Little this, little that

Joe AlbertSome of the things on my radar screen, in no particular order:

  • Five friends and I fished at Upper Red Lake for two days a couple of weeks ago. The final tally: two tiny walleyes, one northern, and several perch. In a word, it was brutal. The temperature started dropping from the mid-20s as we arrived, and it seemed like it never stopped. The wind blew, too, and even short trips outside our sleeper house were no fun. We had plenty of fun inside, of course, despite the unwillingness of the fish to bite.
  • It’s going to be an interesting legislative session. Gov. Mark Dayton unveiled his proposed budget last week, which includes increases for the state agencies most responsible for natural resources and the environment. But those increases largely are dependent on lots of new revenue to the state, including an expansion of the sales tax. Though DFLers control the House and Senate, too, don’t expect a budget agreement to come about without plenty of debate.
  • The bills that carry the recommendations of the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council have been introduced, and council supporters are watching to see what happens and hoping to prevent any legislative mischief. It’s unclear at this early date what will happen, though it’s worth noting that in the House Legacy Committee, which Rep. Phyllis Kahn, DFL-Minneapolis, chairs, hearings were held this week on two projects for which the Lessard council opted not to recommend funding. One of those projects, proposed by the Fond du lac Band, already had been heard multiple times before the Lessard council. Definitely one to stay tuned on.
  • I’m quite certain the Legislature will take some action regarding an Asian carp barrier at Lock and Dam 1 on the Mississippi River. An engineering report the DNR commissioner said a $12 million to $19 million sound/bubble/light barrier was the way to go, but the legislative reaction wasn’t particularly supportive. Watch for a bill this week that would require an electric barrier.
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