A Monthly Publication of the Nebraska Environmental Trust

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Dave Heineman, Governor

Board of Trustees

District I
District II
District III

Agency Directors

Trust Staff

March 2013

In This Issue:

  1. Executive Director's Corner
  2. Nebraska Environmental Trust Invites Comments on 2013 Preliminary Rank Order List
  3. New Board Member Feature - Dr. Joseph Acierno, Chief Medical Officer, Director, Division of Public Health, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services
  4. Grantee Seminar Dates & Agendas
  5. Spring Weed Watch - High Plains Weed Management Association
  6. Landowner Habitat Tours
  7. Electronic Recycling Events by WasteCap Nebraska
  8. UNL ecotourism map now online   
  9. Upcoming Events
  10. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and find us on YouTube


Executive Director's Corner

We are very excited to have three new board members, but are sad to say good bye to three members who have served the Trust well.  The new members are Henry “Rick” Brandt of Roca to represent the 1st District, Gerry Lauritzen to represent the 2nd District and Dr. Joseph Acierno who is replacing Dr. Joann Schaefer for the Department of Health and Human Services.

The second quarter Trust board meeting is coming up on April 4th and the final list of projects to be funded for 2013 will be decided.  The public is welcome to attend the public meeting and provide comments that day or to submit comments to the board before the meeting.

We have scheduled our grantee seminars for the week of April 15th in Lincoln, Grand Island and North Platte.  Dates and times are noted in this newsletter.  We encourage anyone who receives a grant from the Trust this year to attend one of the seminars to learn the latest about grant paperwork and reporting requirements.

Here is to a wet spring and hopefully no drought across Nebraska this summer.

Mark A. Brohman
Executive Director


Nebraska Environmental Trust Invites Comments on 2013 Preliminary Rank Order List

At its meeting in Lincoln on February 26, 2013, the Board of the Nebraska Environmental Trust received the Grant Committee’s proposed funding of 134 projects for a total of $24,247,260 in grant awards. Of these, 87 were new applications and 47 are carry-over projects. This is a record disbursal for the Trust resulting from high lottery proceeds this past year. This is the 20th year of grants from the Trust, which has provided over 195 million dollars in lottery revenue to preserve and protect the air, water and land in Nebraska.

As part of the grant making process, the Trust is seeking public input on the proposed grants before announcing final awards on April 4, 2013. A list of all recommended grants and project information is available on the Trust website at: www.environmentaltrust.org. Written public comments will be accepted until April 3, 2013 at the Nebraska Environmental Trust, P.O. Box 94913, Lincoln NE 68509-4913 or via email at: marilyn.tabor@nebraska.gov. Please include your name, address and organizations (if applicable) and be sure to reference the project name and number in your correspondence. Comments can also be presented in person during a public hearing on April 4, 2013. The meeting begins at 1:30 pm with the public hearing starting at 1:45 pm at the Ferguson House, 700 South 16th Street, Lincoln NE.

You may click the link provided for the 2013 Preliminary Rank Order List.


New Board Member Feature - Dr. Joseph Acierno, Chief Medical Officer, Director, Division of Public Health, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services


The Trust is pleased to announce that Dr. Joseph Acierno has been named to the board by Governor Dave Heineman in succession of Dr. Joann Schaefer. Dr. Acierno is the new Chief Medical Officer and Director of the Division of Public Health for the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. Before assuming his current position on March 8, 2013, Dr. Acierno had served as Deputy Chief Medical Officer since 2007 and was legal counsel to the department prior to that.

As Director and Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Acierno oversees regulatory activity and community health. He is committed to ensuring Nebraskans receive safe, effective quality care as well as helping them live a healthy lifestyle throughout their entire lives.

He continues to promote a culture of wellness across the state through health education, immunizations, preventive screenings, good nutrition, physical activity and disease prevention.

He is a member of the public health emergency response team and is also part of the National Health Security Preparedness Index Project Governance Workgroup sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Association for State and Territorial Health Officials.

Commenting on his appointment, Dr Acierno said, “I’m looking forward to serving on the Trust board and learning about the various projects they fund.”

The Trust Board is comprised of 14 members representing the State of Nebraska and its citizens. Nine citizen representatives are appointed by the Governor to serve six year terms. Three representatives are chosen from each congressional district, serve without pay and represent a wide variety of natural resource interests. Five agency directors make up the remaining seats on the board to provide coordination with existing state resources. A staff of five handles the day-to-day activities of the organization.
Mark Brohman, Executive Director of the Trust said, “We are excited to have Dr. Acierno join us and bring his medical and legal expertise to the board.” 


