To the Editor,
Many folks in the 11 counties of rural Southern Missouri are just now finding out about the proposed OZARK RUN SCENIC BYWAYS scheme that has quietly made it past many elected officials and a few select individuals for the past year or longer. Most of us have just found out about this big government overreach a few days ago. The proponent of this scheme claims that this is just a simple little program to help us country folk make more money and “protect” our cherished Ozarks. They also claim that this designation is just a few road signs and will help tourists find us to spend their money in our money starved Ozarks. Here’s is what they don’t tell you.
1. THIS IS A FEDERAL PROGRAM. This is NOT just a Missouri program! Congress has funded this with over 30 million dollars just in 2017. MoDOT is just implementing this Federal program just as the Missouri Dept of Ag implements other Federal Ag programs. DON’T BE FOOLED!
2. SCENIC MISSOURI claims that the designation will not implement new regulations. This is not true. It will immediately stop anyone from placing signs on the route or improving existing signs. What else this designation does is create a CORRIDOR MANAGEMENT GROUP THAT WILL MEET TO DETERMINE NEW REGULATIONS! This group will be made up of FEDERAL AND STATE AGENCIES, including the NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, FOREST SERVICE, U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE, EPA, AND OTHER STATE AGENCIES! The grant money that will come will make the regulations happen to the unsuspecting!
3. The way these big Government takeovers work is they pass the Federal Program, then a NON-PROFIT 501 GROUP IS CREATED TO IMPLEMENT THE PROGRAM SUCH AS SCENIC AMERICA OF WHICH SCENIC MISSOURI IS AN AFFLIATE. That means Scenic Missouri is the hired gun in Missouri to walk the program through the various Counties and small Towns they want to regulate. THE DECEPTION OF SCENIC MISSOURI IS STAGGERING AND MOST PEOPLE HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IS ABOUT TO HAPPEN!
4. The CORRIDOR PROTECTION GROUP MADE OF OF FEDERAL AGENCIES WILL OVER SEE EVERYTHING ALONG THE BYWAY AND EVERYTHING IN THE “VIEWSHED.” THAT’S ALL THE LAND YOU CAN SEE FROM THE BYWAY, THOUSANDS OF ACRES OF PRIVATE LAND!
5. The Scenic Missouri proponents now say they will go around counties that don’t agree to their Byways scheme and will just take one or two counties if that’s all they can get for now. Don’t be fooled, they want to control anything they can get. Don’t believe a word they are saying.
5. SEVEN PRINCIPALS OF SCENIC CONSERVATION
Here are the goals of SCENIC MISSOURI AND THEIR AFFILIATE SCENIC AMERICA from their website. [see scenic.org]
a. Protecting farms and ranches by … AGRICULTURAL ZONING
b. Map visual qualities..and then adopt strategies to PRESERVE them.
c. Incorporating aesthetics into performance MEASURES for PLANNING, SITING, AND CONSTRUCTION OF ALL NEW DEVELOPMENT.
d. Comprehensive tree policies that PRESERVE EXISTING TREES, CONTROL TREE CUTTING, and tree damage during construction. [remember, this is for the thousands of acres that can be seen from the Byway!]
e. MAKING VISUAL POLLUTERS PAY BY FINING THOSE THAT BREAK THE LAW, TAXING THOSE WHO USE THE VISUAL ENVIRONMENT FOR COMMERCIAL ADVERTISING.
f. BANNING NEW BILLBOARDS AND STRICTLY REGULATING EXISTING BILLBOARDS. HALTING ALL CUTTING OF TREES AND VEGETATION ON PUBLIC LAND to improve visibility of billboards.
g. Setting height and size standards for on-premise signs.
h. Regulating other forms of outdoor advertising including, exterior of public buses, street furniture, store windows,..
I. Incorporating SCENIC CONSERVATION INTO ALL ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY ENVIRONMENTAL AND GEOGRAPHY EDUCATION CURRICULA.
j. INCORPORATING VALUES OF SCENIC CONSERVATION INTO GRADUATE COURSES IN ECONOMICS, PLANNING, DESIGN, AND PUBLIC POLICY.
Designating the OZARK RUN SCENIC BYWAYS will just be the beginning. While they claim working to make the world sustainable they destroy private property rights and freedom. DON’T BE FOOLED OZARKS, THEY ARE FROM THE GOVERNMENT AND THEY ARE NOT HERE TO HELP!
Most counties have already given approval. We need to get out the FACTS about what is happening and NOT just listen to one side that is being paid big money to promote this scheme. I asked the promoter going to all the counties how much he was being paid. He refused to answer. I am being paid nothing.
Please share this information far and wide.
Co-Chair Property Rights Coalition
cell 417-257-8711 or email email@example.com