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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation

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chisos_muse

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« on: March 09, 2006, 07:39:03 AM »
Do we get a trip report on dat Sir Shane? :D

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Offline Don H

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2006, 11:37:08 AM »
Muse, looks like you're eatin Cheerios on this one.
"Rugged isolation in a Jeep with the top down, doors off, sweaty, dusty, listening to your flavor of tunes, immersed in the most beautiful and beguiling desert mountains in all of the Southwest, the Sierra Quemada. Nothing short of spiritual cleansing. " D. Locke

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chisos_muse

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2006, 01:04:31 PM »
Quote from: "Don H"
Muse, looks like you're eatin Cheerios on this one.

Not anymore Don! :wink:

Shane's got pryorriteez at da workplace I'm thinkin...and he's been tired lately  :(

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SHANEA

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OK HERE IT IS, BUT IT IS VERY LONG!!!!
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2006, 08:17:23 PM »
Sorry it's so long.  It's something I'm passionate about, concerned about, and I can type almost as fast as I think.  :lol:

Tried an experiment on this presentation as a "dual purpose" by covering two topics simultaneously.  Topics covered were the funding crisis within TPWD and it's impact on BBRSP and also an introduction "primer" on exploring BBRSP.  Title of the presentation was "Self Actualization @ BBRSP" and made the hypothisis that self actulaization can be reached here.   Had about 20 people or so that showed up for the meeting, not bad for an election night.  The two "primary" members of the local Piney Woods chapter were out of town and they always bring a lot of people with them.  Meeting report - lots of good things going on around here and there is no excuse for being bored.  Someone is leading a day hike in the Davy National Crockett Forest this weekend, others are working on rebuilding the trails between the lakes (Rayburn & Toledo Bend) that was devestated by the hurricane.  There are a lot of plant workshops going on.  (They had some fancy name for it, but I don't recall - a tree is a tree).  What kind of rock is that, it's a rock.  Anyway, Presentation was on PowerPoint slides - 45 slides and the talk lasted just short of one hour, but I could still be going on two days later.  There was one person that had been to BBRSP before.  A lot of people made the common misconception that BBRSP is actually BBNP and that they are one in the same.  Caught up with one of my professors from undergrad days who was my Alegbra prof.  He had a lot of questions on being able to fly in to the area with his private plane.   BBRSP does maintain a good quality concrete/black top runway.  I talked about how BBRSP is limited on the presentations and tours that they can present due to a lack of funding.  Safety of the quests and staff is number 1.  BBRSP only has a staff of seven at the ranch complex and they do not have the manpower to mount search and rescue missions, etc. when hikers wander off the trails or drive down gated roads.  Some of the future goals for BBRSP is to open up a new hiking trail between the OSO loop area and the Rancheros Trail loop.  Additionally, they would like to be able to open more of the back country roads to vehicle traffic.  But, funding is a major issue.  The park has not experienced any reductions in force, but three employees recently quit and their postions were not back filled.    I also talked about the Chinanti area over by Candelaria and Ruidoso that the state owns, but it is a land locked and TPWD is working on getting public access.  Right now, there is no public access to the area.  It turns out that the Chinanti area actually crosses part of the Palo Pinto canyon and road and also includes the profile of Lincoln that you will see when going down the road between Marfa and Presidio.    

Number wise, the FY200 budget for BBRSP was a paltry $140,000 for infrastructure mainteance (there's over 300,000 acres out there), $560,000 budget with employees.  Income in 2005 was $290,000 so it is running a deficit.   Visitations are down.  1995 it was 10,800 and in 2005 it was 9,100 (this is the main ranch complex).   BBRSP is composed of the Warnock center, the ranch complex, Fort Leaton, river access, and Chinanti.  

A new public access plan is being developed for BBRSP as the old one has expired.  I have offered my assistance in developing and formulating this plan.  

Guided tours are a big draw to the area and include trips to the interior of the park to see the majestic canyons, the Madrid Falls, Fresno Canyon, horse back riding to pictographs, photography workshops, cattle drive/round up, etc.  BBRSP would like to be able to offer more of these types of activities.  Fly-In's have recently become popular - where owners of private planes fly in as a group and enjoy the area.  The last group that flew in was from MN - BobCat territory.

I did good coverage with the controversey of Poindexter, where is my job offer, and his attempt to purchase a large piece of BBRSP.   I indicated in my opinon, that it is dangerous for TPWD to start selling off ANY state park land in large quantities as it sets a dangerous precident (paralawyer talk there).   The land in question was going to be sold for a paltry $43 per acre.   Fortunately, with active support from the Sierra Club and other groups, the sale was thrawrted.

I also touched on Lajitas and how precious water is being "wasted" on keeping the golf course green.  

I closed up with talking about how water is the most precious resource in the desert and it is essential if you are to visit this area to carry more than enough water "Many a person has gone to meet their maker by not having enough water".  Also, "This Area Will Kill Those That are not prepared.  Just about every plant will stick you and many of the animals will either sting you, bite you, or eat you".  This is NOT a place to bring fluffy the dog along.  

