(1) The Nebraska Sesquicentennial Commission shall develop programs and plans for official observance of the one hundred fiftieth anniversary of Nebraska statehood in 2017. The commission shall work closely with various state agencies, boards, commissions, and political subdivisions, including the State Department of Education, the Department of Transportation, the Nebraska State Historical Society, the Nebraska State Fair Board, the Game and Parks Commission, and the Nebraska Tourism Commission, to execute commemorative events and to implement educational activities with emphasis on events and activities that promote Nebraska and its economy by focusing on the state's history, cultural diversity, and unique geography. The commission may also seek the guidance and support of any other groups or organizations the commission deems necessary or helpful in fulfilling its purpose.
(2) The commission may employ personnel, contract for services, and receive, expend, and allocate gifts, grants, and donations to aid in the performance of its duties. The commission is empowered to expend and allocate any appropriations authorized by the Legislature to carry out the purposes of sections 81-8,309 and 81-8,310.
(3) The commission shall expend and allocate at least five percent of the money in the Nebraska 150 Sesquicentennial Plate Proceeds Fund on January 1, 2017, for awarding one or more grants to any person who applies to the commission for support for a local sesquicentennial event or project according to standards and guidelines determined by the commission.
(4) The commission shall report electronically to the Legislature on or before July 1 in 2016, 2017, and 2018 detailing the expenditures made from the fund pursuant to this section.