Shillinglaw presents Wisconsin Conservation Congress resolutions

To the Editor: 

At the statewide Wisconsin Conservation Congress hearings a resolution was presented for a vote in three counties as a trial. This resolution was as follows:

Title: Sale of State Land

The Problem: The state legislature has passed a bill requiring the DNA to identify and sell 10,000 acres of state owned land over the next four years. Thus far DNR staff has identified 1,500 acres to be sold. A similar land sale was conducted during the Thompson administration, which therefore depleted the amount of marginal state land available for sale. 

As the current process goes forward, it will be harder to find lands to sell that don’t have significant conservation and recreational value, including outdoor experience for our future hunters, fishers, trappers, and other youth interested in being outdoors. 

We need these public lands as a refuge for wildlife and for all people who desire to know the natural world. Also, it has been shown that public lands are valuable economically for tourism. In the present budget there are additional recommendations to curtail purchase of lands for public use. 

Be it resolved: That the Conservation Congress requests that the Wisconsin State Legislature place a moratorium on DNR public land sales or pass legislation to end further sales of the 10,000 acres.

The vote was 86 in favor of the resolution and 8 opposed, with the Waushara County vote 31 in favor and 5 opposed. This is evidence that there is overwhelming opposition to the sale of public lands.

 

/s/ John Shillinglaw, Madison