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TODAY: Dewey Short Visitor Center to Close

BRANSON, Mo. – Only a week after announcing plans to keep the Dewey Short Visitor Center open during the government shutdown, it was announced on Wednesday it would be closed effective Thursday, October 10.
BRANSON, Mo. – Only a week after announcing plans to keep the Dewey Short Visitor Center open during the government shutdown, it was announced on Wednesday it would be closed effective on Thursday, October 10.

According to a press release, the Visitor Center was to be kept open and staffed by volunteers of the Ozarks Rivers Heritage Foundation.

“Due to the exhaustion of Table Rock funding and an absence of appropriations, we are closing the Visitor’s Center to the public after today,” say Little Rock District Operations Division Chief John Balgavy in a separate news release on Wednesday.

The press release goes on to say the district was able to manage the furlough of employees due to the availability of multi-year fiunding.

As these funds dwindle, Corps officials expect more furloughs and impacts to its multi-faceted activities, including civil works, military missions, navigation, planning, real estate, recreation, regulatory and water control, according to the release.

“We were told today that Dewey Short Visitor Center will be closed effective tomorrow,” said Executive Director of Ozarks Rivers Heritage Foundation Sheila Thomas in the release. “We are fully prepared and capable of operating this facility without Corps’ assistance in the short term, but their decision means that won’t be happening.”

The Foundation previously had a cooperative agreement with the Corps, which was drafted by the Corps and signed in 2010, according to the release. The agreement was abruptly terminated by the Corps in a unilateral decision on Sept. 16.

The Visitor Center and grounds will be closed until the shutdown ends, according to the release.

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