Brainerd Dispatch: Klobuchar, Franken, Nolan introduce land swap bill for Voyageurs National Park
WASHINGTON—U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, along with U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan, introduced legislation to help ensure all of the lands within Voyageurs National Park will be managed consistently.
The bill codifies a Department of Interior interagency land transfer and will save staff time and taxpayer dollars by eliminating the need for a duplicative land management renewal procedure that has required publication and notice in the Federal Register—a burdensome process for lands that were originally intended to be administered by the National Park Service when Voyageurs National Park was established, a news release said.
The measure, which has been introduced to the House Natural Resources Committee and Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, also proposes to exchange certain tracts of State and Federal land for more beneficial and mutual management, the release said.
According to the National Park Service, there are no anticipated costs associated with the land transfer itself.
"Voyageurs National Park is our nation's premier water-based Park and we must preserve it so visitors can continue to experience it for decades to come," Klobuchar said. "Our new legislation will provide more consistency to the land management of Voyageurs National Park while also saving taxpayer dollars. We'll keep working to make Voyageurs National Park an even better place to visit and enjoy."
Franken said the park was a national treasure that should be preserved.
"And that starts with how the park is managed," he said. "Our legislation will give the National Park Service the ability to more effectively care for Voyageurs, which is a commonsense step to support an already beautiful natural resource."
Nolan added that the bill would help make the park a better place to visit.
"Our legislation will ensure that all of Voyageurs National Park will be managed consistently to provide thousands of visitors with an even better experience here in our beautiful Minnesota north country," he said.