Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Michigan Natural Resource Commission to hold annual UP meeting Oct. 11

LANSING -- The Michigan Natural Resources Commission (NRC) will hold its annual Upper Peninsula meeting on Thursday, Oct. 11, in Ontonagon at the Theater of Performing Arts, located at 311 South Steel St.

The meeting begins at 1:30 p.m. with a meeting of the NRC’s Policy Committee on Wildlife and Fisheries. Committee members will receive reports from the Wildlife
Division and Fisheries Division chiefs on proposed policy and regulation changes, along with a presentation on the Little Bay de Noc Walleye Management Plan.

The NRC committee of the whole will then meet at 3 p.m. to receive a report from Department of Natural Resources Director Keith Creagh, including updates on the metallic minerals lease and development process, regional state forest management plans, and the encroachment resolution initiative summary.

Some local residents, including Keweenaw Bay Indian Community members, are concerned about metallic mineral leases requested by Kennecott Minerals in the area shown on the map below.

This map shows the area where Kennecott wants to lease mineral rights from the State of Michigan. Although Kennecott is seeking 15,000 acres of leases from the State, the map indicates the affected area of the 15,000 acres, which could amount to 45,000 acres affected or possibly consolidated in Kennecott possession -- thereby impacting the watersheds of Lake Superior and Lake Michigan. The State's metallic minerals lease and development process will be discussed at the Natural Resources Commission meeting in Ontonagon on Oct. 11, 2012. (Map courtesy Richard Sloat)

A number of fisheries orders are eligible for action by Director Creagh at the meeting, including a decision on proposed regulation changes for muskellunge and northern
pike statewide.

At 4 p.m., the Bay de Noc Great Lakes Sport Fishermen, Inc., of Delta County, will receive the DNR’s Partner in Conservation Award. The award presentation will be
immediately followed by public appearances before the NRC. Those wishing to make public comments to the NRC should contact Deb Whipple, executive assistant to the NRC, at 517-373-2352 or to register.

Individuals registered by 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 5, will be allowed five minutes to address the commission on agenda topics, and three minutes for topics not on the meeting agenda. Registration for public comment is still possible after Oct. 5, with a time limit of three minutes to address the commission. Registration cards will be available at the meeting.

For more information about the NRC, including the full meeting agenda, informational memos and past meeting minutes, visit

Click here for the agenda for this Oct. 11 meeting.

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