Letter to the Editor by Senator Brasch on Renewable Fuels Month

As chairperson of the Legislature’s Agriculture Committee, and an ag producer, I’m humbled and proud to promote the successes of agriculture. But even more important is to continue to work on solutions for the challenges facing Nebraska’s farmers, ranchers, and the rural economy, including burdensome property taxes.


I’m excited about all the future opportunities for Nebraska agriculture, such as our continued success with ethanol. As a leading producer of ethanol, Nebraska ranks second nationally, which is why I’m pleased to join Governor Ricketts in celebrating Renewable Fuels Month. It’s been a difficult road to develop the ethanol industry, but the return on that investment has been tremendous for the communities that are home to ethanol plants, the workers at those plants and their families, our farmers and ranchers, and our state’s overall economy.


In February, during the National Ethanol Conference, Bob Dinneen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association, expressed concerns about the future of the Renewable Fuels Standards (RFS) beyond 2022. He said “[t]he debate on Capitol Hill is shifting away from repealing the RFS to reforming it after 2022, when the congressionally mandated volumes proscribed in the law are removed and replaced with largely unfettered discretion by EPA to set future standards for all renewable fuels. We need to be active…participants in that debate.”


I agree with Dinneen. I’m not comfortable with leaving the fate of this important industry in the hands of the EPA, which has proven to be a burdensome bureaucracy that lacks accountability and appreciation for the importance of ethanol to the rural economy. To leave the destiny of corn-based ethanol under the complete control of the EPA beginning in 2023 is unthinkable. As we celebrate Renewable Fuels Month, let us also be mindful that we must work to secure the future of the ethanol industry.

Letter to the Editor

Nebraska has a bright future in renewable energy

By Lu Nelsen, lucasn@cfra.org, Center for Rural Affairs

 Dear Editor,

Nebraska has a bright future in renewable energy. This cheap and clean energy can serve as a new driver for our local rural economies. When it comes to wind energy potential, Nebraska is fourth in the U.S. – in fact, the state could produce enough energy from wind to meet our needs 118 times over, or enough to power 511,000 average homes.

Despite this great potential, Nebraska continues to lag behind neighboring states in developing our wind energy resources. We are currently ranked 20th for installed wind energy. While Nebraskans work to catch up, local officials and developers should work to identify and address concerns that surround new projects and form standards that will work best for their communities. This local control over zoning has proven to work for many kinds of development, and maintaining it is the best way to ensure communities have a say.

But new legislation in the Nebraska Unicameral would strip some communities of their local control over wind energy. LB 504 would place a two-year moratorium on wind development in the entire Sandhills region, removing the ability of landowners and communities to responsibly develop wind in a large part of our state.

Communities stand to gain a lot from the development of wind energy: development provides new sources of income for landowners through land-lease payments; new temporary and permanent jobs are created to construct or service projects; and wind development adds new tax revenue to small towns and counties. However, to capture these benefits, developers and local officials need to work with community members to determine the best way to build projects to fit local needs.

By working together, Nebraskans can find a way to work toward reaching our renewable energy potential and realize the benefits that renewables like wind can bring to small towns and rural communities across the state.


Lu Nelsen, Center for Rural Affairs 

School Consolidation Letter to the Editor: Choose Optimism and Opportunities

Choose Optimism & Opportunities

I am a mother of 3, wife, nurse, Oakland-Craig graduate, and “eternal optimist”.

I get it. Life isn’t all rainbows and butterflies. There are hard realities, truths, and misfortunes that everyone faces. As a parent, I know that my children and their peers will face more issues than I ever faced with social media, technology, and our world in general.  As a parent, I also feel that it is my job to instill HOPE, OPPORTUNITY, and FAITH into my children and those around me.

This year is a unique year. We as community members have the privilege to build a brighter and more hopeful future for our children, grandchildren, and generations to come. I have always appreciated my rural and small town upbringing, teachers, and education, but I also know it is never going to be “what it was”.

Times change.

People change.

Communities change.

