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There have been surprising few comments received by the NPS on the General Management Plan, only 1,020.  By comparison, there were about 1 Million comments on the proposal to delist Grey Wolves--and that was just from people who were opposed to the proposal.  The Public Meetings have been well attended, about 600 attendees to the Eminence, Salem and Van Buren meetings.

I think it is fair to say that the Park as been managed to provide access, recreation and business opportunities over the mandate to protect the natural resources for future use.  NPS has a dual mandate--essentially access and protection.  After much angst NPS determined that protection trumps access, but the devil has been in the details of implementation.   The residents of the area (or at least some of them) have been remarkably effective in using Congressional support to push their agenda.  Just one short story to illustrate the point.  There were feral horses in the Park.  Superintendent Poe decides that the Park should not support feral animals.  He decided to kill the horses.  Predictably there is a huge local outcry (because feral horses have better PR agents and lobbyists than do feral pigs--joking--sort of)  The result is the Bill Emerson got an amendment passed that changed the enabling legislation to specifically protect the feral horses.  

Without a clear showing of support from the public to protect the resource, even at the expense of access and business interests, the Park's management is unlikely to take dramatic steps, and if history is any guide, any steps to protect the resources from the damage caused by unlimited access.

The upshot of all this is--here is your chance to strike a blow for whatever cause you want to support.

Luann
 
On Jan 21, 2014, at 10:02 PM, June Newman <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> A draft for a new General Management Plan has been prepared for the Ozark National Scenic Riverways and is available for public comment through February 7, 2014.
> 
> The current governing plan was drafted in 1981 and is due for an update which will guide management decisions for many years in Missouri's largest national park which includes the Current and Jacks Fork rivers.     Also under consideration are proposals to designate wilderness areas in Big Springs.  The plan matters.  It is not just abstract words on paper.    
> 
> Search for position statements and discussions from organizations and groups you know.  These search terms, gmp draft proposal ozark national scenic riverways, returned many pages of passionate advocacy for one plan or another.   Inform yourself.  
> 
> You may read the draft document and submit your comments online:  http://www.parkplanning.nps.gov/document.cfm?parkID=158&projectID=15793&documentID=56208 
> or in writing to: Superintendent, Ozark National Scenic Riverways, P.O. Box 490, Van Buren, MO 63965 . 
> 
> If you are able to attend a meeting with National Park Service representatives in Kirkwood tomorrow night, comments will be heard there.  
> 
> Wednesday, January 22nd
> ONSR GMP Meeting, 6-8 p.m.
> Big Springs Wilderness Hearing, 8-9 p.m.
> Powder Valley Nature Center, 6 p.m.
> 11715 Cragwold Rd., Kirkwood, MO 63122
> 
> 
> June Newman
> Carrollton, MO
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