Grantee Seminar Dates & Agendas

It's that time of the year again where we are preparing to have our grantee seminars at several different locations to welcome our new grant recipients as well as visit with some of our existing grant recipients. Different this year, is that we will be holding the Lincoln seminars at the Ferguson House where the Environmental Trust office is located. We believe that having it at the Trust office and in smaller groups may cater to individual needs better. We will be holding four sessions in total. Two in Lincoln, one in Grand Island and one in North Platte. Please see the agendas attached for details:

2013 Grantee Seminar Agenda- Lincoln & Grand Island

2013 Grantee Seminar Agenda - North Platte


Spring Weed Watch - High Plains Weed Management Association

High Plains Weed Management Association (HPWMA) has had a fairly productive winter.  Justin Relka, Field Coordinator, has been busy contracting re-growth spraying and looking at properties for re-growth and first time removal.  There are some great projects in the works for this spring and summer that has the High Plains group excited and ready to go. 

Initial removal projects have been lining up for HPWMA. HPWMA hopes to complete a few more projects before the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBA) takes effect in April and slows us down for a while.  Through advertisement and direct contact with landowners along the North Platte River, HPWMA has seen an increase in removal projects.  So far this winter, there has been around 200 acres cleared of Russian Olives and many more lined up for later this summer after the MBA. 

As for re-growth and initial spraying of Salt Cedar and Phragmites, HPWMA looks to have close to 800 acres in the works to be taken care of this spring and summer.  If all goes well, that number will increase and we will be able to help eradicate more of these invasive species as the year progresses.

Picture below is a project in Bridgeport, Morrill County.





Landowner Habitat Tours

Landowner Habitat Tours are again being hosted across the state by a unique partnership that includes the Nebraska Environmental Trust, Pheasants Forever, Quail Forever, Nebraska Game & Parks Commission and Natural Resources Conservation Service.  In 2013, a total of 16 tours are being offered free of charge on topics that include wildlife management, CRP management, prescribed fire, pollinator habitat, grazing management, and many more.

These tours are part of an 'Education Outreach' partnership that has been supported by the NET since 2008.  In that time, a total of 76 tours have been conducted for 2,149 attendees.  Tours are designed to offer real life examples of what different conservation programs and habitat management practices actually look like on the ground.  Having the opportunity to see projects and asks questions is one of the best ways possible to learn and understand programs.  For more information about future tours or to register for them, simply log on to: www.NebraskaPF.com or call Pam at 308-850-8395

Click here for Link to Statewide Habitat Tours


Electronic Recycling Events by WasteCap Nebraska    

WasteCap Nebraska will be organizing a series of electronic recycling events in various locations. For more information, click here.


UNL ecotourism map now online

Looking for things to do this spring and summer?
Be an ecotourist.
Ecotourism is critical for wilderness and habitat conservation. When you’re an ecotourist, you’re helping spread knowledge of conservation, fund conservation initiatives and support nearby communities economically. And it offers you inspiring moments of human experience – a way to connect to the land, its creatures and each other. An ecotourist site is any place open to the public that is primarily devoted to environmental or biodiversity conservation and provides an opportunity to experience nature.
Where should you go? The University of Nebraska’s Center for Great Plains Studies conducted a survey and released a map of the top 50 ecotourism sites in the Great Plains. That map is now available online at: http://ecogreatplains.org/

Note: Please note that the link is best viewed in Firefox or Chrome browsers

And help them fill in the map by submitting photos of the sites to greatplains.reachingout@unl.edu


Note: The Trust has partnered with various organizations in the eco-map area to make Nebraska a better place.


Upcoming Events

- March 21-24, 2013 - Rivers and Wildlife Celebration: Nebraska's Crane Festival, Holiday Inn Kearney, NE.

- April 4, 2013 (Thursday)- 2nd Quarter Board Meeting, Ferguson House, Lincoln NE. Time: 1:30pm

- April 15, 2013 (Monday) - Grantee Seminar, Central Platte NRD Office, Grand Island, Time: 9:45am

- April 16, 2013 (Tuesday) - Grantee Seminar, Ferguson House, Lincoln, Time: 9:45am

- April 17, 2013 (Wednesday) - Grantee Seminar, Mid-Plains Community College, North Platte, Time: 11:45am

- April 19, 2013 (Friday) - Grantee Seminar, Ferguson House, Lincoln, Time: 9:45am

- April 20, 2013 (Saturday) - 2013 Earth Day Omaha, Elmwood Park, Omaha, NE.

- April 21, 2013 (Sunday) - Lincoln Earth Day, Antelope Park, Lincoln NE.

- April 21, 2013 (Sunday) - Bellevue Earth Day, Bellevue, NE.

- May 7, 2013 (Tuesday) - Nebraska Children's Groundwater Festival, Central Community College and College Park, Grand Island

- May 17-19, 2013 (Friday - Sunday) - Spring Into Spring Festival - Lauritzen Gardens


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