates, McArdle Grading Company, and Cabelas.

“Most people don’t know that Flanagan Lake is a flood control reservoir designed to protect the lives and property of Omaha citizens from floods,” said John Winkler, general manager of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District. “To celebrate the public safety and recreational opportunities Flanagan Lake provides, we launched the “Dam Fun Contest” to engage with the community in a fun and educational way.” 

Rob Morrison, winner of the Trek bike, says he has big plans in store for his new wheels. “I can’t wait to repeat my ‘half-century’ ride – over 50 miles to Flanagan Lake and back,” says Morrison. “Thank you to the Papio NRD and sponsors involved in this contest, as well as all the people that voted for me. I would never have a bike like this without all of you!”

Flanagan Lake, near 168th and Fort Streets, is Omaha’s latest flood control reservoir in the Papillion Creek Watershed. It provides flood protection for Omaha citizens and 730 acres of recreational benefits, such as a 220-acre lake, five-mile hiking/biking trail, and park and green space.

Papio NRD Board of Directors Elects Officers

Media Contact:
Jennifer Stauss Story
402-315-1708
jstaussstory@papionrd.org

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 27, 2018

Omaha, NE – At its July 12, 2018 meeting, the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors elected officers to serve the District for the coming year (July 2018 – July 2019).

Jim Thompson in Subdistrict 1 has been elected to serve a one-year term as NRD Board Chairperson. Thompson replaces David Klug, who chose not to run for re-election as he focuses on election to the Sarpy County Board of Commissioners.

Fred Conley in Subdistrict 2 was re-elected Vice Chairperson.

Re-elected Treasurer is John Conley in Subdistrict 4. Conley will serve as Treasurer until his term ends in December. The Board of Directors will hold elections for Conley’s successor shortly thereafter. Tim Fowler in Subdistrict 8 was elected to serve as Assistant Treasurer.

Richard Tesar in Subdistrict 5 was re-elected as both Secretary and Nebraska Association of Resources District’s (NARD) Director. Fowler was elected NARD’s Alternate Director.

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 $67 million annual budget.

About the Papio NRD

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District is one of 23 Natural Resources Districts (NRDs) in Nebraska. NRDs are multi-county governments organized along major watersheds with broad responsibilities to protect and enhance our state’s natural resources. The Papio NRD includes all of Sarpy, Douglas, Washington, and Dakota counties, plus the eastern 60% of Burt and Thurston counties. Learn more about the Papio NRD at www.papionrd.org.

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Flanagan Lake Officially Opens to the Public

Flood control reservoir provides public safety and recreational opportunities for Omaha citizens

Omaha, NE, June, 27, 2018 – The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District and the City of Omaha today celebrated the grand opening of Flanagan Lake, Omaha’s latest flood control reservoir in the Papillion Creek Watershed, that provides flood protection for Omaha citizens and 730 acres of recreational benefits, such as a 220-acre lake, five-mile hiking/biking trail, and park and green space.

“Flanagan Lake is a reservoir designed to protect the lives and property of Omaha citizens from floods,” said John Winkler, general manager of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District. “This is its primary purpose. The recreational amenities that accompany these types of public safety infrastructure projects are made possible through partnerships. So, it’s flood protection with some incredible cherries on top,” said Winkler.

The $47 million project, located near 168th and Fort Streets, is the largest single flood control structure undertaken by the Papio NRD. It will retain stormwater runoff from an upstream area of approximately 11 square miles. Once the Papio NRD completed construction of the reservoir in 2018, the City of Omaha took over management of the park.

“Just as Father Flanagan created Boys Town to provide a family-centered environment for children, Flanagan Lake is a beautiful public space that will provide family-oriented recreation and leisure,” said Mayor Jean Stothert. “Our excellent parks system provides free entertainment in every part of Omaha. We look forward to opening a Boys Town playground next year, and offering year-round activities for everyone,” said Stothert.

