Zorn applauds Crystal Waters project in trust fund recommendations

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn applauded the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund (NRTF) board for including the Crystal Waters project in Monroe County in its list of 2017 land acquisition recommendations.

“The Crystal Waters project would provide a wonderful public place for our sportsmen and sportswomen to hunt and fish,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “With more than six-and-a-half miles of proposed trails for the site, the land would also provide recreation opportunities such as hiking or just taking a walk through nature. While there are currently no inland public access lakes in Monroe County, this property has seven bodies of water, and a boat launch is proposed on an 85-acre lake.

“Crystal Waters will be a place for personal solitude and family enjoyment in Michigan’s great outdoors and is a positive use of the trust fund’s constitutionally restricted resources.”

The plan approved by the NRTF board includes $3.5 million to acquire 680 acres for a new Department of Natural Resources (DNR) state game area in northwest Monroe County. The property would be managed for deer, turkey, small game and waterfowl habitat, along with hunting and fishing opportunities.

“The Crystal Waters project is an example of the trust fund’s 40-year record of preserving our state’s natural resources and improving public access to outstanding recreational opportunities,” said Zorn, vice chair of the Senate Outdoor Recreation and Tourism Committee. “I strongly support this project and look forward to approving these restricted funds to enhance the quality of life in Michigan for generations to come.”

The NRTF is supported by interest earned on funds generated from the development of state-owned mineral rights. The fund’s dollars are constitutionally restricted to recreation improvements and land acquisitions.

Since its creation in 1976, the NRTF has awarded more than $1 billion for land acquisition and public outdoor recreation development projects for communities in every county.

The NRTF board’s recommendations for projects in 2017 will now head to the Legislature for review as part of the budget process.