Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Minnesota Legislature

New Law: Residents can buy public land parcels

Published (7/15/2011)
By Sue Hegarty
Share on: 

Residents can volunteer to help maintain wildlife management areas, under a new program administered by the Department of Natural Resources. Effective May 28, 2011, the Minnesota adopt-a-WMA program allows individuals, civic and outdoors groups to work in conjunction with DNR officials to make improvements to WMAs and to receive recognition through posted signage.

Sponsored by Rep. Dan Fabian (R-Roseau) and Sen. John Carlson (R-Bemidji), the law also includes the addition and deletion of several tracks of public land. State park boundaries will expand for Scenic State Park and William O’Brien State Park. The Hayes Lake State Park boundary will shrink.

Other places where public land will be added include Greenleaf Lake State Recreation Area, the Iron Range Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area and Smoky Hills State Forest. The law stipulates that any revenue generated from mineral rights or leases purchased within the Iron Range OHV Recreation Area, other than Trust Fund land, be deposited into a natural resource fund dedicated account.

A portion of Lost River State Forest in Roseau County will be removed from the state forest and redesignated as land within the Roseau Lake WMA. Several acres of land used as a picnic and playground area bordering Town Lake and the Otter Tail River in Becker County may be sold to a local government, provided it remains open to the public.

Several counties and the DNR have tax-forfeited land for public sale, including Carlton, Cass, Douglas, Itasca, Pine, St. Louis and Stearns. Private sales of public land is also provided for in Becker, Douglas, Itasca, Marshall, Pine, Otter Tail, St. Louis and Watonwan counties. And in Winona County, about 1.4 acres on Alcorn Island along the south side of Interstate 90 will be conveyed to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service after the Dresbach bridge project is completed. Land sales are effective on or after May 28, 2011.

There is also a provision that permanently validates Dakota County’s reversionary interest in the land deeded to the state for use as the Minnesota Zoo. The agreement is effective when the county board also approves the measure.

HF1230/ SF712*/CH98

Session Weekly More...

Session Weekly Home

Related Stories

Minnesota Index: Enjoying the outdoors
Facts and statistics on state parks and trails
(view full story) Published 4/20/2012

Minnesota Index: Birding
Facts and statistics on birding in Minnesota
(view full story) Published 4/6/2012

A prickly situation
Farmers seek fair fight against noxious weeds
(view full story) Published 3/16/2012

Angling for more participation
DNR looks for ways to get more anglers and hunters into the great outdoors
(view full story) Published 3/2/2012

Meeting halfway
Environment and energy law packs policy changes
(view full story) Published 8/11/2011

Legacy bill brought back to life
More than $449 million appropriated from voter-approved sales tax increase
(view full story) Published 8/11/2011

Trees from start to finish
Environment finance bill would close tree nursery
(view full story) Published 5/20/2011

Legacy spending differences
Conference committee needed to determine parks and trails funding
(view full story) Published 5/20/2011

Less means more
Some Legacy recipients may see increases despite drop in appropriation percentages
(view full story) Published 4/29/2011

Minnesota Index: Outdoor Heritage Fund
Facts and statistics on the Outdoor Heritage Fund
(view full story) Published 4/29/2011

Environment bill reflects ‘priorities’
House addresses wild rice, harvesting timber and closing of state parks
(view full story) Published 4/1/2011

Putting a stop to aquatic invasive species
Broader enforcement, stiffer penalties proposed for violators
(view full story) Published 4/1/2011

Wild rice study proposed
Committee approves policies for wild rice, state parks
(view full story) Published 3/25/2011

Should Minnesotans be hunting for land?
Legislators aim for no-net-loss and no-net-gain targets
(view full story) Published 3/4/2011

Minnesota Index: Horticulture and agriculture
Figures and statistics on horticulture and agriculture in Minnesota
(view full story) Published 3/4/2011

At Issue: Leaving a legacy
Recipients report outcomes of dedicated tax appropriations
(view full story) Published 2/4/2011