New DHM to take effect May 4; May 10 Senior Cruise approved

Julie Rach

New directed health measures will be in place next week in 59 Nebraska counties, including the five that are part of the Southeast District Health Department.

On Friday, April 24, Gov. Pete Ricketts announced that revised DHMs would be in place from May 4 through May 31 for much of Nebraska.

The revised DHMs provide guidance for places of worship, restaurants, salons and other personal-care-service providers, and childcare facilities.

On Monday, April 27, the Nebraska City Board of Health revised the city’s DHM to fall in line with the revisions that will be put in place by the state.

The city’s current DHM is now set to expire at 11:59 p.m. Sunday, May 3. It will be replaced by the DHM?for those counties (Otoe, Nemaha, Pawnee, Richardson, and Johnson) that are overseen by the Southeast District Health Department.

Testing is set to increase in the coming weeks, said Nebraska City Mayor Bryan Bequette, who noted that Otoe County citizens can sign up at and answer a few screening questions to determine their need to be tested for COVID-19.

A special meeting of the Nebraska City City Council followed the Board of Health meeting.

During that meeting, Nebraska City High School Principal Brian Hoover asked the council’s permission to have the senior class cruise a mapped route through the city beginning at 1 p.m. Sunday, May 10, at the high school, 141 Steinhart Park Rd.

Hoover said that, while plans continue for an in-person ceremony later in the summer, he and the rest of the NCHS?staff didn’t “want to leave a void on May 10,”?the Class of 2020’s scheduled graduation day.

The cruise will proceed north from the high school to 2nd Avenue, where it will turn east to 16th Street, then north to Frontage Road.

The cruise will follow Frontage Road west to North 19th, across Business 75 to 14th Avenue, past the NCPS?District Office and Northside Elementary.

Cruisers will head north on 11th Street, then south on 10th Street to 1st Avenue.

They will  then head east on 1st Avenue to 6th Street, then south on 6th Street to 1st Corso, west on 1st Corso and past Nebraska City Middle School to 16th Street.

The cruise route will then pass Hayward Elementary, then head north to Central Avenue and west on Central Avenue past the Pioneer Academy back to the high school.

Hoover said for those Nebraska City residents who can’t stand on their porches and wave to the cruisers, they could line up in front of one of the community schools to recognize the graduates as they drove by.

Both Hoover and Bequette emphasized the need for spectators to practice social distancing along the cruise route.

Hoover estimated the cruise would take about 35 minutes to complete.

Bequette made a motion to “support Mr. Hoover and the Class of 2020 Pioneers” to conclude the discussion.

The Nebraska City Board of Health will meet at 5 p.m. Monday, May 4, via the Zoom platform.

A regular Nebraska City City Council meeting will follow at 6 p.m., also on the Zoom platform.