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Sen. Gragert will not seek another term in office

LINCOLN — Nebraska Dist. 40 Sen. Tim Gragert announced he will not seek a second term in the Legislature in 2022.

He said the decision not to run again came about within the last month as his wife, Donn retires.

“The stars weren’t lining up for me to do another term,” Gragert said from his office Monday morning.

He said they are looking forward to spendi more time with their three grown children and five grandchildren. He will turn 63 next mont

As of Tuesday, at least two candidates had already filed for the seat. Barry DeKay, Niobra and Keith Kube, Crofton, both announced their intentions to seek the four-year term in the Legislature.

Gragert spent 40 years in the military, serving in the U.S. Air Force, Nebraska Air National Guard and the Nebraska Army Nationa Guard, until his retirement in 2017.

He also worked for the Natural Resources Conservation Service under the United States Department of Agriculture until he retired, also in 2017.

Gragert was elected to the Legislature in 2018. After winning the primary election in a crowded field of six candidates, Gragert went on to win the general election and has represented Legislative District 40 since being sworn into office in January 2019.

He plans to make an endorsement announcement for his position in the coming weeks.

“Our form of government here in Nebraska is very good and has a lot of potential,” he said. “We have the opportunity here in Lincoln to get a lot of things done, in my mind, as long as we don’t worry about who gets the credit for it. It’s been a very interesting time for me, serving in the Legislature and was an honor for me. I’ve really seen a lot of things that go on in Nebraska that I wouldn’t have seen if I hadn’t been a state senator.”

Serving in the Legislature, Gragert has been an advocate for pro-life, water quality, veterans, agriculture, broadband to better serve the northern counties of Nebraska, and property tax relief.

“I was able to get a bill through for disabled veterans to enjoy our state parks for free,” he noted as one of his top achievements.

He said he’s also proud of his part in providing property tax relief with more than $2 billion in relief in the last 10 years, as well as his work in soil and water conservation measures.

When elected, District 40 included Boyd, Cedar, Dixon, Holt, Knox and Rock counties in northern Nebraska. After redistricting in 2021, the district now encompasses Antelope, Cedar, Dixon, Holt, Knox and northern Pierce counties.