I did show a great picture of a Collared Peccary.

IF you want a copy of the powerpoint slide show in all it's glory, then send me a PM and I'll send you a copy of it, free of charge.

ALSO, there is a supreme important meeting in Houston @ UofH Downtown on Friday April 7th that is set to discuss with various agencies and represenatives, the people you elect, on getting permanent funding for TPWD - instead of being at the mercy of the budget process every year.  Something tied to something, SOME NEW TAX OR FEE, that will go directly to TPWD coffers - dedicated funds.

Someone at the meeting mentioned that a friend of theirs works for TPWD and if they have some "special event" that brings in extra money, then their budget is reduced by that amount.  Whether or not this is true, I do not know.  Take it for what it is worth.  

Many thanks to  the Head TPWD Honcho who has been with TPWD for 30+ years and has been at BBRSP since it's inception - Luis Armendariz.

The following is a resolution that has been passed by the Sierra Club chapter out of Houston.
Resolution on Texas State Parks

Whereas

1.   Approximately 94% of the land of Texas is privately owned and Texas has only 601,558 acres of state of parks or about one-fortieth acre per person AND less than eight tenths of one percent of Texas is encompassed by state parks and wildlife management areas, and
2.   The greater than 10 million annual visitors to Texas state parks help generate an estimated total economic activity of $448 million in direct expenditures, $863 million in sales impact, $496 million in resident Texans’ income, and 12, 086 jobs in communities across Texas, and
3.   The people of Texas desire and deserve an adequate and adequately funded state park system, and
4.   The chronic underfunding of Texas state parks has culminated in a reduction in hours of operation at state parks across Texas, the transfer of some parks out of the state park system, and the elimination of 73 needed field positions in the Parks Division of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department.

Therefore

1.   The current state of decline cannot continue to be tolerated if we wish to have a legacy of a thriving state park system, and
2.   The State of Texas must provide adequate sources of secure and dedicated funding to for maintenance the present park system, and
3.   The State of Texas must provide adequate funds for capital improvements and expansion of the current park system, and
4.   The State of Texas should explore a diversity of funding options of the Texas state park system, and
5.   The State of Texas must do this without imposing undue burdens on the people of the State of Texas, by which is meant that fees for use of State parks must remain affordable so that all people are able to enjoy Texas state parks.

Supporting Information:
A.   Texas Parks & Wildlife Department owns and manages a total of about 1.35 million acres in parks and wildlife management areas, equaling less than eight tenths of one percent of the state.
B.   The operating budget for Texas parks has declined from $50.2 million in FY 2002 to $49.5 million in FY 2006, while the park operating expenses have increased approximately $7 million from FY 2002 to FY 2005, thus providing a completely inadequate amount of funding for maintaining state parks.
C.   During a study period from 1990 to 2002, Texas expenditures per capita on state parks averaged $2.43, but the 50-state average was $10.67, this ranking Texas 49th in per capita spending for parkland.



This is the registration information for the April 7th meeting.  BE THERE!

Concerned Public to the Rescue of Texas State Parks
Register for April 7th Texas State Parks Funding Forum

On Friday, April 7, 2006, the Houston Regional Group/Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club and the Texas Coalition for Conservation in cooperation with the University of Houston-Downtown are co-hosting a forum on the issue of chronic underfunding of the Texas state parks and possible long-term funding options.  Its purpose is to give people the information they need to be effective advocates for our state park system.
In addition to explaining the current financial and political situation facing the Texas state parks, the forum will go beyond the Texas experience.  The state park systems of Arkansas and Florida went through tough times, just as in Texas.  Speakers from Arkansas and Florida will tell us how they solved their funding problems and how they gained the support of their state officials and voters to implement long-term funding solutions.  
The forum begins at 8:45 AM at the Wilhemina Cullen Robertson Auditorium and ends at 3:45 PM.  Registration check-in will begin at 8:00 AM.  The cost of the forum is $28 and includes continental breakfast, lunch, and snack and an information book.  People can continue the conversation at a reception after the forum.  
Our confirmed speakers and topics include:
Joe Turner, Director, Houston Parks & Recreation Department
Welcome & Opening Remarks:  
  Why a City Parks Director Cares About State Park Funding
Dr. John Crompton,  Distinguished Professor of  Recreation, Park and Tourism
      Sciences, Texas A & M University
Economic Contributions of State Parks
Walter D. Dabney, State Parks Director, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department
The State of the Texas State Parks
Todd Kercheval, Chief of Staff, House Committee on Culture, Recreation, & Tourism,
      State Representative Harvey Hilderbran (Chairman)
What the Texas Legislature Can Do
Richard Davies, Executive Director of the Arkansas Department of Parks & Tourism
The Arkansas Turnaround
Steve Dana, Budget Manager, Division of Recreation & Parks,
      Florida Department of Environmental Protection
The Forever Florida Solution
George Bristol, President, Texas Coalition for Conservation
State Funding of Parks
Ken Kramer, Director of the Lone Star Chapter Sierra Club
Panelist
There will be two panel discussions:  
The Pros & Cons of the Arkansas & Florida Solutions in Texas and
Telling the Parks Funding Story to the People & the Legislature
If you care about the Texas state parks, you should be at this forum.  Send your $28 registration to:  Houston Sierra Club, P.O. Box 3021; Houston, TX  77253-3021.  Registration should be received no later than March 31, 2006.  Confirmation and directions will be sent by e-mail.  Please contact Evelyn Merz at 713-644-8228 or at elmerz@hal-pc.org if you have questions.   Be sure to include your name, address, day-time phone number, and email address.[/quote]

