My first post on our new website coincides with two important conservation announcements. First I would like to reference the study done by Shawn P. Schottler (www.mn.nrcs.usda.gov/partnerships/.../HP%20Schottler%20et%20al.pdf). This study shows the connection between current agricultural practices and increased levels of erosion in rivers and streams across Minnesota. These changes are caused by agricultural practices which drain sensitive wetlands, convert crops to mainly corn and soybeans, and the increased use of drain tiling. Current agricultural practices are damaging our rivers and streams to an extent that we may never be able to fix. We need more responsible farm practices, better educated citizens, and legislation that encourages sustainable agricultural practices. I call on everyone to be advocates for these changes!
Secondly some members of the Minnesota Legislature are pushing a bill that would change the funding cycle for the LSOHC (Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council). The proposed changes include moving the funding cycle from an every year funding to an every other year cycle. This proposed change would significantly lessen the amount of grant dollars available to all conservation groups. Many projects which protect wild spaces, preserve water resources, provide wildlife habitat, and increase outdoor recreation opportunities would not be funded. These proposed changes would also fund a number of projects that have not been recommended by the LSOHC council. Please contact your state representative (http://www.leg.state.mn.us/leg/districtfinder.aspx) and encourage them to oppose the changes to the LSOHC funding cycle.