Michigan Lawmakers Ponder Campground Rescue

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April 12, 2011 by   - () Leave a Comment

Republican state lawmakers representing much of northern Michigan said Monday (April 11) they want to give local governments the option of taking over 23 state forest campgrounds that could be closed as early as next month, Associated Press reported.

Lawmakers said they're developing legislation that would allow land rights and management responsibilities of a site to be transferred for $1 if local governments agree to keep a property open for campground purposes.

Twenty-three state forest campgrounds in the Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Peninsula could be closed as early as May 19 under a proposal from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The campgrounds targeted for closing are seldom-used compared to other campgrounds.

Many are near some of the other 110 state forest campgrounds that would remain open for the upcoming season.

State forest campgrounds are more rustic and have fewer amenities than Michigan's state parks. Forest campgrounds generally are unstaffed, but require upkeep that is increasingly difficult given the Department of Natural Resources' budget problems.

State Sen. John Moolenaar, R-Midland, stressed the plan would be voluntary.

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