Skip to main content

Nebraska Counties Explorer

Pierce County

Communities and Development

Pierce County Seat: Pierce

Total County Population (2020): 7,317

  • Cities (pop. & class): Osmond (794 • 2nd Class), Pierce (1,845 • 2nd Class), Plainview (1,282 • 2nd Class)
  • Villages (pop.): Foster (42), Hadar (280), McLean (33)
  • Unincorporated Pop. (% of county pop.): 3,041 (42%)

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

  • Agriculture: 89.5%
    • By method: Irrigated (row crop/grain/forage) (42%); Dryland (row crop/grain/forage) (32%); Pasture (pure grassland) (15.5%) • Neb. Dept. of Rev. - total equals agriculture's %
    • By commodity: Corn 41%, Soybeans 29%, Livestock (grassland) 17%, Alfalfa 3%, Other Hay 1% • USDA - equals agriculture's % plus some wetlands (1%) and minus public grassland/wetlands and reserve
  • Residential, Commercial, Industrial, Conservation Reserve & Exempt (combined): 9.5%
  • Timber: 1%

County Offices

Courthouse Address and Hours:

111 West Court Street
Pierce, Nebraska 68767
M-F 8:30 am - 4:30 pm

County Board Chairperson: Tom Kuether

Complete list of county board members

County Board Meetings: Monday (Bi-weekly)

View the County's Government Maps

Visit the County Fairgrounds

NACO District: Northeast

President: Lisa Lunz, Dixon County Supervisor 

Vice President: Sandy Zoubek, Stanton County Treasurer

Secretary: Katie Hart, Burt County Assessor

Treasurer: Krista Nix, Knox County Deputy Clerk 

NACO Board Representative: Bill Tielke, Holt County Supervisor 

Click for a live look at Pierce County (US Hwy 81 & US Hwy 20)


Population: 7,317
Land area (sq. mi.): 573.25
Population per square mile: 12.8

Race and Age


White: 95.0%
African American: 0.4%
American Indian: 0.2%
Asian: 0.2%
Hispanic: 1.9%
Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander: 0.0%
Two or More Races: 2.1%


0-17: 25.7%
18-64: 54.4%
65+: 19.9%


Personal income per capita: $68,647
% of Population in Poverty: 8.2%
# of Housing Units: 3,118
Owner-occupied rate: 80.7%
Median home price: $158,860


Access to broadband (100 Mbps via fiber or cable modem): 70.6%

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

Employment, Schools, and Child Care

Unemployment rate: 1.6% (as of September 2022)

County Employment Website:

High school graduate or higher: 94.8%

School Districts: Battle Creek Public Schools, Elkhorn Valley Schools, Neligh-Oakdale Public Schools, Norfolk Public Schools, Pierce Public Schools, Plainview Public Schools, Randolph Public Schools, Wausa Public Schools

Bachelor's degree or higher: 24.5%

Community College Service Area: Northeast Community College

Countywide child care capacity: 24 providers; 308 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.

Pierce County Economy

Annual Gross Domestic Product (2020): $347,491,000

Cattle Producers: 260

  • Pastureland Cash Rent (avg.): $67/acre

Crop Producers: 251

  • Dryland Cash Rent (avg.): $185/acre
  • Irrigated Land Cash Rent (avg.): $267/acre

Dairy Producers: 1

Grain Co-ops and Purchasers: Farmers Pride, Husker Ag

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

Farmers Market: 

  • Pierce Farmers Market (June - October, Fridays 5:00 p.m. - sellout)
  • Plainview Farmers Market (June - October, Wednesdays 9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.)

Electricity Providers: Cedar-Knox PPD, City of Pierce, City of Randolph, Elkhorn Rural PPD, Nebraska PPD, North Central PPD, Northeast Power

Rail-served Communities: McLean, Osmond, Plainview

2022 Levies and Valuation

County levy rate: $0.2147 per $100 of taxable valuation

County property taxes levied: $4,335,774

Total local government property taxes levied: $25,756,253

Total countywide taxable valuation: $2,019,143,709

Click here for all levy rates in Pierce 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

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

Total Irrigation/Livestock Wells: 1,504

Surface Water Diversions (Irrigation): 44

Click for real time:

Streamflow data on the North Fork of the Elkhorn River near Pierce

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

State Senator: Rob Dover (District 19)
Committees: Appropriations, Statewide Tourism And Recreational Water Access and Resource Sustainability (LB406)

Map and statistics for Legislative District 19

State Senator: Barry DeKay (District 40)
Committees: Judiciary, Transportation and Telecommunications, State-Tribal Relations, Justice Reinvestment Oversight (LB605), Statewide Tourism And Recreational Water Access and Resource Sustainability (LB406)

Map and statistics for Legislative District 40

Map of all districts in the Nebraska Unicameral Legislature

Pierce County History

Number of Registered Historic Places: 5

Year Authorized: 1859

Year Organized: 1859

Etymology: Franklin Pierce (14th U.S. president)

Pierce County was created in 1859 through an act of the Territorial Legislature. It was named in honor of Franklin Pierce, the 14th president of the United States.

The Ponca Indians, who lived along the Niobrara River, once used this area as a hunting and fishing ground. The Poncas were a friendly tribe and coexisted well with the first white settlers. But in 1876 the federal government ordered the Poncas to relocate to Oklahoma. White settlers would later tell of the Poncas' tearful departure when they bid them farewell. Some years later, after becoming disheartened with Oklahoma, some of the Poncas would return to Nebraska and the Niobrara River. En route, they passed through Pierce County and called on the white settlers.

The settlement of Willow Creek, the forerunner to Pierce, was established in 1870. The first house was a slab and sod structure that would serve as a post office, hotel and courthouse. When the county's first election was held on July 26 of that year, this settlement would be designated as the county seat and the name changed to Pierce.

Pierce County residents immediately began building a courthouse. Using tax dollars that had been collected, the county built a large, two-story frame building for a cost of $4,000. In 1890 a brick courthouse and jail costing $25,000 replaced the original structure. This building would serve the county until the 1970s, when it became obvious to local residents that a larger, more modern courthouse was needed.

Construction on the present courthouse began in 1974. The first wing, built directly west of the 1890 courthouse, was occupied a year later. In 1977 the original courthouse was demolished and construction began on the second wing, which would complete the courthouse two years later.

The entire cost of the new courthouse was financed and paid for through revenue sharing funds and courthouse and jail sinking funds. Upon completion, the courthouse was completely paid for without new local taxation.

Highlight an important program in your county in this space! Send an email to:

Local Highlights

License Plate Number: 40

Time Zone: Central

Number of Veterans: 460

Zoned County: Yes

Number of County-Owned Bridges: 139

Election Data

Voter Turnout (2022): 59.16%

Number of Registered Voters (2020): 5,019

Number of Precincts (2020): 5

Number of Election Day Polling Places (2020): 4

Land Area per Polling Place (avg.) (2020): 143.31 sq. miles

Intergovernmental Data

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

Natural Resource District: Lower Elkhorn NRD

State Lands (acres): Willow Creek SRA (1,650)

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)