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DNR lands bill clears hurdles

Published (3/11/2010)
By Sue Hegarty
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Typically each year, the Department of Natural Resources decides that it no longer needs some of its land holdings and needs legislative authority to sell them. Parcels offered for sale to the DNR may be required to have legislative authority for the purchase.

HF3051, sponsored by Rep. David Dill (DFL-Crane Lake), comprises the DNR lands bill; its passage would authorize the sale and purchase of varying sizes of property in multiple counties.

The House Environment Policy and Oversight Committee approved the bill March 9 and referred it to the House Environment and Natural Resources Finance Division.

A provision that would allow the DNR to sell land for less than its appraised value drew criticism. Rep. Steve Drazkowski (R-Wabasha) suggested the DNR hold out for a while longer until the economy improves.

Dill said the provision to sell below appraised value was included because it would apply to land that did not sell at its appraised value and needs to be liquidated. About a year remains on the statutory deadline for the sale of unsold parcels.

Sen. Dan Skogen (DFL-Hewitt) sponsors a companion, SF2864, which awaits action by the Senate Environment and Natural Resources Committee.

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