Formal position could be coming for Gage County, on Kansas-Nebraska Heritage proposal

BEATRICE – No decision yet from the Gage County Board about joining or not joining a proposed Kansas-Nebraska Heritage area.
But it appears the supervisors will consider a resolution in two weeks, likely in opposition to joining.

A vocal opponent of the proposal, Gage County Planning and Zoning Commission member Terry Acton, says a majority of counties in the proposed area….28 of 49…are opposed to it.

"More than 63% of the surrounding counties have thumbed it down. I think you need to send the message that no, we're not going to support this. Come back at us with what's supposed to be more unity, and ask us for ways to help with climate change...not come down with very vague laws and policies. So, I wouldn't waste a day. Do it now, send a message and let them know what your thoughts are."

Opponents see heritage areas as federal intrusion on property rights. Gage County Board member Don Schuller said the county should wait to get information, on both sides of the issue.

"I feel we need to table this and look at it more objectively when we are appropriately approached. The only thing that initiated this whole conversation is one meeting put on by Dr. Kincaide and Angel Cushing. And, that's what got everybody excited. If it had not been for that gentleman from Colorado fanning the flames, we wouldn't be at this stage."

Acton is concerned about environmental regulations that may adversely affect landowners.

It was not clear Wednesday how the resolution to be considered by the board will be worded….but County Board Chairman Erich Tiemann said it will cover the proposed Kansas-Nebraska Heritage area….not National Heritage Areas, as a whole.