The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has an update on the Delta Queen, whose fate has taken another turn. I found this paragraph particularly interesting:
Denial of the exemption occurred under U.S. Rep. James Oberstar, D-Minn., then chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. But after he lost his seat in November, the chairmanship passed to Republican John Mica of Florida, who said that if he got a request, he would grant an exemption and the Delta Queen could carry passengers once again.
So there might be hope that we'll see the DQ on the river again.