Populations shift.

Facilities become out-of-date.

Education evolves.

and Opportunities Arise.

Our children will never have the “same” education that we had and that is not such a bad thing. We have an opportunity to give our children an even better one. It is possible for them to participate at new levels in academics and extracurricular activities, they can embrace and keep the “arts”, and we can send them into their futures with an optimistic start on life. Isn’t it our job to want more for our children than what we had? Shouldn’t we want to teach children that life is not stagnant, therefore, education should not be either?  We can put faith into the hard work that has come before us and know that there is anticipation in what is to come.

The negativity, hostility, and “fear” that is being used is exhausting. People are trying to gain votes based on emotions of anxiety and dread. Let’s stay positive. What if we look at all of the good that can happen? Let those emotions be present. I appreciate the factual information given in support of a consolidated district. I appreciate the community members wanting more for not only their children and grandchildren but for ALL students and generations of families to come. After all… this should not be an “us versus them” as we are all in this together. How about we come together and be encouraged? Let’s see the realization that together we are able to give ALL students the best education. Lastly, put confidence in the fact that we have a great opportunity facing us here and now, one that may not occur again. I encourage you to get all of the facts. Attend meetings, ask questions, and see why the majority of elected school officials feel that consolidation provides the best opportunities for everyone.

I was raised to see the best in people, opportunities, situations, and change. The opportunities for all outweigh the fears of some. On November 8th, join me in choosing OPTIMISM and OPPORTUNITIES and vote “FOR” the bond issue to benefit generations to come.

Brooke Peterson

Letter to the Editor from Therese Magill

Dear Editor,
I am writing about the recall of two board members in Decatur. I am encouraging every registered voter to vote yes for the recall. We need all your votes and they do make a difference. In regards to the answers that Loretta Kellogg and Alta Wolf have answered.
#1 The quarterly budget reports have been in place since I started at the Village office in 2000. The budget sheets were in the Board members packets at each meeting.
#2 The reason that the Village has money for now is because we had no police officer for seven months, one of the full time maintenance took another job.
#3 As far as the $200,000.00 loan for the Community Center, Alta Wolf was on the Board when that happened. The Village had a $250,000.00 grant plus the $200,000.00 loan to (fix a building that continues to leak and flood the basement.
#4 The “working” session that Loretta mentioned; is she being sexist by mentioning that the two “male” board members did not show up to, in a working session there can be no decisions made. If the only thing they discussed were the surveys, then why was one of the Village maintenance men let go that day?
#5 As far as Alta Wolf’s authority; she offered me $15.00 an hour to stay with the Village if I would work half of my day at the maintenance shop to make sure they did their job. This all happened before she was voted into office.
#6 As far as Joe Gatto paying for his own schooling at the academy; the Village is now paying for it. Then they hire a part-time police officer that sued the Village. This in no way means that I have anything against the officers.
#7 You let a 15 year dedicated employee go that was only making $12.50 an hour. She worked in the office, cleaned the Community center, helped read meters, cleaned the park bathrooms and anything else that was asked. I have nothing against the two part-time people that were hired at $10.00 each, but that doesn’t make much sense.
#8 You want to take the family insurance away from the two full time employee’s, that is the only benefit they get. Yes they get reduced lights but it is added on their W-2’s at the end of the year.
#9 We had a brand new police car. It was never taken care of. Is the information accurate about the used police car that the Board is considering purchasing from Oakland?
#10 As far as paying the deductible on Joe’s vehicle (I am sorry that someone would do that) we had a police officer a few years ago that he had his vehicle completely destroyed in one of the Village’s buildings and he was not given anything.
#11 As far as Dan Magill not having his certifications. He is certified in water, yes he has taken the test three times, but did anyone ask how many times it took the other maintenance men to pass? For further information he was told by board members not to worry about his sewer certification.
#12 Because we have our own opinions about things does not mean we are fools!!
#13 If you are going to take someone’s pay away for doing something to help the community, you better make sure that it was him. Maybe you should have stopped to see instead of taking it for granted that it was him.
#14 The white truck that you have been seeing at the Green Lantern belongs to John Hightree. Again maybe you should have stopped by!!
#15 One of the Board members did not even know where the sewer plant was.
#16 We have lost our recycling center and dump.
#17 You mentioned employment of Village officials; what about paying a spouse of one of the Board members for fixing a vehicle? The Village is audited every year and they have never had a problem with it and they receive a 1099 for their work.

