Headline News







From our early files

Nuckolls County Courthouse News

11-year-old once taught private school in Edgar

Poll shows increased optimism in rural Nebraska

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From our early files

Eighty Years Ago
Excavation work began for the Superior Post Office. Practically all hand labor was being used. About a dozen men with picks, shovels and spades were aided by one team and a fresno.
More than 20 men from the Superior community were working on buildings for the Nuckolls County CCC camp at the fair grounds.
Mrs. Edward Scott, who was one of the earliest settlers in this region, died at her home in Hardy.
A low temperature of 48 degrees was recorded.
Magic Washer soap powder was 21 cents per box at Cecil Reid's Superior grocery store.
The Lyric Theatre was playing "Palooka," starring Stuart Erwin and Lupe Velez.
Seventy Years Ago
Mr. and Mrs. Henry Swanson, Superior, celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
Richard Butler, 11 months, was electrocuted when he touched a 110-volt wire leading to a reading light at the Butler home southeast of Superior.
Calvin Hill was named manager of the Superior Safeway store. He replaced H. F. Kealy who was transferred to Nebraska City.
S/Sgt. Ross Prather, Formoso, was killed in action in France. He was 24 and a Lovewell High School graduate.
Colorado peaches were $4.95 per bushel at R. J. Stephenson's Superior grocery store.
The Lyric Theatre was playing "The Iron Major," starring Pat O'Brien and Ruth Warrick.
Sixty Years Ago
Mr. and Mrs. Henry Troudt, Superior, celebrated their 64th wedding anniversary.
Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Ebsen, Bostwick, celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary.
Herman Noffke received his 30 year service pin from the Veterans Association of the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad. He had been at the Superior depot for 18 years.
The Bon-Ton Cafe in Superior was sold at auction as a going business.
Armour Star Lard was 25 cents per pound at Superior's Ideal Market.
The Crest theatre was showing "Night people," starring Gregory Peck.
Fifty Years Ago
Mr. and Mrs. Jack Parks, Superior, celebrated their 61st wedding anniversary.
The Village of Hardy was installing a sewer system to be paid for with revenue bonds.
Emma Gebers Marquart, 77, died. She was a longtime Nuckolls County resident.
Clayton Sack, a Security National Bank employee, Superior, attended the annual two-week residence session of the Graduate School of Banking at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Prairie Maid wieners were 45 cents per pound at the Superior Cash-Way Market,
The Crest Theatre was showing "The Incredible Mr. Limpet," starring Don Knotts.
Forty Years Ago
The Nebraska Public Service Commission ordered Lincoln Telephone and Telegraph Company to provide toll-free telephone service between Superior and Hardy not later than March 1, 1976.
Albert Bargen, 54, a Superior area farmer, was killed instantly when the stackmover he was working with collapsed.
Mr. and Mrs. Clay Langer celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.
Lloyd Hendricks, 70, died. He was a retired farmer and a Nelson resident.
A 23 inch Motorola Quasar Color TV was on sale for $459 at the Superior TV Clinic.
The Crest theatre was showing "Herbie Rides Again."
Thirty Years Ago
Burglars stole two shotguns from the Rich-Mar pawn shop in Superior while Renz Lumber, Hardy, lost several boxes of shotgun shells to burglars.
Superior Volunteer Fireman contained an ammonia leak from tanks owned by the Farmers Co-op located near the old sale barn southeast of Superior. No injuries were reported.
John and Janet Hansen celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary.
Eugene Karmazin, 55, died. He was a Superior resident and travelled with his motorized Santa's sleigh and reindeer throughout the Mid-West.
Krylon spray paint was $1.99 at Wheelers in Superior.
The Crest Theatre was showing "Red Dawn."
Twenty Years Ago
Bob and Sue Trapp purchased the Superior Ace hardware store from Jack and Gladys Stinson.
Shelia Sjoholm purchased the Do-Drop In at Hardy.
Herb Pedersen, Hardy, celebrated his 84th birthday.
Robert "Bob" Oglevie, 62, died He was a lifelong Superior resident and operated a popcorn stand for many years.
Frying chickens were 53 cents per pound at Superior's Jack and Jill Food Center.
The Crest Theatre was showing "Wyatt Earp" and "The Lion King."
Ten Years Ago
Meyer's Vineyard, Inc., Superior, received a $105,000 grant to help with the development of the winery.
The Guide Rock senior center relocated to the former Guide Rock School building.
The first store building in Nelson was slated for demolition.
Atha Cassens and Ardeth Hansen celebrated their 80th birthdays In Superior.
The Crest Theatre was playing "Little Black Book" and I, Robot."
Five Years Ago
The City of Superior reached an agreement with the membership of the Superior Country Club to transfer ownership of the facility to the city.
Scott McCluskey was appointed as interim pastor at Salem Lutheran Church, north of Superior and Zion Lutheran Church in Clay Center.
Roy Stutzman, 64, a Nora area resident, was helping move grain to the Ruskin elevator when he fell in the boot pit and died.
Robert "Bob" Marshall, 86, died. He owned and operated a barber shop in Superior for more than 50 years.
The Crest Theatre was showing "G-Force" and "G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra."
One Year Ago
The Nuckolls County Board approved a $8.5 million budget for the 2013-2014 fiscal year.
The Superior Elks Lodge donated a portable scoreboard to the Superior public school system. The scoreboard was to be used for wrestling and cross country.
Harry Robinson, 87, died. He was a former Superior city council member and owned a Conoco station for many years.
Lois Grummert Leslie, 83, died. She managed the restaurant facilities at the Leslie Hotel in Superior.
The Crest Theatre was playing "Disney's Planes" and "The Heat."

