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ArkGeo_Board
09-13-2006, 07:58 PM
On Wednesday, September 13, two members of the ArkGeo Steering Committee were graciously invited to represent ArkGeo at the annual meeting of the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission in Little Rock. Our intention was to ask the Commission to allow the placement of geocaches on lands they own. We were given 10 minutes in which to make our case.

An oral presentation was given, accompanied by some printed materials for each of the Commissioners. These materials included:

A copy of the "Geocacher's Creed"
An article entitiled "What Is Geocaching?"
A list of members who indicated they wanted to be represented
Pictures from a CITO event held at Beaverfork Lake
A document entitled "An Arkansas Landowner's Guide to Geocaching"
A copy of the Arkansas State Parks directive regarding geocaching
A copy of the Arkansas State Parks Geocache Placement Permit

We are proud to report that the Commission was very impressed with the idea of geocaching and they were all in agreement that it would be another tool they could use to draw people to AG&FC-owned lands. Further, they believe (as do we) that geocaching offers several benefits.

The official vote by the Commission on the approval of this policy will be on Thursday, September 14. Details about the new policy will be forthcoming. However, the Commission clearly indicated that they would like to work with ArkGeo during its creation.

Finally, THANK YOU to all those who sent us information and helpful suggestions and comments!!! It was very much appreciated!

ArkGeo is a significant part of the "face" of geocaching in Arkansas. Let's continue to be good representatives for geocaching and let the AG&FC (and others) see just how great a group of people we really are!

Steering Committee
Arkansas Geocachers Association

nonnipoppy
09-13-2006, 08:27 PM
Congratulations Gaddiel and Top_Kitty98 on a job very well done... Lets hope tomorrows vote goes well as I'm sure it will....poppy

flannelman
09-13-2006, 09:02 PM
Thanks to Gaddiel and top kitty for representing us. I would also like to that LadyE for laying the groundwork for this.



GOOD JOB GUYS!!!!

Woodwalker9
09-13-2006, 11:32 PM
A HUGE thank you to Gaddiel and Topkitty for the great representation at the AG&F meeting today. I don't think we could have asked for better. Also, I echo flannelman in thanking LE for all her hard work and persistence in getting it all set up. A fantastic job guys and it's very much appreciated.

Gaddiel
09-14-2006, 06:54 AM
All of the credit for this one goes to LadyEngineer. When we got in there to give the presentation, they were ready for us. I appreciate the multiple months of groundwork, numerous phone calls, and lots of time spent working on the presentation. Thank you, LE!

TheAlabamaRambler
09-14-2006, 08:32 AM
Great work! It will be interesting to see the results.

Geocachers across the nation face the same issues, and I know several of you have put much effort into this already, but I would like to ask for more!

Would you be interested in writing this up, a "How we approached LandOwner X" article that outlines the preparatory behind-the-scenes work as well as the presentation and materials created.

Many folks fail to do the preparation, get an appointment, show up cold and try to wing it. Your work as an example approach and guide to laying the groundwork could be invaluable to them.

Alabama cachers had the same basic approach and success on Conservation and Land Trust lands, as have others, so would there be any interest in combining your experience with theirs to make a larger and more varied article?

I suspect that gc.com, GeocachingU and Today's Cacher would all publish it.

Thanks in advance for considering it!
Ed

Gaddiel
09-14-2006, 09:03 AM
That sounds like a great idea. I'd be willing to contribute in any way I can. It may take me a while, but I could probably throw together an article about the approach we took, obstacles encountered, and good suggestions we received...

Wayne

Team_Pink
09-14-2006, 04:24 PM
I would love to see the:

A document entitled "An Arkansas Landowner's Guide to Geocaching"


Is it something that you can make available for download? I bet you are thinking "this steering committee stuff is starting to sound like work"!

Gaddiel
09-15-2006, 04:32 AM
This document can now be found in our "Downloads" section, under the "Articles and Brochures" heading.