#18 Infrastructure-the basic physical and organizational structures and facilities (e.g., buildings, roads, and power supplies) needed for the operation of a society or enterprise.
#19 Our power is bought from Burt County Public Power and they take care of the primary lines, we own the lines in town.
#20 One of the Board members writes for the Lyons Mirror- Sun, is that not a conflict of interest?
Therese Magill

Letter to the Editor Concerning Nursing Home Closings

Below is a letter to the editor from a citizen concerned about the nursing home closings. Her community has also endured the same fate from the same company. Please feel free to send letters to the editor to Kat Country Hub on this matter or any others concerning you. Just be sure to sign them as they won’t be published without a signature.


This is interesting that 60 days are required for closure.

I’m sure the Edgar facility did not have but 30 days and it does take Medicare and Medicaid payments because I had my mother in the facility from Aug 2014 to Oct. 2014. The employees found placement for 24 individuals in 30 days, worked extra shifts and were not paid. I know this to be true because

I can see the facility from my home. We have individuals that had to leave our community that had lived here 80-95 years and now are 30-100 miles away from Edgar. Some are in towns that they have no friend of family in the community. This is great that the other 2 homes are getting saved but what about Edgar and Exeter. They should be given the same consideration as they provided jobs in our communities and our life long residents deserved better than having their community dissolved.

The Edgar home opened in 1972 and now is sitting empty. Something is really wrong with this situation. Edgar closed May 1st. When did Deseret admit that they were insolvent? I would say they made that admission on April 30th when they told the Edgar employees not to cash their checks. This was 1 day before the last 2 residents left. Just a few things to ponder.

Martha Wacker

Letter to the Editor: Mid-term Election

The constant theme I have heard and read in this mid-term election is that we have no leadership from either party in Washington. It is time for Nebraskans to change this.

We constantly hear the statement “I vote for the person, not the party,” but rarely does that seem to happen. This election we have the opportunity to vote for an individual that has proven to be a leader. He has demonstrated this by his tireless campaign at great personal sacrifice, with nothing to be gained personally and not having an obligation to any special interests. His only goal is to represent all of Nebraska and the United States.

In addition, Dave has no desire to become a career politician. In any measure of Dave Domina, his business career and his life, Dave Domina has been a proven leader. Unfortunately his accomplishments over the years benefiting citizens of the state cannot be spelled out in a short letter to the editor but he can be compared to his opponent who has been seldom seen in Western Nebraska. In fact, the Republican candidate has not shown a personal presence in at least four forums or debates across the state.

Dave Domina is knowledgeable; he will listen to opposing views and most of all he sincerely cares about every citizen in Nebraska. Based on my 20 years of knowing Dave Domina, I have no doubt he can bring together enough Republicans in the Senate to understand and solve issues facing Nebraska while exercising the leadership to do what is necessary nationally.

As a registered Republican, I have the opportunity to vote for the man who I feel can make an immediate difference in Washington for the benefit of our country. This kind of leadership ability is sorely short in Washington. None of the other candidates can honestly say they have this quality. Dave Domina is a man of sincerity and substance that is needed in Washington equal to anytime in the history of Nebraska and the country. We do have the opportunity in Nebraska to make a difference by voting for Dave Domina.

Fred Lockwood, Scottsbluff

Letter to the Editor

Friday, September 12, 2014

Ruth, Our ‘Happy Days’ Disciple

The Bible has Ruth in the New Testament. However, we in Lyons have Ruth Cole at Happy Days. Someone came up with the perfect name for our Senior Center as ‘Happy Days’. We probably have one of the best Senior Centers in the country.

