Proposed Sale of Forest Out of the Woods For Now

1 decade 1 month 1 week ago August 15, 2006 Aug 15, 2006 Tuesday, August 15 2006 Tuesday, August 15, 2006 9:14:19 PM CDT in News

But, critics don't like the idea of selling parts of the forest to the highest bidders.

"Most average people rely on public lands to go on retreat and to hunt, to fish, to hike, to bike, many things we all enjoy as recreational activities," said Steve Hollis. "And, once these lands are sold, we'll never as people be able to afford to buy them back."

Hollis organized a town meeting in March for neighbors to discuss the plan.

"It's a short-term solution," he added. "Once the land is sold, there is no further revenue for those schools. So it's not a sustainable revenue source."

Democratic U.S. House candidate Duane Burghard sees another potential problem with future land donations if the proposed sale goes through.

"If they see what the government is willing to do any time they have a short-term cash flow problem, and they are willing to sell off our national resources, they are going to be a lot less likely to donate that land," he said.

Congressman Kenny Hulshof provided an update Tuesday on the proposed sale.

"We had a good give and take about how this proposal, and really how this effort of this grassroot opposition, helped us make the case to not allow that sale to occur," he said.

Hulshof also said Congress is exploring other possibilities to fund rural public schools instead of selling national forest land.

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