Grand Island Mayor Roger Steele will kick off Central Platte Natural Resources District’s 50th Anniversary Open House with an NRD proclamation at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 14, 2022. Governor Ricketts will start the weeklong celebration, by proclaiming July 11-15 as “NRD Week” to recognize the 50th Anniversary of Nebraska’s Natural Resources Districts.
The celebration will include food and both indoor and outdoor activities showing what the NRD has accomplished and what’s in the works for the future. Indoor booths will feature the NRD’s progress in water management, crane decks, flood control, GIS irrigation imagery, past/current soil moisture monitoring equipment, and the schematic design of the proposed education center/office to be located northwest of Grand Island. Water sampling bottles will be available for domestic and irrigation nitrate sampling and attendees will learn what average nitrate levels are within their community.
Outdoor exhibits will include CPNRD’s prescribed fire trucks and gear, the NRD tree cooler and tree planting machine, and a wetland education activity. Cost-share information will also be available.
* RTIC 52 gallon light-weight cooler, backpack coolers, yardsticks, fans – Central Platte NRD
* Pony Express Package: Wild Horse Golf Club pass/Titleist golf ball, Frito-Lay products, Old Depot
Vineyard & Winery gift certificate- Gothenburg Chamber of Commerce
* (6) Kearneyopoly Games- Kearney Chamber of Commerce
* Denali Fishing Pole, Walleye Nation Lures – APEX Marine of Grand Island
* (2) Turkey Creek Float Trip Gift Certificates – Kearney Paddle Sports
* (2) Travel Mugs – Gibbon Chamber of Commerce
* Silver Maple Wood and Turquoise Candy/Key Dish – Grand Island Chamber of Commerce
As part of the NRD’s Open House, youth ages 5-18 are invited to bring a drawing or painting (8.5 x 11) titled KNOW YOUR NRD. Artwork will be displayed and voted on by staff and attendees from 3:00-5:15 p.m. during the Open House with winners announced at 5:30 that evening. Judging will be based on how well it represents at least one of the NRD’s responsibilities. The top four winners will receive backpack coolers.
How Central Platte NRD was Formed
When Nebraska joined the Union in 1867, natural resources issues were treated as issues of property and often pitted neighbor against neighbor, so the Nebraska Legislature was asked to provide solutions to specific problems. The Legislature usually responded by creating a special-purpose governmental unit that could resolve an issue, but often without sufficient authority or funding to provide effective long-term solutions. By the late 1960s, Nebraska had over 500 special purpose districts including: irrigation, drainage, soil conservation, watershed, rural water, watershed improvement boards, reclamation, sanitary improvement districts and sanitary drainage districts. In addition, state agencies were empowered to deal with some natural resources issues. The solution was for the state to create a unique system of natural resources districts (local government districts) that could deal with a wide variety of natural resource-related problems and opportunities.
In 1972, 24 NRDs (now 23) were established to replace 154 special purpose districts. The designated Mid-Platte East NRD covered portions of the Platte Valley that were being served by four watershed districts and several Soil and Water Conservation Districts in an 11-county area. One of the first acts by the district’s board of directors was to change the NRD’s name to Central Platte Natural Resources District. The city of Grand Island was selected by the first board as the headquarters. Ron Bishop, general manager of the watershed district, became the first general manager. Lyndon Vogt was hired as general manager in June 2013 when Bishop retired. Vogt was previously manager of the Upper Niobrara White NRD in Chadron and Lower Niobrara in Butte.
District Location Central Platte is one of 23 natural resources districts in Nebraska. It lies in the south central part of Nebraska, straddling the Platte River. There are 2,136,304 acres in the district. CPNRD extends for about 175 miles from the Lincoln-Dawson county line on the west near Gothenburg, to Hwy 81 on the east near Columbus. Eleven counties have land included in the district including all of Dawson County and parts of Frontier, Custer, Buffalo, Howard, Hall, Nance, Merrick, Hamilton, Platte, Polk.
For additional details call (308) 385-6282.