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1995 Minnesota Session Laws

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

                             CHAPTER 124-H.F.No. 54 
                  An act relating to state government; directing the 
                  governor, attorney general, and other public officers 
                  to perform certain duties in regard to certain waters 
                  and public lands; proposing coding for new law in 
                  Minnesota Statutes, chapters 1 and 84B. 
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  [1.0451] [LIMITS ON CONSENT TO FEDERAL 
        ACQUISITIONS OF LANDS IN ST. LOUIS, LAKE, AND COOK COUNTIES; 
        WATER AND LAND OWNERSHIP; DUTIES OF STATE OFFICIALS.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [OWNERSHIP OF NAVIGABLE WATERS AND 
        BEDS.] Pursuant to applicable federal and state law under which 
        Minnesota was admitted to the union on equal footing with the 
        original 13 states, navigable waters and their beds located 
        within the exterior boundaries of the state are owned by the 
        state.  In a few limited circumstances, as in section 1.044, 
        relating to the Upper Mississippi Wildlife and Fish Refuge, the 
        state has expressly granted its consent and concurrent 
        jurisdiction to the United States to acquire interests in water, 
        as well as land, for a limited purpose and in the limited area 
        described in its consent.  Unlike section 1.044, the consent 
        granted by the state in section 1.045 to acquisitions by the 
        United States for the Superior National Forest is limited to 
        land, only.  The state has never ceded to the United States, 
        either expressly or implicitly, its ownership of and 
        jurisdiction over the navigable waters and their beds that are 
        located within the exterior boundaries of the forest.  
           Subd. 2.  [STATE OWNERSHIP OF AND JURISDICTION OVER CERTAIN 
        LANDS.] Pursuant to the Organic Act that created the territory 
        of Minnesota (Act of Congress, March 3, 1849, 9 Stat. ch. 121, 
        section 18), and the Enabling Act that authorized the people of 
        the territory of Minnesota to establish the state of Minnesota 
        (Act of Congress, February 26, 1857, 11 Stat. ch. 60, section 5, 
        first paragraph), federal public domain lands located in 
        sections 16 and 36 in every township at the time of statehood 
        were granted to the state for the use of schools, together with 
        equivalent land located in other sections if section 16 or 36 
        had been disposed of before statehood.  In conformity with the 
        terms of the federal grant, the citizens of Minnesota, by 
        constitution, article 11, section 8, have dedicated the proceeds 
        from the sale or other disposition of these school grant lands, 
        and the proceeds from the sale or other disposition of lands 
        subsequently received from the United States under swampland 
        grants, to public school purposes.  By constitution, article 11, 
        sections 8 and 10, the disposition of school and swampland grant 
        lands, frequently referred to as trust fund lands, is limited to 
        sale at public auction or exchange.  Roughly 100,000 acres of 
        state-owned, mostly trust fund land, is located within that 
        portion of the Superior National Forest that is described as the 
        Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.  Much of this state-owned 
        trust fund land, as well as other state-owned land that is 
        tax-forfeited and is held in trust for local taxing districts, 
        is high-value lakeshore land.  The state has not disposed of 
        these lands to the United States and has not ceded jurisdiction 
        over these lands, either expressly or implicitly, to the United 
        States. 
           Subd. 3.  [DUTIES OF CONSTITUTIONAL OFFICERS AND OTHER 
        STATE OFFICIALS.] In the discharge of their official duties, the 
        governor, attorney general, other constitutional officers, and 
        other public officials, such as the commissioner of natural 
        resources, shall vigorously assert and defend, in all forums, 
        the state's ownership of and jurisdiction over the navigable 
        waters and their beds, the state trust fund lands and lands held 
        in trust for local taxing districts located in the Superior 
        National Forest, the natural resources related to these lands, 
        waters, and beds, and the associated rights of the state and its 
        citizens arising from the state's ownership and jurisdictional 
        interests in these lands, waters, and beds.  In furtherance of 
        their duties, the governor, attorney general, other 
        constitutional officers, and other public officials shall, 
        additionally, be especially cognizant of the free rights of 
        travel afforded to citizens of Minnesota and others under the 
        Webster-Ashburton Treaty (proclaimed November 10, 1842) and the 
        Root-Bryce Treaty (proclaimed May 13, 1910) on international and 
        associated boundary waters.  Also, in furtherance of their 
        duties, in any exchange or other disposition of state-owned land 
        located within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, the 
        governor, attorney general, state auditor, commissioner of 
        natural resources, and any other public official involved in 
        such matters shall be especially cognizant of the high value of 
        the lakeshore and other state land located within the area. 
           Sec. 2.  [84B.061] [STATE JURISDICTION OVER RAINY LAKE AND 
        OTHER NAVIGABLE WATERS; DUTIES OF GOVERNOR, ATTORNEY GENERAL, 
        AND OTHER PUBLIC OFFICERS.] 
           As required by chapter 84B and the act of Congress 
        authorizing Voyageurs National Park, the state of Minnesota 
        donated in excess of 35,000 acres of state and other 
        publicly-owned land for the park, roughly one-fourth of the land 
        area of the park, at a cost of over $5,000,000 to the state.  
        More than 24,000 acres of this land was state trust fund land 
        which the state condemned before making its donation.  Pursuant 
        to section 84B.06, lands donated by the state, along with other 
        lands acquired by the national park service for the park, were 
        made subject to concurrent jurisdiction by the state and the 
        United States under section 1.041.  In making these donations 
        none of the navigable waters within the park and the lands under 
        them have been donated to the United States.  These navigable 
        waters include the following:  Rainy, Kabetogama, Namakan, Sand 
        Point, and Crane lakes.  Pursuant to applicable federal and 
        state law, navigable waters and their beds are owned by the 
        state.  Ownership of and jurisdiction over these waters and 
        their beds has not been ceded by the state, either expressly or 
        implicitly, to the United States.  Unlike section 1.044 relating 
        to the Upper Mississippi Wildlife and Fish Refuge, where the 
        state expressly granted its consent and jurisdiction to the 
        United States to acquire interests in water, as well as land, 
        the consent granted by the state in section 84B.06 to 
        acquisitions by the United States for Voyageurs National Park is 
        limited to land, only.  In the discharge of their official 
        duties, the governor, attorney general, other constitutional 
        officers, and other public officials, such as the commissioner 
        of natural resources, shall vigorously assert and defend, in all 
        forums, the state's ownership of and jurisdiction over these 
        waters and their beds and related natural resources, together 
        with associated rights of the state and its citizens arising 
        from the state's ownership and jurisdiction.  In discharging 
        their duties the governor, attorney general, other 
        constitutional officers, and other public officials shall, 
        additionally, be especially cognizant of the free rights of 
        travel afforded to citizens of Minnesota and others under the 
        Webster-Ashburton Treaty (proclaimed November 10, 1842) and the 
        Root-Bryce Treaty (proclaimed May 13, 1910) on international and 
        associated boundary waters.  Also, in furtherance of duties 
        under this section, the commissioner of natural resources shall 
        continue in effect the commercial removal of rough fish, as 
        defined in section 97A.015, subdivision 43, from these waters, 
        together with any rights to do so possessed by any person on 
        January 1, 1995, so long as the commissioner determines that 
        such taking is desirable to the management of the native fishery.
           Sec. 3.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           Sections 1 and 2 are effective the day following final 
        enactment. 
           Presented to the governor May 8, 1995 
           Became law without the governor's signature May 11, 1995

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