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Nebraska Counties Explorer

Pawnee County

Communities and Development

Pawnee County Seat: Pawnee City

Total County Population (2020): 2,544

  • Cities (pop. & class): Pawnee City (865 • 2nd Class)
  • Villages (pop.): Burchard (76), DuBois (122), Lewiston (55), Steinauer (59), Table Rock (233)
  • Unincorporated Pop. (% of county pop.): 1,134 (45%)

Land Development (2022) (% of total land in county):

  • Agriculture: 86%
    • By method: Dryland (row crop/grain/forage) (50%); Pasture (pure grassland) (35%); Irrigated (row crop/grain/forage) (1%) • Neb. Dept. of Rev. - total equals agriculture's %
    • By commodity: Livestock (grassland) 30%, Soybeans 26%, Corn 24%, Other Hay 2%, Alfalfa 1% • USDA - equals agriculture's % minus public grassland/wetlands and reserve
  • Residential, Commercial, Industrial, Conservation Reserve & Exempt (combined): 9%
  • Timber: 5%

County Offices

Courthouse Address and Hours:

625 6th Street
Pawnee City, Nebraska 68420
M-F 8:00 am - 12:30 pm; 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

County Board Chairperson: Ronald Seitz

Complete list of county board members

County Board Meetings: Every other Tuesday

View the County's Government Maps

Visit the County Fairgrounds

NACO District: Southeast

President: Misty Ahmic, Seward County Commissioner

Vice President: Patty McEvoy, Saunders County Clerk of the District Court

Secretary/Treasurer: Amber Mulberry, Saline County Clerk of the District Court

NACO Board Representative: Mark Schoenrock, Jefferson County Commissioner


Population: 2,548
Land area (sq. mi.): 431.08
Population per square mile: 5.9


White: 96.1%
African American: 0.2%
American Indian: 0.3%
Asian: 0.0%
Hispanic: 1.5%
Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander: 0.0%
Two or More Races: 1.7%


0-17: 22.6%
18-64: 49.2%
65+: 28.3%


Personal income per capita: $58,774
% of Population in Poverty: 12.7%
# of Housing Units: 1,402
Owner-occupied rate: 80.8%
Median home price: $84,330


Access to broadband (100 Mbps via fiber or cable modem): 71.9%

Sources: National Association of RealtorsNebraska Library Commission, U.S. Bureau of Economic AnalysisU.S. Census Bureau

Employment, Schools, and Child Care

Unemployment rate: 1.8% (as of September 2022)

County Employment Website:

High school graduate or higher: 83.8%

School Districts: Humboldt Table Rock Steinauer, Johnson-Brock Public Schools, Johnson County Central Public Schools, Lewiston Consolidated Schools, Pawnee City Public Schools, Southern School District 1

Bachelor's degree or higher: 15.6%

Community College Service Area: Southeast Community College

Countywide child care capacity: 2 providers; 51 children

Find child care: For a list of child care providers in your zip code, visit Nebraska DHHS or the Nebraska Resource and Referral System.

Pawnee County Economy

Annual Gross Domestic Product (2020): $123,470,000

Cattle Producers: 189

  • Pastureland Cash Rent (avg.): $49/acre

Crop Producers: 18

  • Dryland Cash Rent (avg.): $142/acre

Grain Co-ops and Purchasers: Ag Partners, Farmers Union Coop

Local Grain Market: Click for today's grain prices in Pawnee County

Electricity Providers: Nebraska PPD, Omaha PPD

Rail-served Communities: Pawnee City, Table Rock

Well Locations (Irrigation/Livestock), Soils, Groundwater & Surface Water

Total Irrigation/Livestock Wells: 22

Surface Water Diversions (Irrigation): 127

Sources: National Agricultural Statistics Service (USDA), Nebraska Cooperative Council, Nebraska Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary EducationNebraska Department of TransportationNebraska Office of the CIO, Nebraska Power Review Board, U.S. Bureau of Economic AnalysisU.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census Bureau

2022 Levies and Valuation

County levy rate: $0.2908 per $100 of taxable valuation

County property taxes levied: $2,369,468

Total local government property taxes levied: $10,604,314

Total countywide taxable valuation: $814,845,254

Click here for all levy rates in Pawnee County

County Levy and Taxation Laws

Levy limits

Since 1996, counties and other political subdivisions have been subject to the levy limits listed in Neb. Rev. Stat. § 77-3442 and Neb. Rev. Stat. § 77-3443.