By the way, if you hosted a CITO event in 2005 or 2006, I'd like to include it in this document. Please send me the GC.com waypoint name and a brief description.

Wayne

OldRiverRunner
10-09-2006, 07:00 PM
The official vote by the Commission on the approval of this policy will be on Thursday, September 14. Details about the new policy will be forthcoming. However, the Commission clearly indicated that they would like to work with ArkGeo during its creation.


How did the vote go? Is there any further information on how this is progressing? -- ORR

Gaddiel
10-10-2006, 08:15 AM
There has been no announcement on this issue that I can find.

I sent a message last week, but did not get a response. I called the Commission today and left a message with the secretary. Hope to hear something soon....

Wayne

Gaddiel
10-16-2006, 02:21 PM
I finally got a phone call from the AGFC today. There is a team that is currently doing surveys to determine the areas they would like to be excluded. This team will be briefing the Commission later this month. They also plan to post some additional information about geocaching to the AGFC web site.

Wayne

SpankytheWizard
02-20-2007, 06:24 PM
Do we have a status update on this? It has been four full months since the last post. Has AGFC completed their items?

STW

Gaddiel
02-20-2007, 08:02 PM
I haven't heard the progress, but I'll try to get an update tomorrow.

Wayne

Gaddiel
02-22-2007, 02:10 PM
I'm told that this project is still in progress. Revision of the policy has been turned over to the Wildlife Management division, since they are in charge of the management for most of the AG&FC land. Apparently there are some code revisions that still need to be made...

Wayne

topkitty98
02-22-2007, 08:07 PM
thanks Wayne

ArkGeo_Board
03-12-2007, 08:24 AM
We have an update from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. Here is a very broad overview of how the developing AG&FC policy will work:

Regarding nature centers, fish hatcheries, and any other place that there will be AG&FC employees stationed, the AG&FC will continue to maintain all caches on these properties.

Regarding wildlife management areas (WMAs), the AG&FC will select the location (coordinates) for cache sites. They have selected around 30 sites already, and plan to select more. Some sites will be restricted to virtuals only. When a site has been selected, it will be posted on the AG&FC web site. The first cacher to claim the site will be allowed to place a cache there and will be responsible for maintaining it. The cacher will be required to fill out a short permit form, which will be good for one year and may be renewed each year.

The AG&FC is not interested in trade caches, so they will request a logbook only. However, they will provide brochures to be placed in the cache to give more information about the area.

This system could be in place as early as July 2007.

It is the consensus of the Board that this policy falls short of our expectations, but we also believe that this step is in the right direction and that it is a great beginning to a developing relationship between geocachers and the AG&FC.


Board of Directors
Arkansas Geocachers Association

OldRiverRunner
04-10-2007, 08:18 PM
It is the consensus of the Board that this policy falls short of our expectations, but we also believe that this step is in the right direction and that it is a great beginning to a developing relationship between geocachers and the AG&FC.



This is much ado about nothing. I am truly shocked that the AG&FC are such control freaks that THEY have to select the sites that will be allowed. In my humble opinion, why should I bother getting a permit for one of THEIR selected sites? I'll pass on this and stick with placing caches in our state parks, which are a lot more scenic than any AG&FC site that I've visited and which have OPENLY EMBRACED geocaching. -- ORR

P.S. Another thing to note is that virtuals are no longer allowed under the geocaching guidelines.

P.P.S. Don't get me wrong. I appreciate the time and effort that the Board has put into this, including LadyEngineer's spearheading of the drive. However, it doesn't look like the AF&FC is very interested in supporting geocaching, and I find that very, very disappointing.

Team_Pink
04-11-2007, 03:47 AM
Me too!

I have a AG&F license plate. I have filled out the paperwork for a personalize license plate like my avatar and will be dropping the $50/yr AG&F llicense plate and this decision is one of the reasons why.

So there, AG&F, take that! :)