The final piece of the 2017 budget agreement was a $988 million bonding bill (HF 5), which passed in the wee hours on the last day of session. The bonding bill funds building and infrastructure projects, including park and trail projects. Specifically, the bill includes:
$15 million for DNR Asset Preservation.
- This money is used by the DNR to fix crumbling infrastructure, including buildings, roads, trails, and campgrounds. This appropriation can be spent on all DNR-owned properties including, but not limited to, parks and trails.
$5 million for Metropolitan Regional Parks and Trails
$3.6 million for Cuyuna State Recreation Area
$3.5 million for Lake Vermilion/Soudan Underground State Park
- for continued development of Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park recreational facilities.
$3.3 million for the Gitchi Gami State Trail
$2.6 million for the Glacial Lakes State Trail
$3.3 million for the Heartland State Trail
$1.6 million for the Camp Ripley State Trail
- between the city of Little Falls and the Soo Line Trail. The trail connection may include separated segments to accommodate recreational vehicles separately from nonmotorized vehicles and pedestrians.
- originally F 548 & SF 434
$1 million for the Prospector’s Loop ATV Trail
- between Ely, Babbitt, Embarrass, and Tower; Bear Head Lake and Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Parks. We’re concerned about what this appropriation may mean towards allowing off-highway vehicles in state parks, and are watching this issue closely.
- originally HF 114 & SF 238
$328k for the Mill Towns State Trail