“While the recreational benefits are much more apparent to citizens, providing public safety is Flanagan Lake’s number one job,” said Winkler. “Most people aren’t aware of this. So, as citizens run the trail or kayak the waters, they can do so knowing flood protection is in action while they play.”

 

To continue the grand opening celebration, Winker also announced the kick-off a city-wide “Dam Fun Contest,” where citizens can enter to win recreation-themed prizes donated by sponsors. For more contest information, visit www.flanaganlake.com.

Additional companies/organizations involved in the design and construction of Flanagan Lake who spoke at today’s grand opening ceremony included HDR, Inc. Vice President & Project Manager John Engel, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission Chairman Dick Bell, Papio NRD Board of Directors Chairman David Klug, and City of Omaha Parks and Recreation Director Brook Bench.

Papio-Missouri River NRD Board Approves Property Tax Decrease and 2018 Budget

 

 

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 9/15/17

Contact: Jennifer Stauss
Office Phone 402-315-1708
Cell Phone 402-960-5329 

 

 

Papio-Missouri River NRD Board Approves Proposed 2018 Budget
Decrease in Property Tax Levy

Omaha, NE: At its September 14th meeting in Dakota City, the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors voted to approve the Fiscal Year 2018 general operating budget that includes a decrease in the NRD property tax levy.

“The District’s property tax levy will decrease this year and the District trimmed nearly $4 million off its overall budget from 2017,” said NRD General Manager, John Winkler. “For 12 out of 13 years, the District has either decreased or kept the tax levy the same. We work very hard to save local taxpayers millions of dollars. It’s our responsibility,” said Winkler.

The FY 2018 budget calls for a property tax levy of .037797 per $100 of assessed valuation, which means a homeowner with property valued at $100,000 would pay a total of $37.80 in property taxes next year to support NRD projects. The budget calls for an estimated $23 million in revenue from the NRD’s property tax levy. Total spending is estimated at $66.7 million.

The Papio-Missouri River NRD’s property tax levy amounts to less than two percent of the total property tax bill for residents living within the District’s six-county area. The levy is based on an estimated 4.6 percent increase in valuations across the district, which includes all of Sarpy, Douglas, Washington and Dakota counties, plus the eastern 60% of Burt and Thurston counties.

 

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No Tax Levy Increase in Papio NRD’s Approved Proposed Budget

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 8/11/17

Contact: John Winkler, General Manager
Office Phone 444-6222
Cell Phone 402-616-2457 

 

Papio-Missouri River NRD Board Approves Proposed 2018 Budget
No Increase in Tax Levy

Omaha, NE: At its August 10th meeting, the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District Board of Directors heard public comments and then voted to propose a Fiscal Year 2018 general operating budget that will, once again, require no increase in the NRD property tax levy.

“The District’s property tax levy will remain the same as last year,” said NRD General Manager, John Winkler. “This is 12 out of 13 years the District has either decreased or kept the tax levy the same. We work extremely hard to leverage federal and state cost sharing on projects to save local taxpayers millions of dollars,” said Winkler.

In addition, Winkler said the FY 2018 proposed budget is $1.5 million less than last year and the District is able to maintain a responsible budget and healthy financial position despite increases in costs like permitting, insurance, wages, materials and land costs.

The proposed budget calls for a FY 2018 property tax levy of .038034 per $100 of assessed valuation. This means that a homeowner with property valued at $100,000 would pay a total of $38.03 in property taxes next year to support NRD projects.The budget calls for an estimated $23 million in revenue from the NRD’s property tax levy. Total spending is estimated at just under $69 million.

The Papio-Missouri River NRD’s property tax levy amounts to less than two percent of the total property tax bill for residents living within the District’s six-county area.The levy is based on an estimated 3.5 percent increase in valuations across the district, which includes all of Sarpy, Douglas, Washington and Dakota counties, plus the eastern 60% of Burt and Thurston counties.

The NRD Board of Directors will hold a public hearing, approve a final budget and set the tax levy at its September 14th board meeting in Dakota City.

 

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