www.mozilla.com Weather Central

Monarchs struggling with milkweed loss -3/6/2015, 10:18 AM

Bees in trouble -3/6/2015, 10:17 AM

Bat study set to begin -3/6/2015, 10:17 AM

Trials, tribulations for trout fans -2/6/2015, 10:41 AM

Cedar Bluff stilling basin's health questioned, tough to check -2/6/2015, 10:41 AM

Just 300 cranes remain in naturally migrating flock -12/5/2014, 10:08 AM

Whooping cranes visit Cedar Bluff -12/5/2014, 10:07 AM

Hunters enter guilty pleas -11/21/2014, 9:50 AM

Pheasant numbers higher -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

If the pheasant numbers are better, why aren't we seeing more? -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

KDWP&T set to woo out-of-state hunters -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

Federal charges filed against 8 in 2013 Graham County dove hunt -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

Politics trumps science -10/17/2014, 11:50 AM

Diminutive burrowing owl briefly stands guard -10/17/2014, 11:50 AM

Rescuing the injured -10/10/2014, 10:00 AM

Manager takes to the sky -9/19/2014, 2:30 PM

Of dragonflies, new bad habits -9/12/2014, 9:51 AM

A real rarity -9/5/2014, 9:56 AM

Peak camping season ends with a bang -9/5/2014, 9:46 AM

Mourning the loss of the last passenger pigeon -- too many already -9/5/2014, 9:46 AM

Bird a top choice for hunters -8/29/2014, 9:22 AM

Doves all around -8/29/2014, 9:22 AM

FWS details ESA listing for bat -8/22/2014, 12:15 PM

Tales from the land of Don't -8/8/2014, 6:07 PM

'Kansas Fishes' hot off the press -8/8/2014, 6:07 PM

Pheasant tour off target -8/1/2014, 8:17 AM

Pheasant harvest falls again -7/24/2014, 11:02 AM

Biologist calls idea 'ludicrous' -7/18/2014, 2:13 PM

Appeals court exonerates Texas water board -7/11/2014, 12:01 PM

Survey finds more prairie chickens -7/11/2014, 11:52 AM

Hunting outlook up; duck numbers sharply higher -7/11/2014, 11:52 AM

New round of federal lawsuits at loggerheads with one another -6/20/2014, 11:34 AM

KDWP&T OKs regional ban on prairie chicken hunting -6/20/2014, 11:34 AM

KNRC not ready to give up -6/20/2014, 11:34 AM

Serenading a historic landmark -5/30/2014, 11:03 AM

KNRC set to ask for more money -5/30/2014, 11:03 AM

Kansas seceding on wildlife -5/9/2014, 8:31 AM

Kansas courts back federal endangered species law -5/9/2014, 8:30 AM

Review nearing completion -4/25/2014, 11:07 AM

Bat species should be studied, biologist says -4/25/2014, 11:07 AM

Bats an economic benefit for farmers -4/24/2014, 11:08 AM

Walleye smaller, still productive -4/18/2014, 11:00 AM

In the baking aisle, shoppers agree environment is critical -4/18/2014, 11:00 AM

Lawsuits lining up on listing -4/11/2014, 11:00 AM

Webster too low for irrigation -4/10/2014, 11:00 AM

-4/4/2014, 4:55 PM

-4/4/2014, 4:55 PM

FWS lists prairie chicken as threatened -3/28/2014, 9:47 AM

Whooping cranes reach Kansas; winter numbers up slightly -3/28/2014, 8:35 AM

Ferret numbers still tumbling -3/28/2014, 8:35 AM

Oklahoma, oil group suing FWS -3/20/2014, 9:59 AM

Divining rod for discs -3/20/2014, 9:59 AM

Despite valiant effort, no success in finding snowy owl -3/14/2014, 9:27 AM

Capturing the moment -3/14/2014, 9:27 AM

Kansas: Not so flat after all -3/7/2014, 3:49 PM

Rod, reel a good fit -2/28/2014, 7:53 AM

Spring just a snowstorm or so away -2/28/2014, 7:53 AM

At 90: Best deer ever -2/21/2014, 10:33 AM

Tests confirm 5 new CWD cases -2/14/2014, 10:13 AM

Senate votes to invoke 'sovereignty' over state's prairie chickens -2/14/2014, 10:13 AM

KNRC to deliver report, asking for more money from member counties -2/7/2014, 10:50 AM

Group flunks states, federal agencies dealing with prairie dogs -2/7/2014, 12:12 PM

Brownback ready to sue feds -2/7/2014, 10:50 AM

Big oil companies bankrolling conservation plan -2/6/2014, 10:50 AM

Audubon blasts 'sovereign' bill -1/31/2014, 9:49 AM

Feds again asking for listing comments -1/31/2014, 9:48 AM

Utilities enrolling in program -1/31/2014, 9:48 AM

Listing controversy continues -1/17/2014, 10:30 AM

Friends on the water -12/20/2013, 9:54 AM

Federal wildlife agency lays out rules for oil, gas protection -12/20/2013, 9:54 AM

