Honors Polk County and Western District Farm Family of the Year – Bob & Sarah Gorden
BY LEANN DILBECK –
Farm Bureau of Arkansas held its annual membership meeting / banquet Monday, September 9 at the Commercial Building at the Polk County Fairgrounds. A fish dinner was provided and served by the Lead for Life 4-H Club.
Farm Bureau President Rodney Bowen welcomed the attendees. Terry Keener delivered the 2012 minutes.
One of the highlights of the evening is always the presentation of the Polk County Farm Family of the Year and this year, Bob and Sarah Gorden have also been named the Western District Farm Family. Mary Holland provided a slide-show history of the family that was followed by the formal presentation by Allen Stewart as well as a formal citation on behalf of the Arkansas House of Representatives presented by State Representative Nate Bell.
A number of proposed resolutions were approved during Monday night’s meeting. Among them, current regulations from the EPA and Fish and Wildlife Service via the endangered species Act restrict the ability of local governments to maintain the integrity of bridges and roads at an economical rate. Many times, this is bankrupting county road budgets. We recommend that county judges be given the authority to manage water flow and the design of creeks and bridges at the bridge site and upstream.
In addition, the group recommends that regulators such as ADEQ take a more moderate approach to enforcing regulations. Compliance with regulations can be costly to local governments. That cost is then passed on to local citizens through fees and taxes in order to be compliant. This will be more and more important if anticipated new regulations regarding solid waster are enacted.
Concerning forestry problems and issues that have caught much of the local attention, the group again said that they opposed the closing of National Forests and public roads. They added that they encourage USFS to contract with local management teams to meet science based targets to minimize environmental impact, while maximizing recreational opportunities.