Kinder and Kelly Argue Future of Ozark Riverways

3 years 11 months 2 weeks ago Saturday, May 03 2014 May 3, 2014 Saturday, May 03, 2014 6:44:00 PM CDT May 03, 2014 in News
By: Nick Thompson, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

EMINENCE - Rep. Chris Kelly, D-Columbia, and Republican Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder delivered Saturday on their promise to have a substantive, passionate debate about the future of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways. 

The two politicians first exchanged jabs over Twitter in February when the Missouri House began considering whether it should add money in next year's budget to manage the riverways if the federal government decides to turn the park over to the state. 

At the time, Kelly said Twitter is the "enemy of substance" and asked Kinder to work out a time when the two could have a public discussion.

U.S. Rep. Jason Smith, R-Salem, attended the debate and discussed the issue with constituents. Smith has filed legislation in Congress to transfer the riverways from federal to state control. 

Kinder and Kelly got together as Eminence celebrated its annual Ozark Mountain Festival and debated in a Lincoln-Douglas format. 

The debate comes after the National Park Service (NPS) announced it wants to update its management plan for the park. The park service has several different options and the level of restrictions varies with each option. The planning process has drawn ire from some locals because they are worried about the impact of new regulations on tourism. 

Under a new management plan, the park plans to close certain trails, roads and access points. The park service also plans to place certain restrictions on motorboats. 

Kelly said federal officials have done a good job of balancing the preservation of such a pristine resource with the interests of local businesses trying to profit off of tourism. 

"Without preservation there's no allure," Kelly said. "No reasonable person would argue that the preservation mandate be abolished in favor of unrestrained exploitation." 

Kelly used horse trails as an example and said locals could try to collaborate with NPS on some aspects of a new management plan. 

"If you think there should be 40 miles of equine trails and I think there should be 30 miles of equine trails, there's probably a reasonably good argument for 35 miles of equine trails isn't there?" Kelly said. 

Kinder countered and said the federal government is too distant and does not listen to people who live near the riverways. Kinder said people cannot reason with the federal government as Kelly described. 

"It just doesn't work out that way," Kinder said. "They are not reasonable. They do not listen. They are arrogant, overweening and they're overreaching."

Kinder said Missouri has an excellent conservation department and state parks department that can take on the 80,000 acres associated with the riverways. Kinder said in discussions with the Missouri Department of Conservation, he has learned the department has entered into some management contracts on other federal lands in the state. 

Under the management contracts, the federal government still owns the land, but MDC officials manage it. 

Kinder said management contracts could work with the riverways. The state could designate the areas near the major springs as state parks and could have MDC officials manage the rest of the land and waterways. 

Some conservation groups have argued the riverways would be too big a responsibility for the state. 

Kelly said a riverways transfer could hurt tourism because the riverways would no longer have name recognition as a national park. 

Shannon County resident John Stuart attended the debate and said he feels NPS has tipped the balance toward preservation instead of recreation. Stuart said it is easier to get in touch with state officials and he supports a state takeover. 

The Missouri House included $6 million in its budget for a riverways takeover, but the Senate did not include that money in its plan. The two chambers have to come to a budget agreement before May 9.

Senators passed a resolution to call for a state takeover earlier in the current session. The resolution still needs a vote in the House. 

NPS plans to begin using a new management plan before the end of the year. 

 

 

 

 

 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY – A majority of Republicans passed a tax bill Tuesday night, but it is still drawing some criticism... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 7:21:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
TIPTON – Some Tipton residents spoke out Wednesday against a potential new concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO). Critics say CAFOs... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 7:21:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Pamela Fitzmaurice has a special section in the cookbook her mother passed down to her. That section is... More >>
10 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 6:49:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO - Puerto Rico was left powerless on Wednesday, nearly seven months after the powerful September storm,... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 5:32:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Gov. Eric Greitens filed a restraining order against Attorney General Josh Hawley on Monday over the investigation... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 4:34:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
MOBERLY - Moberly and Westran Public School Districts celebrated their Healthy Schools Healthy Community initiative on Wednesday. The initiative is... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 3:42:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
MEXICO - It might seem strange to sight an ocean bird in Missouri, but seeing the American White Pelican isn't... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 3:41:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman said Wednesday she was never educated on sexual assault and never realized she... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 3:37:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The Missouri Senate's top budgeter is proposing giving public K-12 schools $48 million more next... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 3:12:16 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA – Dry, windy weather is partially to blame for a large grass fire that destroyed a significant portion of... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 2:52:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – More than one thousand t-shirts covered Kuhlman Court on MU's campus on Wednesday. That's one for every... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 2:42:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Passengers at airports across the country are learning firsthand the impact of new security measures the TSA is... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 2:07:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - By the year 2022, Columbia aims to have 25 percent of its energy come from renewable resources. ... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 1:57:00 PM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Law enforcement arrested a former employee at the state capitol on suspicion of sex crimes involving a... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 11:33:00 AM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Authorities say deputies have shot and killed a parole absconder who raised a handgun at them... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 10:22:00 AM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Authorities say a driver fled from officers before causing a fatal crash in Springfield. Police... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 10:15:00 AM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Police are investigating the death of a 32-year-old male early Wednesday morning at a home on Clark Lane.... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, April 18 2018 Apr 18, 2018 Wednesday, April 18, 2018 8:51:00 AM CDT April 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - An examination of the barriers on the 5th and Walnut parking garage Wednesday showed safety barriers on the... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, April 17 2018 Apr 17, 2018 Tuesday, April 17, 2018 11:00:00 PM CDT April 17, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 33°
5am 35°
6am 34°
7am 34°
8am 36°