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Nuckolls County Courthouse News

Patricia K. Stillwell, Superior, $25; Cheryl A. Hunt, North Platte, $25; Tommy A. McNally, Jonesboro, Ark., $25; Cody M. Miller, Red Lion, Pa., $25.
County Civil Court
Credit Management Services vs. Joseph McKee and Christine McKee, Lawrence, judgment entered.
Credit Management Services vs. Nicole Cotter, Superior, judgment entered.
Credit Management Services vs. Jason Domeier, Nelson, judgment entered.
General Collection Co. vs. Warren C. Fuller and Brandy Fuller, Hastings, judgment entered.
Collection Associates vs. Michael R. Parker, Superior, judgment entered.
County Criminal Court
State of Nebraska vs. Todd E. Wilson, Hastings, hours of solicitation violation, $50.
Eric John Krotzinger and Juliann Sue Wehrman were married on Aug. 9, 2014. at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Superior, by Fr. Brad Zitek with Brandon Edwards and Jaycee Jacobitz as witnesses.
Real Estate Transfers
Michael D. Devaney, Karla K. Devaney to Thomas H. Willett, Toni A. Willett, Lot 9 in Block 30, Original Town of Nelson.
Michael G. Streff, Jane F. Streff to Village of Lawrence, Part Lot 7 Lawrence South Subdivision.
Ross Carstensen, Sarah Carstensen to Ross Carstensen, Lots 1, 2 and 3 in Block 3, East Superior.
Nicole M. Ordich to Byron State Bank, Part Lot 5 in Block 6, North Superior.
Richard C. Kistler, Ellen M. Kistler to Bradley L. Baker, Kathy S. Baker, Lot 3 in Block 18, North Superior.
Peggy Bargen, personal representative for the Estate of Darlene Farver to Jeff Hunt, Shannon Hunt, Block 6, Wheelers South Park Addition to Nelson; Lots 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 and Part Lot 6 in Block 5, with exceptions, Wheelers South Park Addition to Nelson.
Lawrence N. Bouray Jr, Theresa L. Bouray to Richard L. Howe, Barbara A. Howe, Lot 10 and Part Lot 9 in Block 29, Fogels Sub of Lots 8 through12 of Superior.

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11-year-old once taught private school in Edgar
It was reported on Aug. 31, 1939, that Wilma Merrill, 11-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Merrill was Edgar's youngest school teacher. For two summers, Willma conducted school in the basement of the Merrill home which was equipped with desks and blackboards. The eight pupils who attended this school were between the ages of six and eight. All lived in the Merrill neighborhood.
Classes began each Thursday morning at 9 a.m. Language, math, art, music, reading and writing were the subjects offered. The music class was held in the home's living room where a piano was located.
At the end of each three weeks, report cards were issued.
Students were Helen and Gordon Smith, Gloria Rhoads, Janice Kinnison, Gordon Powell, Bobby Huber, Thomas Recht and Roger Lewien.

