To make sure the stakeholders (the Blueway supporting organizations) get the message that the landowners want NO part of a Blueway designation, we must continue passing the Resolution of Opposition to the White River Watershed National Blueway.
What to do:
1. Click here to sign up to help in a particular county. Click on the county in which you want to help.
Many counties in shaded in yellow still need volunteers. Counties shaded in green have already passed a
resolution. If you’re unable to click on a county shaded in yellow, email us: [email protected]
Please consider helping in a neighboring county.
2. Call & get the Resolution of Opposition on your county quorum court’s agenda ASAP!
3. Get the proper information to your JPs (quorum court members). Make sure that they
vote in favor of the Resolution of Opposition. (We will send you all the information that you’ll need.
Be sure to sign up using the link in #1 above.)
4. Be sure that the County Judge and County Clerk sign the original resolution, NOT a reworded one.
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Pertaining to the language of the various resolutions being adopted by counties in Arkansas, there is ONE major difference:
The original anti-Blueway resolution suggested by Secure Arkanss for the people to submit to their quorum courts for adoption plainly states:
“________________ County has every intention to continue present conservation practices as is mandated by laws that are consistent with historic and balanced provisions of the Constitution of the State of Arkansas…”
HOWEVER, after about a dozen counties adopted that original resolution, suddenly other proposed alternative resolutions (sometimes mysteriously) began appearing before quorum courts with “inside” pressure to adopt the alternatives (INSTEAD of the resolution suggested by Secure Arkansas). Upon examination of the wording of some of these alternative proposed resolutions, it is the belief of Secure Arkansas consultants that these alternative resolutions actually do MORE to endorce the principles of the National Blueway Systems than to oppose it. And possibly, the suspect resolutions may, in actuality, be subjecting those counties (who might be held to the literal language of their resolutions by the federal entities they name in those resolutions) to even more subservient involvement with the federal government and its international associates than the initial White River Watershed Blueway designation did on its face.
Here’s why that may be true, as we understand it:
One alternative resolution resolves that the county “…respectfully requests that in connection (?) to the previous (?) Blueway Designation by the U.S. Department of Interior (requests what?! — why is this part of the statement not finished?) and that the concerns and principles herein conveyed… be observed and respected in consideration of (!) any memorandum of understanding and future (!) activities regarding the previously (?) designated Blueway…” (emphasis & inserted questions – ours)
1. Why is a county that opposes the current purported White River Watershed Blueway designation and its pending memorandum of understanding adopting language that requests to be observed and respected in consideration of any memorandum of understanding and future activities of the Blueway IF they don’t want there to even be a memorandum of understanding between outsiders pertaining to their lands and waters — or IF they don’t want any future activities on their lands and waters regarding the previous Blueway?
2. Technically, it appears that the “previous” Blueway would be the Connecticut River Blueway. Why would Arkansas courts adopt resolutions against something in Connecticut?
3. Why did they not specifically say they opposed the White River Watershed Blueway designation??
That same alternate version also states: “We fully support voluntary programs whereby watersheds and the environment are protected.” (Note: that’s what the Blueway is all about! “Voluntary programs” are federal/state activities implemented at the local level via contracts signed between federal or state reps and local officials and/or landowners. Once contracts are signed, the so called “voluntary” element is GONE! And is it not true that the power to change the terms of the contract for the government side of the contract exists in the layers of government bureaucracy(?) — but NOT for or in the interests of the county or the landowner?)
We believe that if those “voluntary programs” get all tied together under one big Blueway umbrella, there will then exist the very certain scenario for the final obliteration of any and all local or private control of our lands and waters.
Has anyone ever thought to ask this question: “In our constitutional form of government that is based on political boundaries of cities, counties, and states, where did any arm of government get a legitimate power to address environmental conservation protection requirements on a “watershed” basis (which is a regional boundary)?!
As far as our research can determine, the first inclusion of the term “watershed” in government documents (which at least had the color of law) is in the Arkansas Water Quality Standards Regulation No. 2 definition of “extraordinary resource waterbody” (popularly known as ERW’s). So, thereafter, all the maze of bureaucratic language both inside and outside of subsequent rules and regulations that pertain to a “watershed approach” for conservation/preservation/environmental issues, may actually be based only on a bureaucratic definition, rather than an actual law!
