Of Interest from Voice of the Ozarks Organization
Voice of the Ozarks Press Release 1/15/2010
Workshop to be included in General Management Plan
Voice of the Ozarks is an organization which seeks to protect the rights of people to access, to use, and to be involved in the management of public lands in South Central Missouri. As you may know, we have most recently been working to protect your rights as they are concerned in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways. There are armchair environmentalist groups which seek to take away our culture, heritage, and livelihood, allowing them to control our beautiful lands. The general management plan for lands managed by the National Park Service periodically review the plan which gives them guidance for how to manage the resources of which they are placed in-charge. Presently the General Management Plan for the Jacks Fork and Current Rivers management is being reviewed, revised, and drafted from public comment.
Many people throughout south central Missouri worked very hard to express their opinions that the management of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways should not further limit recreational activities on the Jacks Fork and Current Rivers and that these activities do not harm the water, land, plants and animals in this area. Here are records from the Park Service for how many comments they have received and tallied and are in the process of understanding.
Comment Forms–2,896 (57%)
Form Letters–778 (15%)
Individual Letters–359 (8%)
In a recent press-release National Park Service employee Dena Matteson gave the following information on how to access the public comments online:
‘Several documents have been developed that summarize the publiccomments received to date. To access the PEPC website in order to review these documents visit: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/ Select Ozark NSR from the dropdown menu, then “General Management Plan” from the list of current
projects, and then “Document List”.’
In the opinion of the Voice of the Ozarks organization, we believe the workshop the Park Service plans to have, although other parks have this process, is unfair and is being used to get around the public comment received from southern Missouri. This workshop on February 24 & 25, 2010 is being held in Rolla where access (roads, trails) and riverway watercrafts (canoes, boats) will be discussed to a further extent for clarification of how to best manage these activities.
We will have representatives from our organization and representatives from various local organizations, however the Park Service is looking to limit those who attend this meeting in order to keep a fairly balanced number to appease such environmental organizations as the Leo A. Drey Foundation, Missouri Coalition for the Environment, the Sierra Club, and the Friends of the Ozark Riverways. We believe that people representing any organization from this area should be invited for a formal discussion on how to best manage this resource with commentary from the people who best know how to manage the Jacks Fork and Current Rivers: the locals and those who agree that we should take care of the resource, but also be allowed to use the land.
Other groups that wish to limit recreation on the riverways are continually seeking to take away your rights to your public lands and waterways, your rights to be involved in public land management, and would eventually seek to limit the economy. Their propaganda is they try to protect this land because we do not know how to, when in fact, the riverways was established here because we have taken very good care of these resources.
To show you just how unfairly stacked this invitation list for the workshop is, please review the invite list and notice the organizations represented which seek to limit your rights, culture, heritage, and economy outnumber the list of groups which seek to help preserve your rights to use and access the Ozark National Scenic Riverways(list is in same order as invitation letter from workshop facilitator Mary Orton):
Tom Bedell, park concessioner
Denny Bopp, Wonders of Wildlife
John Mark Brewer, Voice of the Ozarks
Bill Bryan, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, State Parks
Carol Chrisco, Eminence Chamber of Commerce
Floyd Clark, Jacks Fork Watershed Committee
Trisha Crabill, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Mike Cullen, Camp Zoe
Wanda Cumins, Van Buren Chamber of Commerce
Carolyn Dyer, horse trail riders/operators
Susan Flader, Missouri Parks Association
Kally Higgins, non-motorized river use
R. Scott House or Michael Sutton, Cave Research Foundation
Brett Howell, horse trail riders/operators
Greg Iffrig, L-A-D Foundation, Leo A. Drey Pioneer Forest
Angel Kruzen, The Sierra Club
Jeff Lindsey, Van Buren School
Kathleen “Kat” Logan Smith, Missouri Coalition for the Environment
Steve Mahfood, The Nature Conservancy
Dave Martin, motorboat interests
Troy McAfee, hunting interests
Lynn McClure, National Parks and Conservation Association
Phillip Moss, scenic easement holder
Allison Schottenhaml, Missouri Show Me Backcountry Horsemen
Michael Smith, Missouri Department of Conservation
Stacy Smith, Eminence School
Robert Stout, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Water Quality
Jerry Sugerman, Friends of Ozark Riverways
Shane Van Steenis, park concessioners
Ray Walden, Ozark Natural and Cultural Resource Center
Doug Warren, Current River Smallmouth Association (memorandum transmitted via U.S. Mail or facsimile)
Laura Watts, U.S.D.A. Forest Service, Mark Twain National ForestPlease contact Reed Detring at 573-323-4236 to express your opinion on this matter.
Please contact workshop host Mary Orton for more information: 702.914-8066.
To get information on contacting your elected officials and to join our organization, please visit: www.votozarks.org. If you have information on organizations you would like represented at the workshop, please visit the ‘contact us’ page on our website.