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Poll shows increased optimism in rural Nebraska
Rural Nebraskans' optimism seems to be up a bit, according to the 2014 Nebraska Rural Poll.
Fifty percent of poll respondents said they were better off this year than five years ago, up from 42 percent last year. Only 17 percent said they were worse off, compared to 26 percent in 2013.
A similar turnaround was reflected in a question about how rural Nebraskans see the future, with 44 percent believing they'll be better off in 10 years, up from last year's 34 percent, the lowest recorded in the poll's history. The percentage of those who think they'll be worse off decreased from 32 percent in 2013 to 22 percent this year.
The 19th annual University of Nebraska-Lincoln poll was sent to 6,813 households in 86 Nebraska counties in March and April. Results are based on 1,943 responses.
Poll organizers aren't certain what to make of the improved optimism in this year's poll. Since the numbers this year are more reflective of the poll's historical trends, the 2013 findings may be an aberration, said Randy Cantrell, rural sociologist with the Nebraska Rural Futures Institute.
  The poll is taken in spring, so sometimes its results capture passing moods, events and perceptions about the state of the world. During spring 2013, there was a good deal of uncertainty, particularly over the economy and the Affordable Care Act, Cantrell said.
One of the biggest contributors to confidence about the future appears to be growing job security. The percentage of respondents who said they were satisfied with their job security increased from 65 percent in 2013 to 73 percent this year.
"We haven't felt this secure in our jobs since before the recession," said Brad Lubben, assistant professor and UNL extension policy specialist.
Elsewhere, the Rural Poll's findings were generally similar to the finidings of past years:
­ Majorities of respondents rated their community as friendly, trusting and supportive ­ 77, 64 and 69 percent, respectively.
  ­ Fifty-five percent said it would be difficult to leave their community; 31 percent said it would be easy.
­ Sixty-one percent of respondents disagreed that their community is powerless to control its future.
­ Some services saw significant decreases in satisfaction levels this year. Satisfaction with streets and roads fell from 53 percent to 44 percent. Satisfaction with parks and recreation dropped from 76 percent to 71 percent.
The Rural Poll is the largest annual poll of rural Nebraskans' perceptions on quality of life and policy issues. This year's response rate was about 29 percent. The margin of error is plus or minus 2 percent. Complete results are available online at http://ruralpoll.
  With its 19-year history, the poll has a collection of data about rural trends and perceptions that is unmatched in the country, said Becky Vogt, survey research manager who's been working on the Rural Poll since its second year.
Although the Grand Island area (Hall, Hamilton, Howard and Merrick counties) was designated a metropolitan area by the U.S. Census Bureau in 2013, the Rural Poll continues to include those counties in its sample. Also, Dixon and Dakota counties were added to the poll this year.
The university's Department of Agricultural Economics conducts the poll in cooperation with the Nebraska Rural Futures Institute with funding from UNL Extension and the Agricultural Research Division in the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

