Blue Ridge Parkway "in Crisis". Thanks for Nothing, Charles Taylor.

{inspired by this post at BlueNC}

Congressman Charles Taylor pretends to be a friend of the forests in western North Carolina, but his actions and political flip-flops demonstrate his lack of commitment to our district's most valuable natural and economic resources.

More below the fold

DukeNews: "America’s beloved Blue Ridge Parkway, the scenic road winding through the North Carolina and Virginia mountains, is in crisis. Though it has been the most popular attraction in the National Parks system since the 1950s, and today draws more visitors than Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Grand Canyon combined, its annual operating budget is only about half that of those parks."

Congressman Taylor
is the Chair of the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee and has been in Congress for going on sixteen years. "Between 1980 and 2003 the NFS [National Forest Service] budget increased 82% but the Parkway budget lagged way behind with only a 25% increase."

DukeNews: "This year, 45 of 237 permanent staff positions lie vacant, including 40 percent of positions in the office that manages landscape development, historical and cultural resources, and planning. Road repairs, grass mowing and restroom cleaning have been curtailed; improvements to parkway facilities are almost unthinkable. Meanwhile, encroaching development threatens the parkway’s magnificent views.

Increasingly, travelers will feel the pinch. This year, the parkway did not have enough money to print the Official Map and Guide pamphlets that most of us rely on to remind us how far it is from, say, Cumberland Knob to Craggy Gardens."

The Bush administration is cutting national funding for our national forests, and Charles Taylor is his point man in Congress. Taylor was against using public money to create a public park and memorial to those who died on Flight 93 on 9/11. Only after a national outcry and intense public pressure in his district did Taylor choose to back the park and memorial. Taylor famously stated that he would wait until the Forest Service delivered a final report before he would decide where he stood on selling our national forests to private developers. Again, a principled public came to the rescue, pressuring Taylor to do the right thing.

Asheville Citizen-Times: "Visitors to the Blue Ridge Parkway this year may see more than their favorite overlook, historic log cabin or favorite picnic spot.

They may also spot donation boxes — a new addition aimed at helping the cash-strapped scenic highway generate some revenue."

Charles Taylor pretends that small increases in funding, which do not even cover the rising prices of fuel, salaries, and health care, are enriching the Parkway. His touted increases are, in reality, cuts, as the Parkway makes do with less and less each year. The Blue Ridge Parkway and the Smoky Mountains National Park contribute immensely to the economy in western North Carolina, but Charles Taylor hasn't prioritized them. While other Congressman fight hard for their parks, Taylor has allowed our Blue Ridge Parkway to languish.

Taylor's clumsy "I'm a fiscal conservative who brings home the bacon" rhetoric is intended to obfuscate the fact that he has not prioritized the vital role the parks play in our regional economy. While Taylor seeks hundreds of millions for the unwanted North Shore Road, he underfunds the resources that will actually bring jobs and tourist dollars to our state. Charles Taylor is not a friend to the forests or to those who make their livings through tourism. He's had eight terms to make his priorities clear, and he has failed to protect our parks and our economy.


I didn't see any of the big dawgs around

so I promoted this one. I kinda felt it would be ever so nice to slam both Taylor and Hayes on the front page at the same time.

Wish I had some purty pictures to add to mine.

Nice job Screwy.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Nice one-two punch.

And to Chuck Taylor? I add my thanks for nothing.

$600 Million for the North Shore Road??

I would love to hear Taylor explain how he can support spending $600 million on the North Shore Road to nowhere that no one wants, yet he cannot find it within himself to fund the Blue Ridge Parkway adequately. Where are his priorities? What is he thinking?

Oh he always brings it down to

$300 or $400 million. He says he's found contractors to knock off $100 mil from the get-go. I'm sure those contractors are friends of his. Can you say kick back?
“All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.”
So enjoy the Drama.

Off his game?

Chucky usually "greens up" about this time each cycle. Off his game?
Or maybe he held the Flight 93 memorial hostage to a secret North Shore deal so he could parachute in federal $$ in time for the election?

He is awfully good at throwing

people off his tracks. After the stunt he pulled with the national forest sale I'm sure he will try to pull something. The word is in Charlotte that he's backed off the road.

I can't believe people still take him at his word.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

What a turd.


You compliment him.

Excrement makes great fertilizer. I don't think dear Chuck is good for even that.
“All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.”
So enjoy the Drama.

(828) 251-1988

That's Charles Taylor's phone number. If he's not in, ask to speak to his Press Secretary Deborah Potter.

And, if you do call, please let us know how it goes.

Scrutiny Hooligans -

This is Great Stuff! I agree with everyone!

And yes, Thanks Chuckie Boy for nothing! Chukckie & Hayes know just about enough about our National Park & Forest System and road building as I do about being Captian of a Alaskain Crab Fishing Boat during Crab season. And that's not a awfull Hell of a lot!

Oh, Screwy!

In the event someone does get thru to Ms. Potter dont forget to tell her to call 1-800-call-someone who cares!