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Wonderline -- Readers ask about case calculations and the county/attorney situation
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Wonderline -- Readers ask about case calculations and the county/attorney situation

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The following questions were recently asked on the Wonderline:

Q: On the Four Corners website, they give us a “7-day case rate per 100,000” and then a number. How do we put that number in a calculation in order to figure out the number of new COVID cases in the district in that seven-day period.

A: As explained to us by Four Corners Health Department Director Laura McDougall, you multiply that number times 44,426 (the district’s population) and then divide that number by 100,000. The resulting figure is the number of new COVID cases in the health district in the last seven days.

Q: On what grounds, with what argument, did York County Attorney John Lyons ask for his restraining order/injunction order against the York County Commissioners? What did he say his “injuries” would be if he didn’t receive that order?

A: He (through his attorney) argued, in the legal complaint, that “Lyons, York County, the office of the York County attorney, ongoing law enforcement investigations and criminal prosecutions will suffer immediate and irreparable injury, loss or damage if the board is permitted to extrajudicially remove Lyons. Lyons will suffer further immediate and irreparable injury, loss or damage if the board is permitted to remove Lyons, including: Lyons’ loss of wages, loss of medical and life insurance coverage, harm to reputation and community standing a mere three months ahead of the 2022 election season, loss of participation in the Nebraska Public Employees Retirement System and loss of retirement contributions to NPERS.

“The office of the York County Attorney will suffer immediate and irreparable injury, loss or damage if the board is permitted to remove Lyons, including: usurped statutory legitimacy and authority to enforce and prosecute crimes; delayed criminal cases and obstructed prosecutions pending in both the York County Court and the York County District Court; obstruction of ongoing law enforcement activities conducted by the office of the county attorney; interruption and obstruction of other ministerial duties of the county attorney under law, i.e. LB 1184 compliance, CAC investigations, death investigations and federal and state reporting.

“York County will suffer immediate and irreparable injury, loss or damage if the board is permitted to remove Lyons including: penalties made payable by York County to NPERS by the board’s non-compliance with the provisions provided for (by state statute) by eliminating Lyons’ position absent statutory authority, in addition to needless third-party legal expenses burdening the York County taxpayers in furtherance of frivolous procedure by the board of commissioners to terminate Lyons, said actions lacking the weight, character or indicia of actual law.

“The CITFW-Homeland Security Drug Interdiction Task Force and the York County Sheriff’s Department will suffer immediate irreparable injury, loss or damage if the board is permitted to remove Lyons, in the delay or interruption of ongoing law enforcement efforts and federal asset seizures through the task force on which Lyons, in his capacity as York County Attorney, is the legal advisor,” Lyons’ argument included, regarding the damages he felt would be suffered.

Q: Is John Lyons representing himself in this whole thing against the county commissioners while he is working for the county? Or did he employ another attorney to do that work for him?

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A: John Lyons, the York County Attorney, hired his own counsel, which is David A. Lopez from the Husch Blackwell legal firm in Omaha.

Q: Who is representing the county and the county commissioners in this situation involving the county attorney?

A: The county commissioners retained outside counsel, which is the Woods Aitken legal firm.

Q: In a story earlier this week, only certain schools were mentioned as far as how many students were out due to COVID that particular day. Why weren’t the figures provided for the other schools?

A: Regarding that particular story, we accessed that information from the school districts’ dashboards on their websites – some of the area schools are not utilizing dashboards on their websites and are not reporting their COVID case numbers, so that information could not be included.

Q: When is the city finally going to fix the Wal-Mart parking lot?

A: The city is not going to be fixing the Wal-Mart parking lot because that pavement is the responsibility of the Wal-Mart company and the parking lot is private property owned by that company. The parking lot is not publicly-owned property belonging to the city, so it is not the city’s financial responsibility to fix or patch the paving in that parking lot.

Q: How do I know when it’s time to pick my gourds and pumpkins?

A: Most sources say wait until the vines are no longer green and the outer shells are hard. Plus, traditional pumpkins (as an example) are ready to go when they are simply orange.

Q: If someone hunts a bird or an animal (that requires a permit) without a permit, what is the fine?

A: Recent cases of such have resulted in fines of $150 plus court costs.

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