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Nebraska News Service

Stories of statewide interest

Prepared by UNL journalism students


Photo ID to vote bill brings threat of lawsuit
By Demetria Stephens, Nebraska News Service
March 7, 2013
LINCOLN ­ Nebraskans want some kind of voter ID law, but a senator's second attempt to bring such a bill misses the mark, according to Secretary of State John Gale.
Larry Dix, executive director of the Nebraska Association of County Officials, read Gale's statement during Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee hearing on Legislative Bill 381, Thursday, March 7. The bill, introduced by Sen. Charlie Janssen of Fremont, would require Nebraskans to show a photo ID when voting. Janssen, a candidate in the 2014 governor's race, introduced a similar bill last year, which failed.
Former senator Brenda Council of Omaha said LB381 might be unconstitutional. Amy Miller, ACLU Nebraska legal director, and Adam Morfeld, the Nebraskans for Civic Reform executive director, agreed. Morfeld said his group of 27 Nebraska organizations would sue the state if the bill passes.
"Voting is a fundamental constitutional right, not only the U.S. constitution," she said. "But I urge the members of this committee and the Legislature as a whole to not forget the Nebraska Constitution."
The Nebraska constitution prohibits anything hindering a qualified voter, which is a registered voter, she said.
Thirty-three states now have voter ID laws, with one of the strictest being Indiana. Janssen based LB381 on that law. His bill would make the Department of Motor Vehicles offer a state identification card at no cost to a voters who can't afford another government photo ID. Mail ballots wouldn't require a photo ID, unless it was the person's first time voting. Anyone who doesn't provide the ID at the polls would have to cast a provisional ballot, which means voting officials have to verify the person's identity.
Janssen was amending the bill to allow election officials in rural areas to vouch for the identity of voters if they forget to bring their ID to vote. He cited a 2012 report by the Pew Center on the States that found 24 million U.S. voter registrations, or one out of eight, were no longer valid or significantly inaccurate.
"The report also found 1.8 million dead people listed as voters and 2.75 million people registered in more than one state," he said.
But because Nebraska hasn't had widespread voting fraud, Gale said the bill might not be appropriate for the state. Gale's statement was read in a neutral position. Other opponents said the bill could reduce the amount of people who vote by putting up barriers. Some groups who might be hurt included students and adopted children who might be on the move, and people who can't easily travel such as the elderly and disabled, including veterans.
Former judge Jan Gradwohl said veterans might be in homes or hospitals and not able to go to the Department of Motor Vehicle to get the ID required by this bill.
"Here are people who have fought for the right to vote and who would be themselves unable to vote," she said.
Supporter Marty Brown, vice president of Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, said the American flag in the hearing room reminded him of his service in the military in 1965. People spit on him when he returned from service, he said.
"We don't have any respect for that flag," he said. "In reference to LB381, we'd give some of that respect back."


March. 6, 2013

Tax breaks for wind energy could attract development, revenue
By Joseph Moore, Nebraska News Service
LINCOLN ­ Nebraska would become one of only two states in the country that offer tax credits for renewable energy generation under a bill introduced by Sen. Jeremy Nordquist of Omaha.
The Legislature's Revenue Committee heard testimony March 6 on LB 411.
The bill would offer a new tax incentive for solar, wind, biomass and landfill gas energy producers just as the federal tax credit on renewable energy production is set to expire at the end of 2013.
"Us having something like this in place would make us a magnet for renewable energy developers," Nordquist said. He said the tax incentive would give Nebraska a competitive advantage over other states in attracting investment in renewables.
Currently, only Oklahoma offers a production-based tax credit on renewable energy.
Despite covering several categories of renewable energy, Nordquist said the bill's goal is to attract wind developers.
Nebraska currently ranks fourth in the nation in wind resources, according to the American Wind Energy Association. The state had 260 wind turbines operating in 2012 with a total capacity of 459 megawatts, providing 2.9 percent of Nebraska's power.
By comparison, Iowa, which ranks seventh in the nation in wind resources, had a total wind energy capacity of 4,536 megawatts and generated more than 18 percent of its power from wind in 2011, according to the American Wind Energy Association.
Even with plentiful wind resources, Nebraska is falling behind neighboring states in wind energy production.
Nordquist's bill would provide a tax credit of .5 cents for each kilowatt-hour of electricity generated from a renewable source. That amount would increase to a peak of 1.5 cents between 2015 and 2017, dropping back down to .5 cents after 2019.
Producers would be eligible for the credit for up to eight years.
The estimated cost to the state for these tax credits is about $2 million for the fiscal year 2014-2015.
Sen. Paul Schumacher of Columbus asked if the tax credit is necessary to attract developers considering Nebraska's abundant wind resources.
Richard Lombardi, representing the Wind Coalition, a nonprofit group that advocates for wind energy production, responded by saying that the energy market is heavily subsidized and energy producers are forced to go where the incentives are greatest.
"Tax policy is everything in energy policy," he said.
Lombardi said the state, and particularly rural areas, would benefit from an increase in wind energy production. "Wind projects become one of the largest taxpayers," he said.
David Levy, representing Midwest Wind Energy, a wind farm development company with operations in Nebraska, agreed that the tax credit is necessary to attract more investment.
"Other states' tax incentives put Nebraska at a disadvantage," he said.
Levy said Midwest Wind Energy projects in Custer, Knox and Boone counties would generate an estimated $66 million in local and state tax revenue over the next 10 years, adding, "We would like to build more projects in Nebraska."
No one testified against the bill.
Nordquist said the committee would hear testimony on a number of related bills and encouraged members to consider some form of incentive for renewable energy development.