Parks, Trails Legacy plan hearings set

The new State and Regional Parks and Trails Legacy Plan is out for citizen comment and beginning Thursday, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will conduct public meetings around the state.

The plan, which was developed by the DNR, must be submitted to the Minnesota Legislature by mid-February. The plan will guide funding for the next 25 years for the state and regional parks and trails.

The draft plan was released Wednesday afternoon.

The Legislature directed the DNR to develop a vision which would guide how the park and trail portion of the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment funds will be spent, along with the traditional funds used for state and regional parks and trails.  The plan will identify gaps and needs in the current system and how to address them.

Citizens can make comments at the following workshops:

Mankato: Thursday Dec. 2, 7-9 p.m., Country Inn and Suites, 1900 Premier Dr.

Duluth
: Monday Dec. 6, 7-9 p.m., Holiday Inn-Downtown Waterfront, 200 W. First St.

Bemidji
: Tuesday Dec. 7, 7-9 p.m., Hampton Inn and Suites, 1019 Paul Bunyan Dr. S.

St. Paul
: Wednesday Dec. 8, 7-9 p.m. University of Minnesota Continuing Education and Conference Center, 1890 Buford Ave.

The DNR is proposing recommendations in four major areas: connecting people to the outdoors, strategic acquisitions, taking care of existing parks and trails and developing new opportunities to meet existing and future needs.

For more information, contact Project Manager Laurie Young at laures.young@state.mn.us, or 651-259-5638 or planner Emmett Mullin at Emmett.mullin@state.mn.us or call the DNR Information Center at 651-296-6157 or toll-free at 1-888-646-6367.

The constitutional amendment, passed in 2008, raised the sales tax by three-eights of a percent. Of that money, 14.25 percent goes to funding state, metro and greater Minnesota parks and trails projects.

 

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