Five hearings have been set to hear from the public on a proposed federal-state land swap involving land in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.
The state owns about 86,000 acres inside the 1.1 million acre BWCA, the Duluth News Tribune said. This proposed swap would involve about 30,000 acres, with the state, in return, getting to choose land in the Superior National Forest of equal value.
Looking ahead, the federal government would like to eventually purchase the rest of the land inside the BWCA, which is part of the state’s “school trust land.”
But some oppose the swap because it would take land in the Superior National Forest out of the more ecologically protective federal hands. Instead, they’d like the federal government to straight-out buy the Boundary Waters land from the state.
The paper says the U.S. Forest Service’s public meetings, all scheduled from 4 to 7 p.m., will be:
- March 9: Gunflint Ranger Station, 2020 W. Minnesota Highway 61, Grand Marais
- March 10: Laurentian Ranger Station, 318 Forestry Road, Aurora
- March 12: Forest Headquarters, 8901 Grand Avenue Place, Duluth
- March 23: Kawishiwi Ranger Station, 1393 Minnesota Highway 169, Ely
- March 26: Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Headquarters, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul