The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) proposes to remove the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) designation from the Lower Sioux Agency History Center (Lower Sioux Agency). The Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS) will convey portions of the Lower Sioux Agency to the Lower Sioux Indian Community (LSIC). LWCF status needs to be removed in order for the LSIC to enroll the land in trust. The site is located along County State Aid Highway 2 in Redwood County, Minnesota. The DNR is coordinating this process on behalf of the Minnesota Historical Society. The transfer of the Lower Sioux Agency was authorized by the Minnesota Legislature and signed into law in 2017 (Minn. Law 2017, Ch. 54 § 23).
Section 6(f)(3) of the LWCF Act states that no property acquired or developed with assistance under this program shall, without the approval of the Secretary of the Department of the Interior, be converted to non-outdoor recreation uses. In accordance with LWCF Act conversion requirements, the DNR intends to submit an application to the National Park Service for the conversion of 125.46 acres of park land.
Response to comments on environmental assessment
The DNR has issued the Response to Comments (RTC) which contains the department’s responses to all substantive written comments received on the Environmental Assessment during the 30-day public review and comment period.
The DNR Parks and Trails (PAT) Division will submit the EA, all attachments and figures, RTC, and other documentation required, to the National Park Service (NPS) for its review of the proposed removal of LWCF status from the identified park lands. The NPS will review the documentation sent by DNR PAT and issue a finding.
Environmental assessment (EA)
The DNR prepared an EA for the project. A 30-day public review and comment period was held from January 09, 2020 until 4:30 p.m., February 10, 2020.
Questions: Please contact Cynthia Novak-Krebs with any questions or to request a copy of the documents.