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Nebraska Information Technology Commission
October 24, 2000, 1:30-4:30 p.m.
State Office Building, 301 Centennial Mall, 6th Floor,Conference Room 6Z
Lincoln, Nebraska



Donna Hammack,
Health Representative
Michael Nolan,
Local Government Representative
Ann Stephens,
Libraries Representative
Lance Hedquist,
Local Government Representative
Jeanne Saathoff,
Libraries Representative
Bob Sweeney,
Business Representative
Ron Heezen,
Libraries Representative
Craig Schroeder,
Agriculture Representative
Gary Warren,
Resource Providers Representative
Gerry Kluch,
Agriculture Representative
Ted Schultz,
Health Representative
Stu Miller,
Resource Providers Representative
Ted Smith,
Libraries Representative


Anne Boyle, Resource Providers Sector; Tyler French, Business Representative; Gary Kiel, Business Representative; Jim Lowe, Agriculture Representative; Clyde Tyndall, Resource Providers Representative
Chris Anderson, City of Ashland; Max Thacker, UNMC; Anne Byers, Lori Lopez Urdiales, Tom Rolfes and Michael Winkle, Office of the CIO/NITC


Mr. Schroeder, Co-chair, called the meeting to order at 1:37 p.m. Roll was taken. There were ten voting members are the time of roll call. A quorum existed to conduct official business.

Mr. Schroeder stated that the meeting announcement was posted August 2 and updated September 18 on the NITC Web site and Nebraska Public Meeting Web site. The agenda was posted on NITC Web site and on the Public Meeting Web site on October 10, 2000.


Mr. Hedquist moved to approve the minutes as presented. Mr. Miller seconded the motion. All were in favor. Motion was carried by voice vote.


There was no public comment.

COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP AND IT PLANNING - Anne Byers, Community Information Technology Manager

  • Building Information Communities Assessment. This item was a priority item for the Community Council. The assessment is posted on the Web site.
  • League of Municipalities. The League of Municipalities held their annual meeting on October 4th and 5th in Omaha. The NITC was asked to provide pre-conference informational sessions. Several NITC Commissioners and Council members spoke, as well as state agency representatives. Mr. Hedquist reported that the evaluation ratings on the conference were high - 3.8 out of 4.0. One of the follow-up activities decided at the conference is the development of a list serve for the league members.
  • Information Technology Clearinghouse. The Communities portion of the clearinghouse is organized according to the 15 areas of the Building Information Communities Assessment: Community Leadership and IT Planning; Economic Development; E-commerce, Agriculture; Public Access and Universal Service; Public Library Resources; Health Care; Technology Training and Retention; Broadband Services and Infrastructure; Local Government and Community Services; GIS; Arts, Culture, History and Non-profits; and Funding Strategies. Ms. Byers asked the Council for assistance in providing more information and resources for best practices.
  • Native American Telecommunications Conference. The first Native American Telecommunications Conference was held on October 23-24 in Lincoln. Several providers, the Public Service Commission and Rural Utilities Service representatives were in attendance.
  • Mr. Sweeney arrived at 1:45 p.m.

  • Update on related activities and reports. Household Internet penetration figures by state from " Falling Through the Net IV" were distributed to members. The report indicated that Nebraska lags behind in household Internet penetration. Mr. Winkle announced that the Center for the New West has a report regarding the digital divide between large corporation and small businesses. There is a link to the article in the Communities portion of the clearinghouse. Ms. Byers was extended an invitation a meeting on November 28th regarding the University of Nebraska's new IT initiative. Council members were to let her know if they were interested in attending. North Dakota's new handbook

Dr. Heezen arrived at 2:05 p.m.

  • Next steps. Discussion on next steps for community leadership and I.T. planning will occur at the December meeting.


Elmwood-Murdock Public schools has requested several budget reallocations for their Web Parent project. They had originally budgeted $7,850 for training and anticipate training costs will actually be $500-$1,200. They would like to use the money originally budgeted for training to increase teacher stipends, hire someone to redesign the school's Web site, provide a stipend to content monitors, and pay for a wireless connection from the high school to the elementary school. Reviewers of the original proposal felt that the training budget was high and that teacher stipends were too low. Increasing the stipends does not change the scope of the project. Redesigning the Web site and providing a stipend to content monitors are also relatively small changes. The wireless connection is a significant change to the scope of the project. The only technology expenditures in the original proposal were for a printer, scanner, and software. The technical panel is required by statute to review all Community Technology Fund projects. The wireless connection would be outside of the technical review process.

The staffs' recommendation is to approve the increase in teacher stipends, redesign of the Web site, and stipends for content monitors but to disapprove the wireless connection.

Ms. Saathoff moved to approve the staffs' recommendation regarding Elmwood-Murdock Public schools grant request for change in budget scope/change. Dr. Heezen seconded the motion. Discussion followed regarding a concern of the definition of "Content Monitor". Ms. Stevens made a friendly amendment and moved to approve the request contingent on the definition of "Content Monitor". Mr. Kluch seconded the motion. The Council requested that further discussion wait until the definition is clarified. Ms. Hammack and Ms. Byers left the meeting to make a phone call to Elmwood-Murdock Public Schools. After consulting with a representative of Elmwood-Murdock Public Schools,

Ms. Stephens pulled the friendly amendment and moved to approve the request with the change of title from Content Monitor to Content Manager. Mr. Kluch seconded. All were in favor. Motion was carried by voice vote.

Motion on the floor to approve staffs' recommendation regarding Elmwood-Murdock Public schools grant request for change in budget scope/change. All were in favor. Motion was carried by voice vote.

Mr. Nolan arrived at 2:49 p.m.


Ms. Byers informed the Council that there is a pre-proposal requirement for this funding round to help reduce duplication of efforts. The Council recommended that a sentence be included stating that applicants who do not submit pre-proposals will not be considered for funding. Other suggestions included explaining the purpose of the preproposals and changing the preproposal due date to "must be e-mailed or postmarked by Friday, January 12, 2001."

Mr. Miller left the meeting at 3 p.m.


There are three new prospective members:

  • Harold Krueger, Chadron Community Hospital, representing the Health Sector replacing Rick Nolan
  • Max Thacker, UNMC,
  • representing the Health Sector replacing Dr. Reba Benschoter
  • Chris Anderson, City Administrator of Ashland, representing Local Government filling a vacant position. replacing

Dr. Heezen moved to approve the three nominations for approval by the NITC at their November 6 meeting. Mr. Kluch seconded the motion. All were in favor. Motion was carried by voice vote.

Other membership changes needing no action were as follows:

  • Gerry Kluch has a new alternate. His name is Chad Adams with Adams Bank and Trust in Ogallala. Adams Bank services the North Platte, Sutherland, Brule, Lodgepole, Chapell, Madrid, Grant, Imperial and Indianola areas.
  • Sue Volk has recently married and is now Sue Finkral.
  • Donna Hammack is now the Director of the St. Elizabeth Foundation in Lincoln.


Mr. Winkle provided a brief overview of the budget request prioritization process. After the last biennium, the Legislature requested that one prioritized list of projects be forwarded for consideration. The Education and State Government Councils met to prioritize projects. Both Councils had lists of unranked projects due to the projects not meeting the definition of new or additional funding or the projects were operational costs. Mr. Winkle indicated that the following projects that may be of interest to the Council and requested that they get feedback to Ms. Byers by 5:00 p.m. Friday October 27th.

  • #35-01, Library Commission, Nebraska's e-Library: Content (Grants portion of the request
  • #35-01, Library Commission, Nebraska's e-Library: Infrastructure
  • #35-01, Library Commission, Nebraska's e-Library: Training
  • #51-01, University of Nebraska, Public Service/Engagement
  • #51-01, University of Nebraska, Extended/Distance Education

Mr. Winkle explained the Joint Committee meeting process and provided a brief description of each of the education and state government projects. The Council provided the following feedback:

Education Council Prioritized List (PDF 152k)

  • Education low priority projects: #47-14 to 47-19 from NETC and #83-02 from Mid-Plains Community College Area

State Government Council Prioritized List (PDF 152k)

  • State Government low priority projects: #09-01 from the Secretary of State and #05-02 from the Supreme Court
  • State Government high priority projects: #34-01 from the Library Commission and #82-01 from the Commission on the Deaf & Hard of Hearing

Mr. Nolan commented that education is very important and that the projects dealing with the delivery of education in rural areas be supported. Dr. Sweeney commented that the projects dealing with e-government were important because they encourage the use of the Internet.


There was no new business.


The next meeting of the Community Council will be held at 1:30 p.m., Friday, December 1st. The location will be determined at a later time.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:19 p.m. by Co-chair, Mr. Schroeder.

Meeting minutes were taken by Lori Lopez Urdiales and reviewed by Anne Byers of the Office of the CIO/NITC.

Meeting Minutes