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chisos_muse

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Well...
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2006, 08:34:29 PM »
I asked...didn't I? :wink:  I think you did a superb job, incorporating many different factors involved not only in the funding crisis, but issues that affect visiting the park(s) as well. Can't wait to see the powerpoint! Bravo to you for pouring your passion and knowledge into a topic that eminates from your soul.... =D>  Muse

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Offline Bobcat

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Re: Well...
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2006, 08:42:58 PM »
Quote from: "chisos_muse"
I asked...didn't I? :wink:  I think you did a superb job, incorporating many different factors involved not only in the funding crisis, but issues that affect visiting the park(s) as well. Can't wait to see the powerpoint! Bravo to you for pouring your passion and knowledge into a topic that eminates from your soul.... =D>  Muse


How can anybody type that fast and that much and that accurately(presumably). Shane must have SLPEL CCHEK :!:
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chisos_muse

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Re: Well...
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2006, 08:53:24 PM »
Quote from: "Bobcat"
Quote from: "chisos_muse"
I asked...didn't I? :wink:  I think you did a superb job, incorporating many different factors involved not only in the funding crisis, but issues that affect visiting the park(s) as well. Can't wait to see the powerpoint! Bravo to you for pouring your passion and knowledge into a topic that eminates from your soul.... =D>  Muse


How can anybody type that fast and that much and that accurately(presumably). Shane must have SLPEL CCHEK :!:


No dare werr alutt ov mispellungs if yew look closer like....but who F-in cares? :D

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Offline Bobcat

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2006, 08:54:34 PM »
Yo, Shane :!: Thanks for putting in so much of your energy for all of us :D
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SHANEA

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Thank My
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2006, 11:30:42 PM »
Thank my. Jr. High school teacher who taught me for two "semesters" typing on a real typewriter with no markings on the keys and a blinder to keep you from seeing what you were typing.   I guess ya'll are hunt and peckers.

"The Quick Brown Fox Jumped Over the Lazy Dog".

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Offline Bobcat

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2006, 06:40:52 AM »
What did Florida and Arkansas do to solve their state parks funding problems :?:
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SHANEA

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Understand
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2006, 09:14:11 AM »
The way I understand it, these states have decided that having outstanding public parks is to their economic advantage and have tacked special fees onto such items as drivers lisc. or lisc. plates and the fees are directly funneled into the park system so that the park system has a constant and consistent source of funding w/o relying on the state legislature to continually fund/under fund the park system.

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chisos_muse

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I see fat people....
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2006, 09:19:49 AM »
sure would be nice if SA had some nice parks......all we have is restaurants and really large people....I think if the city said "we're going to add fees to your license renewal so we can build more restaurants"....90% would vote yes....pathetic :!:

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Offline Bobcat

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Re: Understand
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2006, 09:20:30 AM »
Quote from: "SHANEA"
The way I understand it, these states have decided that having outstanding public parks is to their economic advantage and have tacked special fees onto such items as drivers lisc. or lisc. plates and the fees are directly funneled into the park system so that the park system has a constant and consistent source of funding w/o relying on the state legislature to continually fund/under fund the park system.


Do you think that would fly in Texas :?:
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Offline randell

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2006, 09:44:29 AM »
I think all the people that go to parks would vote for it and all the people that don't go to parks would be against it.

Great job researching this.  I'll be quoting this stuff when I go to lunch with my coworkers next week and start talking about my outdoor adventures that they probably don't care to hear.  

Yesterday they asked me how many State Parks there were, then said, "well, I guess you wouldn't know that".  I said "122 and I've been to 39 of them".  They all looked at me like I was crazy for knowing that.  Guess I'm a little nerdy.
There's nothing like a good quest to get you intimate with a place. - Tom Clynes

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Offline Bobcat

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Shane's Sierra Club Presentation
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2006, 10:10:35 AM »
Quote from: "Randell"
I think all the people that go to parks would vote for it and all the people that don't go to parks would be against it.

Great job researching this.  I'll be quoting this stuff when I go to lunch with my coworkers next week and start talking about my outdoor adventures that they probably don't care to hear.  

Yesterday they asked me how many State Parks there were, then said, "well, I guess you wouldn't know that".  I said "122 and I've been to 39 of them".  They all looked at me like I was crazy for knowing that.  Guess I'm a little nerdy.


Guess you're a little outdoorsy, I'd say : )
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