(The following is a letter from Rep. James Lockhart to Gov. Mary Fallin concerning the Tourism Department’s decision to not assist with the Christmas light display at Wister Lake.)
The Christmas lights display at Wister Lake State Park occurs during a time when the park activity is very slow. It does not cost much money to put up the lights and turn them on and off each evening. All it requires is a little bit of man power, which the Department of Tourism has on salary 12 months of the year.
The argument tourism is making about the budget is a moot point. They help Robbers Cave State Park with their fall festival, yet they won’t help us.
Tourism officials are blatantly not willing to work with the Poteau Chamber of Commerce. They are however, willing to refer my constituents to a corporate lobbiest for information regarding the Department of Tourism.
I think this is a sad day, when party politics ruins a Christmas program that benefits so many at such little cost.
I will go so far as to say it might be time to consider replacing some people in the Department of Tourism.
I find it extremely disrespectful that an agency head appointed by you, Governor Fallin refuses to return my calls and is totally unwilling to work with my constituents.
I urge you to motivate officials at the department of tourism to fully cooperate with the Poteau Chamber of Commerce and my constituents in order for this Christmas program to be a continued success.