Representative Steve Drazkowski recently proposed an amendment to HF1010 that would require logging at Frontenac and Whitewater State Parks. This is an unprecedented move that would target black walnut (Juglans nigra) and other trees of value. The promises of revenue are far-fetched and this would benefit only a handful of individuals in Mr. Drazkowski’s district. We have state forest for a reason and the same goes with state parks. This is not only bad environmentally, it’s bad economically.
Doug Smith of the Star Tribune published a piece on this issue on March 26th (http://www.startribune.com/politics/local/118690399.html). The comments section is very interesting and encouraging. Please follow HF1010 by visiting the Minnesota House of Representatives homepage (http://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/) and type in 1010 following the HF in the upper left-hand corner of the webpage. Also contact this Representative and fellow committee members including Rep. McNamara. Voice your opinion one way or the other.
The actual language reads:
Sec. 21. HARVEST OF TIMBER; STATE PARKS.
Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.05, subdivision 2, or any other law to the contrary, the commissioner of natural resources shall assess the black walnut and other timber resources in Frontenac State Park and Whitewater State Park, harvest the black walnut and timber resources suitable for harvest, and deposit the proceeds from the sale into the state parks account in the natural resources fund by June 30, 2013.
This can be found on Page 1064 of the amended bill. You can easily skip through most of this text by running a search in the internet browser of your choice, using the key words “Harvest of Timber” and that should take you directly there.
We report, you decide (we hope).