In November of 2008, Minnesotan voters overwhelmingly passed the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment to restore, preserve and enhance some of the most important elements of the state. The Legacy Amendment increased the state sales tax by three-eighths of one percent, with revenue divided between four funds: 33% for the Clean Water Fund, 33% to the Outdoor Heritage Fund for wildlife habitat, 19.75% to the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, and 14.25% to the Parks and Trails Fund. This amendment to the Minnesota Constitution is often referred to as the “Legacy Amendment”.
The Minnesota State Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF-N) has successfully leveraged funds raised by volunteers at local Hunting Heritage banquets with Legacy funds to enhance habitat for wild turkeys and associated wildlife, and protect lands to provide places for future generations to recreate.
Anoka Sandplain Partnership (ASP): NWTF-MN has been a member of the Anoka Sandplain Partnership, a coalition of 25 conservation stakeholders with a mission to bring together their collective expertise, resources and connections to advance terrestrial and freshwater resource conservation in this ecological region, since its inception. The ASP has secured four Legacy grants totaling over $10 million and restoring or enhancing nearly 11,500 acres. NWTF-MN has provided matching funds for each of these grants, and has been the direct recipient of nearly $680,000, enhancing 845 acres to date. NWTF-MN has focused on enhancing oak woodlands and savannas in the Central Minnesota Focal Landscape by treating invasive species, re-introducing prescribed fire to woodlands, and seeding native grasses and forbs lost to succession. We have worked on the Sartell, Ereaux, McDougall, Sponsa, and Buckhorn Lake Wildlife Management Areas.
Conservation Partner Legacy (CPL) Grants: The Conservation Partners Legacy (CPL) Grant Program funds conservation projects that restore, enhance, or protect forests, wetlands, prairies, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife in Minnesota. Funding for the CPL grant program is from the Outdoor Heritage Fund, as administered by the Minnesota DNR. These are competitive matching grants from $5,000 to $400,000 for local, regional, state, and national nonprofit organizations, including government entities.
NWTF has secured several CPL grants since 2011, including:
Wildlife opening maintenance in the Bemidji area.
Savanna Establishment on the Whitewater WMA
Oak savanna establishment on the Dutch Charley Creek WMA in Redwood County
Swamp white oak planting at Zumbro Bottoms on the Whitewater WMA
Oak herbivory protection near Detroit Lakes
Oak woodland and savanna enhancement on the Little Nokasippi WMA
Oak savanna burning on the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge
Oak woodland management on the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge
Oak re-establishment after blowdown on the Pillsbury State Forest
Oak hand release after blowdown on the St. Croix State Forest
Erect a deer-proof fence to protect seedlings on the Lamprey Pass WMA
NWTF-MN has also provided matching funds for several other Legacy projects involving land acquisitions and forest management with important conservation partners, including Minnesota DNR, Minnesota Deer Hunters Association, Pheasants Forever, and others.