(CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO) – State Senator Wayne Wallingford has released the following statement regarding the Department of Natural Resources’ potential plan to divert funding from the ASARCO lead remediation settlement away from Madison County and instead purchase thousands of acres of land in Oregon County for a new state park:
“Lead remediation funding is supposed to be used to restore contaminated land, not expand a state parks system that is already confronting serious funding shortfalls. This will only intensify the burden upon taxpayers, all while diverting funding away from two communities,” said Senator Wallingford.
He continued, “Officials in Madison County do not want the money taken away from cleanup efforts in their county and directed to a county that does not even have any lead mining to remediate. Officials in Oregon County do not want the land purchased from taxpayers who are currently using the land for ranching, as this would negatively impact property taxes in a county where much of the land is already government-owned. I cannot fathom why the Department of Natural Resources would even consider this irresponsible plan.”