A beckoning -12/13/2013, 9:08 AM

Listing more likely as FWS adds rules -12/13/2013, 8:59 AM

It's happening right before our eyes! -11/29/2013, 10:28 AM

Governor's Ringneck Classic draws a crowd -11/22/2013, 9:29 AM

Drought saps pheasant numbers -11/8/2013, 6:50 PM

Sporting clays sure to be hot at hunt -11/8/2013, 6:50 PM

Counties set to talk chickens -11/1/2013, 12:08 PM

Dangerous delight -10/18/2013, 9:44 AM

Coping with (more) bad habits -10/11/2013, 12:01 PM

Celebrating fossil discoveries -10/11/2013, 11:51 AM

Making a wish come true -9/27/2013, 11:39 AM

Prairie chicken numbers tumble -9/27/2013, 11:39 AM

Counties meet FWS, present plans -9/20/2013, 12:25 PM

Oakley man in pursuit of grouse -9/13/2013, 11:23 AM

Counties hoping to halt listing -9/6/2013, 11:54 AM

Going outdoors -8/23/2013, 10:15 AM

Wetlands no longer bone dry -8/16/2013, 11:46 AM

Duck numbers remain strong -7/26/2013, 11:48 AM

Updated survey, conservation plan upcoming -7/26/2013, 11:39 AM

Pheasant outlook not so bright -7/19/2013, 11:48 AM

High heat, strong winds finally show a beneficial side -7/12/2013, 12:05 PM

FWS delay reopens comment period -7/12/2013, 12:05 PM

Study refutes wind tower effect on greater prairie chickens -7/12/2013, 12:05 PM

Flowering cacti drought's treat -6/21/2013, 11:58 AM

Building a bridge over a key spring -6/14/2013, 9:57 AM

Country matters: Lemon painted-cup taking over -6/7/2013, 8:52 AM

Wind dampens great camping -5/31/2013, 12:22 PM

Wildlife benefits can boost CRP offers -5/24/2013, 11:42 AM

Camping season begins -5/24/2013, 11:42 AM

Field day focuses on wildlife needs -5/17/2013, 11:52 AM

myTown Calendar

[var top_story_head]

Sebelius: Stint on wildlife commission 'tremendous'

Published on -8/5/2011, 10:07 AM

Printer-friendly version
E-Mail This Story



NORTON -- Doug Sebelius knew his days on the Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission were numbered even before his term expired.

But, Sebelius said he got a letter from the director of appointments for Gov. Sam Brownback, saying "thank you and sayonara. It sounded like I attempted to re-up and I didn't."

Don't take that to mean he didn't enjoy his time on the commission.

He did. Immensely so.

"Oh, it's fantastic," he said. "If people could do this on their own without considering it official business. Traveling the state and seeing what we've got out there for recreational opportunities.

"It's something everybody ought to do."

He was lucky enough to have the chance to do it as a member of the group responsible for passing rules and regulations governing what is now the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.

But it also convinced him to join others on the commission "trying to combat the natural deficit disorder."

Kansas is low on the list as far as state-owned properties are concerned, he said, but there's plenty of recreational opportunities.

Sebelius is convinced KDWP does a "great job of getting programs out."

While he's not much of a hunter, thanks in large part to his wife, an avid birder, he delights in getting outside.

"If I would have shot a bird, I would have been loathed forever," he said, chuckling. "I love fishing and boating."

And with a reservoir, named for Keith Sebelius, his father, just outside the city of Norton, Sebelius ducks out to try his hand at catching fish whenever possible.

So many other people in the state do the same thing, he said.

He thinks that's a reflection of what people in the state want -- more outdoor recreational opportunities.

He points to the state's Walk-in Hunting Areas and the use they receive as support for his argument.

"These things aren't land acquisition," he said, "they are land access programs."

In something of a parting shot, Sebelius said the Circle K deal with the city of Hays was "torpedoed" by the likes of then-Sen. Tim Huelskamp, who was among the strongest voices against the state wildlife agency.

Circle K is a ranch in Edwards County, jointly owned by the cities of Hays and Russell; KDWP&T for a brief time tried to buy it for use as a state park, but were rebuffed by legislators.

As for the absorption of the tourism bureau into the wildlife agency, Sebelius is taking a wait-and-see attitude.

"I'll keep an open mind," he said, but he cautions a lot of people he talked to didn't see it as a positive for the agency.

"The ones around here, they said, 'Hey, what gives?' " he said. "They thought they (wildlife and park interests) were going to take a back seat."

He'd also like to see a concerted effort to find a dedicated source of funding for parks.

Fee funds are good, he said, but there needs to be something dedicated to making sure parks are in good shape and improvements can be made.

His proposal?

Sebelius is convinced the state should wait until the latest 1 percent sales tax is about to expire and then retain an eighth of 1 percent, making it a dedicated source of money for parks.

That would let park fees remain reasonable so they can be used by more people.

As for Sebelius, he hopes to spend a bit more time fishing at -- where else -- Keith Sebelius Reservoir.

"The crappie fishing has been tremendous this year," he said. "I hope it's not just a honeymoon period, that we're being recognized as a good fisheries."

digg delicious facebook stumbleupon google Newsvine
More News and Photos

Associated Press Videos