Under the Direction of Ruth — and her helpers, Dee and Elaine, we have meals that are excellent, good tasting and healthy. It is an atmosphere of friends enjoying a good meal together and other fun activities. Our Happy Days provide the following:

  • Good healthy meals
  • Fun times with neighbors and friends
  • Card games (like pitch) and bingo
  • Health education tips and Services
  • Exercise programs
  • Valet services — for the older people who have trouble getting around, Ruth helps them into the room; and then parks their car. When they are ready to go home, she retrieves their car and helps them safely to their car.
  • Ruth even checks up on someone if they do not show up for lunch (to make sure they are OK!)
  • Community support — we have fantastic support from the Lyons Community. Contributions and support for our special events, donations of foods from their garden — as well as monetary donations.
  • Story telling by Mary Frittz.
  • Music for birthdays and special times like Saint Patrick’s Day (by Anne Anderson and Dorothy Moore)
  • Meals on Wheels for Lyons and Bancroft
  • Humor by Laurene and others


When I moved to Lyons, 2 ½ years ago, I was told that their food was good and the price was very reasonable. That is certainly true. But I never relized, how enjoyable it is living in rural America.

By Bruce Hunkins

Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor and Readers,                                                                                      May 4, 2014

I have received two very disturbing pieces of mail recently that are so negative against State Senator Lydia Brasch I was truly upset. I can’t understand how a group by the name of “Coalition for Better Government” with just a post office box address has the right to say anything about anyone, much less attempt to annihilate the credibility of our current State Senator.

I did not know Lydia Brasch before she was elected, but since that time she has made more efforts to truly get to know the people of her district than most of her predecessors. She has made time to meet with public groups both large and small. She has volunteered her time more than once every year working in the 4-H Kitchen during the county fair not just to be a public figure, but to truly help when help was needed most. She has attended small church fundraisers and large corporate events never standing on a soapbox and trying to gain attention, but spending time listening to her constituents.

Her genuine interest in the feelings and needs of the people of her district is more than enough reason to keep her in office, despite the smear campaign of a post office box group. Lydia Brasch is a real person who represents real people. She has my support and my vote to make that happen.

Very Sincerely,

Mary Loftis

Mary Loftis

Craig, NE

Letter to the Editor: Domestic Violence Awareness Month

To the Editor:

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month!  The Crisis Center has planned events to raise awareness about the prevalence of domestic violence and to unite people to work together to make our communities safer.

Day of Unity – October 1st, please wear purple!

Chamber Coffee – October 4th, 9am-10am, Fremont Office, 141 South Union

Candlelight Vigil – October 10th, 6:30pm at the Midland University Amphitheater

Silent Witness Tour – throughout October in our five county service area

Head Start/Preschool Reading – throughout October in Ashland, Blair, Fremont, Ft Calhoun, Oakland, Wahoo, West Point, and Wisner

Ribbon Bowls – wear a purple awareness ribbon!

Volunteer Training – if interested in volunteering contact Chris, Volunteer Coordinator, at 402-721-4340

Domestic violence encompasses many forms of abuse: emotional, verbal, isolation, threats, intimidation, and physical violence.  In an abusive relationship, the abuser may use a number of tactics other than physical violence to maintain power and control over their partner.  Abuse can occur within a number of relationships between marriages, roommates, dating couples, even in later life by family members.

The Crisis Center promotes healthy relationships.  We focus on the safety of victims when working with them.  Every situation and individual we work with is different, and so are the outcomes.  We are committed to the prevention and elimination of domestic violence and sexual assault.

Everyone deserves to live a life without violence, please help make that a reality for someone in your community.  During this month please be aware of those around you; offer your support and give them our 24 hour crisis line number (1.888.721.4340). Help us make a difference in the lives of women and children in Burt, Cuming, Dodge, Saunders, and Washington counties.

Sarah Coday

Outreach Coordinator

Crisis Center for Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault


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