Statutes and regulations

Nebraska Revised Statutes (Chapter 77)

Nebraska Administrative Code (Title 350)

Local tax reductions, exemptions, and credits

Neb. Rev. Stat. § 76-902(5)(a) (Deed "stamp tax" exemption): "The [stamp tax] shall not apply to: ... (5)(a) Deeds between spouses, between ex-spouses for the purpose of conveying any rights to property acquired or held during the marriage, or between parent and child, without actual consideration therefor."

Neb. Rev. Stat. § 77-201(2) (Valuation of agricultural land and horticultural land): "Agricultural land and horticultural land as defined in section 77-1359 shall constitute a separate and distinct class of property for purposes of property taxation, shall be subject to taxation, unless expressly exempt from taxation, and shall be valued at seventy-five percent of its actual value, except that for school district taxes levied to pay the principal and interest on bonds that are approved by a vote of the people on or after January 1, 2022, such land shall be valued at fifty percent of its actual value."

Neb. Rev. Stat. § 77-6703(1) (Tax credit for school district taxes paid): "(1) For taxable years beginning or deemed to begin on or after January 1, 2020, under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, there shall be allowed to each eligible taxpayer a refundable credit against the income tax imposed by the Nebraska Revenue Act of 1967 or against the franchise tax imposed by sections 77-3801 to 77-3807. The credit shall be equal to the credit percentage for the taxable year, as set by the department under subsection (2) of this section, multiplied by the amount of school district taxes paid by the eligible taxpayer during such taxable year."

Sources: Nebraska Department of Revenue

State Senator: Julie Slama (District 1)

Standing Committees (click for scheduled committee hearings): 

Select Committees:

  • Reference

Special Committees: 

  • Executive Board of the Legislative Council

Map and statistics for Legislative District 1

Map of all districts in the Nebraska Unicameral Legislature

Pawnee County History

Number of Registered Historic Places: 14

Year Authorized: 1854

Year Organized: 1854

Etymology: Pawnee Native American tribe

As one would conclude, Pawnee County and the county seat of Pawnee City were both named after the Pawnee Indians who inhabited the area. According to history, Turkey Creek, near where Pawnee City is located, was a popular campsite for the tribe.

The county boundaries were defined by the Legislature in 1855, redefined the following year, and reapproved in 1862. The first election was held in 1856 and it was decided that Pawnee City would serve as the seat of the government. The decision was made to build a courthouse, but due to continuous delays and a lack of funds, the two-story structure was never completed. Deteriorated to the point where it could not be repaired, the building was eventually leveled by strong winds in 1860.

Nine years later, efforts were renewed to build a permanent structure and a two-story limestone building was completed at a cost of just over $15,000. Despite some remodeling and renovation projects, the courthouse proved to be too small. In 1911, $85,000 in bonds were approved for the construction of the present courthouse. Once again made of limestone and brick, the building features a decorative relief sculpture over the building's main entrance.

The earliest settlers of record to make a claim in this area were from Ohio. When they found no land available in Missouri, Christian Bobst, Robert Turner, Jacob Adams and Robert Archer crossed over into the Nebraska Territory and settled along the south forth of the Nemaha River, located in the far southeast corner of the county. The four settlers named the area Cincinnati, in honor of the city in their native Ohio. The area, however, would never progress to their expectations and eventually ceased to exist as a settlement.

In more modern times, the advancement of farming throughout the area and the coming of the rail lines helped Pawnee County established itself. Today, the rolling green prairie that greeted the first settlers has given way to prosperous family farming operations.

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Local Highlights

License Plate Number: 54

Time Zone: Central

Number of Veterans: 174

Zoned County: Yes

County Hospital: Pawnee County Memorial Hospital

Number of County-Owned Bridges: 170

Number of County-Owned Dams: 2

Election Data

General Election Turnout (2022): 60.42%

Total Registered Voters (2020): 1,888

Number of Precincts (2020): 5

Number of Election Day Polling Places (2020): 5

Land Area per Polling Place (avg.) (2020): 86.22 sq. miles

Intergovernmental Data

Emergency Mgt. Planning, Exercise and Training (PET) Region: Southeast

Natural Resource Districts: Lower Big Blue NRD, Nemaha NRD

State Lands (acres): Bowwood WMA (320), Burchard WMA (560), Iron Horse Trail WMA (19), Lores Branch WMA (130.16), Mayberry WMA (176.69), Pawnee Prairie WMA (1,140), Prairie Knoll WMA (120), Table Rock WMA (415.19), Taylor's Branch WMA (240)

Sources: Nebraska Department of Transportation, Nebraska Emergency Management AgencyNebraska Game & Parks CommissionNebraska LegislatureNebraska Office of the CIONebraska Secretary of StateU.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (eCFR)