The Managed Public Land Strategy, approved for implementation in September 2018, requires the DNR to review approximately 240,000 acres of state-owned land to determine whether these lands contribute to the department’s mission. These parcels are located throughout the state, and each one either:
- Is 200 acres or less, or
- Has an irregular shape resulting in a significant shared private-public boundary, making it potentially difficult to manage.
Certain parcels of land that meet this criteria – including developed boating access sites, designated trails and other DNR facilities – have been removed from the review, as they have been confirmed to contribute to the department’s mission.
The review will be conducted on a county-by-county basis, 10 counties at a time. The counties in each group will be geographically dispersed throughout the state. All parcels will go through a thorough multilevel, multidisciplinary review.
- Local: The review process starts with local forest unit managers, wildlife biologists, fisheries biologists and recreation specialists.
- Regional: Forestry, wildlife, fisheries and recreational aspects are reviewed at a regional level.
- Statewide: Forestry, wildlife, fisheries and recreational aspects are reviewed at a statewide level.
- By Program: Important issues such as mineral rights, deed restrictions and environmental impacts are reviewed by the DNR and the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy.
Public feedback: This is your chance to give input on the recommendations that came out of the review process before the DNR director makes a final decision on parcel classification.
All parcels involved in the state land review effort are recommended to be classified into one of the following categories:
- Retain in state ownership/DNR administration.
- Offer for potential ownership by a local unit of government or alternative conservation owner. If there is no interest, these parcels will be retained by the DNR.
- Exchange for another parcel of land, if a land exchange is available. The parcel will remain available for exchange proposals for two years. After that time, it will be disposed.
- Dispose via public auction. (Any parcels that are recommended to leave state ownership will first be offered to local units of government.)
Department of Natural Resources