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Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council allocates funding

Sen. Tom Saxhaug, DFL-Grand Rapids, attended the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council meeting earlier this month, where the council determined allocations on a number of items related to the protection, restoration and enhancement of wetlands, p...

Sen. Tom Saxhaug, DFL-Grand Rapids, attended the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council meeting earlier this month, where the council determined allocations on a number of items related to the protection, restoration and enhancement of wetlands, prairies, forests and habitat for native fish and wildlife.

The council receives one-third of the money raised by the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment as passed by Minnesota voters in 2008. This year, just over $100 million was set aside for projects under the council's jurisdiction.

Saxhaug's priorities have been to preserve north central Minnesota's forests by preventing fragmentation and promoting the consolidation of forest lands. To that end, a project to protect key forest lands in Cass County has received particular attention. Saxhaug was able to procure $500,000 for Cass County to acquire the lands, which are considered key tracts in promoting healthy, sustainable, multi-use forests.

Another local project received $3,150,000 in funding to conserve targeted habitat along the Mississippi River. The Mississippi Headwaters Board is tasked with protecting the first 400 miles of "America's River," and a Habitat Corridor Project will go a long way to ensure the viability of the river for recreation, drinking water and industry needs long into the future.

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