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Preston’s National Trout Center included in MN 2012 Senate Bonding Bill

Mon, Apr 16th, 2012
Posted in Preston Government

Senator Jeremy Miller recently informed National Trout Center (NTC) representatives that the current Minnesota Senate Bonding Bill includes a $1 million item for the center’s permanent home located in Preston, “Minnesota’s Trout Capital.”

National Trout Center Board Chair, Dr. George Spangler – U of MN Professor Emeritus, Dept. Fisheries, Wildlife, & Conservation Biology, presented Preston’s National Trout Center funding request of $3.5 million before the MN Senate Capital Investment Committee on March 14, 2012. Requested funds would be used for pre-design, land acquisition and site preparation, and construction of a 10,000 square-foot building sited along the South Branch of the Root River.

The National Trout Center is a non-profit corporation whose mission is to conserve our natural and cultural heritage of trout and the cold-water stream resources of the four-state region, known as the “Driftless Area” (unglaciated region), which includes the SE corner of Minnesota.

This project is an economic engine for SE Minnesota, as well as for the entire state. The National Trout Center will have “national” impact as fishing is a popular sport nationwide among men, women, and families. Analysis of the Driftless Area trout fishery revealed more than $1.1 Billion in annual trout fishing-related economic activity in the four-state region. The annual value of recreational fishing in this area equals approximately 1/3 of Wisconsin’s dairy industry, about 1/3 of Minnesota receipts from corn and dairy products, and exceeds the combined revenues of all five of Chicago’s professional sports teams, $848 million.

The NTC self-sustaining building project will provide year-round benefits to the region by enhancing tourism opportunities beyond the traditional spring, summer, and fall seasons; adding additional economic revenue to the current $11 Billion generated annually in MN by tourism and hospitality related industries statewide.

Outdoor recreation is at the heart of the quality of life in Minnesota and the National Trout Center project will continue to enhance these recreational opportunities for everyone who calls Minnesota “home.”

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