Minn. DNR to hear outdoor concerns

Elk herd
The DNR is holding a roundtable this weekend to listen to concerns of people who hunt, fish, and enjoy the outdoors.
MPR Photo courtesy MNDNR

Minnesota Department of National Resources officials are listening this weekend to people who hunt, fish, and enjoy the outdoors. The DNR Roundtables are held once a year, a chance for agency workers to hear from citizens.

The DNR is not in charge of the money, but it will no doubt be applying for some of the funds.

One of the big topics this year is how to invest the sales tax money that will start coming in this summer, following voters' approval of a constitutional amendment.

Steve Hirsch, of the DNR's Ecological Resources division, said people are starting to build a cooperative attitude about how to handle the new money. "We're not looking specific project ideas at this point, we just want to give people a chance to talk," Hirsch said. "Give us ideas about what direction this needs to go in."

One-third of the money is slated to go to land conservation and improved habitat, one-third to water quality and the rest to parks and trails, and the arts. The total amount is expected to approach $300,000.

Other sessions focus on the DNR's management of deer and walleye, and environmental review of planned precious minerals mines in northern Minnesota.