Zorn applauds River Raisin battlefield project as top trust fund recommendation

LANSING—Sen. Dale Zorn applauded the city of Monroe for its proposal to purchase land adjacent to the River Raisin battlefield. The plan was the top priority in the Natural Resources Trust Fund (NRTF) board’s land acquisition project recommendations.

“The River Raisin National Battlefield Park is the site of the devastating Battle of Frenchtown and is the only national battlefield park from the War of 1812,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “It speaks volumes to the importance of the River Raisin site and the hard work by local leaders that this project was scored as the state’s number one priority for land acquisitions.”

The plan approved by the NRTF board includes $4,986,200 toward a $7 million project for Monroe to acquire properties adjacent to the River Raisin National Battlefield project that would be used for accessible recreation, the conservation of natural resources and the improvement of urban areas.

The Michigan state budget director recently requested legislation be approved this year to authorize NRTF funding for the River Raisin project and 68 other recommended projects.

“The battlefield is an important historical, cultural and natural resource,” said Zorn, vice chair of the Senate Outdoor Recreation and Tourism Committee. “I strongly support this project and look forward to quickly approving the use of these constitutionally restricted funds to help connect the national park with the community. It is about helping preserve a piece of our heritage and also improve access to outstanding outdoor recreation.”

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 fund has awarded more than $1 billion for land acquisition and public outdoor recreation development projects for communities in every county.