Questions of the Week – Readers ask about zoning, Harrison Park and LB 357 funds

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The following questions were recently submitted by curious readers: 


Q: I saw that the county is advertising to hire a new zoning administrator. Is that a full or part time position?

A: It is a part-time position.


Q: What is that new feature down in Harrison Park? I saw something has been built there, when I was driving by, but I couldn’t tell what it is.

A: That new feature at Harrison Park is a splash pad! It was recently installed and is now open for business! It was a LB357 project – which means it was paid for with funds from the city’s special ½-cent sales tax. That money is used to pay for specially earmarked projects for the school, city infrastructure and recreation projects.


Q: Can you tell us what the LB 357 funds are being used for in York?

A: As explained earlier by York City Administrator Sue Crawford, the LB357 sales tax revenue “continues to pay off bond investments and to provide revenues for other school and city infrastructure and recreation projects.” Bonds tied to LB357 projects were refinanced in 2021 at a very low interest rate. Those savings, combined with healthy sales tax revenues “enabled some one-time investments in projects consistent with the LB357 purpose of improving recreation and infrastructure in the city and schools in 2021.

“In the 2021-22 budget year, LB357 investments included a new playground surface for the playground at the ballfield complex, a tot playground and splash pad, an accessible restroom for Mincks Park near the new Peyton Parker Lane Playground, a new HVAC system for the library and improvements at the family aquatic center as well as a major lighting project at the York Middle School.

“The LB357 budget approved for 2022-23 includes further improvements around the Peyton Parker Lane Playground, surfacing for York Public Elementary School playgrounds, HVAC units at the senior center, school crossing safety improvements and funds for a local match on the upcoming major federal investment in trails and pedestrian safety in York.”


Q: Even with our housing issue, it feels like York continues to grow anyway. What is the population of York right now?

A: The latest population figure for the City of York is 8,133.


Q: How old is the Farmers Valley Cemetery by Henderson? It is just beautiful and so historic. I was there recently for the first time and was just in awe.

A: Farmers Valley Cemetery was established in 1876 on land donated for the purpose by John Brown.

It is the final resting place of many pioneers including Marion Littlefield who was killed by Indians at Pebble Creek, Mary Kailey and her child who froze to death in the legendary Easter blizzard of 1873 and Nebraska State Senator Perry Reed.

As far as the man who donated the land, John Brown was born in Glasgow, Scotland, on Dec. 28, 1808, and died July 30, 1878.


Q: When did the observation of Memorial Day begin?

A: Originally called Decoration Day, from the early tradition of decorating graves with flowers, wreaths and flags, it was first widely observed on May 30, 1868, to commemorate the sacrifices of Civil War soldiers, by proclamation of General John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of former Union sailors and soldiers.


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