Most significantly then to that line of research is the fact that ALL original Arkansas ERW designations (there’s that word ‘designation’ again!) in the state of Arkansas were ‘public noticed’ in the Democrat Gazette in a ‘legal notice’ on October 23, 1987 without even naming the specific names of the waterbodies that were so “designated”.
(A legislative interim study report dated 6/13/00 and denoted as ISP 99-25 that pertained to ERW’s
etc. stated that “public notification was inadequate” and that “the director of ADEQ would be willing
to open a review process to evaluate the ERW…” Thirteen years later, that has still not happened!)
Therefore, we content that if that is the only basis of law for ERW’s and “watershed authority”, then we believe that the whole premise of ERW’s (with their watersheds), and ecoregion policies, and all Blueway-type “designations” are INVALID from INCEPTION!!
Therefore for the promoters of language (in county legislative resolutions) that “fully support” voluntary (federal/state government) programs at the local level for the “protection” of the “watershed” , in our understanding may be opening a back door for dangerous federal/state agency heavy-handed free reign entrance into our counties that no county ordinance or resolution has allowed for before.
To our knowledge, counties in Arkansas have never before endorsed or encouraged environmental or conservation matters to be subjected to federal or state powers on a “watershed” basis but dealt with such matters on a county-by-county basis through quorum courts and county conservation district boards.
It is our concern that quorum courts may have adopted alternative resolutions without having been informed of the matters we have explained above. Trusting those who advised them to do so, and believing they were opposing the Blueway designation, we believe there is a real possibility that they may have actually committed themselves to the very thing they fear.
The wording of another alternative resolution apparently allows its county to be “affected by the precedence of this federal action (National Blueway System) in the future.” It also claims to speak for its “neighbor county friends” that they “believelocal government should lead” in how they “want to protect respective areas (?) more than guests”! Article 7 Section 28 of our state constitution however states that our county courts have “exclusive original jurisdiction” in all of these kinds of matters. That kind of constitutional power means counties do not have to let “guests” (a.k.a. NGO, national and international stakeholders) have a say in how we take care of our lands and waters!
1. Why does this resolution refer to “respective areas” which could be interpreted as a watershed region? Why did it not clearly say the land and water in a specific county?
2. So WHO is writing up such apparent forfeitures of county power, and WHO is promoting such apparent Blueway philosophy and policy?
3. Is it just coincidence that the language of this alternative resolution also appears to be another guise of supposedly opposing the Blueway?
We believe that this matter is too critical to adopt language that can be construed in two opposing ways. In essence, to us it appears that this alternative resolution is actually saying that the county supports their neighbor counties in taking “offense” because they were not properly included in the making of the designation! In its final resolve, that resolution actually “requests that ___________________ County Government be fully informed and engaged (!?!) of any federal action planned in ____________________ County, Arkansas similar to the National Blueway designation.” ?!?! (emphasis ours) The Webster Dictionary definition for “engage” is: “being actively involved in or committed — esp. to political concerns” (!)
The following questions beg an answer:
1. Why would any county who opposes the Blueway officially request to be fully engaged of any federal action… similar to the National Blueway designation????
2. Is it possible that counties are being deceived by these alternative resolutions???
3. If our concerns prove to be true, will landowners and people of these counties be forced to overturn these questionable resolutions via petition initiatives and/or other lawful constitutional procedures??
4. Should they do that anyway, just to be safe?
LET IT BE KNOWN THAT Secure Arkansas STANDS BEHIND ITS ORIGINAL RESOLUTION AS BEING A CLEARLY AND SAFELY-WORDED RESOLUTION TO TRULY OPPOSE THE BLUEWAY DESIGNATION OF THE WHITE RIVER AND ITS WATERSHED. ARKANSANS MUST REMAIN VIGILANT UNTIL WITHDRAWAL IS COMPLETE AND OFFICIALLY ACCOMPLISHED, ALL CONGRESSIONAL QUESTIONS ARE FULLY ANSWERED, AND THE BLUEWAY IS D-E-A-D!